The CruiseMates site keeps growing, which delights us to no end of course. New people registering day after day, and it got to me to wondering.... so thought I'd ask.
I'd love to hear some stories from ALL of you about how the site has helped you. Is it the information you've learned here that you find valuable, or the people you've met thanks to the site, or the feature articles and reviews available, or.........?
And, of course, what keeps you coming back?
***By opening this post, you've been redirected to where this thread was moved to. Scroll down to read other's responses, and please add your own thoughts ****
I got all my info for my first cruise here and glad I did cause i didn't know anything about cruising. Without this site we would of looked like a bunch of Hillbillies gettin on that ship with our plastic bags from walmart and the grocery store!!!
checking this site was a dose of good medicine for me every day and Thank You all for the valuable info that was here for me to read .
I think of this site as a teacher for the new cruiser and second time around for me and still I come here to learn something new.
Kuki - I discovered this site just a few weeks ago - before my first cruise in 20 years. I found it invaluable with tips for making the cruise experience better. Some things I did ... took an over the door shoe rack with me for all the bathroom toiletries, took an extension cord for more outlets, magnetic memo board for leaving each other messages. Bought the packing cubes ... still packed way too much stuff. All stuff I learned from reading on cruisemates. I love this site and am sorry that my cruise is over already. We just got back last weekend from the Inspiration. We are itching to take another cruise. Maybe next one can be the southern route.
I found this site just after I booked our first cruise. It gave me invaluable insight as to what to expect, bring and clarified some questions I had on tipping. Anytime I had a question someone was always quick so answer.
By sticking with the site after my cruise it helped to spread out and try a second cruise, on a different line. Reassured my thoughts that it is always good to travel the day before to the port city. Helped with booking onshore activites, the best places to shop.
The daily boards is one of the first thing I check in the morning. It gives my day a great start and always reminds me that while I might not have a cruise in the wings waiting, that there is always hope, that soon I too will be sailing the high seas.
I can't remember what led me to this site but it has become like a family. First of all, I needed help with a countdown clock. A gal named CarolB gave me a lead to a fellow whose handle was Bon Bon Voyage. He helped me immeasurably with it and had much patience. Then it was on to the Signature and I got help with that, too. By the way, CarolB and I, and her daughter and her sister became the "Bon Girls". We all went on the same cruise together, and connected by that first posting of roll call and the countdown clock. And do you know what? We followed Bon Bon Voyage through to his cruise that was after ours. He's faded away but CarolB and I continue to post and are planning another cruise, we hope, for 2007.
Another fellow named Kuki, and Mike M have helped me so much with problems connected with me being "computer illiterate", especially since the site was revised. They have fixed the problems! (Now-I need a new countdown clock and can't seem to figure out how to get it! -hint, hint).
And, another great fellow by the name of RayB invited Trevor and me to a Central Florida gathering. We've only been able to attend two of them so far but due to his hospitality, we've met some of the posters on the People Board, including Ray's wonderful wife, Helen. This is such a friendly and supportive group!
I check in with the boards either in the AM or definitely after work and catch up on the happenings. I do not reply to all, but do try to answer some. We all have some sort of bond, along with cruising and do offer aid and uplifting and "friendly advice" to each other. We have fun-as well as keep each other in line sometimes--but always lovingly!!
This board is like a home and I feel comfortable here. I know what "room" I can go to if I need specific information--like practical advice, or items about destinations or cruise lines.
Did I answer the question? !!!! I may have forgotten a few more reasons but I think this a good start!!
I don't remember how I found Cruisemates but it was shortly after I booked my first cruise. Being new to cruising I had no idea what to expect. The people on this site helped me to know more about cruising, what to take, what to expect, tipping, formal nights. I learned alot and thanks to cruisemates we had a wonderful time and are booked for our 2nd cruise in the fall on the Sensation. I'm sure when the Sensation goes back into service at the end of March I will be getting information on that cruise.
Thank you cruisemates and keep up the good work.
Carnival Valor - 10/2008
Carnival Sensation 10/2006- now Fantasy
Carnival Miracle 10/2005
Well, I cannot begin to tell you how supportive everyone on Chit Chat was when my DH was so very ill. I won't go into that whole story again. But these people, who along with me, post every day on Chit Chat, encouraged, supported, and prayed for both of us. I can never thank them enough.
Keith and I had the opportunity to met a few of our CM's recently: Mike and Betty when we visited my mother in Minnesota; Jennifer and Jose when we visited Keith's brother in Phoenix; Kuki and his wife, Geela (from Canada), Steve, and Teresa and Larry, the latter three from Southern California. The last group we met at a pre-cruise cocktail party in San Pedro, CA.
In December, we can't wait to meet a BUNCH of CruiseMates when we all sail on the Cruise of the Century!
Lots of good information always.
Specifically, before our last cruise when we were assigned inside seats on the 13 hour flight home in spite of my husband's disability, and no help from HAL staff or the airline. With the advice given here we got a doctor's letter, faxed it to HAL and eventually did get an aisle seat near the washrooms. Thanks everyone!!!
My wife and I have been on 4 cruises, but are still learning. This by far is the best place to get a answer. We have a cruise coming Apr 19,06 on the Pride. You would think it was your frist. We thank all the cruisemates for all your help , this site keeps me going, my wife thinks I am a cruise nut. Thank you
__________________ 1986 USS Constitution / Hawaiian Islands 1999 Royal Caribbean / Ensenada, Mexico 2005 Carnival Paradise /Ensenada, Mexico 2006 Carnival Pride / Mexican Riviera 2008 Carnival Conquest / Western Caribbean 2009 Sapphire Princess / Mexican Riv
I think I discovered CruiseMates shortly after we got our first computer. I was completely computer illiterate; my teenagers had to show me how to do everything. When I started researching cruising, I found this site, and everyone was so friendly and helpful, not just with cruising questions, but with technical stuff too. I wouldn't be here today if it weren't for the help of Carole, Michelle, and of course, my hero, Mike M.!!
I come here first, every morning for my daily fix of cruise nuts! I love all the people here, and can't wait to meet them on the Cruise of the Century!
Our Sunday travel section in the newspaper brought me here for more cruise information. The article was a tease for me and I had to see how much, more we could learn about cruising, even after 10 cruises. A LOT!! Thank you for a great informative site. Love the articles, and really get a feel for the ships reading the reviews. Of course always try to stop off at Chit-Chat to say good morning to my CMs!
Im really a newbie but I know so much now about crusing thanks to your site. The people here are really wonderful and almost all my posts get answers. As soon as I think of a question I post it and read the answers. But the site should come with a warning = Warning these posts are addictive!
I have learned to pack some essential things like a power strip,
extra batteries for the camera, the all important night light, etc. I also learned how to save money by bringing my own insulated water bottle and filling it on lido deck each day.
I have found out about which excursions people liked or did not like and why. When trying to make my mind up about a ship or destination I need only post questions and wait for the replys. I have found out on my own how to investigate and save money on shore excursions by booking my own after reading that most serious cruisers do this. I have learned so much I find myself answering other peoples posts and have recieved many messages of thanks. The people are polite, and freindly this is what sets your site apart from the others I have visited!
It's pretty user friendly except I still have no idea how to use the countdown clock or post a photo but one of these days I will figure it out. The articles really help to educate people and the reader reviews good or bad give people an idea of what to expect or what can happen on a cruise.
I hope to try out a cruise mate cruise one day to meet some of you in person. I love reading the posts and looking at the photos. When some of you write from sea I feel almost like Im there with you. I may even look into becoming a travel agent as I really enjoy hunting for a good bargain, and giving advice.
Since I travel as a single Pat Hagans articles are very helpful. The next best thing to being at sea is coming to this site to read about crusing. Thanks to everyone for all the answers to my many posts!
In 1999 I finally figured out the cruising wasn't exactly like The Love Boat and I decided to give it a try. I was a somewhat more "intense" person back then and I had to know everything about it before I booked. In my search I found Cruisemates. This site and it's people provided me with knowledgeable answers to my newbie and some specific questions and the people were downright helpful. After that I stayed around so much that they put me work. I guess I was taking up too much bandwidth.
The site has also provided me with some great contact with people and many of them have become true friends who will be that for life.
I do know that through the last six years it's an experience I wouldn't trade and it has enriched my life.
__________________ Cruisemates Community Leader/Moderator
"There is a great difference between being well traveled and just having been to many places." ~Me
I discovered the site by clicking on a link in the Sunday Houston Chronicle Travel Section and have been addicted since. I enjoy seeing what everyone is talking about, being able to help out those who have questions. This is a...(about to date myself here) neat place to be .
Cruised more times than I can remember.
Good people sleep peaceably in their beds at night only because rough men stand ready to do violence on their behalf.
Courage and perserverance have a magical talisman; before which difficulties disappear and obstacles vanish into the air.
Pick your company wisely! Hang around people who are going to help you become all God created you to be.
I was already a seasoned cruiser when I found CruiseMates. I was looking for reviews of ships when I found CruiseMates. How lucky for me!!! This site is a treasure trove of info for first time cruisers and the seasoned cruiser. Just when we think we "know it all" another bit of helpful info comes out. Best of all I found a warm and inviting group of people here. People who make everyone feel comfortable here. I have met a few of you and hope to meet more in the future. When I say the word "cruise" around my friends they scatter or suddenly go deaf. Not here "cruise" is what we all want to talk about. CruiseMates!!!! Gotta love 'em!!!
I disc0vered this site through Google. We're walking out of the door in 2 hours to board our first cruise ship. I feel a lot more prepared because of the suggetions people have passed on. I've been able to answer questions from other family members (7 of us traveling for parent's 50th) and think things will go much more smoothly than if I had not been reading your boards every day. Thanks!
After crusing for some thirty years its nice to see such a large group of people that share and enjoy the wonders of crusing. I find recent cruise reviews of fellow passengers interesting and compare them with my own personal experiences while sailing a particular ship. While I find many of the "new build" "mega liner"s that carry 3000 passengers not my cup of tea, there are still enough other smaller ships that I might enjoy.
I guess that I found cruisemates about 2 months before my last cruise. I had one or two question that y'all answered for me and I'm grateful.
Mostly though Cruisemates got me even more fired up about my cruise with all of the present, future and former cruisers chatting and posting everyday. Also got to do the chat with a lot of you and y'all welcomed me like I had been posting for years and I really appreciated that.
I too found this site in 1999, before my first cruise. I bet I asked a 100 questions. A real nice lady named Donna, answered everyone.
Since that time, I come here at least twice a day. I love to read about everyones cruises, and it helps with PCD.
The people here are so friendly, and helpful. And thats something you won't find on other cruise board sites.and you never have to worry about profanty and unwanted material here.
With our cruise coming up in May,here again, it will be our first to sail out of Miami, and fly to our port, and we've already found alot of helpful information about airports, Miami, getting around in Miami, and good places to eat, and not to meantion, our ship Carnival Valor .
So to all the Cruisemate staff, and to other cruisemates, Thanks for making this board what it is
Dream - Sept. 22 2012
Truimph - Nov. 2010
Truimph - Aug. 2010
Legend May 2009
Liberty - Aug.23 2008
Fantasy - Sept.22 2007
Fantasy - Sept.27 2007 (B 2 B )
Holiday- Sept.- 2006
Valor- May - 2006
Conquest- August- 2003
Enchanted Isle- Sept.- 1999
I first stumbled upon this site when I was cruising for a good porn site. I thought I had discovered a cruisin-for-love site. Then Mrs. Thomas discovered how much time this site occupied my time she made it my home page. She's enjoying the great outdoors.
Book me on your next cruise and enjoy your personal punching bag.
The wife and I found this place shortly before we booked our first cruise. The people here were kind and eager to help this old country boy from South Carolina. This website gave us great lists for what to pack and answered my formal night questions. Kuki settled me down on my hesitation about gambling due to being a greenhorn.
Due to that care, we are booked on Triumph in October for our second of many cruises to follow. Thanks everyone.
In September of 2000, Mort and I were talking with a couple we met while on a cruise, and they mentioned that "CruiseMates" has a web site where you can read passenger reviews of ships, etc. I had just bought a computer, so when we returned home, I couldn't wait to go to cruisemates.com. I found Mary Lou who was looking for people who would be sailing on the Millennium on a certain day in January. We were booked on that cruise also. And - Mary Lou is also from my old hometown - Pittsburgh. We became friendly through the board and teamed up to plan a get-together onboard with the other couples from this site who were also sailing with us. Since then, I've met in person and cruised with many other wonderful CruiseMates. I READ "Chit Chat" everyday (even though I don't post that often), but it is a way for me to stay in touch with friends and read about the happenings in their lives. By finding this site, I am among people who share and understand my passion for cruising.
When I booked our first cruise in 2004, I didn't know anything about cruising. I searched and found this site and was I glad! I got a pen & paper and as I was reading suggestions, I was making a list. Everytime I read something else, I was like...."ohhh I have to add that to the list!" I can't imagine how many little things could have gone wrong without that list. It made the cruise pretty much free of all the little annoyances that would have cropped up.
We're going on our 3rd cruise next month and are taking our adult daughter with us. It will be her first cruise! As parents, it's a thrill that she's taking that first cruise with us. Her boyfriend says he doesn't think he'd ever like cruising, but I have a feeling that once she's gone on one, he won't hear the end of it! haha..
This site is great! I check in often to see if anyone has posted something new. I'm very curious about Veendam, which we'll go on next month. I hope it's as nice, even if it isn't as big, as Zuiderdam.
I discovered this site early 2001 when I was booking my Honeymoon cruise which had to be cancelled due to my future stepdaughters illness. That was a very tangible benefit, I had learned about how important insurance was and resources for finding the best coverage for my dollar. I have gleaned many other bits of information that have enhanced my cruise experiences. Chit chat is fun too.
Explorer of the Seas October 2013
Caribbean Princess July 2006, May 2010 & November 2012
Monarch of the Seas November 2008
Crown Princess November 2007
Celebrity Zenith November 2005
Enchantment of the Seas August 2004
I'm one of those people who have to have everything figured out before going on trips. Its a sickness. HAHAHA This site and all you wonderful people helped to answer all of my questions about everything. It made my first cruise so worry free and incredible. *hugs* for all of you.
Life is too short to let the ship of your dreams sail without you.
Carnival Destiny Feb. 2006
Carnival Fascination Feb. 2007
Royal Caribbean Grandeur of the Seas Feb. 2008 The DTW & MsBJ tour
Carnival Valor MsBJ and Dina Feb. 2009
Carnival Glory MsBJ and Dina Feb. 2010
Carnival Dream MsBJ and Dina Feb. 2011