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Can You Cruise Without Underwear?

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At present I’m sitting in my “second home”, a condominium in Scottsdale, Arizona, and I’m involved with the joyous task of doing my laundry… so I have underwear on my mind. It’s not an interesting topic (though it would be if I were laundering Brittany Spear’s underwear, because since she doesn’t wear any I’d be doing something else). At any rate, it’s irrelevant because neither scenario has much to do with this week’s Blog. I just thought the title was “catchy”.

This is an illustration of what happens to the mind of a dedicated cruiser when they’re stuck on land for too long… as has happened to me.

For the past six months my life seems to have got in the way of me cruising. Silly things, like helping to plan (and pay for) my first son’s wedding, getting my other son back to college (and paying for it), Mrs. Kuki’s job, and other oddball family obligations have forced me to stay away from the sea. I have indeed missed the smell of the sea, the motion of the ocean, and the friendly, gracious service one always gets on a cruise ship; not to mention the fun and food.

Every once in a while an inevitably long thread appears on the message boards about how people manage to cruise so often. It’s surprisingly not that uncommon to hear from many people who cruise multiple times each year. And not surprisingly there’s many who wonder how the heck they do that. Personally, I’ve been very lucky, in that I’ve perfected counterfeiting various currencies in my basement… and found a job writing for CruiseMates.

Honestly, of those we hear from who do perhaps cruise several times per year, I don’t think we’d find that most are independently wealthy, or are travel writers. There are many factors at work, but I think a couple of the most important are choices they make during their everyday lives to cut back in other areas, and understanding the great value of cruises, and knowing  how to hunt down the terrific deals available.

For example, they’ll know that in the Caribbean some of the very best deals can be found sailing dates between U.S. Thanksgiving and Christmas, and some of the very least expensive cruises in all areas of are for repositioning cruises; when cruise lines are moving ships from one area of the globe to another, due to seasonal demand. That is ships heading from the Caribbean to Alaska in the spring, or back in the fall; as they also do to Europe in the spring, and back in the fall; or simply business decisions to reposition ships to new ports.

However, I don’t think anyone; from those who cruise multiple times during the year, to those who cruise each year, or those who can only take a cruise every two or three years, take their opportunities for granted.

The majority of people on cruise ships are very “happy campers”! They usually appreciate that for at least a short time they are blessed to be “treated like royalty”, and experience one the very top end means of vacationing and travel.

And that’s precisely why, after being landlocked for awhile, that yearning to set out to sea again is growing within me. Maybe I’ll just tell Kuki Jr. (who told me today he needs two root canals and two crowns) he can do without teeth, while I set out on a world cruise. I’m ready now. My underwear just came out of the drier!!

Who else out there is just itchin to go on cruise?

-A View From the Kuki Side of Cruising –

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Comment from rciaddict
Time August 26, 2009 at 11:25 am

Who isn’t itching to go on a cruise? There will be no cruise this year for the missus and I, but hopefully next fall on the Oasis.

Comment from GaNavy
Time August 27, 2009 at 12:55 pm

Only once have I managed to go on more than one cruise in a year. Big problem: limited vacation time given to employees by short-sighted American employers who think that employee vacations are just lost productivity/profits.

Comment from Paul Motter
Time August 27, 2009 at 6:33 pm

A lot of peopl who cruise a lot do bargain shopping – looking for sales and finding liong inexpensive cruises.

I am sure they often opt for non-balcony cabins. They also keept eh flying to minimum.

The people who spend more often fly fairly far, get a suite and a hotel. They end up paying most of the money off the ship.

Thos are the kinds of choices you make. having free time (being retired) makes it so a person can cruise a great deal more.

The best deals come in long cruises, not that all long cruises are cheap, but some of the cheapest you ever see, per diem, are long.

Comment from Debbie
Time August 28, 2009 at 11:45 am

We make lots of decisions based on our desire to cruise as often as possible. For instance, Chevy truck vs. Hummer. Difference in price? About 10-15 cruises. When we remodeled the kitchen, Viking stove vs. Kitchen Aide–2 cruises. I also hunt long and hard for the best prices. And then there are the hidden costs. A few years ago I used frequent flyer miles to get us to Seattle and then we took a bus to Vancouver at $33.00/pp as opposed to taking an international flight. The bus trip turned to out to be fun, in spite of my very low expectations.

We’re also not terribly fussy about hotel accommodations if we’re arriving the night before a cruise. Some accomodations have been better than others and a few are on my “Don’t Ever Go There Again” list, but overall it works. I’m going to Mexico twice in the next 6 weeks. The first time with hubby for 10 days and then with a group of girlfriends for 5 days.

Another expense the frequent cruisers don’t fret about is clothes. Hubby bought two tuxes a while back (summer/winter) and I’ve acquired about 6 formal ourfits that will get rotated until they are hopelessly out of style.

While hubby likes the occasional massage, we don’t spend a lot of money on spa services. I have an objection to spending more money for a service than I would on land and then having to put up with the additional sales pitch for overpriced products.

Finally, frequent cruisers don’t feel the need to buy souveniers, including ship photos of every breath you take. We always have a portrait taken and we buy it only if we love it.

So overall, there’s lots of ways to cut corners, big and little, in order to have multiple cruise experiences.

Comment from Tim Butler
Time August 28, 2009 at 7:42 pm

I agree with the cutting corners. A dollar or two here and there add up rather quickly over the course of a year.

I also empty my change into a piggy bank each time I am home and it can add up to several hundred dollars over the course of a year.

Like Debbie said…keep expenses down on the ship and you needn’t take much money with you once the cruise is paid for. I made the mistake of cruising during spring break on my first cruise and I was talking to one college student that brought along only $75 for expenses on the cruise, that was after gratuities I am sure, and he was having a ball.

Searching out the best deals also helps to keep expenses down. This has been a great year for cruise deals and I expect that as soon as these mega ships start coming online over the next year, Oasis, Epic, Dream, ect…, that the deals will get even better.

Being self employed does help us to be able to cruise when the cruise fares are lower too.

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