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Don’t Miss Out: 7 Reasons Skipping a Cruise Is a Big Mistake!

It’s no secret that I love to cruise, and my love of cruising began after taking my first family cruise to Alaska when I was eleven.

My parents say they may not have considered taking a cruise – but my Gran regularly cruised and was keen to take us along. We were soon hooked – and have all been cruising ever since!

You might be curious about cruising and wonder if a cruise would suit you and your family or friends.

In this article, we look at 7 great reasons to try a cruise.

#1 Visit Multiple Destinations, But Unpack Only Once

This is one of my favourite things about cruising. It feels like the destinations come to you!

You can be busy enjoying yourself onboard with the entertainment, great food and accommodation – you arrive in port and get off to explore the destination.

Once you have seen enough, you can just get back on board again.

Emma Cruises, Norwegian Encore ship, Alaska
Emma Cruises, Norwegian Encore ship, Alaska

There have been occasions that I haven’t been impressed with the port, and have been back on board in time for lunch – and then spent the afternoon enjoying the quieter ship – enjoying the pool or the bars etc.

Cruising gives you complete flexibility to do and see as little or as much as you want.

Although I love a road trip as a way of seeing lots of different places, I don’t like living out of my suitcase. With a cruise, you only pack and unpack once.

Packing with Hudson
Packing for a cruise with the help of my cat Hudson

#2 Great Value For Money

Cruises offer great value for money. Fares include nearly everything you’ll need for a fantastic holiday – food, lovely accommodation, daytime and evening entertainment and the cost of transportation between different ports of call.

One thing I really like about cruising is that the ship accommodation is wonderful – the cabins are very clean and your cabin steward services them at least once a day – with some cruiselines twice.

I am often disappointed when I stay in a hotel on land and the rooms are not cleaned to the same high standards as cruise ship cabins!

I aim to spend around $100/£80 a night on a cruise holiday – and fares often include flights and transfers too.

Most food is included -Enjoying breakfast on Norwegian Encore

I spend extra money on drinks onboard, and sometimes tips – depending on the cruise line. Many British Cruiselines include tips/gratuities in the cruise fare.

Find out more about gratuities/tips when you cruise here:

Cruise Gratuities: A Simple Step by Step Guide For First Time Cruisers

#3 A Great Choice For Families

Cruising is a great multigenerational holiday. There is something to suit everyone.

Cruise ships have free Kid’s Clubs, split into different age ranges. Children can find new friends at the Kids Clubs and take part in all sorts of fun activities.

Whilst the children are enjoying themselves with new friends at the Kids Club, parents can enjoy themselves – without the guilt of thinking that the children would prefer to be there with them.

My parents found I couldn’t wait to get into the Kids Clubs – and I am still in touch with people I met onboard when I was cruising as a child/teenager

As well as being great for all ages, cruising is an affordable choice for families with young children.

On many lines, kids sail free or at discounted rates when sharing a cabin with two adults. They might get all that wonderful food and entertainment for nothing!

Disney Cruise Line Waterslides

#4 Ship Sizes To Suit Everyone

Cruise ships really do come in all sizes – from a few hundred passengers on a luxury line to the Royal Caribbean Mega Ship “Icon of the Seas” which holds over 7500 passengers.

If you are sailing with teenagers or young children, you can choose a ship with waterparks and rock climbing walls. If you are travelling with friends, you might want to try a Norwegian ship with a Go Kart track and laser quest.

If you don’t think you need entertainment like zip lines and ropes courses, you just want good onboard entertainment and food – a smaller, less busy ship might suit you better.

There are certainly advantages and disadvantages of different ship sizes.

Emma and Symphony of the Seas
Symphony of the Seas Cruise Ship – one of the biggest in the world.

Advantages of A Large Ship

  • Lots of fun onboard activities.
  • Broadway-style theatre shows.
  • The price may be more affordable if the ship holds more passengers (but if you are considering the cruise lines newest ship, expect to pay more because of increased demand.)
  • They are very stable in rough weather – if seasickness is a concern for you.

Disadvantages of a Large Ship

  • It can’t dock at smaller ports.
  • When it is docked you might feel like the port is overrun with thousands of passengers from your ship.
  • You might feel like you lose the connection with the sea – you often don’t feel like you are actually on a ship, it’s so large.
  • You need to be prepared to do lots of steps – the mega ships are huge. Although there are lifts/elevators I end up walking up many flights of stairs. (I try never to take the lift when I cruise – and use that as an excuse to eat more cookies!)

Advantages of Smaller Ships

  • Smaller ships can dock at smaller, more interesting ports.
  • You are never far away from the public areas of the ship – restaurant, theatre, buffet etc.
  • You don’t have to walk up so many flights of steps.
  • They have a more intimate atmosphere. You may get to know other passengers or crew – on bigger ships you may feel like you never see the same people twice.
  • You will actually feel like you are on a ship – you won’t be so disconnected from the ocean as you might be on a ship with a central street or central park. Then you are always focussed towards the centre of the ship rather that out at the sea.

Disadvantages Of Smaller Ships

  • You aren’t going to find a Go-Kart Track, zip lines or waterparks etc onboard.
  • They may be more expensive if they are more of a luxury line.
  • No Broadway-style theatre shows – although they will have good theatre shows of their own.
  • Less entertainment choices.
  • You might feel more seasick on a smaller ship if the sea is rough.

Find out why you shouldn’t discount older, smaller cruise ships here:

9 Reasons You Shouldn’t Avoid Cruising on Older, Smaller Cruise Ships

#5 Easy To Plan And Book

You can book directly with the cruise line or use a Travel Agent to book the cruise, flights, transfers etc.

You just decide on an itinerary you would like to try, choose a cruiseline/ship that will suit you and decide on your cabin type. A good, knowledgeable Travel Agent is invaluable here and will be able to assist and make suggestions.

Emma Cruises and Emma Otter
Me with my UK Travel Agent, Emma Otter onboard Celebrity Edge

Find out whether it is best to book directly with the cruise ship or use a travel agent in the article below:

Is It Best To Use a Travel Agent or Book Directly With The Cruise Line? (Money-Saving Hints and Tips For Booking, and Much More…)

You don’t have to research different hotels, and prices, or book and co-ordinate travel between different cities.

If you are booking for a large family or group, you may discounted fares or perks – like one free fare/passenger.

If you are able to cruise from your home country/ local cruise port you don’t have all the stress of going through an airport and taking flights. Once you step onboard, your cruise holiday begins.

Embarkation Day
Embarkation Day

If you don’t already have a great travel agent, you can get in touch with my recommended agents here.

#6 You Can Visit Faraway Destinations Easily

A cruise is one of the best ways to see exotic and foreign destinations which you might be concerned about visiting if you were travelling independently.

You can explore far flung parts of the world easily and comfortably.

You don’t have to do all the research on the best places to visit. In an unfamiliar destination, the cruise line will have done the research for you and will visit all the major cities and offer excursions to interesting places and sites.

The cruise line excursions will have English-speaking guides and you will returned to your ship safe and sound at the end of the day, ready for you to continue on to the next port.

Visiting The Gardens by the Bay In Singapore

Find out all about the wonderful places I visited on my Asia cruise in the video below:

#7 Everything You Should Need Is Onboard

Cruise ships are like floating cities with everything you could possibly want or need onboard.

If you’re concerned about being stranded in the middle of the ocean, miles from land – relax! Cruise ships tend to sail along the coasts, rather than making great ocean voyages. Usually, you aren’t very far from the nearest land.

There are shops if you have forgotten to pack something – although you will find these a little more expensive than shops on land.

There are medical facilities if you should fall ill whilst you are onboard, staffed by doctors and nurses.

There are Gyms, Pools, Spa’s, Hairdressers – Virgin Voyages even have a tattoo parlour onboard! There are often self-service laundries or laundry services if you need to wash your clothes.

There are multiple things to keep you entertained – including swimming pools, theatres and movie cinemas, bars and clubs.

You can buy WiFi onboard if keeping in touch with family and friends is a concern for you. I tend to just use the data on my phone when in port, as this is free for me on my mobile/cell phone contract.

WiFi onboard a ship is never 100% reliable, but it has improved a lot in the past few years.

Find out more about avoiding expensive mistakes when using your phone on a cruise in the article below:

Costly Mistakes to Avoid When Using Your Phone on a Cruise – (Beginners Guide)

msc seaview top deck pool deck
There are plenty of things to keep you occupied onboard when you cruise.

Before You Go

Make sure you are prepared for your first-ever cruise. Read about 67 cruise tips for first time cruisers here:

67 First Cruise Tips: Common Mistakes to Avoid

Find out what your cruise fare is actually spent on below:

This is What Cruise Lines Spend Your Cruise Fare on (Real Breakdown)

Free Insiders Cruise Line Guide

Ever wondered how the mainstream cruise lines compare? Cruise lines won’t tell you this, but I will.

This FREE guide shows you everything you need to know to find your perfect cruise line.