Cruising is something I really miss. My wife and I have favorite ships. We are patiently waiting for them to set sail again. When that happens, we are going to make every moment count. Here’s what I have in mind the moment we make our booking.
- Bring another couple along. For 15 months our friends have heard me moan how much we miss going to sea and being pampered. They hear all about our favorite ships. They have their favorites too. The moment we book, we are going to try persuading another couple to book the same trip!
- Tell our cruising friends. We’ve been keeping in touch with our overseas friends who also love to sail. They have been cooling their heels too. We will call, e-mail or video chat with each, one at a time. We will fill them in on the deal we got and hope they will book too. They will get to meet the couple we are bringing along.
- Extend our vacation. The experience is more than just sailing. It’s also spending time in the departure and arrival ports. We will plan to spend at least three nights before boarding or departure exploring the city. Cunard sails from Southampton, but we will spend those few nights in London, revisiting our favorite restaurants and stores.
- Book the ship’s alternative dining venues. These can get sold out quickly, especially at peak times. Assuming the formal nights have the really spectacular menu selections, I’ll book jus lunch or dinner on some of the other nights. This will be done before we even reach the pier.
- Find the great restaurants in the ports we will visit. OK, maybe not every port. Usually I do this at the last moment. Often it’s trial and error, as I depend on the kindness of strangers and some online sites for research. I’ll do this quietly, as a surprise for my wife.
- Find something to celebrate. The logical occasions are birthdays and anniversaries. I’ll include that in our booking details. On previous trips, I think we’ve renewed our wedding vows twice. I’ll skip that because my wife doesn’t see our marriage as a battery that periodically needs a recharging ceremony.
- Plan on booking the trip after this one. I’m always amazed the onboard booking office is always busy. Over time, I’ve learned you get pretty decent perks like onboard credits if you put down a deposit, even if your voyage is unspecified. It gives us another something to look forward to.
- Get the waist taken out on my tuxedo. 15 months of lockdown has taken its toll. I cannot claim the dry cleaner is shrinking my waistbands because I haven’t worn my tuxedo since our last cruise!
We aren’t sailing yet, but we are getting close. I’m ready to start counting the days.