Cruise! Who doesn’t love to cruise and better yet a great cruise deal!?
Hello and Happy Friday! If you are looking into cruising and do not know where to start you have come to the right place 🙂 .
I LOVE cruising! I worked at Carnival Cruise Lines for 4 years and currently I sell all types of cruises. Honestly, to me cruising is one of the tops vacation you can take as it’s basically a floating hotel where you visit different destinations depending on the length of your cruise. If it’s your first cruise I suggest a 3 day cruise to make sure you don’t become extremely seasick but to me 7 day cruises are the way to go especially to get your money’s worth. My first cruise was a 2 day cruise on the Carnival Splendor to the Bahamas in 2009. Since then I have done 3, 5, and 7 day cruises. All of course with Carnival as this was during my time I worked with them. Since then I have been able to have familiarization (FAM)with different cruise lines due to the nature of my job.
If you aren’t aware first 3 months of the year is considered Wave Season due to the fact cruise lines take this time to announce their enticing promotion(s). It can be anything from a 50% off deposit, an extra amenity depending on which ship and/or cabin you book, or on board credit depending on the duration of your cruise. Below are my top 5 cruise lines perfect for families as well as a friends getaway or an adult’s trip as each cruise line has an adults section only as well. Before here are some friendly reminders/tips:
- Make sure the ports of call are places that really interest you. Don’t purchase a cruise ship just to stay onboard all the time, I mean you could but that is not the purpose of cruising.
- Make sure the cruise ship has enough entertainment for you the adult as well as for the children. If you have an infant/toddler there are daycares during certain hours and babysitters are available for a fee during evening hours.
- Don’t try to take part in EVERY event on board. Every evening the cruise line will place an event sheet for the next day including the drink specials and spa specials if you wish to stay on board versus getting off the ship. Select which event(s) you would like to attend.
- Pack accordingly to days at sea, port of call, and evenings on the cruise. Certain evenings your cruise line may have an all whites theme, Parrots Getty (Disney), etc. Don’t over pack and if you need to there is laundry on board. Also, leave room for souvenirs or in my scenario for all the alcohol you might bring back 🙂 .
If you purchase ANY cruise especially for the Caribbean during Hurricane Season please purchase the insurance and please know your cruise MAY get cancelled or change itinerary!
My Top 5 Cruise Lines:
5 – Princess Cruise Line — Honestly I will be the first to tell you Princess is mostly for couples, it is the Love Boat BUT when it comes to itineraries especially for Alaska they rock! That is why they are in the top lol. Now with multigenerational families taking all types of vacations if anybody is planning an Alaska cruise Princess is the way to go. Yes their other itineraries are great too but they take the cake in regards to Alaska. Princess is currently offering up to $600USD on board credit.
4 – Carnival Cruise Line (CCL) — my first cruise experience and to be honest for the price compared to other cruise lines I would purchase a Carnival cruise in a heartbeat. Even though they are the most economical (in my opinion) their entertainment, food, and onboard experience are great. They are always updating and renovating each ship including it with IMAX and Sky Ride. If your child is a of Dr. Seuss you might want to take a look at The World of Dr. Seuss at Sea. Carnival is offering free room upgrades, 30% of certain sailings, and a $100 deposit.
3-Norwegian Cruise Line (NCL) — Norwegian is known for freestyle cruising. Basically you decide what to do and when to do it. You are not assigned a dining time as you are on the majority of the cruise lines instead you can go dine within the specified hours or just do buffet style or hey order room service. You are on a vacation so you decide! Youth Programs are also available on NCL and on select ships you can bowl as a family-STRIKE! 😀 Also, NCL is perfect for solo cruisers due to their special cruise fare and having a single passenger floor that comes with a lounge for cruisers to mingle with other solo cruisers. Norwegian is currently offering up to $500USD on board credit.
2- Royal Caribbean Cruise Line — Has anybody experienced the biggest cruise ship in the world? Visited and fell in love especially with the Coach store in Central Park. I was honestly thinking, “How much cheaper can these purses be out at sea?” I will be honest and say that I have always said that why pay more for ice skating, Starbucks, Johnny Rockets, etc when I can pay for that here but then again this was coming from somebody that couldn’t afford Royal like 10 years ago. Central Park? Loved! Starbucks in the morning? Yes please! And if your child is a fan of Shrek, Madagascar, or Kung Fu Panda they will have a blast enjoying these characters onboard due to the partnership Royal has with DreamWorks. Currently Royal has a 30% off every guest plus up to $200USD to spend at sea.
1- Disney Cruise Line — Of course this would be number 1! It’s literally the park (without the rides-no Fastpass needed) on a cruise ship. All Disney characters are on board and if your child is a fan of The Avengers or Star Wars they will be on select cruises as well. Disney is also starting a partnership with AmaWaterways to start a River cruise Itinerary geared to families with children as River cruises are mostly catered to the adults. Personally I love River cruises as you are able to visit smaller cities that the large cruise ships are not able to dock in. The Beauty and the Beast them River cruise has my name all over it! And yes adults who have sailed Disney without children have enjoyed every minute of it. Currently Disney has Florida resident specials as well as 50% off deposit.
Are you taking a cruise this year, if so where to? If you need any suggestions let me know!
Thanx for reading!