Actually, there are some very good reasons for never paying the final payment early. We book a lot of cruises (about 5 or 6 a year) and generally shop for the best price. When cruise lines drop their price (this happens a lot) for a cruise you have already booked, its usually possible for your travel agent to get you the lower price up until you make the final payment (RCI and Celebrity sometimes will give you a lower price after final payment). We usually have about 5 cruises under booking at any time, and the norm is that we will constantly monitor the latest prices, promotions and sales. This saves us thousands of dollars per year, and usually its just a matter or calling or e-mailing our TA to get a lower price. If we had made that final payment in advance, many cruise lines would refuse to lower the price. One other tip. Always pay for your cruises with a major credit card (which should be processed by the cruise line....not the TA). This gives you protection against TA fraud or even a bankrupt cruise line (happened to us with the old Regency cruise line).