You probably have a rough idea of what you think cruising is all about. But be prepared, chances are you'll be totally surprised once you get onboard.
Are you the type of person that would go on a cruise?
A cruise is something that can appeal to all sorts of people; from families to couples to singles. For singles who travel alone, most ships hold parties to make it easy to meet people. For families with kids, many cruise ships provide various activities such as sport, video games, clubs and swimming pools. Also in many cases, cruise lines offer reduced fares for children. For couples, newlyweds and friends, a cruise is an opportunity to get together for a special occasions like a honeymoon, birthday or anniversary.
How to choose your cruise?
You have to bear five things in mind when you are making a decision about a cruise: Where, When, Which, How Long and How Much.
Where? - Where do you want to go?
There are so many itineraries to choose from, it may get confusing or overwhelming. Perhaps write down some of the places you would like to visit and see if your cruise agent can recommend an itinerary that encompasses some if not all of those destinations. Most cruises cover a certain area, ie the Med or the Caribbean, for those that are more adventurous or have more time on their hands, a world cruise may be for you!
When? - When do I want to go?
If you want to cruise the Mediterranean, its best to choose the summer months (May - Sept), though if it's the Caribbean you prefer, you will find the weather better during our winter (Nov -Apr)
Which - Which ship should you choose?
This can be the hardest decision. You may find many ships are offering the type itineraries you like so the next thing is the compare the facilities and overall 'feel' of the ships. You may prefer a smaller more intimate ship that has fewer facilies or a larger ship with much more to do. You may have children to consider, so comparing kids facilites may be the most important thing to you. Maybe the eveening entertainment or the food is your preference, whatever advice you need, your cruise agent is there to advise you.
How long? - Itineraries vary largely, from a minicruise (1-5 nights) right through to the world cruises that can be as long as a year! Really the choice is yours, though remember that your mind may be willing but your budget may not be!
How much? - Again, this varies from agent to agent. Ideal Cruising are an independant cruise agency that recieve large discounts, easily passed on to you the customer. Visit their website here www.idealcruising.co.uk