The Beginner’s Guide to Cruising

A river or ocean cruise is the ideal way to relax, unwind and enjoy all the attractions of a resort while travelling from destination to destination. River and sea cruises are exceptionally popular with people who want to enjoy the journey as much as the destination and a cruise is also a great way to meet people, socialise and appreciate the view as you travel. The cruise lifestyle is easy to adapt to and offers numerous advantages, including:

Via Lisa Andres Flickr
Via Lisa Andres Flickr

Budget benefits

One of the biggest advantages of a holiday aboard a cruise ship is the all-inclusivity of the ticket price. Most cruises charge upfront for full board and lodging, making it far easier to budget for a holiday and to know exactly what your food and accommodation costs will be before you even set off.

You may still need to budget for alcohol, souvenirs and any excursions enjoyed while the ship is docked, but your major costs will be covered at the offset and budgeting will be far easier as the majority of your vacation is already paid for. Cruises are an exceptionally convenient form of holiday travel and once you are on board there are very few considerations that need to be made, barring how you plan to spend your day and when to enjoy the facilities on offer.

Travel advantages

Cruises allow you to effortlessly travel to multiple destinations during the same trip without having to endure long stop-overs, lengthy flights and jet lag that could be experienced if covering the same distance by air. There are also so many different options for cruise destinations, and whether you are a bookworm, a party animal, social butterfly or simply want to spend the day lazing by the pool, there is sure to be a cruise that is tailor-made to your specifications.

Personal preferences differ vastly and across the continents there are different cruise options that visit a multitude of destinations and offer incredibly diverse experiences. The extensive choice of packages and types of ships also make cruising an extremely attractive option, and regardless of your preference there is sure to be something that will suit the most adventurous traveller, or one simply looking for some time to unwind.

Safety satisfaction

If you are looking for a safe environment in which to let your hair down and have a good party a cruise ship is possibly the best place to spend your holiday. Single ladies can enjoy themselves to the full and not worry about their safety, having to venture home alone in an unknown place after dark or any of the other concerns that can plague woman when enjoying themselves on holiday.

A cruise ship is a safe environment and all guests are looked after to the best of the crew’s ability, so a carefree and enjoyable holiday experience is almost a guarantee. When docking in ports along the way most cruise ships offer a guide or the opportunity to travel in a group so there is no need to be left alone in a strange place and you can explore with safety in numbers. Cruises are great for singles as they offer a safe environment in which to meet new friends and there is a hugely social element to many of the cruises that offer nightclubs, discos and other entertainment geared towards the younger generation.

Via Sean MacEntee Flickr
Via Sean MacEntee Flickr

Amazing activities

Cruise holidays can be as action-packed or as relaxing as you desire. You can create your own itinerary and choose when you wish to indulge in certain activities, or you can simply spend the time relaxing and enjoying the view. Most cruise ships have extensive night time entertainment on offer and have nightclubs, theatres, cinemas and more on offer for everyone.

Depending on your preferences you can party the night away at one of the on-board dance venues or enjoy a sumptuous meal in the restaurant without having to leave the ship. Daytime activities include poolside events, swimming, mini golf and group games which can be joined in at will, or you can relax with a treatment in the spa or enjoy the entertainment on offer in the casino. Children’s activities are also available and parents can leave their kids with professional minders whilst they enjoy some alone time.

Advantageous travel options

Cruise holidays can be as short or as long as desired and you can book certain cruises from port to port rather than staying for a full duration. Three day cruises are a great option for a long weekend and longer cruises are best suited to a full length holiday where you can travel from exotic destination to destination.

Cruise ships often stop at ports of interest and you can see the world by ship if you desire. Educational cruises are also available and river cruises are often a fantastic way of learning about a region from the comfort of your own berth. Cruising is also advantageous for the traveller who wishes to rest while in transit and arrive at their destination refreshed. A cruise also allows travellers to take in the sights and sounds of the world from the safety of a guided tour and there is no need to be concerned about language barriers or exotic customs of new destinations.

Pack at your preference

Cruise holidays offer a multitude of different activities so be sure to know exactly what type of clothing you require for the events you wish to participate in. A few party dresses or more formal outfits are great for evenings if you want to dress up, but otherwise just ensure that the ship you are boarding doesn’t have any dress code rules and pack whatever you prefer.

Swimwear and sunscreen are vital for cruise holidays and a kaftan or sarongs are a useful addition as you are then always pool-ready. Most cruises issue key cards so packing a lanyard is a great idea, as although you can buy them on board, they are often more expensive. A major advantage of packing for a cruise is that you do not have to worry about strict baggage weight restrictions, so if you do over pack there are generally no consequences, except for less cabin space.

Cruising offers numerous advantages and the benefits of seeing the world from a boat are enormous. These are just some of the best reasons to book a cruise and discover for yourself why so many people enjoy this type of holiday.

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