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8 Proven Ways to Get VIP Treatment on Your Next Cruise

Do you want to feel like a VIP on your next cruise? Picture yourself surrounded by luxury and being pampered at every turn. Below are tips on how to get VIP treatment on your next cruise.

1. Upgrade to the Cruise Ship’s Exclusive VIP Category

For the ultimate VIP experience, upgrade to the cruise line’s VIP category. If it’s within your budget, it’s worth the upgrade. This is the simplest way to feel like a VIP on your next cruise because, quite literally, you are the VIP.

For example, Norwegian Cruise has its Haven experience, their most luxurious category. As a Haven guest, you’ll stay in a lavish suite with a personal concierge and a 24-hour butler at your beck and call. 

Plus, there’s no need to mingle at the crowded cruise pool because, as a Haven guest, you’ll have access to your own private sundeck and pool exclusively for Haven passengers. The pool attendants will pamper you, delivering cold towels and serving fresh fruits and drinks while you lounge by the pool. 

You’ll also dine at the Haven restaurant, which is only for Haven guests, where the chefs prepare special dishes. After dinner, unwind at the exclusive Haven lounge. 

Plus, right from the beginning, you’ll be treated like a VIP with priority embarkation, priority tender boat boarding, priority disembarkation, and, naturally, the best seats at the theater. You’ll also enjoy perks that regular cruise passengers don’t get, like a mobile phone that you can use throughout the ship.

VIP on a cruise

2. Cruise Loyalty Club

Joining the loyalty club of a cruise line is an easy way to enjoy VIP treatment on your future cruises. By consistently sailing with one cruise line, you can quickly attain loyalty status, which will earn you access to exclusive events, priority boarding, onboard discounts, and even cabin upgrades. 

I love attending the members-only cocktail parties, where you are treated to complimentary drinks and appetizers while mingling with the ship’s captains and other high-ranking officers. It truly makes you feel like a VIP.

3. Art Auction 

Another, more roundabout way to get VIP treatment on your next cruise is to buy art at the art auction! If you buy enough art, you will start receiving invitations to special VIP events. You will also be treated with complimentary gifts of wine and bubbly delivered to your stateroom. 

And if you have spent a substantial amount on art, you may even get invitations to free cruises courtesy of the art auction company Park West.

4. Casino High Roller

If you’re a frequent casino player, you can leverage your status to become a VIP on your next cruise. Many cruise lines treat their high-rolling casino guests as VIPs. 

For example, Princess Cruises has an exclusive VIP Casino program known as the Princess Hearts program. If you’re invited to join, you’ll receive a host of VIP perks during your cruise, such as a special VIP welcome party, priority boarding, and complimentary gifts.

These gifts can make you feel truly special, ranging from chocolate-covered strawberries to bottles of champagne delivered to your cabin. And if you spend enough, you may even be invited to complimentary Princess cruise trips as an extra perk.

VIP on a cruise

5. Private Shore Excursion

Another way to feel like a VIP on your next cruise is to book a private shore excursion. With a private shore excursion, you will be treated like a VIP with your very own private transportation and tour guide. It’s a great way to tour attractions without strangers! 

6. Specialty Restaurant

A more affordable way to feel like a VIP on your next cruise is to dine at a specialty restaurant. The cruise ship’s specialty restaurants will give you a taste of the VIP dining experience that is only offered at the cruise ship’s top-tier restaurants, exclusive for suite guests. 

First, you don’t have to wait or deal with crowds, since you’ll be seated right away. You will also be served premium dishes that are not served in the main dining room. 

Service is also much better at specialty restaurants, since there are typically more servers per table. The attentive staff adds to the VIP experience, making it a worthwhile splurge on your next cruise vacation.

7. Upgrade to Balcony Cabin

If booking a suite is out of reach, a more affordable way to feel like a VIP on a cruise is to upgrade to a balcony cabin. It’s the cheapest way to elevate your cruise experience. Then, treat yourself to room service and enjoy your breakfast in your private verandah. Combine your balcony upgrade with tipping generously, and you will feel like a VIP on your cruise!

8. Tip Generously

Tipping generously on your cruise is an effective way to receive VIP treatment. If you start by tipping your cabin steward generously on the first day of your cruise, you’ll enjoy extra attentive service throughout your trip. 

Tip your servers generously at the main dining room, and you’ll be treated like a VIP. If you find a bartender you like, tipping them generously can also lead to VIP treatment. 

Bring cash on your next cruise and try it. It works wonders! Check out my article on the exact amounts I typically give in extra cash tips on a cruise.

Check out these free cruise printables

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