What Would Be Your Perfect Cruise Ship? 15 Points to Consider

Different cruise lines have different personalities. They also have different sized ships. If you remember “Goldilocks and the Three Bears”, the children’s bedtime story, “One bowl of porridge was too hot, another too cold and the third was just right.”  If you were to design a cruise ship that was “just right,” a ship you wanted to sail on again and again, what would it be like? The right size. There are ships equaling the population of …

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Take One Expensive (Cruise or Land) Vacation or Several Cheaper Ones?

You have friends just like ours!  We were dining recently with a couple that enjoys a month in the Caribbean every winter. They rent a big house with staff and are joined by other friends from around the world who arrive as another departs. That is their major vacation for the year. We are the sort of people who would have our next departure scheduled seven weeks after we returned from our current vacation. A typical year …

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12 Etiquette Rules for Cruise Ship Dining Rooms

Dining Room Etiquette for Cruise Ships – Fine dining is one of the highlights of cruise ship vacations. Many of the rules we follow on land also apply at sea. Here’s a refresher. Rules in the Main Doing Room Many people prefer dining at a large table because it provides the opportunity to meet fellow passengers. Seatings are traditionally set about 6:00 and 8:00 or thereabouts. Open seating is often an option. For your own groups you would …

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7-Plus Ways to Enjoy a Cruise Port, Especially Visiting for First Time

If left on my own, exploring ports would probably end up as an experience called “Pubs of the World.”  When the ship docks in port, you might be stepping into a place you have never seen before and might never see again. You might be returning to a port you have visited a dozen times. How should you approach each experience? The Port You are Visiting for the First Time Approach this opportunity from the following point …

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10 People You Want to Get to Know on Your Cruise Ship

Cruises can be great vacations. Have that great first experience and you keep coming back. You often choose a favorite cruise line and stick with it. The officers and crew onboard are professionals, many choosing to make their lives at sea, moving up the ranks as they build their careers. You might run into them on future voyages. Not everybody is gregarious. Some people travel to literally get away. The prefer to be left alone. Assuming that …

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The Case for Choosing Different Cruise Itineraries

So many ships! So many ports! So many routes! Let’s assume you have a favorite cruise line. Why should you choose one itinerary over another? Before we look at itineraries, let us consider three factors that transcend destinations: A really great price. You have a favorite cruise line. You have status. They treat you well. The destination is secondary. The price is incredibly reasonable, they will give you a substantial cabin upgrade and you get a great …

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24 Things You Can Do on a Cruise on a Sunny Day At Sea

There are people who think cruises are boring. They rationalize you are confined by the railings on the ship. Here are plenty of things you can do, especially on a sunny day. It helps to have some imagination. This article is not ship specific. You can’t say: “There is no water slide” or “They don’t have a golf simulator.” You should be able to do all of these on any ship, large or small, ocean going or …

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Restaurant Review – Britannia Dining Room on the Cunard Queens

The Britannia Dining Room is the main dining room for the approximately 85% of Cunard passengers booked into Britannia category cabins, the major category aboard the ship. Dining is organized into two seatings at 6:00 PM and 8:30 PM as I recall. Here are my overall impressions after 17+ voyages. The Britannia Dining Room All three Cunard Queens feature a Britannia dining room. It’s located at the stern of the ship. On the Queen Mary 2 it …

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How To Spend Your Day in Southampton When Cruising

If you are sailing from England, it’s highly likely your port of embarkation will be Southampton. You can catch an evening flight from New York, arrive in the early AM the next day and take your cruise line’s connection to your ship sailing the same day. This is almost a guaranteed way to raise your blood pressure if there are any delays in your journey. You don’t want to miss your ship!  You will likely plan to …

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Traveling in Queens Grill on Cunard – What Do You Get for Your Money?

In 17 voyages with Cunard, we have never booked in the Queens Grill category of accommodations. On our March 20th Queen Mary 2 Westbound crossing I was determined to learn how it’s different from sailing in Britannia grade. The Purser’s Office was able to unlock an empty cabin so I could look around. Cunard also arranged a meeting with Nicolas Oldroyd, the Operational Executive Chef on Queen Mary 2. What Does It Cost? Many people want to …

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