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  #1 (permalink)  
Old May 16th, 2007, 05:48 PM
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Default Choosing a first cruise is overwhelming

Hi

My DH and I want to celebrate raising/graduating (and surviving) our five kids. The 18 yr old baby graduates this month. DH wants to cruise as many of our friends and family say it is AWESOME!! There are so many choices!!! I like the itineraries on HAL for the Eastern Caribbean. But the Norwegian looks good too. Looking at a 7 day. I Know...............big difference in the two lines. Oh..........we're looking at late Nov/early Dec. Already getting our passports so we'll be ready.

We are not super nightlife party folks but we do like to have fun.

What were some of your first ever cruises and what would you choose if you first-timers again? Thanks!!
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Old May 16th, 2007, 05:56 PM
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I would go with HAL over NCL just because I found the food etc.. on NCL not up to much.
Some love NCL but not our cup of tea!!
We have not done HAL in several years so it may have declined but it use to be very good service.
Princess is another line that is good.

Ask your friends which they have done or prefer & why.
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Old May 16th, 2007, 06:33 PM
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My all time favorite to date, Royal Caribbean. I've just found them better suiting for what I want in a cruise, lots of activities if I choose to take part and a decent pool deck to relax. Great entertainment, decent food and some great itinaries. I also find them great for cruising with kids and families, something for everyone.
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Old May 16th, 2007, 07:33 PM
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I agree with Donna that RCCL is the "middle of the road" and I don't mean by standards as they have beautiful ships, but as in catering to families; little something something for everyone! For a first cruise with a family, its probably your best bet. Personal favorite RCCL ship: for the beauty of it: Radiance; for the Pool Enchantment of the Seas...
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Old May 17th, 2007, 08:26 AM
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if you are celebrating raising/graduating/and surviving your kids, why would you choose a family-oriented cruise line. go for mature elegance and style. pick HAL.
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Old May 17th, 2007, 09:21 AM
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I agree with HOMBRE!!!

If you want to get away from the kids and party type cruises if you can afford it try Oceania.
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Old May 17th, 2007, 12:07 PM
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Default HAL Service

I've done HAL for 20 years. True, the service is not what it was 20 years ago, but service has declined in general across the lines so HAL's service still remains very good, relatively speaking.

Quote:
Originally Posted by lulu48
We have not done HAL in several years so it may have declined but it use to be very good service.
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Old May 18th, 2007, 03:20 PM
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Default Alaska

I've been on a few cruises, but only in Hawaii. What would be the best cruise for a first time to Alaska? Is this a dumb question?? Just looking fo rpersonal experiences.

Mahalo!
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Old May 18th, 2007, 03:56 PM
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Default Re: Alaska

Inside passage, Seattle to Seattle, is easiest logistically. Skip the premium asked for cabins with balconies - better value in warmer climes.

Quote:
Originally Posted by frankyP4lover
I've been on a few cruises, but only in Hawaii. What would be the best cruise for a first time to Alaska? Is this a dumb question?? Just looking fo rpersonal experiences.

Mahalo!
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Old May 18th, 2007, 05:03 PM
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Default Re: Alaska

Quote:
Originally Posted by frankyP4lover
I've been on a few cruises, but only in Hawaii. What would be the best cruise for a first time to Alaska? Is this a dumb question?? Just looking fo rpersonal experiences.

Mahalo!
Where would you like to go???

You are not limited to Alaska...Europe Caribbean, Asia a whole world to discover
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Old May 20th, 2007, 11:48 AM
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Since this is all new to us I still have so many questions. I guess I liked the idea of the smaller size of HAL and the slower pace but am not to excited about formal nights. I've seen my DH in a suit maybe 4 X's.....our marriage, kids weddings, and a family funeral. Thats why I had the questions about Norwegian. I see they have freestyle and thought that might be more our "way". Dont get me wrong..........DH cleans up........but his "dress up" is khakis and loose tie.

Thanks for other ideas on other lines. Ive been looking at some of them. It's very overwhelming to see all the options but also exciting.

I guess I was wondering which cruise all of you expert cruisers chose as your 1st cruise and how you got hooked on it.???
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Old June 6th, 2007, 03:34 PM
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I'm not that experienced (only two) but we picked our first cruise by length and destination. We wanted to cruise at least 7 days and we had never been to the Southern Caribbean. DH was concerned about being bored with too many days at sea so we did desination intensive on Carnival Destiny. I loved every single stop but we treasured the days at sea not having to get up so early to explore the next island. And to give our feet a break. HAHAHA

Its all about personal preferences and your budget. How much.. how long and with that decided.... what options do I have to where.
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Old June 6th, 2007, 04:19 PM
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Default First Cruise

Best first cruise length is 3-7 days. Best first cruise location is the Caribbean (most variety in ports of departure and ports visited). Best price is found by using comparison sites like VTG. Best line is a personal preference since they vary in their appeal to different niches.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Coachinmom
I guess I was wondering which cruise all of you expert cruisers chose as your 1st cruise and how you got hooked on it.???
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Old June 7th, 2007, 04:49 PM
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We have only been on two cruises with our third coming up January 2008. First cruise was on Carnival Conquest, second cruise was Norwegian SUN, and third will be Royal Caribbean. When we decided to finally give cruising a try our first question was; "do we want to fly to a port or take one close to home where we can get to the port by car in less than a day?"

Answer that question first, then work from there. We are all here to help you so once we find out which port you want to leave from it will give us a better idea of which ships leave from that port and which islands they go to. Good luck on your search.

WARNING WARNING! Once you start cruising you will be hooked.
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Old June 7th, 2007, 06:11 PM
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Default Fly or Drive in a $3.00+ a Gallon World?

If I may chip in, the fly or drive dollar difference may now be inverted. On my recent trip I saw people paying to go 40 miles by train because it was cheaper than driving the ol' SUV. Hitting the sweet spots for SWA and other airlines might work out cheaper than driving and parking, depending on the bargains offered. That said, here are two very good reasons to drive: (1) your luggage will not get trashed and (2) your luggage will not be lost in transit. 8)

Quote:
Originally Posted by froggie620
We have only been on two cruises with our third coming up January 2008. First cruise was on Carnival Conquest, second cruise was Norwegian SUN, and third will be Royal Caribbean. When we decided to finally give cruising a try our first question was; "do we want to fly to a port or take one close to home where we can get to the port by car in less than a day?"

Answer that question first, then work from there. We are all here to help you so once we find out which port you want to leave from it will give us a better idea of which ships leave from that port and which islands they go to. Good luck on your search.

WARNING WARNING! Once you start cruising you will be hooked.
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Old June 11th, 2007, 09:30 AM
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Default First Cruise Choice

Sounds like you need a special trip. If you can afford it there isn't a better cruise line than Regent. Smaller ships and the best of the best
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Old June 18th, 2007, 07:39 AM
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Default Re: Fly or Drive in a $3.00+ a Gallon World?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Divemaster
That said, here are two very good reasons to drive: (1) your luggage will not get trashed and (2) your luggage will not be lost in transit. 8)
I swear, I must lead a charmed life or something. I've never had my luggage trashed or lost heading to a cruise. Once I had a bag misplaced ... but that was upion arrival home after a school-related trip. I had nothing in that duffle bag but jeans and tee-shirts, and frankly ... I was hoping they wouldn't find it. I was told that if the bag were not returned to my home within 24 hours, I could file a claim for up to $1,500. And, boy was I all set to file that claim form, complete with all the expensive outfits I had in that bag.

Of course, my luck doesn't run too good. Come the next evening, there was my floral dufflebag sitting on the front porch. Boy, was I pissed as I tore up the claim form I had taken such care in preparing.

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Old June 19th, 2007, 04:21 PM
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Default Re: Fly or Drive in a $3.00+ a Gallon World?

Orlando diving the Living Seas Aquarium using SWA November 2005 - two new wheeled dive duffles about $250 each. Both dropped from height by the baggage handlers, both sets of wheels broken. Luckily the dive gear inside was OK. As demand rises but the American fleet size remains remains relatively constant baggage horror stories just increase. That's why I prefer to drive my gear to the dock, even if its a 750 mile drive. Damaged luggage is harmless, but damage a BCD and that is quite another story.


[/quote] I swear, I must lead a charmed life or something. I've never had my luggage trashed or lost heading to a cruise.[/quote]
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