What's Important?

What is important to you when you cruise? Is it the base fare, the size of the cabin, the quality of the food, the service, the itinerary, or something else?

For me, I have been looking at itinerary, however I have run out of different options in the Caribbean (this is not necessarily a bad thing!), which leaves me wide open for other ideas.

I really don't look at base fares any more - I combine them with the "gratuity" charge and drink package, which I normally prepay (those lines with the bundled fares and higher base fares seem like a much better deal than the lower base plus extras).

Room size is important, but not deal-breakingly so -- as long as there is seating for two I am good with it. I am used to bad food and worse service, but I would still defer to a line with better food and service. As far as big ship vs small ship, to me they each have their advantages and disadvantages. Lastly, the customer base is a big consideration for me -- I am getting to old and crotchety to want to deal with rude people.

Home port is also a serious consideration. Unfortunately, only two lines that I would consider sail out of Galveston, (RC and Carnival), and neither hit the notes that would make the ideal cruise for me (Princess and Celebrity come closer to that ideal).

I think I may be moving from Carnival and Princess to Royal Caribbean and CelebritySad. I have had good times on Carnival, but the customer base is just wearing me down. Princess, likewise, has hit all the marks, but when considering the total cost of the extras, ends up costing much more than Celebrity. NCL, with it's bundling of prices, will also get serious consideration from me in the future.

 

What are your thoughts as to the ideal cruise that you would realistically go on? (Yes, I would love a world cruise on a luxury line, but in reality, it ain't gonna happenBig Smile)

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13 Answers

I am facing a similar dilemma in looking toward future cruises...Still researching but no conclusions yet ... will keep you posted...

So far we have been loyal to Carnival, but that's where we have found the best prices.  We prefer to cruise more cheaply so we can cruise more often.

Each time I book, though, I check out all the prices except for the obviously upscale lines. 

Second in importance is what kind of entertainment there is.  After our Sensation cruise where the activities were lacking (at least other than Bingo, trivia, and Karaoke), I try to at least book something with the Dive-In movies.  Daytime is not so bad, but we really like having something to do in the evenings.

For me it depends on the cruise.   I don't mind Carnival for a short 7 night or less trip but not sure I'd enjoy 2 week on a Carnival ship.  The client base of Carnival is what I can not take for long periods.  On my last 6 night Carnival cruise I had to call security on neighbors 3 nights and should have done it 5 of the nights.   For longer cruise I look for good food and service and good client base,  I tend to use Celebrity and RCI for longer cruises.  

 

For a short cruise I'm good with an inside cabin,  on Long cruises with 7 days at sea I want a balcony.

 

Ship size.   I have found I prefer a small to mid size ship or ships that do not have the amusement park attractions (less attractions = less kids)  I like a ship with more room per guest (tonnage / # of guest)

 

I would have to say for a 4 night getaway Carnival is fun,  for a elegant long relaxing cruise Celebrity.

Dang BD.  What happened to you?  You used to kick butt in your job.  Now you got old??? Nervous

We stay with Carnival.  We live in Galveston and that makes it easy to cruise.  Been on a Carnival cruise for a couple of 14 day cruises, mostly 5 days.  Important to us is just to cruise, ride the ship.  We get a balcony as when we are tired of people, we go to cabin and sit on the balcony.  We get a table for 2 in dining as we have heard enough of braggarts.  Most of the time we eat on lido deck as the crowd are in the dining areas.  We love the shows,and comedy club.  It is a way to unwind in our own way

The ship size.  Not to big and not small and old.  I travel out of Port Canaveral because that's where the CCL ships that I prefer

Yes, not much of the Caribbean to see but the ship is also the fun part.  Unfortunately Charleston SC has the older ships and goes only to the Bahamas.  I wish Charleston would get nicer ships and itineraries.  It's only a 3 hour easy drive for me.

I completely understand the dilemma.  We try to add something new each cruise, new ship, new port, or new debarkation port.  The other thing we have started doing is sailing with new cruisers (friends or friends of friends).  We have a few favorite places and will look for an itinerary that will go to that port.  We tried skipping the cruise experience entirely for a year and found we missed cruising more than we anticipated.  We are finding we like the newer ships, because of the new "add-on" foir each one.  Next cruise is on the Carnival Vista.... it has a brewery!Big Smile

I say we all quit cruising.  It's too expensive and no one has fun.  Just complaintsSad

I try and try but the cruises keep booking themselves Crying

 

You two are hilarious!  I never thought I'd get a second cruise so every cruise we take is "gravy" for me!Big Smile

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