I would like to write a quick page that might help when choosing a cruise line.
I have cruised every line except Disney and Celebrity. Here are my thoughts on the lines I have cruised.
- Costa. Don’t do it.
- Carnival. The complete opposite of relaxation. Bright colors everywhere. Loud. Pretty much party time 24/7. It is great for young people looking to let off steam and party!!! It’s prices are very low. Extremely affordable way to have an all inclusive vacation. But be aware of the nickel and dime situation. Your bill that gets slid under your door or put in your little mail slot can build up quick!😱 I will never cruise Carnival again, but that is simply a matter of my personal taste. I did have a load of fun on the 3 journeys I had with Carnival. There is a LOT to do on board!!!! The food is plentiful, and the midnight buffets are festive and fun to dive in and gain a pound or two. Ha!!! Yes, most people gain weight on cruises. I avoid this curse by using stairs instead of elevators no matter what. The staff is friendly and full of energy. Best towel animals at sea. In closing on Carnival: young people looking to party, budget conscious people, large groups, high energy, families with teens and small children (again, great on budget and great teen and kids clubs) and those that enjoy hustle and bustle and noise and loud music and need something to do at all times🎉
- Royal Caribbean. MEGA ships!!!! And I mean HUGE!!! This is the cruise you take if staying on ship the entire time is what you prefer. Ports of call too difficult to navigate with the mass amount of people and the short amount of hours in port. You WILL get lost on these floating cities. Many times😳 The cabins are very small. Service is way better than I expected with such a gigantic amount of people to take care of. Food is decent. Again, watch the nickel and diming. So so many things are extra. When choosing a cabin, I recommend you go way forward or aft ship to avoid overhead noise when trying to sleep. Great cruise for very active people, families and those needing constant stimulation.
- Princess. The original “Love Boat”❤️ Much changed over the years. Thank Goodness. Clean crisp white ships without a bunch of bright colors and noise. Large ships, but easier to navigate and less “partying” going on. Very professional staff. Cabins are a bit larger and tasteful. The food is spectacular!!!!! Entertainment is so-so. More time to get off ship for island exploring and excursions. Excursions are very well organized and plentiful in options. Great middle ground if traveling with those that want to relax and those that want to play.
- NCL. I have cruised on NCL more times than any other line. Infact, at one point I thought I was just continue to cruise this line exclusively. Mid sized and large ships. Cabins are larger and very comfortable. Easy to navigate. Great itineraries. Amazing food, especially with their free style dining. Upgraded flat fee specialty restaurants are SO worth it. ($10pp-$50pp). On a seven nt cruise, try to choose two nights for these specialty restaurants. I love the steakhouse and the Italian ones😍 Very well organized shore times. Easy off and back on. Not much nickel and dime expenses. Best to look for sales that cover your gratuities. They upgrade your status every time you sail with them, and you get exclusive deals and percentages off on board purchases. Great loyalty program. Ships are well laid out. Great mix of guests. Quiet areas and fun zones. Fabulous spa!!!!!
- Holland American.❤️ My new favorite and will cruise no other line. Beautiful mid sized ships. Tasteful wood and neutrals throughout. Super easy to find your way around. Top notch service!!!!! Huge cabins. Food to die for. Longer and better ports of call (mid sized ships can get in to more nooks and crannies). Best spas at sea period. Very diverse and interesting entertainment. Quiet deck areas are perfect! You can read, stare out to sea, whatever… And only sound you hear is the water and occasional bird. No nickel and diming. You pay a tad more to start, but that pesky daily bill is a beautiful sight. Slightly older crowd (especially to Alaska). We are in our 40’s and I think besides someone’s grandchild here and there, we were the youngest people on that cruise!!!!! I loved it!😃
So, there you have it. My basic advice on the different cruise lines that I have personally experienced. Happy sailing!🛳