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BellaOnline's Cruises Editor

New Tool Pinpoints Cruise Deals

Looking for a great cruise deal? Hotwire, a major discount travel site, has just launched a new Cruise Savings Indicator to help. The Cruise Savings Indicator reveals the top five cruise destinations with the largest price drops. Using this tool can help cruise customers focus on destinations that will deliver the greatest cruise value.

Cruise deals are increasingly occurring in places that are seeing more traffic and competition from major cruise lines. This can cause major price drops in spots such as Australia/New Zealand, Hawaii and Europe. Hotwire finds this trend information by sifting through their vast array of pricing data to come up with a guide that identifies the places where cruise customers can save the most.

Given below are the top five cruise destination price drops according to Hotwire's current Cruise Savings Indicator:

1. Australia/New Zealand
Sailings to this region have risen over 35 percent since last year, causing increased competition. This increase in sailings and berth space has driven prices down, particularly on Royal Caribbean. The average daily rates for Royal Caribbean balcony cabins in 2012 are down 25% over this year.

2. Hawaii
Hawaii is always a favorite destination with both cruise and land-based vacation travelers, so it's no wonder that there's an increase in sailings planned for these beautiful islands. 2012 will see a greater number of cruises to Hawaii - more than 20% more than the current year. As a result, there are some fantastic deals on Hawaii sailings. Prices on Celebrity Cruises' oceanview and interior cabins have fallen 25-30% for 2012 sailings as compared with this year.

3. Caribbean
The Caribbean remains a popular place for cruises. Although the number of sailings in this area has remained constant, 2012 prices have fallen. Vacationers can find great prices on cruises to these islands through wave season (now through March) and into the rest of the year. For example, 2012 average daily rates on Norwegian Cruise Line are 25% lower than they have been in 2011.

4. Pacific Coastal
Cruises along the Pacific Coast of the United States are becoming more popular. These sailings take passengers from Southern California up the coast to some of the most beautiful ports in Canada. In addition, the duration and locations of the cruises are quite flexible - and they are offering great savings. For example, cruise shoppers can find double digit savings on most cabins on Celebrity Cruises and average daily rates have dropped 20% for 2012 sailings.

5. Repositioning Cruises
Repositioning cruises occur when ships move from one region to another. While not a specific destination, these types of cruise sailings offer some of the greatest deals. For 2012 repositioning cruise sailings, Princess Cruises is offering double-digit savings across all cabin types. Average daily rates for these 2012 sailings are more than 35% lower than comparable 2011 cruises - an excellent deal.

For more information on the Hotwire Cruise Savings Indicator tool, visit Hotwire at http://www.hotwire.com.

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