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View Poll Results: 3 and 4-day cruises: What do you think?
Never, the crowd's too rowdy and the ship's too dowdy 9 23.68%
Not my first choice, but it's still a cruise 18 47.37%
The length doesn't matter as long as I am on a ship 9 23.68%
They are my favorite cruises because of the price and atmosphere 2 5.26%
Voters: 38. You may not vote on this poll

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  #1 (permalink)  
Old July 9th, 2008, 11:35 AM
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Default Poll: Short Cruises - Are they worthwhile?

I assume most of us cruise for at least a week when we cruise, but that suggests a lot more than just how long we are away from home.

My question is on the 3 and 4-day cruise experience. They are very different for several reasons:

1. The crowd tends to be younger because they can't get as much time off work and the price is lower

2. The ships are invariably older - most short cruises use ship 10 years or older (except the new NCL Sky which is a newer ship).

3. The crowd "parties" more, because they are younger and because the cruise is shorter so they really try to "pack in the fun" while they can.

In the end, it is almost an entirely different experience than what I believe most of us conjure the cruise experience. So, how do you feel about short cruises?

Please answer the poll based on your ACTUAL CRUISE HISTORY, and not on how you think you feel.

Also, please explain your answer, especially if you think the ships are too old or the crowds are too rowdy (or the opposite).
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Old July 9th, 2008, 11:59 AM
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We took a 4 day RC cruise in April and had a great time. Not a rowdy crowd and, in fact, pretty low key. No college students either .
I enjoyed it very much. and combined it with a trip to FL and it was a great vacation!!!!!!
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Old July 9th, 2008, 12:08 PM
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I look at it this way - there are some short cruises that are great. I would take a 4-day Disney cruise along with a visit to Orlando. I also like the short cruises to Canada out of NY City.

But the 3-day Ensenada voyage on a 1990s ship, or 3-days to Nassau on a 1990s ship is not something I would recommend as a "great vacation" to anyone. Mostly because the ships are so much older and less representative of what you can get ona 7-day voyage.

I am looking forward to Mariner of the Seas coming to Los Angeles. It will be the first mega-ship on the West Coast (because it has to sail around South America to get here). But I am hoping having a ship of that caliber here will turn on a lot of West Coasters to cruising.

Hey Royal Caribbean, how about giving us Independence or Freedom of the Seas?
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Old July 9th, 2008, 12:16 PM
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A 3 day cruise is NOT worth it; unless it is a party celebration; i.e. birthday, bachelerotte, etc.
A 4 day cruise is almost worth it; long enough to unwind, but short enough to make you want another day or two
A 5 day cruise is just about perfect for those who are near ports and want to cruise twice a year; I would pick two 5 days over one 7-day or longer
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Old July 9th, 2008, 12:25 PM
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We live close to all 3 ports so for us as a quick get away the 3 day is worth it. I can still work a few hours on Friday and be in the office by 9 am on Monday. No vacation time used. To us it is less expensive than a 3 day stay in San Diego and we don't have to drive around looking for food or entertainment. Very relaxing to us.

We wouldn't do a 4 or 5 day because it uses the same amount of vacation days as a 7 day cruise.
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Old July 9th, 2008, 12:55 PM
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I don't mind the shorter cruises because it is at sea and I can find the quiet places if I must.
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Old July 9th, 2008, 12:57 PM
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I voted no, but for different reasons. By the time I pack, get to the port, etc. I am too tired to enjoy the first day of any cruise (health problems). So, just not worth it to go for 3 or 4 days. Although, I did those when I was young and healthy and wanted a quick get away. A cruise always beats other vacations, even mini ones.
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Old July 9th, 2008, 01:36 PM
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Alright, based on my cruise expeniences. As you can see by the list I have been on 3 short cruises all 4 days to Catalina and Enseneda (budget reasons). I have also been on a 14 TA cruise from Miami to Italy (now I'm broke ).

On the 14 day a man in the dining at a table just behind our table went crazy and held a butter knife up to another man's throat. He was somewhere in his 60s or 70s. Senior citizens are more crazy then the college kids. I never heard of this happening on any of the 4 day cruise I have taken. Yes, there is more drinking and dancing on 4 day cruises. But I didn't think I would say the shorter cruises are more "wild" then the longer cruises. This is not my personal experience.

However, I love more time on the ship than a 3-4 day cruise provides. Carnival is now putting 6 day cruises on the west coast schedule I think that is a great. 4 days is just not enough. At this point in my life I want a cruise 5 days or longer.
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Old July 9th, 2008, 02:52 PM
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What is the 6-day Carnival option on the West Coast?
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Old July 9th, 2008, 05:42 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Paul Motter
What is the 6-day Carnival option on the West Coast?
Carnival does it like twice a year out of San Diego. I was on the Elation in May 27, 07 it went to Cabo, Laz Paz and Enseneda.I did a review on it here is the link. http://www.cruisemates.com/articles/.../elation39.cfm

It looks like the next one is on October 31, 2008 that would be fun, only $429 for an Ocean view room. Here it is:
Cruise Itinerary:

Day Ports of Call


1 San Diego, California --- 4:00 p.m.

2 At Sea --- ---

3 Cabo San Lucas, Mexico 8:00 a.m. 6:00 p.m.

4 La Paz, Mexico 8:00 a.m. 4:00 p.m.

5 At Sea --- ---

6 Ensenada, Mexico 1:00 p.m. 7:00 p.m.

7 San Diego, California 8:00 a.m. ---
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Old July 9th, 2008, 06:28 PM
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If you live near the port of departure, a four day cruise might make some sense, if you live 1000 miles away there is no way that it would. If I'm going to pay the cost of today's airfare, I want at least a 10, 12 or 14 day cruise for my money.
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Old July 9th, 2008, 06:57 PM
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We took the four day Sovereign of the Seas out of Port Canaveral a few days back. It was a fine cruise; not too rowdy. We went with my folks who were around 70 at the time.

However, we now prefer cruises of around two weeks. Long enough so that you can feel at home on the ship and get into a routine. Also long enough to make the air travel worthwhile.
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Old July 9th, 2008, 09:48 PM
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I have been on 3 night (once), 4 night (once), 5 night (once), 6 night (once), 7 night (twice) and a 9 night (once) cruise. I have really enjoyed all my cruises, although I much prefer the 6 - 7 night cruise. The 3 or 4 night cruise is a great get away for us. I don't mind the older ship as long as it is kept up and clean. So far, both my really short cruises were on the Majesty OTS, which RCI has refurbished and keeps in great shape!

We have scheduled our short cruises during the winter or fall and at times when we can be sure not a lot of kids and young partiers will be onboard. I am hoping to plan another 3 night cruise on the Majesty OTS for next February. Let's put it this way, I like the 3 - 4 night in addition to my usual yearly 6 or 7 night cruise, but not instead of.
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Old July 10th, 2008, 08:14 AM
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Since we live centrally to 5 cruise ports, the Summer 5 day out of Tampa is absolutely worth doing. (Especially with the higher prices in the summer, and the fact that we have no air travel to worry about.) We just happen to love that ship as well, and as a result, I'll usually book "Inspiration" to hold me over until my next 7 or 8 day cruise in the fall. Would I prefer to stay aboard longer? Absolutely, but I always totally enjoy my "short" summer cruise.

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Old July 10th, 2008, 12:43 PM
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We also love the Inspiration out of Tampa. But, I still prefer 7 days or more. 10-12 days is my ideal. After 14 days, I've usually caught someone's cold (just my problem) and am ready to curl up and be miserable at home.
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Old July 10th, 2008, 03:01 PM
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skymaster, if we lived in Florida, we'd feel the same way.
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Old July 11th, 2008, 12:35 PM
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Paul,

I had to vote "Never" because I wouldn't consider one because of the airfare. I won't pay the airfare required for just 3 or 4 days at sea. After the number of cruises we've taken we really want 10 days or more. Seven is now too short.

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Old July 11th, 2008, 08:39 PM
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Since I have to fly into a port to cruise, if I were to do a shorter cruise, I'd tie in some kind of land trip, especially in Florida for the rest of the week. With the cost of transportation down from the midwest, just to go for a short cruise, isn't cost effective.
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Old July 11th, 2008, 10:53 PM
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Default Re: Poll: Short Cruises - Are they worthwhile?

Quite enjoyed my 1 day cruise on the then new HAL Nordam from Vancouver to Seattle. Actually most of the crowd was older which I don't mind, the ship was newer and it was not a party boat. It took 2 flights, one taxis, one bus and two trains to get to the ship from Texas and when I left it was via Seattle to New Hamphire, up to Vermont, Maine and Massachusetts, down to Tennessee and on home. Made for a relaxing extended (3 day)weekend that we travelling auditors appreciate.<g> Lest you think it was all travel and no fun, I participated in crowd control for a medical emergency aboard ship, got some hiking done in Vermont, took in a movie in New Hamphire, checked out some beavers at play on a stream, and visited a site in Maine where a branch of the family got wiped out by Indians back in the Popham Colony times.



Quote:
Originally Posted by Paul Motter
I assume most of us cruise for at least a week when we cruise, but that suggests a lot more than just how long we are away from home.

My question is on the 3 and 4-day cruise experience. They are very different for several reasons:

1. The crowd tends to be younger because they can't get as much time off work and the price is lower

2. The ships are invariably older - most short cruises use ship 10 years or older (except the new NCL Sky which is a newer ship).

3. The crowd "parties" more, because they are younger and because the cruise is shorter so they really try to "pack in the fun" while they can.

In the end, it is almost an entirely different experience than what I believe most of us conjure the cruise experience. So, how do you feel about short cruises?

Please answer the poll based on your ACTUAL CRUISE HISTORY, and not on how you think you feel.

Also, please explain your answer, especially if you think the ships are too old or the crowds are too rowdy (or the opposite).
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Old July 12th, 2008, 02:08 AM
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I voted for it's a cruise and I am happy to be on it...I have been on several 3-4 day cruises out of both coast and have used it as a great first "long" date to see if my friend really likes the cruising concept before I expend the funds to go on a longer one with her..plus you get the credit towards building up your loyalty program status
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Old July 12th, 2008, 07:36 AM
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Hi Divemaster,
How is the ride from Vancouver to Seattle. I cruised out of Vancouver once before, but this time its Seattle, decent senery?? Although, we only have a few hours of daylight when leaving.
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Old July 12th, 2008, 08:23 AM
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Hi Donna:

By ship nice because of the mountains around the port, after dark there are lights on the Olympic Peninsula and various islands.

By train nice because you are mostly by the water - scenic.

By bus nice because of the greenery and some old farms.

By plane nice because of the mountains again.

When leaving from Seattle the weather can be hit or miss and views peek-a-boo. Belltown is the better departure location but you are probably leaving further south near the Starbucks HQ. More industrial down there. Hit Pike Place Market. Try Applets and Cotlets. See the Aquarium. Used to live up there BTW over in West Seattle just west of where you will be docked.

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Donna
Hi Divemaster,
How is the ride from Vancouver to Seattle. I cruised out of Vancouver once before, but this time its Seattle, decent senery?? Although, we only have a few hours of daylight when leaving.
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Old July 12th, 2008, 07:04 PM
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Thanks Dave,
Just what I wanted to know, hopefully the weather will cooperate and we can see some things.
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Old July 12th, 2008, 09:38 PM
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Always things to see if overcast - from the Pioneer Square area to the Aquarium to the Pike Place Market to the Ballard Locks. Just don't take in Slugfest - one look at the size of the critters up there will give you nightmares for life.

Quote:
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Thanks Dave,
Just what I wanted to know, hopefully the weather will cooperate and we can see some things.
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Old July 13th, 2008, 04:03 PM
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There is actually a difference between even the three-day and the four-day cruises. The three-day cruise leave Friday and return Monday, so they have a lot more younger people taking a weekend from work. A four-day cruise actually requires taking a week off of work, so the crowd is less rowdy (probably older, plus they are not trying to pack every minute with partying).

I do agree though, that if you have to fly make the most out of it, take at least a 7-day cruise. And if you are flying to Europe or elsewhere far away, take an even longer one.
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Old July 13th, 2008, 05:01 PM
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Interestingly, I was watching a movie called "Jumpers" yesterday. Similiar to the folks in the movie who teleport anywhere there are a bunch of us real life folk (pilots, auditors, authors, and the like) who actually zip about the globe on short notice for short periods and actually enjoy it. Would not be a problem for me at all to fly to Spain for a day just to cruise to Africa and then fly back the next day. Of course if diving it would have to be a 3 day trip.


Quote:
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And if you are flying to Europe or elsewhere far away, take an even longer one.
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Old July 13th, 2008, 07:21 PM
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DW and I have done 5 of these short cruises. They are nice little getaways.
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Old July 13th, 2008, 07:43 PM
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I chose the second option.
After our last cruise out of Miami (a 5-day) wife and decided that any cruise that involved flying will have to be at least 7 days.

We are eager for the cruises to start departing from Seattle as it is a 2 hour drive from our home at the most. A 3-day cruise is quite doable and won't even require arriving at the port a day early.
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Old July 20th, 2008, 09:56 PM
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While we have never been on a cruise shorter then 7 days, this will change in Dec. with a Carnival 5 day cruise out of Mobile, I do know that it takes at least 3 days to find out where everything on the ship is. Seems to me that just about the time you got everything figured out on a 3 day you are leaving the boat and going home. Plus the drive or cost of the flight would not make a 3 day appealing to me.

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