Tips for Planning and Organizing Your First Cruise
April 15, 2019
Guest blog by Kacey Mya, the blogger behind The Drifter Collective
You’ve seen others encounter new places and experiences on exciting cruises, and now it’s your turn to journey on a cruise ship. Vacationing directly on the water, stopping at captivating ports and relaxing in the sun are all in store.
But as a first-timer, you need the best strategy for organizing the trip and planning your itinerary. Before you make definitive plans, you’re looking for the best approach to get your cruise in order. Here are eight tips for arranging your first cruise.
1. Set a Budget
Unless you opt for an all-inclusive cruise, you’ll have to set aside money for each day. According to Cruise Market Watch, each passenger spends approximately $212.80 per day of their trip. Depending on the cruise line you choose, reserve at least $200 to $300 per day to cover drinks, restaurants, shopping and on-shore activities.
Keep track of how much you’re spending, because the available amenities and resources are easy to indulge in. Also, the different levels of cabins can change your cost. Allow yourself room to splurge while maintaining a reasonable budget.
2. Consider Who’s Going
Figure out who you’ll be traveling with on your cruise. Are you going with family? Are your friends getting together for a special occasion? If you’re going with a group, your planning involves other people and preferences. So, take them into account and meet with them to discuss the destination and timeline.
On the other hand, traveling solo can simplify and improve your planning. You can prioritize your desires and give yourself the opportunity to embrace exploration on your own. Whatever your reason for taking a trip by yourself, you can freely manage your time the way you want.
3. Determine the Length of Your Trip
On your first voyage, settling on a set time away from home can be tricky. You don’t know how entertained you’ll be after a few days or what to expect on your excursions. But the beauty of a cruise is that a variety of options abound. For your first trip, a weekend or weeklong cruise can give you a taste of the experience.
4. Choose a Destination
Because the ocean provides plenty of access to stunning locations, you have several destination options to weigh. As you contemplate which destination is best for you, research the port stops to find which coastlines offer activities you like. You can visit islands in the Caribbean for a tropical ambiance or head toward Alaska for a mountain setting.
5. Pick the Right Season
Weather and the time of year for your getaway are significant factors in booking a cruise. Fair seasons bring more travelers, especially in tropical places, but the offseason can offer better deals. With more free time for families in the summer and winter, you can often avoid the crowds by choosing a spring or fall cruise.
6. Schedule Enjoyable Activities and Excursions
During a cruise, your ship will stop at ports along its route for a few hours or overnight so you can explore new areas. These locations offer a chance to wander through markets, see local attractions or try thrilling activities. You can take tours with your ship or independently adventure based on your interests.
There are entertainment opportunities on board, too. You can participate in spa treatments, hang out by the pool, see a performance or join casino activities.
7. Pack for All Occasions
While you’re on a cruise, you’ll participate in everything from sunbathing and exploring ports to fancy dinners. Pack comfortable clothes for excursions and elegant options for dining. Many cruise lines have specific dress codes for certain areas, so familiarize yourself with the recommended wardrobe around the ship.
8. Select a Cabin
Each cabin has unique advantages that set them apart. You can stay in a windowless cabin to save money, or you can enjoy a breathtaking view with a balcony cabin. Porthole or window cabins can be a happy medium. Expansive suites are an extravagant rooming selection for those who want convenience and luxury.
Embark on Your First Cruise
As you organize your first cruise, you can consider what will make your ideal trip. Plan with your budget, preferences, destination, companions and the weather in mind. Start booking a relaxing cruise vacation today.
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