Unofficial Cruise Planner

It started out our usual party of 8 - me, hubby, the sons/wives & my 2 princesses Big Smile. Last year we had 12. I found out a few weeks ago that this year there are 21 people going. Yay Surprised, LOL. I was fine until I started getting questions about the flights, hotel, shuttle, excursions... I told my husband I am not organizing or planning stuff for everyone, but a number of them are first timers and I can't leave them hanging!! Crying LOL. 

I've decided to keep it as simple as possible. I'm sharing my info on the flights, hotels and shuttle we're using; they can use it or make their own arrangements to Miami. As for the cruise itself, there will be enough on the ship each day to keep everyone busy. Also giving them the list of the beaches or excursions I've been looking at for each port, so they can have an idea of what's available or make their own plans. They've been doing their own research as well and was thinking this will be a piece of cake. Today i got a call asking when we're having a meeting...

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8 Answers

So, have a meeting.  It actually helps.  We used to do it with a group of 12.   You need to know who has or hasn’t paid, who has booked airfare / hotel, etc.   Especially if you booked a group rate ( which you should never do ).  One member of our group lived in California ( the rest are in NY. )  so we called and put them on speaker.   You also get to discuss excursions, dining, etc.

enjoy the cruise

I have very simple rules for traveling with a group, some find it offensive. I tell them all I am not responsible for you having a good time, I will assist you if I can, but do your own research and understand we are not joined at the hip. I am more than willing to share what I know and my past experiences. If you want to do something and I don't , go do it just please don't get your feelings hurt because I don't want to go. 

 Have a great cruise.

As our Renaissance group grows, I have the same problem.  We link our dining time (18 is the most we've had...don't know it it's practical with more) and I say "see you at dinner".   We answer as many questions as we can and even have newbies to our house for dinner.  It is fun to have a big crowd as long as they don't get clingy.  Like Bubba54, we encourage them to go do their own thing.  We tell them what we plan and have the other experienced cruisers share their plans.  So far it's worked out.  So everyone is responsible for themselves, we ask for booking numbers only to be able to link dining, which we link to ours for unity and the rest takes care of itself.  Have fun and good luck!  It is great to bump into them during the day.Big Smile

We were a group of 10 on our last cruise. A friend and I did the hotel research, sent it out and let the others do their own booking. 6 chose one hotel, 4 chose another. We also shared info on excursions before our cruise and some ports we all did our own thing, and other times we got together. Dinners were always together so we could share what we did and saw with each other. It worked out perfectly and everyone had a good time. 

Thank you guys for the responses and suggestions. Will keep you posted. Big Smile

You should find a travel agent (good ones don't cost you anything) that will do all of it for you all. If you have 8 cabins you can form a group and get additional amenities. They can also arrange air, hotel, and ground transportation for everyone. Are you all leaving from the same city? 10 or more people counts as a group for air travel. You could get discounts there as well.

I would say meetings are a good thing to have so that everyone is on the same page.  Even if it's over the phone, you want to make sure that everyone sends in their payments on time.

Good suggestions. No travel agent but I did put them in contact with our Carnival PVP and she's done a fantastic job of getting them set up. Leaving from the same area but different days. 

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