Top 6 Reasons to Try a Short Cruise

There are many reasons to try out a short cruise! - Photo by Canva

Are you interested in cruising for a few days but not quite ready to commit to a week or longer voyage? Maybe you're a first-time sailor who wants to test the waters of cruising before taking a more extended trip, or a seasoned cruiser who wants to try out the ‘new world’ of short cruises. There’s never been a better time than now to try a short 3- or 4- night cruise.  

In addition, shorter-length cruises offer all the same onboard activities and amenities as longer voyages. These sailings will likely include, depending on itinerary, a stop at one or more ports. On many mainstream cruise lines, this includes a visit to the line’s private island. 

We’ve shared our top six reasons why now is the perfect time to book a short cruise. 

1. Less Time Commitment for Vacation

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As you are cruising for fewer days, shorter voyages require less time away from work or home responsibilities. If you are not in a position to take an extended voyage or just craving a quick tropical escape, a short 3- to 4-night cruise might be just the ticket for you. Shorter cruises can commonly be over weekends, allowing you to take a quick mini-vacation without having to do extended planning and preparations. 

2. Less Expensive Price Tag

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As you are cruising for fewer days, short cruises come with a smaller price tag than a week plus longer voyages. You are also likely to spend less money on the ship for added extras like specialty dining or activity charges. Likewise, on a shorter cruise, you will spend less time in port which means you will spend less on excursions, port meals, souvenirs, etc. 

At, we commonly compare the rates of our cruises by the cost per night. When looking at prices for sailings, you will likely see a lower cost per night for a longer cruise. Shorter cruises tend to cost a bit more per night, but that can vary by line and sail date. 

3. Great Way to Test Your Sea Legs

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Are you a first-timer and not sure cruising will be for you? Shorter cruises are the perfect time to test out those ‘sea legs’ and see if you like the experience. It’s a great way to get a feel for what it is like to actually be on a cruise ship, without the major time commitment. You can get the full experience of ship activities, what it’s like to sleep in a cabin while at sea, going into a port, and the dining scene, without the commitment of a longer voyage. 

If you're a seasoned sailor and curious about the ‘new world’ of cruising, a short cruise is an excellent way to test the waters. You will get the full experience of new embarkation procedures, onboard health and safety protocol, and get a sense of what it's like to cruise right now, without a longer time commitment. 

4. Group Getaways

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Looking to cruise with a group of family or friends? A short cruise is a great option to consider and can be much easier to coordinate with a lot of people. Oftentimes the cruise line will offer a discounted rate or upgraded cabins for groups as well as special amenities. Be sure to ask what is available for the ship and sailing date you are interested in. Additionally, the cruise lines will offer free credits (aka tour conductor credit) typically for every 15 paying passengers, the 16th passenger is complimentary. This savings can be spread across the entire group or be used for specific passengers.

5. Upgrade to a Balcony Suite

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Do you typically choose an inside or oceanview cabin? Are you a first-timer that isn’t sure what type of cabin to select? A short cruise is a perfect time to upgrade your cabin selection to a balcony or suite. A week or longer cruise can be a larger financial commitment in a balcony or suite, but these cabins are much more affordable on a short cruise. Additionally, upgrading to a balcony or suite on a short cruise is a great opportunity to experience the additional amenities and see if you are ready to make the commitment on a longer cruise.

6. Add a Hotel Stay

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A short cruise pairs nicely with a pre or post hotel stay to create a more extended vacation. This option is very popular with stays in Orlando for Disney and Universal Studios and cruises roundtrip from Port Canaveral. Other options are cruises from South Florida and hotel stays in the Keys or South Beach. Basically, any homeport with a short cruise will have hotel options for extended vacations. 

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