ABOUT SALISBURY CRUISE CLUB
The mission of the Salisbury Cruise Club is to provide customized and fully-escorted group cruises and tours to all cruise and travel enthusiasts and to introduce the luxury vacation experience that cruising offers to first time cruisers at an affordable price. We provide a "value-added" cruise experience by personally hosting all of our cruises and taking the worry out of your cruise experience.
Salisbury Cruise Club founders, Kelly and Tracy Shannahan, got the idea for a group cruise when they were searching for the most economical way to take their next cruise in the late 1990's. After paying approximately $1,400 each for their prior 7-day cruises, they looked into cost savings that could be offered by group cruising. Since there were no cruise groups in the Salisbury, Maryland area, they formed their own club in 1998 and were able to secure group pricing starting at $995 per person for the same cruise that would have cost them at least $1,400. In addition to the low group pricing, they were able to negotiate incentives from the cruise line and provide each member of their first group with gifts including: a t-shirt, wine and champagne in their cabin and at dinner, a group photo and a complimentary cocktail party. Not only was their first Salisbury Cruise Club cruise much less expensive, it was also great fun to meet and travel with 88 other people from the Salisbury area.
Membership in the Salisbury Cruise Club is absolutely FREE and there’s no obligation. All we ask of members is that they consider joining us on future cruises and that they spread the word about our club and cruises to others who may be interested. To join, simply click here to Send Us An Email and include your name and email address (you can also add your postal mailing address and phone number, although we do most of our communications through email) and we will gladly add you to our membership roster so you will be among the first to learn about our future group cruises and tours.
You will then receive all future mailings and announcements of upcoming meetings and cruise opportunities. We typically send three or four group emails each year to all members on our email Membership Roster, and more regular emails to registered passengers on our upcoming cruises.
Advantages of Group Cruising
Value-Added Cruise Experience - There are many advantages to group cruising, but perhaps the greatest advantage is that you can leave all of the worries of cruise planning to your Cruise Coordinators Kelly and Tracy Shannahan. On all Salisbury Cruise Club cruises, you’ll receive advanced information about the ship and the ports-of-call on our cruise itinerary. You’ll also receive advanced information on the excursions (shore tours) available through the cruise line and we typically arrange a few customized excursions in each port available exclusively to those Salisbury Cruise Club members who are registered to join us on our cruises. These customized excursions are similar to those offered by the cruise line, except we explore more of the sites and spend more time participating in the activities (typically relaxing on a golden sand beach or snorkeling in the clear blue Caribbean waters) and our tours are only a fraction of the cruise line prices. In addition, you’ll receive special information and instructions on how to prepare for your cruise, special gifts and incentives on your cruise and a post-cruise photo exchange to share your memories with fellow passengers. We also typically provide a complimentary personalized DVD and group photo as a memento of your cruise.
Safety and Security of Traveling with a Group - For many, the best part of traveling with the Salisbury Cruise Club is the safety and security of traveling with a group of people from your home town. Cruise Club members are encouraged to wear their complimentary shirt on our travel day so that you can quickly spot your fellow passengers in our group. Not sure where to go after checking in at the airport or at the port . . . just follow the Cruise Club members in the colorful shirts. These matching outfits also announce our presence as we board the ship making all other passengers aware that the Salisbury Cruise Club family has arrived and is ready for the vacation of a lifetime. For single members of our group, the Cruise Club offers an opportunity to join a familiar group of people on the ship and while exploring the islands. Singles can often be paired with other singles as roommates in order to avoid the single supplement rates. For couples, they’re treated to the best of both worlds as the ships are large enough to take that romantic stroll out on the deck, or if you prefer, to meet up with other members of our group in the casino, piano bar or to see the Las Vegas style shows.
Cost Savings - As a group, many of the cruise lines are willing to offer us the lowest possible prices on our cruises. As we mentioned earlier, booking as a group for our Southern Caribbean Cruise 1999, we were able to negotiate prices as low as $995 per person, saving each participant more than $400.
The rates that we quote for Salisbury Cruise Club cruises include all taxes and air fare (unless otherwise noted). It is possible that taxes may change slightly from when they are quoted (which may increase the price slightly - by a few dollars), but we would rather provide you with the Total Package Price for your cruise, rather than try to lure you in with a low-ball price like you may see in other cruise advertising. When my wife and I used to search for the best cruise deals on our own, we were always disappointed when we would see ads for cruises "starting at $695 per person" only to find out that by the time you added air fare and transfers ($450), and air and port taxes ($200), that bargain cruise was back up to the same old $1,400 that we paid before. Just as an example, the price of the Southern Caribbean Cruise in 1999 was broken down as follows: cruise ($428), air fare ($409), port taxes ($119), and air taxes ($39) for a total of $995.
Upcoming Cruise Opportunities
Our original goal was to plan at least one group cruise each year with varied itineraries to meet the demands of our membership. However, now that President Kelly Shannahan has retired from his full-time job with Worcester County Government, he now has time to plan and host several cruises and tours each year. While we understand that not everyone can afford to cruise every year, our annual schedule of cruises and tours will allow members to choose to join us on the cruise and tour itineraries that they want at the frequency that’s right for them, perhaps every other year or every third year. Information about our current cruise opportunities is included on the Home Page and elsewhere on this web site. New cruise opportunities will be emailed to members when they are available for registration.
How the Registration Process Works
After we announce our proposed cruises and tours (usually in the fall), we ask our members to send us an email to advise us regarding which trips they may wish to book. there is no obligation at that point, it just gives us a general idea of interest. From these responses, we develop an "Interested Passengers List" for each cruise. These lists help us to know whether we have enough interest in a proposed cruise and if so, how many cabins to request in our group inventory. Once cruise details are final and we are ready to begin accepting registrations, we first email the Interested Passengers List for advanced registrations. If you plan to register, it is important to reply immediately to the Interested Passengers email and follow up with a completed registration and deposit payment to secure your space while cabins are still available. About one week later, and if space is still available, we notify the entire membership (currently about 1,300 member families) that the cruise is available for general registration. However, often times our cruises and tours sell out with registrations from the "Interested Passengers List" during the advanced registration period, so it is important that you let us know which cruises you may be interested in to have the best chance of booking while space is still available. If you are interested in any of our cruise and tour itineraries, please send me an email so I can send you more details or contact the cruise line to secure your cabin if you are ready to book. Thanks.