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Saga - why are they so expensive?

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Saga - why are they so expensive?

Postby Dave » 16 Sep 2011 14:45

I've seen Saga ships at Dover, and they look quite nice - rather old-fashioned in a Fred Olsen sort of way.

I received a Saga brochure in the post yesterday and I was keen to see how their prices compare with other cruise lines. I had a shock!

I looked at a 15 night Iceland/UK cruise on Saga Sapphire for next August because it was only one day less than our cruise this August to Greenland & Iceland on Boudicca, and so I thought it'd make for a fair comparison.

The price (after discount) is £2499pp for the cheapest inside cabin, and £5427pp for a balcony cabin. Yes, I know gratuities are included, but I have to ask... why are Saga so expensive?
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Re: Saga - why are they so expensive?

Postby CGBOWLER » 16 Sep 2011 14:56

I think when my brother & wife went with Saga they were transferred by chauffeur-driven car from their home in Crowborough to Southampton & back, included in the price. Still expensive though and there was a maximum distance involved. I can't remember if there were other included advantages.
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Re: Saga - why are they so expensive?

Postby hazel20 » 16 Sep 2011 15:18

I believe it also includes insurance (which for the age profile must be fairly costly)..........door-to-door transport......gratuities.

I guess you have to factor all these in and then compare.
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Saga Pearl II - Adriatic - October 2017
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Re: Saga - why are they so expensive?

Postby Dave » 16 Sep 2011 15:36

hazel20 wrote:I believe it also includes insurance (which for the age profile must be fairly costly)..........door-to-door transport......gratuities.

I guess you have to factor all these in and then compare.


Fred Olsen's cheapest inside cabin for Greenland/Iceland, 16 nights, next summer is £1869 (brochure price).

Saga's cheapest inside cabin for Iceland/UK, 15 nights, next summer is £2499pp (brochure price).

Saga offer a discount of £56pp if you don't want their included insurance. I guess the 'chauffeur' service (which can be for distances up to 75 miles) is worth perhaps £50pp (or you can opt for 'free' car parking). Gratuities for 15 nights might be worth £75pp.

I'm not trying to knock Saga - as I said, we're interested, but I still can't see why there's such a big price difference. I must be missing something!
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Re: Saga - why are they so expensive?

Postby Fossil » 16 Sep 2011 16:32

Hi Dave, I have taken on board what you say (excuse the pun) and agree that Saga are expensive. Could I also respectfully suggest that you are a little out of touch with prices. 14 days gratuities at £75 is very low. Celebrity would be $161, RCI $163.10, HAL $154 and Princess $161. The only cheaper one would be P&O at £43.40. (Source http://cruisetip.tpkeller.com/ ) As for the taxi up to 75 miles. Most cab firms in our area charge £2 a mile. I know it does not make up the difference but you then have to compare the standard of service on board and reviews suggest there is a difference. Saga like Fred Olsen have a very loyal customer base so they must have something that keeps their customers happy. I am hoping to do some ships visits to Saga early next year so will let you know the difference. ;)
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Re: Saga - why are they so expensive?

Postby Skier Pete » 16 Sep 2011 17:38

The other thing about Saga is they have less room on their ships for cabins as they have larger capacity morgues than is usual. A typical 70,000 - 100,000 tonne has 2-3 places, Saga ships have 5-7.

They tend to keep this relatively quiet, but i found out from my mother ( who has done 3 world cruises with them + other shorter cruises) as that is the sort of question she would ask , especially on the longer sea passages.

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Re: Saga - why are they so expensive?

Postby Dave » 16 Sep 2011 17:39

Fossil1 wrote:Hi Dave, I have taken on board what you say (excuse the pun) and agree that Saga are expensive. Could I also respectfully suggest that you are a little out of touch with prices. 14 days gratuities at £75 is very low. Celebrity would be $161, RCI $163.10, HAL $154 and Princess $161. The only cheaper one would be P&O at £43.40. (Source http://cruisetip.tpkeller.com/ ) As for the taxi up to 75 miles. Most cab firms in our area charge £2 a mile. I know it does not make up the difference but you then have to compare the standard of service on board and reviews suggest there is a difference. Saga like Fred Olsen have a very loyal customer base so they must have something that keeps their customers happy. I am hoping to do some ships visits to Saga early next year so will let you know the difference. ;)
Alan

I don't think I'm that out of touch...

Gratuities on Boudicca and Black Watch last month were £4pp per day, and would have been just under £7pp per day on QM2 (had we gone).

I guessed Saga might be somewhere between the two, but nearer the Fred Olsen end, so I allowed £5pp per day. Perhaps I'm just out of touch with American-owned cruise lines! :D
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Re: Saga - why are they so expensive?

Postby Gemma » 17 Sep 2011 05:28

Does any one have any idea if Saga holidays are also expensive when compared to other companies ?
At the other end of the scale - I understand Disney cruises are also expensive. So maybe parents with kids are willing to pay that bit extra for the amenities and entertainment on Disney just as the mature feel safer on Saga feeling their needs and tastes will be catered for more than on a main line ship
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Re: Saga - why are they so expensive?

Postby Dave » 17 Sep 2011 10:21

Gemma wrote:Does any one have any idea if Saga holidays are also expensive when compared to other companies ?
At the other end of the scale - I understand Disney cruises are also expensive. So maybe parents with kids are willing to pay that bit extra for the amenities and entertainment on Disney just as the mature feel safer on Saga feeling their needs and tastes will be catered for more than on a main line ship

I think you're right about Disney and Saga catering for niche markets Gemma. It's just that it means reviews on those cruise lines are rare and, to me anyway, they're a bit of a mystery.
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Re: Saga - why are they so expensive?

Postby hazel20 » 17 Sep 2011 10:35

Like FO, they do have a loyal customer base.............it must be priced to sell and you rarely see Saga cruises discounted so demand must be high.
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Crystal Symphony - Around UK - Aug 2017
Saga Pearl II - Adriatic - October 2017
Saga Pearl II - Christmas 2017
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