Totally agree with Marshall, book your cruise & then you could fly Continental out of MCR to New York direct with plenty of options for the return from Toronto. Another agent option for long haul flights is Netflights (formerly Airline Network part of Gold Medal Travel) who I have never found anyone to beat them on price including the two already mentioned. Personally I would never go long haul on a package flight, cruising or not, just read the comments from people who do. If this sounds a challenging prospect to you, here's my advice. Do all your homework on flight carriers & timings, cruise, choice of hotels etc. & most importantly know your prices & then present it to an INDEPENDANT travel agent such as the telephone number at the top of this page. Get a couple of quotes from different agents & suprise yourself at the possible savings plus the benefit of knowing from where & whom your flying with. P.S. They will also arrange any transfers should you require them. Good Luck Wilba.
Book the cruise "cruise only" and book your own flights - to arrive the day before the cruise starts or earlier (in case of delays) and to leave a day after the cruise finishes or longer if you want to stay a while. You will get the flight/cruise cheaper this way. Try "Expedia" or "e-bookers" and go for multi destination option where you can select to fly into New York and out of Toronto. Good luck!
I was thinking about my earlier answer - if a travel agent tells you that you "have to fly from heathrow" then they are not doing their job! These days there are loads of options and any combination is possible for flights etc. I suggest you try and book with a different agent if you are not keen to do it independently. You are the customer, so tell them what YOU want! They should be able to sort out a trip to your requirements.
I understand the preference to fly Manchester to New York and back again via Toronto. Only last year we sailed on Crown Princess from San Juan and we had to fly from Gatwick which also meant we had to fly down the day before. It can make your trip a bit tiresome. I agree that you should somehow be able to book the cruise only. I know Cruisefinders on the net sell a lot of these types of holidays. But be warned; fly to New York the day before the ship departs. If your flight is delayed by many hours or even cancelled, the ship WILL sail without you since you are responsible for your own flights.
I totally agree with going the day before or in the case of New York 2 or 3 days before if you've not been before & the money saved should pay for your stay. Wilba.