It took almost 20 years to convince my hubby to cruise. Our first one leaves Dec 24 on Miracle.
Anyone else been on a cruise over Christmas and New Years. I anticipate it will be fairly formal on those two dates at least.
Also, what is the census on booking shore excursions ahead of time? My husband wants to wait until we are on board in case weather is an issue, but my two kids really want to snorkel and swim with the dolphins and I don't want it to be sold out.
Any other tips for first timers greatly appreciated.
Congratulations on your first cruise and welcome to CruiseMates! I know your family will have a wonderful time during the holidays!
Regarding shore excursions, keep in mind that the week you are sailing will be a very busy week for cruising. If the excursion you are wanting to do is very popular, it will probably be booked full prior to sailing, so book ahead of time.
Another option is to book outside of the cruise line. If you are wanting to swim with the dolphins in Cozumel, Luanne Russo can give you some excellent information on that choice.
Have a wonderful time, and let us know if you have other questions!
Mariner of the Seas
Carnival Magic Bloggers Cruise 5
Mariner of the Seas
HAL Statendam Alaska Cruise Tour - 09/09/12; Disney Magic - 12/01/12; Allure of the Seas - 05/26/13
Nine nite Xmas cruise on Miracle for a first, W-O-W-! Your hubby's gonna be kickin himself he waited this long. Make sure you're on deck when the ship sails outta Tampa under the Sunshine Skyway bridge, SPECTACULAR. Unfortunately, haven't been to several of the ports you'll visit, but do try and see BOTH sides of St. Maarten. IMO, the French side puts the Dutch to shame, but they're both fabulous. You'll have at least 2 formal nites and the ladies dress to the nines and men in dark suites with a few sporting tuxes. Other nites dress is casual in the dining room and I HIGHLY recommend taking your dinners in the dining room. Poolside grill, deli, pizza, lido buffet all great for breakfast/lunch, but dinner is not to be missed in the dining room. BTW, they'll fix the kids (or you) steak, chicken, fish, or burgers any day. Here'a few links to sample breakfast, lunch and dinner menus to give you an idea. The menus are the same on all carnival ships. Tell the kids to order the chocolate melting cake for desert. You're in for a D-Y-N-A-M-I-T-E vacation!
Almost forgot, don't know what age/gender your children are, but if you're all booked in one room, tell hubby to grab his dinner duds, shavin gear and head to the gym/spa. After relaxing in the hot tub, sauna, and steam room he can go back to the locker and dress for dinner. I did this when my GF and I took my mother on her first cruise, freed up the bathroom for the ladies to ready themselves for dinner. Not sure what age the kids have to be to use the gym/sap, but don't you or your hubby miss it. The view is SPECTACULAR up there, the entire front wall is wall-to-wall, floor-to-ceiling glass. No charge for use of any of the facilities, just turn your sail-n-sign card in for a locker key.
My kids are 14 and 11 (boy,girl). They have a separate cabin next to ours. I'm a little nervous about letting them roam the ship on their own, but from what I have researched, they will probably not want to hang with their parents anyway!
I think I will book the shore excursions this w/e to avoid disappointment. I wanted to do the zip line canopy tour, but when I went back to look it over, it was gone - disappeared from the my cruise weblink. Must have gotten sold out, I guess??
I've gotten lots of info and insight from this website. Good job.
Just wanted to wish you luck taking your husband on his first cruise.
I go all the time and my husband is also going on his first cruise
in april 2008 with me on the Liberty. He thought he should see what
he is missing.. Since I go all the time .
I am sure they will both enjoy the week.
If not the ships are big enough we can hide all day and only
find them when its time for dinner.
Be sure to post a report on how your husband liked the trip.
I'm taking our first cruise ever Nov 5th, also w/ a 14 year old, boy. I'm so overprotective of him. Funny how my mom, who I swear was even worse when I was younger, is already telling me she is going to make sure that he gets to roam freely. She is bringing me a walkie talkie. Maybe this idea will work well with your family also.
Hi and welcome to Cruisemates. I think this is your cruise schedule on the bottom of the post. Is that correct?
You are going to love Cruising at Christmas, and tell the kids they won't have to miss out either, because you are about to experience Christmas on the open sea. It is breathtaking, and unforgettable.
As far as excursions go. This is the busiest time to cruise. You must book early. I have several web sites for you, if you decide to book on your own, but you might want to do your first cruise excursions through the ship, for piece of mind.
Suggestion: Go to the dollar store in your neighborhood, and get a small already decorated Christmas tree for the room. They come in a small box, that easily fits in your suitcase, and will make a great night light for your room.
I would love you help you plan, so let us hear what you need.
Ft Lauderdale (Pt Evrglds), FL 4:00pm View Shore Excursions
2 Fun Day At Sea
3 Fun Day At Sea
4 St. Maarten, NA 8:00am 5:00pm View Shore Excursions
5 St. Lucia, WI 9:00am 5:00pm View Shore Excursions
6 St Kitts, WI 9:00am 5:00pm View Shore Excursions
Sorry, im not on this day, but leaving 3 weeks later.. As for you husband, I understand.. At first, my hubby was worried what would we have to do ... But contrary fromhe an island resort, where you only have the beach and hotel,, a cruise has ports of call, loads of activities, different shows every night,,, and so on and so on... Before our first cruise,, ( a 4 night cruise out of Port Canaveral) he thought he would be bored.. WRONG... he fell in love with the ships pizzaria ( got knows how much pizza this guy wolfed down!!) lol... When we decided to leave this winter (first time de fly out together for a trip since our honeymood (the 4 night cruise was while we were visiting my parents inflorida, thay babysat),,He only wanted to cruise... fell in love with it.. Tel you hubby to trust other men!!! If he is still sceptical,,, tell him that there is a topless ares!!!lol THAT WILL GET THEM EVERY TIME!!.. You can even say,,, I will think about sunbathing topless.. even if you will NEVER do it..who is he to know!!LOL,.,,, Let me know if you have questions.. and have fun waiting.. waiting and planing is half the fun..