Corporate Incentives, Meetings & Charters

How much does it really cost to rent a cruise ship?


Are you looking for an exciting, unforgettable experience for your organization’s next corporate retreat, offsite meeting, or annual event? Renting a cruise ship and sailing away to the world’s best destinations may be just the ticket.

On board the ship, nearly every aspect of the experience is customizable, with limitless branding possibilities to grab attention and drive business goals. Out-of-the-ordinary meeting venues and extraordinary event spaces ensure your guests are always engaged. Exhilarating entertainment, 24-hour room service, world-class dining venues, spa services, and boutique shopping sprees promise endless ways for guests to relax and enjoy themselves between functions.

A private cruise offers companies and organizations myriad options for tailoring sailing itineraries around the globe, giving your guests an experience of a lifetime.

Swimming pool on Celebrity Edge deck

What does it mean to charter a cruise ship?

Chartering a cruise ship, in a word, means exclusivity. Your company, group, or organization buys the exclusive use of the ship, its staterooms, services, and onboard amenities for the itinerary you choose.

Booking a private cruise with Celebrity Cruises means you’ll enjoy the complete attention of the crew. You’ll have an onboard cruise coordinator at your disposal to assist you and make sure every detail of your private cruise is addressed seamlessly, resulting in the most memorable cruise experience for you and your guests.

Full-Ship Charter

A full-ship charter is perfect for a large group meeting venue, incentive reward, corporate retreat, trade show, fundraiser, product launch, or themed event for your organization.

In a full-ship charter, your company or organization agrees to purchase all staterooms (double occupancy) and pay taxes and associated fees for a given ship and itinerary in order to have the ship, its crew, and amenities, as determined by a charter contract, at your disposal for the duration of the cruise and the pleasure of your guests.

Full charters are generally booked for itineraries that Celebrity normally sails, like 5-day Caribbean cruises or 10-night Spain, France, and Italy cruises.

To create the most successful events for employees, team members, business partners, and other guests, you can arrange fitness classes, spa treatments, and activities such as theater performances, movies under the stars, and tastings. Of course, you have access to all of the ship’s rooms, suites, and corporate event venues for meetings, exhibitions, and entertainment.

With a full-ship charter, you’ll have a dedicated onboard event coordinator and account executive to assist with details, no matter how small. The ship’s crew is at your disposal to assist in planning and executing memorable meetings and events to motivate your team, celebrate their successes, and build excitement for what’s ahead.

Group doing yoga onboard a Celebrity Cruise

Partial-Ship Charter

A second option for chartering or renting a cruise ship is a partial charter. Your company or group purchases a large number of staterooms, often within a particular stateroom class, along with meeting spaces for private events aboard a ship with an itinerary that is open to the public.

This type of charter is excellent for group incentive rewards, meetings, and special celebrations. It can be customized in many ways, including special events on board and customized events on shore.

How much does it cost to rent a cruise ship?

The cost of renting a cruise ship depends on the ship, date, and itinerary you’re considering, as well as the level of customization involved.

To ensure a cost-effective experience for your company, as well as a magnificent cruising experience for your guests, we have specific requirements and preferred experiences for booking a charter, including a history of chartering ships of similar size, either with Celebrity or another cruise line.

Payment terms include 10% of the charter rate and prepaid gratuities due at contract signing, along with an irrevocable standby letter of credit; 30% of the charter rate and prepaid gratuities due at seven, five, and three months prior to sailing; and prepaid taxes and requested amenities due three months prior to sailing.

You also have the option to pay 100% of the charter rate and prepaid gratuities at contract signing, without a letter of credit, with interest earned and applied as a shipboard credit during the charter.

When considering a full charter, you’ll want to be sure that your guest count closely matches the double-occupancy count of the ship, as the rate you’ll be charged and prepaid gratuities are based on such occupancy, no matter how many guests are sailing. Based on the final number of guests aboard, you’ll also be expected to meet an onboard-revenue target, with associated taxes and fees.

If you’re set on sailing an itinerary aboard a specific ship, but have concerns about your final guest number, be assured that Celebrity’s charter team is skilled in organizing and scheduling the flow of events on board to accommodate the group and ensure a smooth flow to all staterooms and venues.

Celebrity Cruises Meeting Room

What’s included in the private cruise ship price?

A chartered cruise ship gives your guests an impressive and luxurious venue to relax, renew, and reinvigorate for the business ahead. It is essentially yours to command for the duration of the sailing. Our crew and staff are available exclusively to lavish time and attention on your guests and make them feel special and appreciated.

The private cruise ship price includes all staterooms and suites and round-trip sea transportation to the ports of call on the itinerary. Most meals are included, as are most nonalcoholic beverages, and most entertainment aboard ship, such as regularly scheduled Broadway-quality live shows in the ship’s theater and lounge entertainment.

Imagine your guests’ delight in knowing that all the ship’s venues are available for them to enjoy, like the swimming pools, hot tubs, sundecks, spa, fitness center, library, gaming room, lounges, casino, and so much more.

Onboard items and services not included in the charter price include: air transportation and transfers to and from the ship; meeting-break or special-event set-up fees, and any technical and broadcast fees when needed; telephone calls, internet services, and photographs; and all guest spending of a personal nature, including casino gaming, specialty-restaurant charges, spa or salon services, purchases from onboard stores, and laundry or medical services.

What kind of customization is available on a chartered cruise?

You’ll want to offer your guests, members, clients, and executives the most memorable cruise experience possible, so there are a number of ways to customize a full charter.

One of the easiest and most requested ways to tailor a charter, creating an even more special sailing, is to switch out a port of call within your chosen itinerary while keeping the departure port and dates of departure and arrival the same.

It’s also possible to combine itineraries, creating a unique cruising adventure. All departing cruises from the United States must visit at least one foreign port, and each of these customized scenarios is subject to additional costs and fees, which are included in the initial charter quote.

In addition to itinerary changes, there are many opportunities to add excitement and value to your charter. Possibilities include food and beverage arrangements, such as specific menu items or courses; entertainment events, including arrangements for specific shows; even fireworks displays.

Depending on your group’s focus, you could request that specific onboard venues, such as the casino or certain bars, be closed for the duration of the cruise, with incremental fees added to the charter contract to cover lost revenue.

During port calls, continue to amaze and delight your participants with exciting and enlightening shore excursions. Our crew’s in-depth knowledge of destinations and our network of top tourism operators around the world are at your disposal. We’ll assist you in curating a perfect menu of private shore excursions tailored to your group’s interests, from exclusive journeys and destination highlights tours to Celebrity Discovery excursions that offer immersive local, cultural, and culinary adventures.

What kind of events can I host on a chartered cruise ship?

If you can imagine it, we can make it a reality when you sail on a Celebrity Cruises charter. From corporate meetings at sea and formal evenings honoring your top performers, to themed parties and outdoor concerts on the Rooftop Terrace, it’s all possible and guaranteed to create enduring memories.

Large-scale events, such as fundraisers, trade shows, and conferences, take on a whole new dimension when staged on a chartered ship with multiple dynamic venues that keep attendees engaged. A chartered cruise is also the perfect venue for hosting a themed event like a food-and-wine or music cruise open to the public for booking, or more personal events like a family reunion, wedding, or anniversary.

Can I rent a cruise ship for a private party?

A partial charter cruise is an excellent option for private parties, group incentive travel, meetings at sea, and special personal occasions.

A partial-charter group cruise offers many of the same options as a full-ship charter to create and customize a memorable sailing experience for your private party, with a stateroom-booking requirement of just eight staterooms.

Imagine the impact when your guests are invited to dine in exclusive specialty restaurants. Booking buyouts of specialty restaurants is possible and an excellent way to celebrate special occasions and events. For example, at Tuscan Grille, a party of up to 150 can dine on Italian specialties with a modern twist, including handmade pasta and dry-aged steaks. If you’re looking for a more relaxed atmosphere, you can host a casual grill party for up to 50 at the Rooftop Garden Grille.

Rooftop Garden 2

How do you charter a cruise ship?

Ready to take the next step? Request a quote or call our corporate sales desk at 1-800-722-5934, and one of our knowledgeable sales managers will guide you through a qualifying questionnaire. Once submitted, you’ll receive a charter quote within days.

If you’re ready to explore all the exciting possibilities of charter cruising, contact us at 1-800-722-5934 to speak to one of our corporate sales account managers.