I’m Often Asked If I Ever Get Tired of Cruising
Written by: Kuki
In the past 15 years I’ve sailed on about 54 or so cruises. Unlike many I haven’t actually kept track, and don’t have the brain cells or the will to back track to create a list. For 10 of those years I’ve been writing about those cruises for CruiseMates, so people’s perception is that I am an experienced cruiser. Because of that perception I do get a lot of people asking me questions about cruising, and my opinions about cruising. In this week’s blog I thought I’d address one of the most frequently question I get asked.
I’m often asked if I don’t ever tire of cruising.
I do admit there was one cruise I was on where I wished the cruise was over before it was scheduled to end. That was a cruise on the Carnival Victory. I don’t remember the year. Understand, I’m a big fan of Carnival, and the product they deliver. However, on that cruise I felt they were badly missing the mark on delivery of that product, and in fact things seemed so askew at one point I actually thought I was being “punked”.
Aside from that one experience, I’ve truly enjoyed each and every cruise I’ve been on, on all the cruise lines I’ve sailed. Since my first cruise in Dec. ‘94 I’ve taken very few vacations that were not cruises. Though I had quite a bit of flexibility to travel because I owned my own business there were still some limitations, so I chose cruise travel as the primary way to spend my leisure time.
I’m now retired from my business endeavours, and my only job is writing for CruiseMates, so I have plenty of free time. With that situation in mind, I admit I have been thinking I should possibly look at expanding my horizons somewhat in regard to travel. I shockingly thought I should look at travel outside of cruising.
In fact I just recently spent a week in Phoenix, Arizona. My accommodation in Phoenix was an “outside room”, with no private balcony… and my view, in fact, was a large paved parking lot, rather than an ocean-view. I stayed at a Hilton Garden Inn. The only thing that came with my room was my room, and a coffee maker, and for that extreme pleasure a one week stay, with taxes, cost me $1687. This was in March, which is really the end of high season in Arizona for tourism.
My entertainment costs for the week – golf- cost me an additional $625. I was fortunate in that my sister and brother-in-law live there, and own an extra car that they loaned me, so my only transportation cost was $50 for gasoline for the week, and another $100 to take them out for dinner to say thank you…. Rather than paying for a car rental as well.
During the week I spent another $450 on meals, snacks and drinks… which would have been doubled if I had taken Mrs. Kuki with me. The grand total for my seven days away came to approx. $2900! I didn’t enter airfare into the equation as I used Frequent Flyer Miles to get my ticket (as I often do for cruises as well ) That $2900 number sticks in my craw!
What would $2900 have bought me if I’d chosen to cruise?
It’s simple really… our next cruise, the CruiseMates Group Cruise on the Ruby Princess in October, sailing from Venice to Ft. Lauderdale – for 18 days – was at one time going for $1599 pp. for a cabin with a private balcony.
So, for an extra $300 both Mrs. Kuki and I could have an EIGHTEEN day vacation, including all the food we wanted to eat, and all the snacks we felt like shoving down our throats. And while we were at it, we’re able to travel on an amazing itinerary, visiting superb European ports of call, before relaxing as we cross the Atlantic Ocean.
One doesn’t have to be an Actuary to understand that math! Rather than encouraging me to venture forth into more land based vacations, my Arizona jaunt reaffirmed to me just how good the value is in cruise vacations. So…when I become tired of superior accommodations while I travel, combined with terrific service personnel, and almost unlimited dining choices with daily and nightly entertainment all included in the cost, you’d best just stick me in a facility for the mentally infirm, because I’d have to be nuts!
What about you folks— Do the frequent cruisers amongst you get tired of cruising, and look for other vacations? Have you found a vacation that you feel offers better value? Do you like to mix cruise vacations with other forms of vacation travel? Or (horror of horrors) do you prefer other types of vacations to cruising?
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Posted: April 21st, 2009 under Kuki.