Monday 1 October 2012

Rare and Deep Discounts on Antarctic Cruises

AdventureSmith Explorations ( the active travel company that secures matches between adventure-seeking clients and a treasure trove of small, expedition ships, reports unprecedented deep discounts in cruises to Antarctica this coming season.

“One of the main factors may be that travel bookings slow down as a U.S. Presidential election approaches,” speculates Todd Smith, AdventureSmith founder and director. Smith explains that August through November is prime booking season for Antarctica small ship expeditions.

“Every four years there seems to be excess cruise capacity to Antarctica and consequently ship owners provide deep discounts, but this year seems special and a great opportunity for adventurous travelers seeking to check off a bucket list vacation to the bottom of the planet.”

He attributes this to “people being reluctant to make big purchases prior to an election due to any perceived uncertainty about the future. The trend is not nearly as pronounced in other lower ticket travel destinations. We noticed this trend in 2000, 2004 and it was especially pronounced in the 2008 election cycle and economic downturn.”

Following are programs discounted up to 30 percent and others offering significant charter air savings. Small cruise vessels that ply these southern waters vary in capacity from 110 to 189 passengers.

At a 30 percent discount, Antarctic Peninsula Basecamp Cruise is geared toward the traveler interested in actively exploring away from the ship for enhanced adventures (kayaking, hiking, snowshoeing, camping, mountaineering, scuba diving and photography workshops). Departure dates are Nov. 22-Dec. 3 and Dec. 3-13, 2012. The per person (double) rate before the discount begins at $8,050.

The Antarctica Peninsula with South Shetlands Cruise comes with a 30 percent discount aboard a research vessel that gets up close and personal with the land of snow and ice. Departure dates are Dec. 3-13, 2012, and Dec. 23-Jan. 1, 2012/13. The per person (double) rate before the discount is from $8,050.

Mawson’s Antarctica offers a discount of up to 15 percent (or no single supplement). Beginning and ending in New Zealand, this 19-day expedition commands sightings of elephant seals to wandering Albatross of Antarctica. Departure dates are Dec. 20-Jan 7, 2013, and Jan. 7-25, 2013. The person (double) rate before the discount is from $17,430.

Antarctica Air Cruise is a whale photo safari that comes with a $1,500 per person air credit for a Dec. 7-13 departure. The per person (double) rate is from $10,800.

National Geographic the White Continent is a journey with Lindblad Expeditions that comes with a $1,400 air credit or a $700 air credit and two complimentary days in Buenos Aires. This has the finest naturalist program of all Antarctic cruises. Departures are Nov. 27-Dec. 10 and Dec. 7-20, 2012. The per person (double) rate is from $11,740.

Founded in 2003, AdventureSmith Explorations is based in Tahoe City, California along the northern shore of Lake Tahoe. Phone: 800-728-2875 toll-free or 530-583-1775.
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