so i'm going on a solo cruise trip next year for my birthday and want to be fully prepared! although this is my 3rd cruise, i haven't been on one since i was 16 yrs old. this will be my 1st cruise where i do all the bookings, planning, finances, etc. i could use any and all advice everyone has to share!!! please feel free to give me tips on any area in the planning, booking and partaking aspect of cruising you have to give.
Since it's been a while,and so many inovations have taken place in the industry..cruise around the cruise line web sites, to see what would interest you..a bigger ship with all the bells and whistles, or, a smaller more intimate ship.....
Next, find a Cruise travel agent who can walk you through all the pitfalls one might come across,and highlight the positives for you.
Next, decide where you want to go...have a dream destination? Find the ships that go there,and, narrow down your choices...decide what time of year, that will impact pricing..get a quote,with taxes and port charges included...know what is included on your cruise, and all the optional dining venues that have a fee,and thingls like photos, liquor, excursions, etc that will add to your bottom line.
Ok, that's enough to start with...more info to come from many. Happy planning!
Trip, with her book & tea!
Chat Hostess & Board Moderator
Last edited by Trip; February 15th, 2011 at 12:45 PM.
you are in for some big changes and alot of fun...are you cruising alone or with someone special ? suggest you spend sometime reading alot of the articles on this website and go thru some older threads..are you thinking 7 days or one less then 7..thinking mega ship (Oasis of the Seas) or smaller ship?..since it's been so long, I would suggest a mega ship which will really give you a contrast to what you sailed 12 years ago..as you begin your detail planning just post timely questions and you'll receive lots of help
I agree with Venice. One of the megaships would be great for you. There is so much to do on the Oasis or the Allure that it will make for an exciting cruise.
Go and have fun
Carnival Liberty New Year's Eve 2007
Liberty of the Seas 5/2008+11/2009
Allure 1/16/ 2011
don't know which ship or ports yet, but i know i want to leave from either New Orleans, LA or Houston, TX as i can drive to both. that limits me to NCL or Carnival (i think). so the ports would probably be Mexico, Cayman Isles, Jamaica... depending on the cruise. I love everything from lounging to partying, river raft tours to snorkeling, day entertainment to the night life. i'm a versatile creature lol.
don't know which ship or ports yet, but i know i want to leave from either New Orleans, LA or Houston, TX as i can drive to both. that limits me to NCL or Carnival (i think). so the ports would probably be Mexico, Cayman Isles, Jamaica... depending on the cruise. I love everything from lounging to partying, river raft tours to snorkeling, day entertainment to the night life. i'm a versatile creature lol but am lost as to where to even start! i'd like to compair the on board entertainment as well but can't seem to find it. should i do all the research on my own or go through an agency? i'm completely overwhelmed and have over a year to get it all straight
I think you might find some Royal Caribbean's Mariner or Voyager sailing out of Galveston. If you like things like rock walls, sports, etc that would be a fun ship.
I highly recommend Carnival for a single cruiser - and I say stick to the newer and bigger ships - bigger than 100,000-tons. I just personally think they are nicer andmore fun than the older fantasy-class ships. I would pick Conquest because it is on of the newest & biggest Carnival ship out of Galveston.
However - carnival MAGIC is coming to Galveston, an that is a very big ship - the newest & biggest Carnival ship, but I dont think arrives until November.
But you do want to see what's NEW in ships, right?
I am the editor, but I also speculate, ask questions and play devil's advocate. I reserve the right to change my mind.
Things are a bit different in cruising than it was twelve years ago. The basics are still the same but dress codes, dining options, boarding and disembarkation are a bit different.
With the addition of alternative restaurants you will have more dining alternatives and most lines now have a "Anytime Dining" type concept where you choose the time you eat instead of having a fixed dining time and table.
While there are still dress codes they are more relaxed. The tuxedo is becoming a rare sight on many cruises.
In regard to planning you've taken the right first step. Check out the message boards, ask questions, read the articles and reviews to help you in making your choice.
In regard to costs and financial options: It is a great opportunity to start clicking on some of the advertisers. You can see their pricing and selections. In the words of Bluto from Animal House: "Don't cost nuthin".
Good luck on your search and becoming up to date on the current cruise world.
__________________ Cruisemates Community Leader/Moderator
"There is a great difference between being well traveled and just having been to many places." ~Me
Thank you all for the help! All of you sharing your tips & advice make me feel like I'm over thinking this and it will easier than I thought. Please keep it coming, I'm open to any and all you have to give. I am 28 now but want to cruise for my big 30th birthday with a bang!