I would love to take a cruise but don't have any idea how to get started. I need advice on how to find cheap cruises and what to expect when I get there. Are all the food and restaurants free?
By Robby from Jacksonville, NC
Just found this website which will answer all of your questions. It is a series of videos.
I suggest to consult with a travel agent. Usually their services are free (their fee is paid by the cruise line). You pay for the food when you get the ticket, they have gambling on some. I got sea sick. I will never go on another cruise, but good luck. (12/08/2009)
Here is a site you can check out for ideas of cruises. You can also join their email list and get offers sent to you each week of specials going on. http://www.travelnotes.org/
Another site to get info about cruises and places is http://www.tripadvisor.com/ (12/08/2009)
We loved our cruise, but we went in November and rarely saw the sun. It was very cloudy. The swimming pools are also salt water. I didn't know that until after we boarded. We went with Royal Caribbean and had prepaid for our shore excursions. We would go down past the desk to find out our excursion had been canceled. No reason was given, and it happened 3 times. I was a bit disappointed by that, and I don't know if it happens on other cruise lines, but I wouldn't go with RC again. Food was average, unless you want to pay extra for the specialty restaurants. Our room was an over sized closet.
Overall, I think it was a good value for the money, but an all-inclusive at a resort will probably be our next vacation. I didn't feel safe in the foreign ports we visited. Certainly not enough to venture out on our own. Jamaica was the worst, but we did go with a large group to swim with dolphins. If you get the chance, definitely do that. We got the seasick ear patches from the doctor, but we didn't use them. My overall advice, check the weather for your ports ahead of time, and be watchful of your surroundings in port. (12/10/2009)
The Travel Channel has a show on every now and then about what to expect on a cruise. I took an Alaskan cruise on Princess and highly recommend that trip to everybody. However, every cruise line is different and what you can expect on one may not be the same on another. (12/11/2009)
I love cruises! AAA has info as do all travel agencies, as well as many sites online. Generally all food and on board entertainment are included. You pay for alcohol and soft drinks, and tips (which are given at the end of the cruise) to your cabin attendant, waiter and busboy, a least. I usually drink iced tea with meals and there is no extra charge for that. You pay for any gift shop purchases, shore excursions, spa services, laundry or dry cleaning, etc. Most cruise fees are based on "double occupancy" so it is good to have someone to travel with. (12/12/2009)
My husband and I have been on four cruises so far, and we're real penny pinchers. We belong to a vacation club, but have never found any better deals anywhere than at vacationstogo.com. I've spent a LOT of time on the internet making comparisons and have found it to be the best.
As to your question about restaurants, most cruises have a couple of restaurants that have a cover charge but we never use those. The dining rooms are great, but there are lots of other choices. The food is included in the price. Coffee, tea, fruit juices are too. Alcoholic beverages and soft drinks and bottled water are extra, but the water on the ships is fine for drinking. I usually get water from one of the coffee stations.
I would suggest that you go to cruisecritics.com. You'll find lots of information there, but you might get so involved with the site you'll lose all track of time. We're shipping out again on Jan. 30th. Good luck, and I hope you find what you're looking for. I don't think you'll be sorry. (12/13/2009)
Add your voice! Click below to comment. ThriftyFun is powered by your wisdom!