Freighter travel: A fascinating way to discover the world

By Jamila Cherif




If you have always wanted to travel around the world but don’t like airplanes or commercial cruise ships, freighter travel is a less crowded and less expensive alternative for crossing the sea.

Today, there are a lot of choices concerning the types of cargo ships, going to every part of the world and fitting a budget. However, you should book early because only a few cabins are available, and so you will need to book up to 6 months in advance. Also, ships are used as working vessels, so expect to be staying with the captain and his crew.

The trip cost is set by the vessel owner and usually is between $65 to $125 USD per day. Voyages tend to be less expensive in the “off season,” which is from April to September, according to Seaplus.com. There is usually a 10 to 15 percent discount offered by operators. Sometimes, you may find a voyage with no charge for “deviation’’ insurance, otherwise, budget about $260 USD for this cost. Overall, the cost includes the room, all meals, port taxes, deviation insurance and the booking fee.

A person must be under 80 to do a cargo ship cruise, so if you book a trip for someone else make sure he doesn’t have a history of any serious diseases. If you are in good health, of course, you should take the opportunity to visit ports in the South Pacific, the Far East, South Africa, North and South America, and many more.

After you book your trip, you should go at your destination of embarkation a couple of days before to know when the ship is arriving and get immigration to stamp your passport. You will receive a security ID card to get through gates, and most importantly, you must have travel insurance with evacuation cover.

Planning what freighter and trip to choose can be almost as much fun and as exciting as the trip itself, so don’t waste time and start your research now!

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