MYTH BUSTING: If you like boring holidays, don’t bother with a cruise.
Cruising isn’t for you. We know. You’d be bored in a minute. You’d want to jump off after a few hours at sea. You couldn’t stand being stuck on a ship with the same people day in day out. You would hate to have to sit at the same table, wearing stuff dinner jackets and bow ties night after night. We know.
But are you right?
To be honest, we’ve heard it all when it comes to cruises. All those reasons for not going. All those misguided myths about what cruising is and always will be. The boredom, the people, the mass tourism, the mob handedness of it all. We know.
If you’re the sort of person who thinks that cruising is all dickie bows and bad musicals, then it’s time to think again. There has never been a better time to go on a cruise. You now have a choice of the entire world – and we’re not joking when we say this - and a whole lot of ways to see it. On a cruise you can see places that others can’t, you can learn, you can be entertained and you can enjoy some of the finest food on the planet.
So, we thought it might help to change your mind if we took a little time to bust a few of the myths of cruising.
MYTH: Cruises are boring
Far from it. Whatever interests you, cruises can cater for it. Even if you like surfing, climbing, cooking or golfing you’ll be catered for by some cruise line. All you have to do is choose carefully. So if you are interested in archaeology you might want to jump aboard a cruise ship heading up the Nile to Luxor or, if you like feeling like an explorer you could book yourself on a conservation cruise to the Antarctic. And if you like just having fun, check into a cabin on Carnival Cruise’s Allure of the Seas or Oasis of the Seas. They both have zip wires, Flowrider surf machines and even ‘the first real park at sea’. Go figure!
MYTH: Cruises go to the same old places
Not true! You can now cruise to Antarctica, up the Yangtze River, to visit the Galapagos (not many people can), to India, Dubai, the Suez, Finland, up the Amazon and just about everywhere in between. A lot of the more popular cruises will still pull into the old favourites in the Med and Caribbean but there are some really exciting destinations to go to these days. It all depends on what you want to see.
MYTH: Cruises are just for the oldies
Where have you been? Cruise companies are now targeting all areas of the market and families are high on their list. Celebrity Cruises have specially designed areas for kids and teenagers on most of their ships and run special evenings and events. They even have designated youth counsellors on board. Likewise, Royal Caribbean Cruises have kids water parks, climbing walls and even the ‘Dreamworks Experience’ on some ships. Some lines also offer special kid’s tea times and babysitting services so everyone gets to have fun too…
MYTH: You have to sit with the same people at dinner
No you don’t. Not if you don’t want to. Lots of cruise lines offer ‘open dining’ options for people who want to eat outside of the more traditional dinner times. There are no set seating plans and you can choose to sit wherever you like. Many of them don’t have a dress code either so you won’t have to get all dolled up every night. Although, to be fair, it’s nice once in a while. Check with your cruise line what the options are before you book.
MYTH: The extras can run into thousands
Not true!!! Lots of cruises these days are all inclusive which means you don’t have to pay for anything once you get on board. That includes drinks, food, trips to the cinema and all sorts, although, of course there are always exceptions. So make sure you do check before you book. If you are not on an all inclusive deal then make sure you find out what’s included and what isn’t before you book. And also find out what the etiquette is for tipping staff. Lots of cruise lines don’t allow it because it can be awkward for both staff and guests. That makes life easier from the off. Nothing worse than that moment when you should be tipping and haven’t got any cash on you.
MYTH: The entertainment is second rate
Sometimes it might be but cruise lines are attracting more and more famous faces these days. Take P&O’s line up in 2014 as an example and you’ll see that the rich and famous are still attracted to cruising. This year the line hosts Michael Ball, Katherine Jenkins and a host of 80s stars in the form of Paul Young, Howard Jones, Heaven 17, the original punk princess Toyah Willcox, Carol Decker of T’Pau fame and Clare Grogan from Altered Images. Even David Essex makes an appearance. If you like celebrity chefs then you’ll be in good company on the line’s food and wine cruises too, when Marco Pierre White is on hand to teach you a thing or two about cooking, show you a few vineyards and host your dinner in his very own on board eaterie.
MYTH: You are herded around like cattle
When it comes to hitting port you can find yourself in a whirlwind of frenzied activity that’s centred around getting as much money out of you as possible. That’s the basic truth of it. But you don’t have to go with the crowd if you don’t want to. At any port you can usually get off and get around under your own steam. Hire a car, get on a bus, whatever. It’s all out there for you to see. Just make sure you know when the ship is due to depart!
MYTH: You have to take the insurance that the cruise line offers you
All cruise lines will insist on travel insurance to cover the cost of trips to the ship’s doctor (they cost about the same as in the US) and disasters such as having to be airlifted off the ship if things get serious. But you don’t have to take out cover with their preferred partner. As with anything it pays to shop around, especially if you have a medical condition are over 65, or are travelling for long periods.
Here at World First we have a Cruise Policy that’s designed for people taking all kinds of cruises. We cover people up to the age of 100, with 1000s of medical conditions covered and can cover cruises that cost up to £10,000 of any duration. Give us a call!
For more information on Cruise travel insurance, CLICK HERE or call us on 0845 90 80 161