Alaska Cruise with Elderly Parents

Old Feb 1st, 2008, 03:48 PM
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Alaska Cruise with Elderly Parents

My husband and I a (60 and 50) are planning on an Alaskan cruise this summer. We would like to take my parents (81 and 82) along. They are in good health, but both have arthritis and can't walk much. However, I think they would both enjoy the relaxing aspect of cruising. I am stumped, however, at trying to figure out which cruise line to choose that caters more to travelers our age and theirs. I really don't want to be on a ship with a lot of young families and kids (been there, done that and it just isn't what we are looking for on this cruise.) We are limited on dates because of other commitments and are considering either Holland America Volendam or a Cruise West cruise called Whales/Wilderness. Any experience with these? I have the impression that the Cruise West would be more of an "adventure" cruise and might be too much for my parents. Please help.
romandub is offline  
Old Feb 2nd, 2008, 02:35 AM
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Given the age parameters, I would definitely go w/HAL...they age-skew to an older clientele; however offer enough for younger folks.

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so you can make a more informed choice.
Rhea58 is offline  
Old Feb 2nd, 2008, 04:31 AM
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You might want to rethink Cruisewest. Although offers "adventure" the personal tour and closeness you get to Alaska blows the cruiseships away. They will detour, stop etc, for wildlife and it is viewable from these ships!!! Not a cruise ship. Although pricy, they would offer a superior trip for all of you.

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Old Feb 2nd, 2008, 05:43 AM
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HAL would be a good choice and I like the line very much. You will have some kids in summer but not as bad as other lines for sure as they have none of the rock walls, slides, etc, that attract families.

If you can swing it, look at Regent. They are top notch, do not cater to families and the ships and lovely.
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Old Feb 4th, 2008, 10:20 AM
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I, as well, would suggest Holland Ameria Line (HAL). Fewer children, no "party atmosphere" with loud, boorish people. These cruisers tend to be older, but pretty hip, well traveled, better educated, etc. The "shows" are not thrilling, but certainly adequate. Do have at least one night's dinner in the Pinnacle Grill..truly gourmet ($30 pp surcharge). Also, 24-hour room service is available and normally the food is appropriately hot or cold. A bit of a tip would be appropriate at both the Pinnacle and for room service. 24-hour coffee, however, is available at the Lido Buffet.
The "superior verandah suites" are very comfortable and less expensive than the deluxe and the penthouses, although the latter 2 do provide additional perks..private lounge, etc.
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Old Feb 4th, 2008, 11:11 AM
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HAL is a good cruise line if you want to be on a large ship; they were the original large-ship line to visit Alaska.

But I think BudgetQueen has a very good point with Cruise West. Even though these are smaller ships and purport to be "adventure" travel, their options for glacier and wildlife viewing are infinitely better because of the small ship size, and CruiseWest has many 80+ travelers, so they know how to deal with older cruiers.

Having said all that, my parents chose Carnival (wouldn't have been my first choice), and they had a fine time. They're in about the same age group as romandub's parents.
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Old Feb 23rd, 2008, 09:11 AM
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Another choice to consider, given the age of your parents, is Silversea, all-inclusive (tho not port excursions of course)luxury small ship (under 400) with excellent cabins, food and service.

They will not get you as "up-close" as Cruise West, but, given their size, can get places where Holland America ships will not, esp for glacier-cruising.
tuckerdc is offline  
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