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High Hotel Rates Got You Down? A Boat May Be Better Value

Make your money go further and take to the water.

Bloomberg Businessweek

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yacht in Croatia

The Kairós yacht can be chartered for Croatian adventures through Sailing-Classics. (Source: Sailing Classics)

Hotel rates in Europe have jumped 50% since 2019, according to market researcher CoStar Group, but one place where pricing is relatively stable—even if your footing isn’t—is on a boat. The cost of a cruise can be a steal when you consider it also includes meals and entertainment.

Ironically, the more luxurious the cruise, the more value you can extract. Seabourn’s 600-passenger Encore (seven-night sailings from $3,999 per person) includes unlimited caviar and Champagne on trips to small ports such as the ancient Greek town of Monemvasia, typically accessible only to yachts. Regent Seven Seas Cruises redefines the meaning of “all-inclusive” by covering round-trip business-class airfare from 29 US and Canadian cities to the port. That alone could make a seven-night sailing between Athens and Istanbul on the 698-passenger Seven Seas Voyager (from $8,999 per person) worth every penny.

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The eight-cabin Kairós. (Source: Sailing Classics)

For a more intimate experience, motor over from Malta to Sicily, Capri and Rome on SeaDream Yacht Club’s 112-passenger SeaDream I (from $5,999 per person for seven nights), newly outfitted with a waterslide that plummets from the top deck into the sea. Other bells and whistles include kayaks, Jet Skis and paddle boards.

You can even find deals on private yacht rentals. The Moorings, a charter company, offers springtime sales of up to 20% off, bringing down the cost of a four-cabin monohull to $6,389 per week. (Add a skipper for an additional $1,925.) In Italy, Dream Yacht Worldwide is currently promoting private charters with a skipper that start at $443 per person per night in the spring and fall—a price that only goes up to $756 in the peak summer months. And the Dutch company Sailing-Classics sells individual accommodations on the eight-cabin schooner Kairós (about €3,300, or roughly $3,500, per person for a week), which explores the glorious coves of the Croatian coast.

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This post originally appeared on Bloomberg Businessweek and was published April 30, 2024. This article is republished here with permission.

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