How to Select the Best Cruise
If you’re looking to spend your next holiday in a cruise, the first thing you have to keep in mind is that not all cruise lines are made equal. Depending on your interests and age, you’d be better off selecting a cruise that matches with your traveling style and personality.
Below is a list that will help narrow down your choices:
- Ideal for couples
If you’re looking for an intimate and incredibly romantic cruise experience, go for Windstar. It offers guests with a taste of luxury – from L’Occitane toiletries and expensive wine bottles to fine dining and high thread-count sheets. More so, their ports of call are usually situated in honeymoon-worthy destinations in the Caribbean and Europe.
- Ideal for seniors
Appealing mostly to retirees, HAL’s midsize ships offer recreational activities suited to a more mature target audience. Their cruise traditions include afternoon teas, bingo nights and ballroom dancing, all catered especially for an older market.
- Ideal for families with little kids
Hopping on board a Disney cruise ship is perfect if you’re bringing little kids. Its themed approach coupled with its child-friendly amenities such as nurseries, themed play spaces and plenty of Disney character interaction make the experience in the cruise ship as enjoyable as possible for parents and kids alike. Plus, as Disney knows the entertainment business better than any major cruise liner in the market, its onboard stage shows mix original productions with live versions of hit movies like Aladdin and Toy Story. Its best known event is the pirate-themed deck party, which combines an interactive musical show with dance parties and fireworks released at sea. It’s a hit not only for little kids but also for parents who continue to be young at heart!
- Best for budget-conscious travelers
The Carnival Fun Ship line is perfect for budget-friendly travelers who want to experience spending their holidays at sea. The company constantly offers frequent promotions on non-peak months and their itineraries are generally much shorter, making them more affordable than their counterparts.
- Best for big spenders
For those who are willing to spend for once-in-a-lifetime cruise experiences, the Regent Seven Seas Cruises offer the best kind of luxury money can buy. Their packages include pre-cruise hotel stays at five-star hotels and exclusive excursions on port of calls, as well as first-class accommodations and unlimited alcohol and countless of fine dining options on board.
- Ideal for foodies
Best known for its specialty-dining scene, Celebrity attracts cruisers who are looking to feast without guilt. They have a variety of restaurants on board, serving everything from French-continental cuisine to international comfort food. Practically anything you want to eat, they have it on board – whether you plan to indulge on artisanal gelato or build your own pizza. The cruise line is also famous for its nightlife, boasting of craft cocktail bars and exclusive wine tasting events.
- Best for night owls
If you’re looking for a good party at sea, you’re surely going to find it on board a Norwegian ship. Apart from hosting the most happening dance party where cruisers come in all-white outfits, they also have an array of interesting water holes, from unique themed lounges to craft beer pubs. Plus, they have a very lively club scene that keeps going even on weekdays!
- Perfect for hipsters
Ask any person working in the creative industry and they’ll probably tell you that a cruise holiday is the most mainstream travel experience they will never ever pay for. Guess what, Oceania is changing that one concept at a time. Its newest ships, Marina and Riviera, each feature a culinary center that features hands-on cooking classes and special artisan food tours. They also have an artist loft on board, where artists-in-residence give special classes in watercolors, needlepoint, and other mediums.
- Ideal for adventurers
Azamara best captures its unique offerings with its “destination immersion” catch phrase. Even if it only has two small ships in its fleets, its itineraries always include less-touristy ports and cruise regions, making it appealing for those who are itching for more than just a pampered life on board. They also feature late-night stays and overnights in port, allowing cruisers to experience the local culture and nightlife more extensively. Plus, Azamara really takes its catchphrase seriously by scheduling its cruises around major destination events such as Carnaval in Rio or the Grand Prix in Monaco.
- Best for water lovers
If you like water sports or just generally enjoy the feeling of having cool, ocean water splashing against your skin, there are two major reasons why Windstar would make the best choice for you. First, its sailing yachts have plenty of open deck space. Second, their ships allow you to enjoy different water sports from their built-in onboard marina. The best part is you can easily borrow kayaks, windsurf boards, small sailboats, snorkel equipment and inflatable boats and mats from the cruise line, so you don’t have to worry about renting equipment for an add-on cost.
- Best for entertainment
If you’re looking for plenty of entertainment options at sea, Royal Caribbean tops the list. Apart from being the only line to offer ice-skating shows and water-based acrobatic shows, it was the first to bring Broadway on board its ships. Their floating cities are also filled with plenty of shopping and dining options, as well as casinos and game rooms.
- Ideal for solo travelers
For those who are cruising solo, Crystal makes for the perfect choice. Apart from organizing a wide variety of singles get-togethers, they have a set-seating option to force singles to meet new friends over dinner. Plus, Crystal curates the atmosphere on board carefully to make it as communal and social as possible, so no passenger needs to feel lonely.
While this list gives you a good idea of what’s the best cruise line for your traveling style and personality, it always helps to read reviews and consult travel agents to further narrow down your choices. The more you do your research beforehand, the more you will surely find a cruise line that will meet your expectations!