Would I like a cruise?

Jan 4th, 2003, 03:45 PM
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Having taken one cruise we decided it was not for us - we prefer land based trips and not so much structure, and frankly cruises give you very little time in port to see anything of a place.
Since you are taking your daughter over spring break almost everything will be full of kids, that goes for the more expensive lines as well as Carnival (which is not all that bad, our one cruise was on the Destiny and we never saw any drunken people, any wild anything, no extremes in behavior, etc.) In fact we had a nice cross section of people, from 80's down to 20's and a minimum of kids. Cross section of life as well, from professional people, educators, retired folks and blue collar types. Our only complaint was that there was little time in port and we felt more confined then we do when we are free to come and go at a resort hotel or in Europe, etc.

For spring break you can expect kids - everywhere - and long lines I imagine getting on and off the ship if they use tenders for some ports.

I have a number of friends who like cruising but all have said they are not "like they used to be", the food quality is way down and the service as well. It's all mass produced now and you are simply a number. It's not like the Love Boat by any means! No real pampering, etc. it's "move them in, move them out" so to speak.

Jan 4th, 2003, 08:09 PM
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We've done both...traveled "loosely" with no reservations except for a rental car.
However, one time we tried a cruise and my husband figured it would "get it out of my system". He brought 5 hardcover books to read since he wouldn't have anything else to do. He ended up looking at about 5 pages of one of them, and promptly discovered the fun things to try on a ship that he had never done before. We traveled to several Caribbean ports and got off the boat at each one of them. We didn't buy any of the tours from the ship but headed off on our own.
If you want a cruise without the crowds, try a Windjammer. It's like sailing on your own yacht. Some of them are smaller and the one we took (our second cruise) had 70 people on it, which inlucluded the crew. Stopped at a lot of out islands in the Bahamas and many were deserted or only had a few people in a small village. Went snorkling and beachcombing and even steered the ship and helped hoist the sails.
A cruise can be anything you want it to be.
Jan 5th, 2003, 01:23 PM
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If as you say, you like to travel loosely, and dislike tours, and don't like being treated like cattle, you should definitely avoid cruises. I was in your exact position two years ago and relented and took my family on an Eastern Caribbean cruise. You are part of the cruise onslaught at cheesy ports, your time is very limited, when you find a place you wish you could explore you have to go back to the boat. It really is about the boat.
Cruisers love not needing to make choices, for me that's half the fun, making it up as you go along.
My .02
Jan 6th, 2003, 07:58 PM
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Thanks to all for the interesting posts. As it turns out, we'll be going to Captiva Island for this trip - it just ended up being easier with our time constraints. But with all the research I have done on cruises... I'm sure we'll be trying one at some point. I appreciate all the input - thanks to all who posted, Catherine
Jan 6th, 2003, 09:30 PM
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My favorite subject!

Some of the others are correct, and you really need to find out for yourself.

The first cruise we took on the advice of others, ended up as a disasterous lesson to us. The food to us was horrendous, the accomodations and activities boring, and the people not much better.

On a second cruise on the advice of others who told us "this is the best, it is the gourmet style cruise", turned out to be better....at least up from the equivalent of a buffet line at Shorneys to the quality of Outback Steak house!"

That was the second and LAST cruise we will ever go on!

My advice to you is do a 3 day cruise and see if it strikes your fancy!

If your used to eating at fine establishments, and a bit of a high end traveller, I predict you are going to be in shock!

I'll never forget the 3rd rate shows on board, and the paint by number art works they have hanging for sale in the stairways.....can you say K-Mart on saltwater?

Anyway god bless everyone for liking different things, otherwise we would all be fighting to get a ticket!
Jan 7th, 2003, 09:41 AM
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Richard, would you mind telling me what cruiseline that second one is? I booked a Celebrity cruise on the advice that it was upscale, yadda, yadda, but after visiting the cruisecritic message boards, I'm having second thoughts. An enforced dress code on formal nights? I mean, what does it say about the passengers when they need to be policed?

For the most part, lot's of the posters sound like pretentious wannabees who would like to think they are the sophisticated, upscale passengers that Celebrity claims they cater to, when in reality, it couldn't be further from the truth.
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