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Our Top Quick Tips For New Cruisers

Joanna Hall

I was recently chatting to some seasoned travellers who were also savvy frequent flyer, and to my great surprise they admitted that they’d never been on a cruise. Finally taking the plunge, thanks to newfound semi-retirement, they didn’t really have a clue where to start when choosing, and booking a high seas holiday. As I told them, a cruise can be great value for money, and with ships ranging from basic to six-star, there’s something to suit all budgets. But how do you ensure you will have a great time if you’re new to cruising? Our top tip is doing your research before you do anything else. Get it right, and a cruise can be a relaxing and highly affordable experience for newbies. Get it wrong, however, and you might end up wishing you stayed at home. Well before you plan to travel, take time to research the ships and cruise lines, as well as fare options, making sure you use reputable resources. 

Next, you need to choose where to cruise, keeping in mind that the further you travel, the more expensive it will be overall. Also some destinations operate during clearly defined seasons. Although you can cruise the South Pacific, the Caribbean and even the Mediterranean year round, you can only head north to Alaska or northern Europe during their summer months - which of course are our winter months. Deciding how long to cruise is also a big decision, as itineraries range from two-night jaunts to nowhere, to longer voyages of a week or more right up to multiple month world cruises. New cruisers should ideally opt for a five or seven-night itinerary only as a safe bet, as it allows enough time to get into the “swing of things” on the high seas, without being too long if you decide it’s not really your thing.

Size matters when it comes to cruise ships too for a variety of reasons. As a general rule, you’ll find five star luxury on small to mid-sized ships, while bigger vessels will have a greater number of facilities, entertainment options and restaurants to choose from. For anyone prone to seasickness, however, a big ship is always a better option as they’re more stable in rough seas. Another key element in choosing a ship depends on who’s cruising. Some ships are built specifically with families in mind, with kid-specific facilities including clubs and child minding services, but if you’re looking for romance or an older crowd, you should focus on small to medium ships which are aimed more at couples. Finally, always check prices carefully. The fares you see advertised are almost always “per person”, like flights, and not per room like hotels. Also, on many cruises except for those which are premium or five star “all inclusive”, you will have to factor in paying extra for a lineup of additional things from soft drinks and premium coffees to alcohol and tips.

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  1. Posted by on 24th Feb 2020 Verified Customer

    Great Tips 5 Star Review

    We've never cruised and have been thinking about it but all this sickness around has put us off to be honest. Great tips here though if we change our minds

  2. Posted by on 24th Feb 2020 Verified Customer

    Never Cruised 2 Star Review

    We've never cruised either...never really fancied it. And now with coronavirus I think it's a great reason to stay home and support Oz, especially after the bushfires!

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