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Old January 18th, 2004, 05:45 PM
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Default Got this note in my email-gay friendly cruises

Hi all,

I got this note in my email ... thought I would answer, but I (and am sure they would, too) would like to hear what you all have to offer.

Here is the question:

"I would like to know what are best cruise companies, dates and destinations for gay people. I mean ordinary cruises. I do not like 100%-gay cruises. I prefer general cruises with all kind of people."

In terms of timing, I would say avoid the standard vacation times -- spring break etc. It seems most of the lines fill up with kids and teens at these times.

I, too, like the variety of a non-gay cruise. I love to mix with everyone.

I really don't see any difference in destinations, but I am an airplane-phobe so have never done the Caribbean.

In terms of lines, we have sailed Norwegian, Princess, Carnival and Royal Caribbean. We've never had any problem on any line, but if I were to rate one above the others for gay-friendliness, it would be Princess.

Perhaps it's the more English/Australian staff, or the fact that it's a bit more expensive, but we have always had wonderful experiences on Princess -- both from staff and passengers. A close second would be Royal Caribbean. But oddly enough, we've sailed the most on Carnival.

I just seem to recall I felt the free-est to dance in the disco on Princess, saw more gay staff, and generally got a warmer reception from both passengers and crew.

Can anyone add their experiences ... or experiences on other lines?
Harry



Post Edited (01-18-04 17:56)
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Old January 19th, 2004, 12:56 PM
mike (and jon)
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Default Re: Got this note in my email-gay friendly cruises

harry...(and i hope congrats are in order, presume you're the new board moderator), we have had great experiences on all lines we've sailed. i think they all realize the gay market is lucrative and attempt to (pardon the pun) go overboard with courtesy and kindness towards us. princess, ncl are tops....celebrity was a bit more reserved but very friendly; will report on cunard after 3/6 qm2 cruise (lst cunard), but i DO have to say i emailed them asking if press were invited aboard qm2 while she is in fort lauderdale, that i free-lanced for the expressgaynews, and they almost couldn't wait to get back to me ...called from new york pr department...and invited me aboard (going the 28th for lunch and ship tour) as a "gay" reporter... so that says something too! curious as to the experiences of others...like rccl, other than the "gay bashing" incident last oct. on monarch of the seas.....mike (and jon)
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Old January 19th, 2004, 03:42 PM
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Default Re: Got this note in my email-gay friendly cruises

We have been on several GLBT Dignity cruises through Dignity Cruises and have had great experiences. I think their address is *********** (can post commercial URL's)
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Old January 19th, 2004, 05:23 PM
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Default Re: Got this note in my email-gay friendly cruises

Mike, too cool about the QM2 tour!!! Good for you -- and happy to hear they are courting our business.

Harry

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Old January 21st, 2004, 10:06 AM
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Default Re: Got this note in my email-gay friendly cruises

I will be on the VISION OF THE SEAS, February 1, attending a seminar at sea. Since I mostly deal with west coast cruising and am well aware of the happenings on the MONARCH, I plan to talk to as many crew as possible and see what they have heard. We are also going to ask for an FOD gathering as see what kind of response we get. My partner and I were on Carnival's ELATION about 2 years ago and were completely taken aback at one of the late night comedians. We should have immediately gone to the powers that be and complained but never did. There were also some red necks sitting directly behind us that kept egging on the comedian to make matters even worse. Other than that incident, we have always received good if not better service than that of the other passengers. We have always felt that we have been treated a little better than average. Whether it was because we were gay or just easy going you never know.

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Old January 21st, 2004, 10:40 AM
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Default Re: Got this note in my email-gay friendly cruises

/We've been on all the major cruise lines including Carnival, RCCL, NCL, Celebrity, Princess and HAL. We have no desire to take a gay cruise. It just doesn't appeal to us and since we try to do 3-4 cruises per year, gay cruises would be cost prohibitive.

We have always been treated respectfully and have made many good friendships on these cruises, including both gay and straight couples. We've never once had a negative incident occur and always feel welcome, despite the fact that we present ourselves as just another couple and don't attempt to hide our relationship. Probably the most positive experiences I've had on recent cruises is straight couples initiating dialogs about our relationship, finding out we are married (Canada) then voicing surprise that we couldn't have gotten married in Hawaii or Vermont or California (don't these people watch the news or read the paper???). I think they walk away from the experience with a little enlightenment.

I can't really say which line is the most gay-friendly. Just as I couldn't say which is the least gay-friendly. I think that, like in most situations, it's how secure you are in being gay and being in a same-sex relationship. People tend to treat you with the same level of respect that you have for yourselves.

Brian and Jose
Jacksonville FL
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Old January 21st, 2004, 11:19 AM
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Default Re: Got this note in my email-gay friendly cruises

Brian, good point about the questions straight couples will ask. Usually after a couple nights at dinner, someone will be surprised of something we have to deal with as a gay couple, etc. I agree about the enlightment comment -- think that is one of the best reasons for taking a mainstream cruise.

Harry

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Old January 21st, 2004, 04:44 PM
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Default Re: Got this note in my email-gay friendly cruises


We were recently on a 10 day cruise on the Sun where there were a more mature straight crowd. There were a couple of other gay couples on board as well but to be perfectly honest, our paths did not cross much other than for a polite knowing nod to each other.

However, one thing we found very interesting on this trip were that a quite a few mothers who had grown gay sons came up to us and were more than happy to chat to us about them whether we wanted to hear about their sons or not. Be warned! Actually, I was surprised by the reaction from these mothers which I think is fantastic, it was a very positive experience for me given my own parents are very conservative. For some reason, the fathers always sat beside them and smiled quietly.

However, when one of the evening shows feature the cast doing song from La Cage Aux Folles with the guys in dresses with the audience loving it, you know that its just the accepted norm.

A few Filipino waiters kept winking at my partner though. I'm jealous but we did get great service.
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Old January 21st, 2004, 09:09 PM
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Default Re: Got this note in my email-gay friendly cruises

What a great input!!!

Harry

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Old January 27th, 2004, 10:36 PM
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Default Re: Got this note in my email-gay friendly cruises

I'm only 17 so I wasn't expecting to find anyone my age and I didn't...advertise so to speak. But as I started to meet people I found out that my RCI cruise was very open the only negativity I found was in my father and one guy at my table. But I actually met a lot of people passengers and crew with whom I made great friends and who taught me a lot. I'm from Canada and truthfully have certain reservations about Americans with accents, something I'm a little ashamed of but I don't think it's completely unfounded. But the best friend I made was a 19 year old straight boy from Kentuky, and we talked completely openly the whole time. The whole cruise was just great for me. That's all I can really say.
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