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-   -   Newbie needs advice (http://www.cruisemates.com/forum/first-time-cruisers/400531-newbie-needs-advice.html)

CruiseAddict99 January 9th, 2014 10:16 AM

Newbie needs advice
 
So my wife and I are growing older, and we have come to a point where we really want to experience more. I have seen commercials on television about some cruise line that does tour cruises throughout various major attractions in Europe. This had me thinking about the fact that I have never been on a cruise ship. So this year I figured this was something we could do. The cost of taking a cruise has become significantly more affordable, and the options of the places we could visit are nearly endless.

So I went to the computer like so many of us do, and I began my search on the internet for information about cruises. I looked all over the place and found everything from travel advice to websites that offered cruises for sale. I eventually ended up on Wikipedia at List of cruise lines - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia which has a list of a huge number of cruise companies. I thought this was pretty cool because there is a list of operating companies, as well as companies that have failed. I never realized that there were so many companies that failed and folded. I came across a website that I found incredibly useful. At cruiseoffers.co.uk I found a ton of information about choosing cruises. So I have gotten to the point where I need to make a few decisions in order to move forward.

I was curious about different cruise experiences many of you have had. There was the story of the cruise ship that got stuck during new years 2013 in the Antarctic. There are obviously cruises all around the Caribbean. I have seen commercials fro cruises throughout Europe. There are cruises that go to Alaska. There have to be other cruises that I don't even know about yet. Share some your experiences on different cruises so I can get a feel about which direction I would like to look.

I would like to purchase our package within the next few months, but I want to gather my information before I make any decisions. I was hoping that getting some experiences that other people have had would help me to choose not only a location, but the cruise line I want to go on.

Travelbuggs January 9th, 2014 04:55 PM

Wow, you've never been on a cruise ship, yet your handle is "CruiseAddict99"?
LOL. You must be psychic or something!

Pretty much anywhere in the world you can think of, there is probably a cruise line that goes there. It would certainly help if you could narrow your focus a bit.;) We have Australia and New Zealand on our bucket list as well as Hawaii and Tahiti. Have done the caribbean several times, east, west and southern. Maybe someday will do Greek Isles and other european ports, but right now travel to Europe just to get TO a cruise ship seems like more stress than I could handle.

Our Akaska cruise out of Vancouver was out of this world in our book because of the spectacular scenery, but YOU might not like it at all. Only you know what would interest you. My recommendation would be to do some research on destinations, find one that interests you and then look for cruise lines which have itineraries there. A travel agent may be able to help you choose a ship which would meet your budget and interests.

We love cruising and feel it is the absolute best way to travel.

Donna January 9th, 2014 05:26 PM

I think if you can narrow down where you want to cruise and go from there, what islands, etc. As you already found out, there are many to choose from...Do you like lots of activities on the ship or more of a relaxing week..?

Surfguyxxx1 January 9th, 2014 06:41 PM

Living in Florida, I find that the Caribbean cruises are the most affordable for me. You quoted a website with UK in it so am I to assume you are from Europe? If so, there are many cruise lines that are wonderful. Some have the excursions already included into the price of the cruise but with a pricetag attached. Others give you a good value for the dollar.
It comes down to where you want to go; leave from; $$$; length of time on the ship. Perhaps with a bit more information, we can guide you to something to ensure you have a fantastic time!

storybookcruises.com January 9th, 2014 07:03 PM

First and foremost, you need to get the help of a reputable cruise specialist. Their services are free to use and they have a wealth of information that will help you narrow down the multitude of options available. They can definitely make it much easier on you and save you alot of hassle.

Now, with that said, every cruise line out there has their fans and their critics, so you'll get as many different viewpoints as there are people. Keep in mind that like I always say, 'what one person loves, another will hate', so just because someone thinks a particular cruise line is wonderful, it may not be suitable you you.

But it sounds like you've got a good start and now just need to narrow down where you want to go.

We've been on 47 cruises on 11 different cruise lines in many parts of the world and the one thing we learned a long time ago; once you've gone on a cruise, you're going to be hooked and will want to go again and again. And that's the fun part about cruising is trying them all until you find the best one for you based on your needs, budget, and lifestyle.

Pete

mycruiseandvacation February 8th, 2014 05:38 PM

Well I must say this is surprising - Cruiseaddict 99 - In fact it was in 1999 that I took my 36th cruise and now I have the pleasure of stating that I been on 67 cruises on 27 different cruise lines including small ships, River Cruises, and medium to mega ships in some 18 different zones! If you go on a cruise and are like myself you're going to get hooked and will want to go again and again - sometimes 4 to6 times a year like me. And that's the fun part about cruising is trying them all and planning until you find the best one for you based on your needs, budget, and lifestyle. This great community can and will help you we just need to know your likes, time available, destination bucket list and some things about your lifestyle. Share and we are at your command.

Trip February 8th, 2014 08:45 PM

Welcome to the cruisers waiting room, quite the happy place.I envy you the planning of your first cruise, as to me, research is a fun part of it.


Since it appears you are in the UK, I am going to toss this out...For your first cruise, why not do a Med itinerary. Most from across the pond, when they sail from Florida,with the cost of airfare, take longer cruises. Since you are so close to departure ports in Europe you can save on airfare,and get a longer cruise, almost in your back yard.:)


A cruise specialist can walk you through the steps, to make sure you select the right ship and itinerary, for an exciting adventure. Getting the right cabin,and placement of the cabin, too can enhance your experience.


I sailed the Carnival Magic in the Med in May,and it was a glorious time of year, to sail. These crusies are port intensive, and the excursions can last all day, so, your ship time will be less, then if you went with a Caribbean cruise.


If indeed it is the heat and palm trees of the Caribbean, you seek, consider that in the summer, the ships are filled with kids. Some areas of the USA, start back in August, with the balance right around Labor day.


Another inportant factor to consider is getting travel insurance..a very important part of feeling comfortable it by chance, you find you need it. We did, soo I speak form first hand experience....so, did we help you a bit? I hope so...come back and tell us hpw you made out..


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