Whats your opinion on cruises?

Discussion in 'General Discussion | Travel' started by ralfkrippner, Jun 2, 2014.  |  Print Topic

  1. ralfkrippner
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    ralfkrippner Silver Member

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    After 20 years of intense travel itineraries together with my wife for our holidays we do more and more cruises. We've chosen Celebrity cruises as our provider of choice but also look into the offerings of others. So far we've done 5 cruises and have three upcoming (Alaska, Azores and Canary islands, Suez Canal). We time our flight (usually burning miles) to the departure port one or a few days before departure of the ship and have some slow time in a nice hotel near the port. Then after boarding the ship we only decide in the morning what we plan to do the same day. No need to plan ahead and no need for a plan B. Just relax, read, enjoy the sea breeze, have lots of places to dine and have a nice drink. Do a day trip in a nice port if you feel so and the weather is good. Or just stroll along the sea promenade of the port town. If you forgot somethin essential you can buy or lend it on the ship. Just a stress free week or two. Value for money is good in our opinion if you compare the cruise fares with a good hotel, cost of food and drinks on the road, entertainment and a car to travel around.

    Are there any more cruise lovers out there in the miles&points enthusiasts of milepoint? Whats your opinion on cruise holidays?
     
  2. Blue Skye
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    Blue Skye Silver Member

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    i've heard good things about Celebrity, but have not tried them myself. i love cruising. my kids love cruising, too. of course said kids are technically adults now but started out when they could be in the teen club.

    i finally got to Elite status with Princess, which i primarily cruise b/c i like their program (yes, it is all about getting free internet but their other perks like laundry, and minibar are nice, too). i have cruised a couple of times on Holland America, once was a Japan-transpac-Alaska itinerary. that one was really good.

    haven't done a holiday cruise but would to love to try it at some point.
     
  3. Mapsmith
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    Mapsmith Gold Member

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    About a dozen or so here. Carnival, Princess, Royal Caribbean, Celebrity, and MSC. Most on Carnival and MSC. Looking at Croisieres de France for French Caribbean next. On the old Celebrity Horizon.

    Cruising is great because it gets me away from the damn phone and internet. At sea, nothing from work can interrupt my sea day naps.
     
  4. ralfkrippner
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    ralfkrippner Silver Member

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    My Suez Canal cruise is on Celebrities Century. After arrival in Rome on April 20, 2015 she will be transfered immediately to Croisieres de France. I've heard ood things about them and their non-mainstream routes. Maybe I try them one time in the future.
     
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  5. Blue Skye
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    Blue Skye Silver Member

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    seconding the sea day naps, which is right up there with balcony naps, or post food naps, pre-dinner naps ... ;)

    i'm also a fan of just staring out at the sea. sometimes you get lucky and see wildlife. on a recent cruise from LA to Vancouver, we spotted lots of Dall porpoises, and a few whales.
     
  6. Mapsmith
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    Mapsmith Gold Member

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    Wake me up for Orcas.

    Of course, can't forget the Human Wildlife. On an MSC Cruise a couple of years ago, (MSC is a line that caters to Italians) One gal was being referenced by we Ugly Americans as "Leather Boobs" because she was always topless on the deck above the pool or on a beach on an island. They had the color of fine tanned leather. (Mapwife would not let me check to see if they felt like leather)
     
  7. Photonerd71

    Photonerd71 Silver Member

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    Love cruises. Got 5 on the books done already. (not counting my Navy days). I have a 9 day Baltics cruise booked for next May as well. Great way to get a taste of different counties without all the hassles.

    Sent using a small piece of fruit.
     
  8. Flyer1976
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    Flyer1976 Gold Member

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    Can I just say I'm envious that you're doing the Alaska cruise. :)
     
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  9. pointshogger

    pointshogger Silver Member

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    Big fan of cruises here. Vacations are about taking the time to relax and enjoy doing something that you want to do. Some people prefer vacations that have a lot more sightseeing, which is great if you enjoy that. But others enjoy taking it easy, because it's not easy to take it easy where we are. So cruises are an amazing place to take it easy. But if you want a go go go vacation, maybe cruises should be a secondary option.
     
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  10. Mapsmith
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    Mapsmith Gold Member

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    You definitely need to make the time to take an Alaska Cruise. Extend it a week and see the interior (as a tourist, not on a business trip)
     
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  11. Blue Skye
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    Blue Skye Silver Member

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    Alaska is a favorite of mine for relaxing cruising. i also like it b/c it is one of the few places i can visit in the summer where i don't feel like i will melt. where i live the summer average is maybe 80F, though currently we are seeing maybe 73F during the days, with no humidity. :)

    ha! yes, the Human Wildlife. sometimes you just can't look away. my friend from Vancouver and i frequently play what i like to call "Fashion Police", critiquing outfits/ensembles on the cruisers. last cruise was a woman in ALL white knit tops and pants, who apparently did not have a mirror to check to see how transparent the material was. her undergarments weren't much better. :eek: gave a whole new meaning to full moon.
     
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  12. Photonerd71

    Photonerd71 Silver Member

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    I did an Alaska cruise last Sept. Best cruise I have done so far. I went late in the season so most of the kids were back in school and prices lower. Glacier Bay national park is beyond words great.
     
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  13. Zomby Woof

    Zomby Woof Silver Member

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    Love cruising. I've been on Holland America, Celebrity, Cunard, and Norwegian. I've sailed the most on Holland and achieved 3-stars in their loyalty program. Going on a 14-day Alaska R/T Seattle in late August. I like Celebrity quite a bit also. I've been on 4 cruises with them and got an 11-day Caribbean cruise in Feb '15. Cunard is a little to formal for me. I went a a music cruise (Progressive Nation at Sea) on Norwegian. I'll be doing another music cruise on Norwegian (Keeping the Blues Alive) in Feb '15.

    Carnival (Carnival, Holland America, Curnard, Costa, Princess, and Seaborn) and Royal Caribbean (Royal Caribbean, Celebrity, Azamara) keep separate loyalty programs for each line in their portfolio. There does see to be some cross benefits in Royal Catribbean but nowhere near like the major airline alliances.

    Carnival (and all its lines) has a decent shareholder (at least 100 shares) benefit where you get ship board credit depending on length of cruise ($250 14+ days, $100 7 to 13, and $50 6 or less) that is combinable with any other shipboard credit benefit.
     
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  14. mattsteg
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    mattsteg Gold Member

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    The value/price in comparison to other options is probably favorable, and if you're looking to just chill and take it easy I'm sure they can be a great trip. I think a lot of it comes down to choosing the ship and line - huge ship with everything onboard (and everyone overwhelming every port) vs smaller ship that maybe doesn't carry such a large sphere of influence.

    I'm way more in the non-cruise mode for now - I'm generally more in the go go go mode and also like to have a bit more local exposure generally.
    If I'm in chill-mode I guess I'd just rather chill on my own terms. I have nothing against just making things up as I go wherever I am if that's what I want (so to some extent it's possible to dictate that aspect of the experience), and also have lots of great options near to home that can also work well for that.

    I definitely hear pointshogger on breaking free from daily insanity...wheels-up in the front cabin and vacationing on the other side of the world forces the disconnect and starts the vacation here. Up until then...I tend to be working up to the last second, including in the lounge at the airport.

    I'd definitely do something like a scuba liveaboard, or a small-vessel antarctic cruise, or other more "adventurous" option. There's a lot that comes under the "at sea on a boat" umbrella.
     
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  15. Gardyloo
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    Gardyloo Gold Member

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    We've done a half dozen or so, mainly on Celebrity (Caribbean, Hawaii > Mexico, Cape Horn) but also on Oceania (Western Mediterranean) Royal Caribbean (Alaska) and Cunard (QM2 NY > Southampton). Enjoyed them all, especially the sea days, and especially enjoyed the South America route (BsAs - Valparaiso via the Falkland Islands and Cape Horn.) We used to live in Alaska so that was a bit of a busman's holiday (traveled with relatives that had never been). And the QM2 was technically a "crossing" not a "cruise," but also very enjoyable - flat beds at Mach 0.3.

    However, our BEST cruise experience was on a freighter from Auckland to San Francisco via Fiji. No midnight buffets, had the run of the ship (bridge, engine room) and 21 days at sea when we saw precisely ONE other vessel until approaching the Golden Gate at sunset on Christmas Eve. Way cheaper than the others, but you need the time.
     
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  16. philatravelgirl

    philatravelgirl Silver Member

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    I enjoy cruises with a few sea days to sleep -like to still be busy with many ports - love that I have no internet or work signal to disconnect. I go solo and have planned out award flights for the Baltic cruise (Princess), Istanbul/Greece (Celebrity), Venice to Lisbon (RCCL repo) and a few others. really depends on picking right line/ship for you - have convinced a few friends to give it a go and they were surprised they liked it.
     
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  17. Flyer1976
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    Flyer1976 Gold Member

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    You forget I've lived in Denali for a summer? :p

    I've seen plenty of everything from Seward to Fairbanks in that area so I want to explore the North Slope and other parts of Alaska.
     
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  18. daninstl

    daninstl Gold Member

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    I've heard Celebrity is better than many of the other mass market lines and better than Princess. We like MSC the best so far but we usually book Yacht Club on the MSC ships.
    I agree the value is great when compared to hotels and restaurants.
     
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  19. FetePerfection
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    FetePerfection Silver Member

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    I want to try a Viking River Cruise through Europe but only if the water levels are low enough for the longboats to get under the bridges. I like Celebrity cruise lines. They're a little older crowd and I thought the cabins were spacious.
     
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  20. blackjack-21

    blackjack-21 Gold Member

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    Friends of ours were on a VRC last year when rivers were flooded so badly that of their ten or eleven day cruise they only moved the ship for three days until it got trapped between bridges by the flooding and high water levels. The rest of the trip was on buses for day trips from the ship to visit some of the cities and sights that should have been seen from along the river. Cruise line offered all the passengers a 50% discount on a future cruise.
     
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  21. FetePerfection
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    FetePerfection Silver Member

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    That's my fear - exactly what your friends experienced. I have a travel agent friend who had to deal with customers in the same boat (excuse the pun) and it wasn't pretty.
     
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  22. blackjack-21

    blackjack-21 Gold Member

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    In all fairness, there's no way the cruise companies could have dealt with the flooding they experienced, and probably didn't think it would happen, even with the rain predicted prior to the trip. And since most people book their trips well before the date of travel, obviously lots could happen, but no one foresaw the flooding. Our friends said the cruise line handled it as best they could, and the staff, accomodations, food, etc., on the ship were fine and had no compliants there, but of course they were disappointed how it all turned out with the bad weather, which also made their bus trips to different places along the river less then enjoyable because of all the rain.
     
  23. alanro

    alanro Gold Member

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    My wife spent a month when she was a teenager and living in Australia with her family cruising through the Fiji islands (and beyond) on board a copra freighter. She describes it as a wonderful experience; this was a common mode of inter-island transport for many people living on the islands and most everyone just camped outdoors on the deck. New Caledonia
    and Vanuatu are the islands she most wants to return to; this is definitely on our To Do list.
     
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  24. Pizzaman
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    Pizzaman Co-founder

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    We've cruises half a dozen times, all originating in the US/SJU so far. We haven't been in a couple of years but found it to be an enjoyable compromise for our family.

    My wife likes to get to one destination and unpack for a while and relax. I like to squeeze in as many destinations as possible. Cruises make both of those things happen.

    And, with a flexible schedule cruising can be downright cheap. Now that we have 2 kids, I'll need to figure out how hard it is to find connecting rooms cheaply.

    We've always preferred Royal Caribbean though want to try a Disney cruise at some point.
     
  25. Jaimito Cartero
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    Jaimito Cartero Silver Member

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    NSFW

    Was it Magda?
     
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