Ideas for choosing your next cruise ship holiday

Cruise ship holidays offer a wonderful way to see and experience new parts of the world, whilst travelling at a relaxing pace. With so many tour operators offering river cruises and ocean going cruising, there has never been a better time to see a range of destinations on one trip.

View of modern luxury cruise ship

Image credit: Andres Manuel Rodriguez

So if you are struggling to decide on your next holiday destination, why settle for just one? When you have a multiple destination itinerary, whilst travelling in style and having all the comforts and activities you could desire in one place. Cruise holidays are one style of vacation that should definitely be considered, both river and ocean cruises are not only an exciting and luxurious option, but can be extremely good value for money if you are looking to visit more than one place during you holiday. Most cruise ship companies will no doubt have a choice of packages or a tailored made one to suit your needs and budget.

These days cruising holidays can take you on so many routes around the world, with many different cruising routes taking tourists around the Caribbean, the Mediterranean or even to Alaska and Artic. So first, it would be advisable to take time to draw up some ideas & a short list for destinations & requirements for your next holiday. Do some research on the locations or places you would like to include in your cruise ship trip.

Once you have an idea of the type of places or locations you would like to visit, have a look online or drop into your local travel agents and see if there is a tour operator, or cruise ship company which covers some or most of the places you would like to include in your cruise holiday. At this point, also find out what sort of facilities the cruise companies various cruise ships can offer you whilst staying onboard during your cruise holiday.

View of cruise ship from beach

Image credit: Michael Bentley, Flickr

To help you research some ideas, here are a few of the popular cruise ship specialist companies include; Royal Caribbean, P&O Cruises, Reader Offers Cruises, Norwegian Cruise Line (or NCL) and Fred Olsen Cruise Lines, these are long established, reputable cruise companies who offer a wise range of cruise holiday options to wide range of destinations around the world. Also make sure choose or use an ABTA and ATOL protected company, so you can have complete peace of mind throughout your cruise holiday.

For a first timer it could seem quite daunting to begin with when researching for your cruise destinations. So as an example & to make it easier lets select a Mediterranean cruise option here as an example of a potential cruise holiday, as depending on your criteria & type of cruise will potentially offer the traveller chance to spend many days whilst exploring wonderful a variety of countries, cities or places along your cruise holiday route.

A Mediterranean cruising holiday could take you on a route to a plethora of different countries and islands giving you a wide choice for excursions to enjoy during your cruise holiday. Many cruise ship companies can include many of these day trips within their package pricing and some have an additional tariff, either way you will have plenty of options for getting a good deal on this type of organised trips from both financial and entertainment value perspective.

Some examples of potential Mediterranean stopovers or day excursion shore visits could include; Rome, Palma, Gibraltar, Nice, and Cannes, just to list a few potential destinations. This style of mini tours are a great way to explore a few countries in one journey, but also a way of also by cramming in some of the best sites, places or attractions to see in a short period of time within your cruise holiday schedule.

Sovereign class cruise ship at sea

Image credit: Matt H. Wade (User:UpstateNYer)

Once you have decided on an itinerary or an approximate location of where you would like to take your cruise. The next step in the process is to select your desired accommodation options. These will vary depending on your travel budget, these will varying in cabin types and sizes available to your needs. Once you have narrowed down your choice of accommodation options, make sure you ask yourself some important questions.

How much space will you and your companions or family need? – This will assist in helping you narrowing down cabin sizes, as with most people when taking a cruise holiday you find yourself spending much of your time outside the cabin as opposed to being inside. If you are taking a young family along with you on holiday it would be very wise to take the option of a “Suite” for larger room space.

Will you require a balcony? porthole? or neither? Cruise cabin prices can differ from a financial perspective depending on the criteria you have. Balcony suites are very luxurious and can give you a private and luxurious area to enjoy the fresh sea air and sunsets whenever suits you, but these can come at a cost.

So once you have come to a decision on many of these aspects  to consider it will just leave you to book your desired cruise holiday and then for you to then think about what plan to take along with you on the journey, like clothing depending on where you will be visiting, so consider the climate & time of year, where the stop-overs will be, and also what kind of books you would like to read and how you will spend your time cruising around the Mediterranean, so just relax and enjoy your cruise ship holiday and a trip of a lifetime!

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