Cruisin’: A Primer The Selection and Beyond

So you’ve decided to take a cruise, (as have I), but where do you start? For me it was easy as I had 3 to 4 days available and knew what port I wanted to depart from. But for others here are a few things to consider:

  • Where do you want to go??? An island or beach destination or visit Europe, cruise on the Rhine, Danube, the Baltics, Italy or Greece? Cruising makes life easier with only one unpacking required…
  • What do you want to pay? Luxury or austerity? Some simply want a room for a quick change, (me), while others want a balcony overlooking the sea with several rooms. There are enormous options but decide what you want and price range. Also, check out last minute, cheapie, Expedia/Groupon and the like websites for cruises.
  • Actual Cost – don’t forget the add-ons like the daily per person fee for service, ($13 at least per day/per person), parking, (recommend off site as reliable and half the cost as terminal), then there is plane and transport from airport to terminal. Cruise lines always have a service but check costs to ensure best price for plane fare and shuttle.
  • Dates – for those who only read bullet points I repeat. Check weather for the area during the time frame desired.
  • Type of Cruise Line – Carnival advertises it is a party ship and it is with many youth, bridal parties. Drink packages well used. However, it is fun. For those who want a wee bit quieter and relaxed cruise there are other lines. Again, what do you want? Ask those who have cruised, call the various lines, and read the ship bios and advertisements.
  • Services for Children – This is a great service provided by the cruise ships so couples can have some free time together, if you wish to be.. Ha!Ha! as my daughter would say..
  • Handicapable Services – All lines offer, however some better than others. Investigate and perhaps use a specialized cruise travel agent if you need these services. They would know best.
  • Packing – light and an extra bag for momentos. Bring easy to wash quick to dry clothes, nylon, wash and hang with the shower closeline. Mix and match – plain bottom with colored or printed tops. One pair sneakers and flip flops, nice pair shoes, ballet slippers work and less space for the suitcase. Throw in a dress that folds up and out without creases as you never know if you’d like to go more than casual. Nowadays folks seems to like the top deck cafeteria verses the formal dining rooms but do one night in the formal. Amazing service and food. Layer, layer, layer as with any travel experience especially with climate change. You can never predict. I was glad to have a heavy sweatshirt to walk the decks at night. Great experience watching the full moon and waves.
  • Bathrooms have loads of racks, and closets ample space. Safes are in each room. Lighting varies with one outlet per room to recharge cells. No need for foreign adaptor plugs.
  • Wifi packages available and still pricey- either by minute or day depending on need.

That’s all I can think of for now.

Stay tuned for more.

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