Trust Me, You Love Cruises. You Just May Not Know It Yet!

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Why You Should Cruise At Least Once In Your Life
Odyssey of the Seas is simply stunning at night.

Why You Should Cruise At Least Once In Your Life

Cruises are my favorite type of vacation. I love paying one fee (for the most part) and having all of your meals, entertainment, transportation, and lodging taken care of. Here are some reasons why I love cruising and why you should cruise at least once in your life:

  • Being able to see multiple destinations while having to unpack only once.
  • Eating/drinking whatever I want without worrying about the bill at the end of the meal. (When adding the alcoholic drinks package at least.
  • Having activities that my whole family can enjoy even if we decide to go separately.
  • The service around the ship is usually unmatched by any on shore resort I’ve been to.
  • There is no better place to have a cup of coffee than on your balcony breathing in the sea air as you watch the ship’s wake on a beautiful morning in the Caribbean.
  • Cruise ships and their passengers carry an energy that I can’t find anywhere else.

The point is that I love cruises. So, when I hear someone say they don’t like cruises I take that personally (Verbal meme: Michael Jordan from The Last Dance, “…..I took that personally.”). Not really, but I do try to understand why and then try to convince them otherwise. Below I will go through the most common reasons I’ve heard and explain why they are dead wrong.

This is a guest post from our MtM Diamond member Chris Sobeck. You can follow him on Twitter.  Thanks for putting this together for us Chris.

Why You Should Give Cruising A Try

There Are 2 Legit Reasons That You Shouldn’t At Least Try A Cruise

To be fair, there are two excuses I’ve heard that I see as legitimate reasons to not even give cruising a try. The first would be having a genuine fear of being out at sea. The second is if you are extremely introverted.

Cruise ships have a lot of people. There are going to be situations where you get on an elevator or are standing in a line and someone (like myself) will try and start a conversation with you. If the thought of being around large groups of friendly outgoing people makes your skin crawl, cruising may not be for you.

Notice I did say EXTREMELY introverted people. My wife is an introvert and still loves cruising. She spends her days reading books, taking naps, or sunbathing by herself while I am involved with just about every activity I can find. We typically don’t see a lot of each other during the day, except for meals and the occasional exercise class, but we meet up for dinner and the live evening entertainment. 

5 Reasons Why You Should Cruise At Least Once In Your Life

People that have never been on a cruise usually list the following reasons they don’t think it would be for them. I’ll share the most common gripes and give you my rebuttal to those hot talking points.

Why You Should Cruise At Least Once In Your Life

I Don’t Want To Be Stuck On A Ship

If you are worried about feeling like you are stuck on a ship just pick an itinerary where you are in port everyday. On these itineraries the ship acts more like your hotel then as part of the destination. Also, I never feel like I’m “stuck.” On the contrary, sitting on my balcony overlooking the ocean, I feel free. There is also so much to do on the ship that I don’t think you will have time to feel stuck.

All There Is To Do Is Eat & Gamble

This could not be further from the truth. Modern mega ships have so much to do on them that you will never get to everything in a week. Even if you are on a smaller ship you will still have Broadway-caliber entertainment, a spa, game shows, enrichment classes, a gym, fitness classes, multiple pools, trivia, waterslides, children’s centers, basketball courts, mini golf, shuffleboard, and in case you forgot – you are on the ocean, which guarantees you spectacular views and sunsets! 

Cruise Ships Are Germ Factories

Unfortunately, there is a SMALL amount of truth to this one. If you have thousands of people in a relatively small space your risk for disease increases. That said, it’s no worse than getting on a plane or going to a concert. In many ways it’s better. On my last cruise everyone had to be vaccinated for COVID-19 and PCR tested at the port. That, combined with meticulous cleaning, put me at ease.  I know nothing is foolproof, but in my mind there is no safer way to travel.

The media makes it seem like getting on a ship guarantees you get COVID or Norovirus. Except they conveniently leave out that 30 million people cruise a year. They love to tell you about the isolated instances, but neglect to tell you that your odds of it happening to you are extremely low. In fact the CDC has dropped their travel health notice for contracting covid while cruising (Current as of June 2022). 

Cruises Are Too Expensive  

There is a cruise for every budget. Shawn has written about some amazing deals lately, in this article Cruise Hacking Carnival & Royal Caribbean – My 7 Insanely Cheap Cruises. You could check out his podcast episode on it too, if you prefer that. In general you don’t have to look too hard to get on a ship for $50 per person per day. If you want an elevated experience $100 will get you there. So $200 a day for a couple to have all of your lodging, transportation, food, entertainment, and sometimes drinks covered?! Try matching that at any resort.

Why You Should Cruise At Least Once In Your Life

Cruises Are For Seniors Or Are Just Booze Cruises

There is a cruise for everyone. Yes, if you want a quiet peaceful trip that may cater to older people, sail Princess or Holland America. If you want to party like it’s spring break take a 3-night weekend cruise on Carnival or Royal Caribbean. There is everything in between! Tell me what experience you are looking for and I’ll show you an itinerary and line that will fit. 

You Should Cruise Once In Your Life: Final Thoughts

Did I convince you yet? I’m constantly telling my five year old, “You don’t know if you like it until you try it.” The same is true here. I know you like to travel because you are reading this blog so get out there and give it a shot! I would suggest a 4 or 5 night cruise to start. There are 3 night cruises available, but for your first time that may be too short for you to get the hang of it. A 7 night cruise may be too much if you end up not liking the experience. If you have any questions please feel free to ask!  

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26 COMMENTS

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26 COMMENTS

  1. Hell no. Went on one cruise. The septic system vented through my little corner of that floating cesspool. They sent us vouchers for a cruise to make up for it. I wrote the words “Go; F*ck; and Yourselves” on each of the 3 and mailed them back.

  2. Love cruises! Everything you stated is truth! So much entertainment, foods good and drinks too! People that never cruised and say it isn’t for them just make me cringe.

  3. Cruising is great, but only with a small (700 passenger or less) cruise ship as the massive cruise ships one encounters on cruise lines such as MSC, Carnival, NCL, Royal Caribbean, Princess) are just massive attempts to put Las Vegas on a floating vessel, with crowds, long lines, powdered scrambled eggs. Better to go to Las Vegas if that’s what you want. However, small (upscale) cruise ships provide an excellent experience without overwhelming ports and visiting smaller more interesting venues, docking closer in many cases to the sites. In addition, recommend booking directly with the cruise line rather than with third party travel agents, most of whom are more interested in the amount of their commissions than the welfare of their clients.

  4. Have never understood people’s desire for cruises. So much time on the water, so little actual time in destinations. Lots of people. Toss covid in there and it’s a massive pass. Glad others enjoy it though partly because it opens up more airline seats, airbnb’s, and hotel beds for others:)

    • Do you think that people who go on cruises only go on cruises. I travel a lot and find them very enjoyable, but the point of them isn’t to spend vast amount of times at destinations. I think you can both like cruises and like normal travel as well. That said, I don’t understand people who ONLY go on cruises. So much more to see out there.

      • One thing this discussion reminds me of is that points and miles have different value depending on what kind of traveler you are. For example, because I go for out-of-the-way places and wilderness experiences I don’t ever stay at luxury hotels or resorts. So I find I get less return out of hotel points than most of you probably do, and my valuation for hotel points tends to be quite low. (On the other hand, being old, I place a high value on airport lounges, comfy seats, and early boarding.) It would be interesting to see a comparison of points values based on types of travel.

    • Agree 100%. Never got the appeal and now the added bonus of being a superspreader event and maybe quarantined in a tiny room. The food is never impressive (except in specialty restaurants) the ports are all pretty much the same and the experience is much inferior to most resorts. Been there, done that, fooled me once…

  5. @ Christian Having just done it, I don’t think there’s a better way to see Alaska, given that it’s impossible to drive to some of the places (including the capital!) one would want most want to visit. I prefer to use the cruise ship as my floating hotel; watch Miles to Memories for an upcoming post on merging independent travel with an Alaska cruise.

  6. I’ve been on my share of cruises over the years and outside of a river cruise I’m kind of disinclined. Here’s why:

    Cabins tend to be small. I can pay a lot for a guaranteed roomy cabin but that costs a lot.

    I enjoy quiet time every day but not while being required to spend it in a specific room. Otherwise I feel trapped rather than relaxed.

    I adore swimming pools. I can lounge in a quiet one for hours, only breaking for food, bathroom breaks, and sunscreen. Unfortunately I really don’t like noisy or crowded pools and I have yet to see a warm weather cruise with a pool that wasn’t busy unless the seas were rough.

    I’m not saying that I won’t cruise again. I think given a family reunion or something similar it might be worthwhile. I just enjoy all-inclusive hotels more. Except for the pack once and see different places aspect I think they offer the same benefits without any downside. That said, I can see multiple circumstances where a cruise is a fabulous idea: situations like yours, families with older kids who want freedom but still pretty much know where they are, gamblers, highly social people, theme cruisers, etc. For that matter, cruising makes an awful lot more sense to see Alaska, for example. I guess the YMMV might apply on this as well.

    • Many cruise ships have adult pools that are mostly quiet and under used in my experiences. I used to sell cruises as I was a travel agent for almost 30 years. There is a cruise/cruise ship for every person’s needs. You just need to find one that fits your needs.

      • Hmm. I accept the challenge. I like staying in the wilderness with my family where I can walk out the door at any time and take long hikes in the woods. I prefer to avoid hotels and like to have my own kitchen. What sort of cruise would you recommend?

        • Amazon! Small ships that go to places that are very difficult to get to, on any other mode of transportation. Galapagos are also better from a cruise ship. Both are very undeveloped, with the Amazon being wilderness. Sailing the Irrawaddy in Myanmar is also a wilderness cruising destination. All three are destinations that are very difficult to visit independently without advanced planning, which in the end may be far more costly and time consuming than just taking a cruise.

          • I have looked at small ship cruises over the years (you can add Kerala, Yangtze, and Ha Long Bay to the list) and you are right that they are of more interest to me than the behemoth floating Vegas ships. But the ones I find most interesting tend to be quite expensive, and none of the cruises would make my top 100 wish list of trips. I don’t want someone else planning my trip for me and cruises tend to charge a premium for pampering I don’t want. So while I am sure many of these trips are quite amazing I can always find other (usually cheaper) trips I am more interested in. For example, I am sure a Galapagos cruise is an exceptional experience but I would be much more likely to go somewhere like the Faroe Islands where I can set my own itinerary, stay as long as I like at a location, and do more of the things I like, all for a lot less money than the Galapagos. Or if I go to Ha Long Bay I will be more likely to hire a local guide for rock climbing than to take a cruise. Maybe in 20 years or so when I am in my 80’s a cruise will sound more appealing but for now it just doesn’t match what I like in travel.

  7. You are overlooking a HUGE reason a lot of people avoid cruising. The one thing I enjoy most about travel is immersing myself in the environment of my destination. I love finding the little out of the way spots to eat, strolling through local neighborhoods, hiking secluded mountain paths, and generally managing my own schedule as far away from tourist spots as possible. I don’t want to stay in a big hotel, floating or otherwise, and I have no interest in any of the activities you list. There is nothing wrong with cruises, but it is safe to say that people who cruise have a completely different goal in travel than I do. I have been on a cruise and have also been to an all inclusive resort, and I hated every minute of both for the same reason. Neither really felt like travel to me, and in both cases I was itching to get away from the structured environment the entire time. So I think it comes down to why you travel and what you want out of it.

    • Cruising can be a great way to get an introduction to a place that you can later go back to. Or at least in some cases that works, especially in places like Europe. Good points James! It sounds like you know what you want and that is great.

      • Good point. I should add I’m not knocking cruises, but just the cruises are for everybody thing. I have no doubt what I enjoy in travel is NOT for everybody!!

        • There are some places that a cruise is the best way to visit the destinations. People have mentioned Alaska. I think a better example, is Bermuda. Bermuda is a fantastic island that has its own flavor and is not like any Caribbean island. But Bermuda is omg expensive. Finding a hotel or B&B for less than $300/night is a challenge. The least expensive way to do Bermuda is a cruise with the ship being your hotel. One can visit all the nice spots with a scooter only going back to the ship for dinner, sleeping, and breakfast.

          Another ideal destination for a cruise is the Greek islands. Getting between the Greek islands is a time consuming hassle. Doing a cruise here, will give one all the flavors of each island, so that when they return to these islands, they can pick specific ones to visit.

    • I agree. We took an excursion in Naples where we went to a young ladies apartment to make Tiramisu. While the Tiramisu was setting up she takes us for a walk through Naples. She buys pizza and other items. All for $40.

      Or the time we have a bottle of French wine and sit on the top of mountain looking over the water. Many more of those from only on cruise.

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