What Teens Want in Cruise ships By Alex Gaynor Jan. 17, 2007
This is an informal poll taken in our message boards. Over 100 teens repiled to the poll.
When cruise lines design a new ship or overhaul an old one, they need to know what kinds of facilities and services are important to the growing teen segment of passengers. From teen club amenities to types of food and service, we teens have an opinion. I've often wondered how other teens rate cruise lines and their ships in terms of food, teen clubs and service, so I surveyed people on the messages boards until I found my answers. So listen up, cruise lines, this is our cruise review.
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I started by asking which line teens generally preferred. This category includes everything the line has to offer. Does it have great food, service, and teen clubs? My personal vote went to Royal Caribbean, but in the final survey results, it was almost a tie between them and Carnival.
I next surveyed teens on their favorite ports. Although sometimes we go on a cruise mainly to experience the ship, the ports can be lots of fun too. Here's how teens rated them:
Although you may not spend all your time there, teen clubs are an important aspect to teen cruising. Where else would we meet other teens? The following are your votes for best teen club:
Club O2 (Carnival)
The Loft (HAL)
Club Remix (Princess)
In addition to the teen clubs, there are other places to hang out with your new shipboard friends. I admit that sometimes you'd rather not hang out at the teen club with its organized activities and adult supervision. Your favorite hangout places are as follows:
By the pool
Up on the top decks
Personally, one of my favorite things about cruising is the food. It's everywhere -- in the dining rooms, buffets, by the pool, room service. It seems that when you're cruising, there are 10 meals a day. Here are the cruise lines teens rated as having the best food. (There was a tie for first place.)
Carnival/ Royal Caribbean
Doesn't everybody love it when the crew members on your cruise are super friendly? It's part of the staff's job to be kind and caring towards passengers. They have to deal with up to 3,000 people a week and they still manage to do it with a smile. Here are your ratings for best service. (There was a three-way tie for third.)
Holland America/Carnival/ Costa
Tips for First-Timers
Think back to your very first cruise and try to remember how you felt. Were you worried that you weren't going to meet anyone and make friends? Didn't the ship seem huge with its endless passageways, waiting for you to get lost in them? Did you ever seek out advice? Here are some of the most frequent tips for our first-time teen cruisers from other teens who've been there. (In no specific order)
Just get out there and have fun! Be yourself and make friends the first night so you have people to hang out with for the rest of your cruise!
Be friendly and respectful to other passengers and the staff.
Remember that on a cruise; you're allowed to go a little crazy. Most importantly, be yourself and always have fun even if you do look stupid.
Go to the teen meeting the first night. Be open and try not to be shy -- remember that everyone else is in the same boat as you, so to speak. They all want to meet people too.
Don't be afraid to take chances; you probably won't see these people ever again, so enjoy it as much as possible.
The ship may seem gigantic at first, but if you walk around the first day and find out where everything is, there's no chance you'll get lost.
So there you have it, cruise lines. Our likes and dislikes. In the end, it's all about having fun. Happy cruising!
Alex Gaynor is a 13-year old contributing writer and co-editor for our teen area, and the daughter of our family cruise editor and advisor, Luisa Frey Gaynor.