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To Cruise, or Not To Cruise

by margaret 21. July 2011 12:00

When it comes to traveling, I like to go where I want to go. If there are cheap flight tickets for the weekend to a place I’ve never been, I’ll take it! But going on a tour while I’m there? Forget about it! I’m there to see things that I’ve read about in magazines and blogs, eat where I want to eat and not necessarily end up in the most touristy of spots. And I know I’m not the only one. Travelers all over the world forgo the guidebook and do as they please while on vacation. So a cruise really isn’t the type of vacation for us. Or is it? I asked Carrie Finley-Bajak of Cruise Buzz to try and convince me and travelers like me to go on a cruise. Let’s see if she can get the job done!

Not to Cruise

The one thing that always deterred me from wanting to go on the cruise was the idea of being trapped on a boat (albeit a giant boat!) for days in the middle of the ocean. That’s of course a rather dramatic way of looking at things though! While you are on the boat for days at a time sometimes, people always seem to be on some sort of schedule. Anytime I’ve watched a travel show or listened to friend’s story about their cruising experiences, it all seems to revolve around doing activities when other people wanted you to do them. You dock into the port and only have a certain amount of time to see the local area you’re in. That kind of thing is great for some people, but it’s never really appealed to me. It’d be like the time I was trapped at an all-inclusive resort with nowhere interesting to go (apparently the idea there is to relax!).

 What is your opinion on cruising the open seas? Photo by Thomas Quine, Creative Commons


To Cruise 

Let’s start the convincing! I asked Finley-Bajak why a traveler like me would want to go on a cruise. “First off, anyone that loves water will probably enjoy a cruise. The challenge is to match the right cruise line to the individual. There are plenty of choices, so assuming that a person does not suffer from severe motion sickness, I am confident that cruising is a good choice.” Ok, so we have options it seems. And who isn’t a fan of spending some time in the water?

There are all sorts of travelers out there that cruises can appeal to. The one you might think would least enjoy a cruise are people whose entire vacation is based around outdoor activities like kayaking, boating, skiing, hiking and more. If you’re one of them, then according to Finley-Bajak, there are actually cruises out there for you. “For adventure cruisers that want to use the boat/ship to access remote places of Alaska, the Galapagos, and Antarctica there are small cruise lines or smaller cruises in larger fleets.”

Whether it’s a vineyard in France or a historical bar in Philly, when I travel, everything seems to center around food and drinks. To my excitement, there are cruise ships out there that cater to the foodie in all of us! Many larger luxury ships offer wine events and hangouts for foodies. “Foodies will love ships with facilities that allow for learning: Oceania Marina and the larger Holland America Line ships have purpose-built facilities for cooking,” mentions Finley-Bajak.

Overall, the best tip that came my way for first time cruisers though is to take one close to home. Out of New York, there are actually overnight cruises to nowhere. This gives you a chance to experience what it’s like to be on a cruise ship for a night, and see if you’d like to go on a longer outing in the future. Finley-Bajak does suggest staying close to home for your first cruise, and cheap tickets can always be found for first-timers cruising around the Caribbean. 


Where Will You Cruise? 

So adventurous travelers, are you convinced? While I admit I’ll never tire of traveling off the beaten path, I would be curious to try out a specific cruise that caters to my travel needs and interests. If there’s enough to keep me entertained between ports, then ok, I’ll try one!

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Tags: cheap flights, cruise, travel, vacations

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