If you’ve been thinking about taking a cruise but feel unsure whether it’s the right kind of vacation for you or your family, consider that cruises are becoming one of the fastest-growing segments of the travel market!
The experts at Global Connections Travel have identified some of the most common misconceptions about cruises to get you out of the dark and on your way to the perfect cruise!
Myth No. 1: We’ll have to fly to Florida to get on a cruise ship.
Truth: Nope! Cruises depart from most major coastal cities, including: Bayonne, N.J.; Boston, Mass.; Charleston, S.C.; Galveston and Houston, Texas; New Orleans, La.; Honolulu, Hawaii; Los Angeles and San Francisco, Calif.; Norfolk, Va.; and Brooklyn and Manhattan, N.Y.
Global Connections Travel books cruises with Carnival Cruise Lines, Norwegian, Celebrity, Holland America Line, Princess Cruises, and Royal Caribbean, which will take you from multiple U.S. departure locations to exotic destinations around the world, including Bermuda, Caribbean, Panama Canal, Mexican Riviera, Alaska, Hawaii, Canada/New England, and Transatlantic.
Myth No. 2: Cruises are tropical, and people only take them when the weather turns cold.
Truth: Sure, cruises make a great escape from brutal winter temps, but cruising is a year-round pastime. Alaskan cruises (available May-September) are popular for those who want to escape the heat and see the majestic glaciers and wildlife Alaska has to offer. Families also take cruises during the summer months because children are out of school. Cruises to the Caribbean and Bahamas run year-round, with Europe between April and November, Bermuda April through October, and Panama Canal between September and April.
Myth No. 3: There may not be medical personnel on a cruise ship.
Truth: The doctor is in! Virtually every cruise ship has a fully equipped medical facility and staff on board to handle almost any emergency. The cruise lines also have precautions in place if a person has to be evacuated to a hospital on land (be sure to purchase trip insurance, most cover these types of medical emergencies). Prescription medication should be kept close at hand in a purse or carry-on, rather than in checked luggage. It also is a good idea to carry a written list of medications with dosages in case they are lost.
Myth No. 4: My kids will get bored on a cruise.
Truth: Not even close! Most major cruise lines offer organized programs and camps for children. They can participate all day or only in specific activities. This provides both fun family time and a chance for parents to relax alone. Daycare and babysitting services also are available, usually at no charge.
Myth No. 5: Our entire cruise will be spent at sea.
Truth: You’ll be able to stretch your sea legs! Cruise vacationers actually have the opportunity to spend plenty of time on land. Cruises usually feature multiple ports of call, giving travelers a chance to visit beautiful, secluded beaches, vibrant cities and popular tourist sites. Ships usually arrive in port early in the morning, allowing plenty of time for shopping, dining, visiting historical sites and exploring the area. Planned excursions, arranged by the ship’s staff or local sightseeing companies are also available.
Myth No. 6: Everyone gains weight on a cruise.
Truth: You just have to be a little smart about this one. While cruises are known for having plenty of food available, today’s cruise lines offer healthy choices as part of their already extensive food selections. Stay active! There are plenty of activities on- and off-board to help burn away the extra calories.
Myth No. 7: I will feel claustrophobic in a cruise ship cabin.
Truth: If you’re doing this right, you won’t be spending much time in your cabin! While an inside economy cabin does tend to be small, an outside cabin (ocean view) has a window or porthole, and a balcony (veranda) cabin has a glass door leading to a balcony. Most ships feature larger suites for those who truly need more space.
Myth No. 8: Cruises are expensive.
Truth: Not really. A cruise is actually one of the best travel values out there. Where else could you find a shiny new resort on the ocean? Cruises are fairly comparable in price to all-inclusive resorts, but knowing your own preferences and spending habits will help you decide which would be best for you.
Ready to sail away? Our Global Connections Travel representatives are here to help you navigate the perfect cruise vacation.