Like land vacations, cruise vacations have a significant amount of variety, services and amenities. Let’s face it, the past 15 years and particularly the last several, our cruise line partners and resort partners are evolving as we, the travelers, do. Options for land and sea include family reunions, office groups, swaggering singles, destination weddings, having the time of your life, BFF’s and celebrating significant unions or life goals.
Not only do we each want the best value for our dollar, we’re not willing to give up the service and choices we’ve come to expect whether a land based or cruise based getaway.
1. Your dreams and dollars must meet somewhere and finding that professional who will respect them both is your first step.
2. Both families, groups, LGBT, adults-only, couples only and singles have different needs and priorities. Consider these carefully in choosing land or sea based experiences. Travel is love and the memories will be a part of your future. There are different groups restrictions as well as group benefits, so your specialist needs to knows the destinations, brands and cruiselines as well. We say, when it’s your heart, you want a heart specialist. Skip the general agency down the road, location means nothing, find your expert, don’t settle for less or you will get less.
3. Do you see the number of ships on the seas now? You have high-end pampering at world-class spas, adrenalin available excursions (book separate from the cruise line – another blog later) dining ranges, different ports of call to fit YOUR travel desires, not your moms, not your office mates, it’s YOUR travel, you can have it customized with the right planner.
4. Make a smaller footprint with picking cruise lines and resorts with green awards. Get to know your destination and environment! Un-Cruising is the thing to consider, with guides, unique and cultural adventures, first hand and hands-on unforgettable experiences!
5. The coveted all-inclusive package is now available, with some restrictions, via ship, with the purchase of various beverage package to go with your meals, accommodations and on-board activities. PJ’s TIP: You’re going to see more than one destination for several hours. This is like one lick of an ice cream, it’s a quick stop and you can’t really judge the ice cream based on one lick. The real banana split is for those who come back and stay awhile!
6. Does size really matter? It depends who you ask? Cruises come in all sizes and shapes. You may be on the Sea, on a River, in the Ocean, in a Canal, around Islands, in different Countries. The popularity of more intimate ports of calls with smaller ships is a fact. Intimate to grand, what’s your stye? PJ’s TIP: consider this fact – you are choosing your elbow-to-elbow passengers, consider why you’re cruising and your personality. It will make or break your memories and experience if you aren’t matched to the cruise line that suits your style. Some have dress codes, know their dining options and resturants.
7. Customize your cruise, for heaven’s sake. Review different excursions at different ports, some ships include them. Arrive early, add a pre-tour, come back to port and add a post-tour. We’re just getting started. Indulge in a niche hobby or sport, you’re not in Kansas anymore, damn it! Be it Mayan Ruins, volunteer travel, meeting new friends, getting the family back together, you can cruise to every corner of the world as they say… (even though the world is round!)
8. Unpack once, the same as a land-based all-inclusive stay. Add exploring more than one international destinations by ship, get a taste of cultures, enjoy friends and family, have more fun, stay up late, get a couples massage, have breakfast in bed!
9. Ships provide multiple activities and entertainment, as do our all-inclusive brands in the Caribbean, Mexico, Fiji. Check your schedule, choose what suits your fancy, relax at the pool, try something new please, day and night you’ll find choices to keep you busy if you can’t keep yourself occupied! From simulated surfing and sky diving to wine and chocolate tastings. Don’t forget the spa, it’s additional, but you’re on vacation, right?
10. Cruising allows multi-generational families with a lot of age differences to come together yet the’re designed to offer experiences to different age groups from seniors to toddlers, from teens to singles! Let’s hear it for families who sail together! We know, if the kids aren’t having fun, you’re not having fun. It doesn’t take a brain surgeon to know this, but making it happen is another act of kindness you should expect. From family reunions to the family vacation of a lifetime, cruise to celebrate holidays, life goals, coming together and getting apart. It’s about staying connected, building relationships, polishing tarnished relationships and looking for new relationships.
11. Today WiFi onboard as well as data options will keep you connected to work or home … if you want to be. This is a feature ships are busy upgrading along with the all beverages we mentioned above. With work patterns which don’t allow us to disconnect, cruising is a great option although most of our all-inclusive brands and resorts offer Wifi free of charge.
What are you vacationing for? What are your priorities? We have a great list of excuses if you need one to get out of town! (see link below) We have our favorites and we know you do too. I don’t miss making my bed, I like to have it made when I come back to my room. I do miss the food preparation and choice of foods when I get home. I don’t miss the phone constantly ringing, I do miss the sand between my toes sitting at my desk (I’m considering my own sand box underneath) I do miss clean, dry towels at the end of the day, I do not miss wearing my sweatpants all day to stay warm, I do love the white glove dining experiences at the restaurants and I do miss having a menu with no prices listed when I get home! I do want someone to bring me coffee in the morning, and I do miss my dog terribly which is why I finally go home, attitude adjusted or not.
So there you have some of my reasons to travel. A great travel planner will ask you what you want and what you DON’T want and they’ll keep asking. If they don’t, you’re in the wrong place. From health to fitness, to discos to beach chairs, from beer-drinking contests to hairy chests, feel-good travel means sand to some, pools to others, waves to surf, places to shop or places for lady luck. Make your list, compare your lists, reprioritize and combine your final lists!
Covet your chosen Travel Concierge assuming your communications and experience exceed your expectations. Hold their endorsement and confidence as that person truly dedicated themselves to you, your family, your experiences! Where to next?
Reasons to Travel: http://wildsidedestinations.com/default.asp?sid=34382&pid=55264