I was recently trading stories with someone about vacationing on cruise ships. What I’ve observed is that most people fall into one of two camps—either you love them, or you don’t. Although they are not my cup of tea, I’ve have had fun the two times I’ve cruised.
I’d like to share my list of pros and cons regarding this type of vacation. With this information, it may help those of you who’ve never been to determine if it is something you would like to try.
Pro—Great option for those with limited mobility: If you or a travel companion is not able to move around very easily, I think that cruises can be ideal to let you see different sights and countries without having to juggle with cars, trains, etc. Especially if you already live near a port, you may not even have to travel far to
“catch” your boat. Years ago I took a cruise from New York to Bermuda, and one of the best parts was that it took me only 30 minutes to get on board and start my vacation.
Pro– Good way to assess locations: My very first cruise was a seven-day trip to the Western Caribbean. Since I had never been to this part of the world, I particularly loved that I got to visit so many different islands. This allowed me to compare and contrast them to see where I might want to return. Out of seven different ports of call, I knew Barbados was my favorite and a candidate for a future trip.
Con–Think twice if you don’t like water: I have a fear of the ocean and I don’t like to swim. Just imagine being stuck on a boat during a storm at sea. Yes, this happened to me. On my return from Bermuda to New York, our last night was interrupted by a bad storm which rocked the boat pretty badly. It prevented women from wearing their high heels during dinner, and caused the drawers in my cabin to open and slam all night long. I could not wait to get off the next day. Cruises that cross the Atlantic Ocean (or any ocean for that matter) can be particularly rough rides, so make sure you don’t mind all the rocking before you book your trip.
Con–Beat the clock: I am the kind of traveler who enjoys taking my time when exploring a new area. This is not always possible when you go on a cruise. Your stops at the various ports of call are on a tight schedule, and I remember feeling rushed and always looking at my watch so as not to miss the boat. If you are trying to escape from deadlines and timetables on your vacation, cruising may not suit you unless you don’t exit the boat and stay on at every port of call. This will take away the stress of beating the clock and save you a ton of money too, since land excursions cost extra.
As always, I wish you all the happiest of travels!
*Image of a cruise ship via Shutterstock