A cruise is a very versatile vacation option. Overall we loved our cruise, we had a great time and would definitely consider another cruise, but it’s not something we would want to do all the time. My parents are obsessed with cruising, and it’s easy to see why they go on a cruise EVERY single year to get a break from our dreadful winters!
The best thing about going on a cruise? Every single thing is taken care of for you, you don’t have to worry about anything! Breakfast, done! Lunch, just choose where! Dinner, fantastic multiple course fancy meals or a ton of non-formal options! Oh and that midnight snack or hangover cure, grab a slice of pizza or order off the 24 hour room service menu! Our Princess cruise consisted of days filled with food, tons of time by the pool, way too much drinking and cheap entertainment!
What did we love?
Ok, seriously, are you getting tired of me talking about the food? If/when you decide to go on your cruise you will know exactly why I have mentioned this so many darn times! The buffets (they even have a buffet at midnight). The poolside options, such as ice cream, hamburgers, hot dogs and pizza. We thought we would rarely go to the formal dinner, but we went almost every single night, the food was multiple courses of amazingness, we got to dress up and the wait staff are the greatest people!
Not only are food options available around every corner, but so is ice cold booze! Mixed drinks, specialty drinks, buckets of beer; Whatever you want they got it!
The Freedom it Gave the Boys!
The fact that the boys could adventure on their own made this an extra special vacation choice for them. They could chill at the pool with us if they wanted to or run off and do their own thing. They would go play basketball and badminton or go devour some ice cream or pizza. They thought it was totally awesome that they could go around eating and playing all day long and didn’t have to pay or be attached to our hips!
This was an extra cost, but it was so fun! I think my mom and I went every day that we were at sea and the boys even joined us a few times, not the hubbies tho, they decided they should stick around the bar and make sure we had cold drinks when we returned LOL. The announcer was cheesy and hilarious and who doesn’t like the chance to win money?! And we did win! My mom won, Bo won, even I won and I never win anything!
The Awesome Staff!
I can not brag enough about the staff on the boat! From the cabin steward to the bartenders to the servers they were all the greatest people! From the moment you step onto the ship you feel like you are the most special guest on board. They never make you feel like a customer, you truly become friends. It was fascinating learning about their background and the country they are from and life working/living on a cruise ship. They remembered our names, what we drank, what we ate, it was actually sad to leave them!
The only negative about the pools is that they can never be big enough! Being on a Princess cruise you don’t see many children so they were never extremely overcrowded, but sometimes it was hard to find lounge chairs! We spent a great deal of our sea days poolside. They always had music playing or pool games going on, it was a super fun environment.
Your Day Can Be As Flexible As You Want It To Be!
You can have a day that is completely scheduled based on the cruise ship schedule of events or you can have a day filled with relaxing by the pool with endless food and drinks or you can have a day where you don’t even leave the comfort of your room. Whether you want to hang out in a robe, a swimsuit or a fancy dress you will still have an amazing day and be waited on hand and foot!
What’s Not To Love?
All The Extra Charges!
You go on a cruise and think everything is included….think again! Alcohol and even soda are not included in your free drink choices. You can purchase a drink card that enables you to have unlimited drinks for the entire trip. If you are an alcohol drinker I would definitely suggest getting the drink card! If you have only 4 or 5 drinks per day it is worth it because even though the drink card sounds expensive at around $40 per day you have to keep in mind that most drinks are going to be between $6 to $12 each depending on what your drink of choice is. It was disappointing to see that even some of the coffee shops and restaurants weren’t included; Why would that be?! Then you have the extra charges for shore excursions and the tips that they add to your bill at the end of your trip; They know how much they are going to charge each person for tips before your cruise even begins so why wouldn’t they include those fees in the price of your cruise? In my opinion it’s because they want the cruise to sound as inexpensive as possible during the initial purchase of the cruise.
The Ports! This one is very love/hate
At each port you exit the ship straight into a tourist trap, overpriced knick knacks and souvenirs. If you choose a shore excursion that you purchase on the boat it is an excursion that has some sort of agreement with the cruise line and you pay top dollar for those activities. We planned our own adventures at most ports by either making reservations on our own for a tour or charter before even leaving the US or just jumping in a cab and finding a fascinating part of the city to explore! Just be back in time because the cruise ship WILL leave you!
Not Enough Time On Land!
I know what you are thinking! If you don’t want to be at sea, then why go on a cruise? I wish we had more time at each Port, to really be able to experience each location and what makes it special. I think our longest stop was around 10 hours, which sounded like a long time til we tried fitting everything we wanted to do into 10 hours!
Room Card & Charge Card In One!
While on the cruise ship our room key was also what we used to purchase any “extras”. You use the card and it is instantly added to your final bill, this simplifies things for the staff. When you aren’t using cash or a credit card your invoice that is so lovingly handed out during your last day on board has the potential to give you a heart attack! Pay close attention to how much you are spending so you don’t end your trip having to become a cruise ship employee in order to pay off your debts. 🙂
Ship Deck Adventures!
The Princess ship that we were on did not have much happening for an adrenaline rush on deck! No slides into any of the pools, no rock climbing, no zip lining, all of which I have seen offered on many other cruise lines. Bummer!
As you can see my list of things we didn’t like is very small and would never deter us from experiencing a cruise again! A cruise is a great vacation option that makes it possible to see multiple places without having to try to plan it yourself. You get treated extremely special. You don’t have to live out of a backpack. It’s a special experience. Happy sailing!