Cruise lines penalize singles

Regarding "Cruising for Bargains," by Si Liberman [Aug. 16]: It is true that cruise lines are offering some good bargains. However, in many cases the single traveler is not able to take advantage of these advertised bargains because of the penalty cruise lines impose on single cruisers.

My travel agent tried to book a March 8, 2010, itinerary on the Holland America Rotterdam that was promoted to Mariner Society members at $6,999 per person for a Verandah Suite. The pricing proposal from Holland America for my booking was $14,800.

The same attitude was also demonstrated by Cunard on a Queen Elizabeth maiden voyage promotion for Oct. 12, 2010, for an advertised price of $6,455 for a Princess Suite. Cunard quoted me $13,400. Neither Holland America nor Cunard made any counterproposal to me as a senior single traveler. They seem to totally ignore the value of the older, mature single traveler's potential market.

I am fortunate, however, that Regent Seven Seas has an enlightened policy about single travelers and has booked me for a Sept. 9 cruise. Factoring in the shipboard credits, business-class airfare discount pricing and free port tours, my suite will be a bargain and my cruise a real adventure.

Stanley Steinberg

Thousand Oaks

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