Cruising Tips: To Cruise or Not to Cruise

Who should take a cruise and who shouldn’t? How to find out if going on a cruise is the perfect (or not so perfect!) vacation for you.

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Who should consider a cruise?

  • Cruises are great for people who like organized tours (people who aren’t off-the-beaten path explorers) since most cruises are strict with schedules, offer guided excursions and have tour guides at the ready.
  • They’re also great for families or multi-generational trips, because there’s a wide array of activities, both on and off the ship,  so everyone gets to do things that are cool and fun for them.
  • Cruises are also a great way to see several destinations, cities or countries in one go. If you’re someone who likes to island hop, or loves being in a new spot each day, cruises are awesome for you.
  • Another big bonus is they’re pretty much an all-inclusive on the water — what you pay upfront is typically your entire trip cost (minus tips and any extra excursions or your own personal expenditures). It’s easy to budget this way and not end up with a scary credit card bill when you return.

 

Don’t go cruising if you…

  • Aren’t a fan of milling around with a big group of people. You’ll be frustrated at the “slowness” of moving from place to place, especially if you’re on a cruise that’s geared towards an older generation.
  • If you’re an adventurer who likes to do things on a whim — cruise ships dock and leave port at very strict times, so there’s no opportunity to book a last-minute stay somewhere, or do an all-nighter.
  • If you’re notoriously seasick — most cruises are smooth sailing, but you might still feel some sway, especially on sailing days, and if you’re very sensitive this may be bothersome for you.

The new cruising trends…

Healthy cruises: Forget gorging at the buffet and putting on those cruise pounds… a lot of cruise lines are offering healthy retreats with fitness classes, fitness focused excursions and wellness treatments. Celebrity Cruises offers “Mindful Dreams” — a wellness program with their onboard spa provider, Canyon Ranch.

Millennial river cruising: For the longest time river cruises have been a thing for your grandparents to do when they retire… but as millennials are coming into the travel spending market (and they are typically willing to spend quite a bit on travel), cruise lines are gearing specific itineraries for the millennial set (those who fall in that age range, but also for those who are just young at heart and not technically a millennial) with more adventurous excursions, bar hopping, silent discos and even yoga on the roof. U by Uniworld is a great example for this with the Europe’s only dedicated river cruise for millennials and the millennial-minded.

Cruise ships are going BIG. Cruise ships are increasing in size, holding not just more people, but everything from laser tag to race tracks, to bike lanes and more. And on the technology side, newer cruise ships are stepping up their game making sure you’re entertained in every possible way from apps to help make signing up for excursions easier to virtual reality on board. Norwegian and Carnival are launching their biggest ships this year.

Expedition adventures with luxury: If adventure is your name of the game, but you’re not looking to rough it per say, consider luxury adventure expeditions through Greenland, Antarctica, Alaska and more. Abercrombie & Kent lets you visit these kinds of destinations during the day, but then kick back in luxury at night with amenities like gourmet restaurants, heated pools, spas and steam rooms.

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