A European cruise can be surprisingly affordable because you pay many costs upfront in dollars, not in pricey euros or pounds. "A cruise fare includes everything you absolutely need, such as transportation from port to port, food, entertainment, a kids club, water and coffee," said Carolyn Spencer Brown, editor of CruiseCritic.com, a consumer information website. Look to fall and winter for cruise fares as low as $499 a person, double occupancy, for seven-day eastern Mediterranean itineraries and $679 for the western Mediterranean, she said. Airfare is extra, of course, although a few luxury lines are offering free flights for select voyages.
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