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Author Topic: Anyone been on a cruise?  (Read 1970 times)
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kathode
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« on: February 10, 2005, 10:33:43 PM »

I'm looking at taking some vacation time next month and I was thinking going on a cruise with a friend of mine might be cool.  Anyone been on one?  What do you do on days when you're "At sea"?  And do they just kind of dump you out when you reach your destination for the day?
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corruptrelic
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« Reply #1 on: February 11, 2005, 02:57:53 AM »

I haven't been on a cruise in over 10 years (feeling old just thinking about it) but it was definitely an enjoyable experience.
We went out for around 2 or 3 days on a gambling cruise so we didn't get dropped off anywhere.
There was a huge pool, a restraunt and bar, plenty of games, your own room with TV, and of course the gambling and singing area.

Now this post has got me wanting to go on another cruise. I can only imagine that getting dropped off somewhere (like the Bahamas) would only be a great experience. Spending time out on the sea in a mini-city and then getting a vacation at some island (hopefully your "friend" is a hot chick  :wink:) to get away from everyday life seems like a dream.

Definitely would recommend a cruise vacation, unless there have been some MAJOR changes (hopefully for the better) over the past 10 years or so.
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glr200
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« Reply #2 on: February 11, 2005, 05:26:47 AM »

Kathode

I've been on two cruises (Alaska and the Caribbean).  

On the days at sea, there is the pool, restaurants and bars, casino, movie theater, exercise room, and there are usually several scheduled activities throughout the day.  

On destination days, you can go out on your own for sight seeing or you can sign up for their excursions.  The price of the excursions are on top of your cruise tickets.  When you board the ship, they will give you an itinerary with prices.  Some excursions have limited seating, so first come first served.

By the way, almost everything is included with your cruise tickets except for alcohol and soda.
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Doopri
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« Reply #3 on: February 11, 2005, 05:49:24 AM »

im gonna play devil's advocate here.  ive never been a fan to tell ya the truth.  when you go on vacation - do you enjoy spendin most of your time on the plane or in the hotel?  because thats essentially what cruises start to feel like, especially for longer than a week.  alaska / north western is slightly different, because there are some waterbound things that are just gorgeous - iceburgs driftin are a sight.  that said - i always much prefered to go somewhere and thoroughly explore it, not spend 5 hours doin the tourist routine then the rest of the day in the hotel (cruise ship).  also, if you're a big scuba fan cruises are a lil bit better (caribbean) BUT only if youve done it for years and can appreciate the varied spots - otherwise one dive will seem like any other.  that said - you can get a much better and more personal experience decidin on your own where you want to go and findin every hidden lil area of a spot - but again if youre a fan of the sport youd prob be doin that anyway and not even consider a cruise for variety of location.  last thing to consider - if the "other" is a recent romantic aquisition - make sure youre ready to be spendin ALOT of time together - again something that isnt as well suited for a cruise - at least if you "go somewhere" you can spend the days wanderin varied areas, shoppin at the local markets and awesome exclusive places (im a huge shoppin fan so i love hittin up the boutiques and such), different places to eat etc - whereas on cruise youre gonna be spendin every night at the same bar or the same lil room.  if you like to really explore places, take in all they have, find the exclusive / remote / "hidden" spots, temples, museums, galleries, clubs whatever then I would say no way.  if you like to hit the big things then move on it might be more to your likin but i always prefered travellin on my terms than island hopin with a curfew - "ooh ah, now back on the bus" smile
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Doopri
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« Reply #4 on: February 11, 2005, 05:49:47 AM »

holy shit sorry that was long
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Chrisoc13
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« Reply #5 on: February 11, 2005, 08:38:00 AM »

I went on a cruise last year in the carribean. It was great. One thing is for sure: you will gain weight unless you work out on the cruise and turn down food, which is avaliable every night. And you will get used to being treated like a king or queen. Personal waiters for all, as much lobster as you want, you get the picture.

The cruise I went on was actually Italian (la Costa). They bring their atlantic crusie boats down to the carribean in the winter.  That was probably one of the cool parts of the cruise. Half were americans on the crusie the other half were European(mostly because everything was offered in italian, french, spanish and english, which kind of got annoying). The funniest thing to watch was the clash between the cultures. On Toga party night, the americans were vary roudy, (and intoxicated) and there were lots of complaints from the europeans. Few of them even wore togas (you can tell who is who because in the dining room the europeans eat upstairs while the americans eat downstairs for language purposes mostly). Just different ways of partying I guess. Good times  though  biggrin . Kind of gross watching lots of older people dancing around in togas though, might never get some nasty pictures out of my mind  :wink: .

The at sea days were rather boring. There was a casino, but I dont gamble (dont like to lose money that much  smile ) and an arcade were you could restle around with pre teens to play top skater or rogue squadron for $5. It was better to just relax on those days and wait till night when the diso and ballroom opened downstairs.

Fun times though, I would suggest a cruise to anyone if for nothing other then the great food, and the treatment you recieve.
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PaulBot
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« Reply #6 on: February 11, 2005, 10:21:18 PM »

My wife & I went on an Alaskan cruise August 2002. My wife summed it up best: it was the honeymoon we should have had.

It was absolutely incredible. Everything except soda, booze and tips are included. Food is available any time you want it - even room service is included in the cost.

The really cool thing about a cruise is you get to see different places and you don't have to keep packing your suitcase every day to go to them!

There were numerous places the ship stopped, and it was entirely up to us if we would even get off the ship. If you stay on, you will have nearly the whole ship to yourself, and the crew is there to serve you just like any other time. If you want to go explore wherever the ship stops, it's up to you how much you do and spend. Pick an organized tour, or just wander on your own.

I'll sum it up this way: JUST DO IT
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LanceM
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« Reply #7 on: February 11, 2005, 11:13:54 PM »

My wife and I did the Alaskan Glacier Discovery cruise a few years ago. Incredible time. The ship basically cruised all night and arrived in a new port the next morning. We would go ashore all day, come back aboard, and then cruise to the next location during that night. Repeated for 7 days, with some neat stops to look at sights--we saw where 7 glaciers all come into 1 bay.

We even splurged for a helicopter ride and went glacier hiking one day--just amazing.

The cool thing about a cruise (that stops at locations) is that you can do as much or as little as you want. One day we went hiking on our own. One day we went on the organized tours, one day we stayed on the ship and napped. We even went down to the midnight dessert bar one night.

Anyway, we are saving to take the kids on a Disney cruise/land combo someday.

Highly recommended!
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glr200
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« Reply #8 on: February 11, 2005, 11:24:46 PM »

Quote from: "LanceM"

We even splurged for a helicopter ride and went glacier hiking one day--just amazing.


My wife and I did the helicopter/glacier hike too!  It was totally cool.
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SpicyJ
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« Reply #9 on: February 12, 2005, 03:20:03 AM »

For those of us who get ill riding small sailboats, how do the big cruise ships compare, nausea-wise?
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Chrisoc13
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« Reply #10 on: February 12, 2005, 05:08:12 AM »

My boat was huge, and I could hardly tell we were on a boat. I could at first, but I got used to it. I get motion sickness rather easily too, but our boat was big enough I could hardly tell. Of course, we didnt go through a storm the whole time. Perfect weather the entire week, that could change your experience.
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rrmorton
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« Reply #11 on: February 12, 2005, 06:34:13 AM »

The funniest thing I've ever read (six times) is David Foster Wallace's essay A Supposedly Fun Thing I'll Never Do Again. Random Amazon reviewer sez:

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The title essay, about a hundred pages, is a sort of spy mission where the author, a man who makes it clear that he loathes the philistinism of conspicuous consumerism, poses as a boat cruise passenger and chronicles the depression and uneasiness that results from a luxury boat cruise. Wallace's depression is our joy because he is extremely funny in the way he shows how the Pampering Industry, that is, the boat cruise staff, is in fact a bunch of bullies who force us to "have a good time" as we luxuriate on a cruiser, which Wallace envisions as a sort of huge, warm womb where consciousness is lost and where the tourists experience a sort of death.


UTTERLY BRILLIANT.
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PaulBot
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« Reply #12 on: February 13, 2005, 08:02:25 PM »

My wife and I did the helicopter ride too, and it was AWESOME (IMO). She wouldn't do it again, but I absolutely loved it. She didn't like how small the helicopter was, and that's exactly what I like. I grew up around small private airplanes, and so I like riding in the small ones where she likes the big ones where you don't feel like you're flying. Add some aerobatic tricks to the helicopter tour and it would be perfect!  biggrin

As for nausea, we got on the ship, and felt a little dizzy (very little - nothing even close to being termed as nausea) for a couple hours and after that we were fine until we got off the ship at the end of the week and we felt dizzy again.

The ships are so big now that they are very smooth rides. The most common routes for the Alaskan cruises keep them in relatively calm water since they are never very far from shore.
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dfs
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« Reply #13 on: February 15, 2005, 03:34:06 PM »

Rmorton is right on about  Foster-Wallace. Great writing.

Wife and I went on a cruise last winter. Had a nice time and all that. People warn you about the food, but they don't warn you about the activity. I ended up with a vaugue sense of un-ease that I was "missing" something no matter where I was.  After a day or so, I was able to let that go, but it kind of shocked me to feel that way.
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leo8877
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« Reply #14 on: February 16, 2005, 12:42:21 AM »

I've been on four cruises.  3 to Mexico and 1 to the caribbean.  For your money, it tough to beat the deal.  Food and room is all inclusive, they just get you on booze and excursions.

Everytime I have been on a cruise, it's basically one big party....morning until night.

However, there's lots to do.  They constantly have activities going on at all time of the day, so you shouldn't get bored on the "at sea" days.  You can just kick back and relax if you want.  I've never stayed in my cabin for anything but the night's sleep.

Excursions are fun too, and there's usually lots to choose from, so you can tailor it to what you like.  

I've noticed that people are more friendly on cruises too.  I've met lots of really nice people that will send emails and pictures when it's all over.  

I'd definitely go back on one, it's just a fun time.
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Blackjack
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« Reply #15 on: November 11, 2010, 08:42:25 PM »

Remember this story next time you're thinking about a cruise -- though to be fair, it's supposedly the first time in Carnival's 35-year history they've had an engine and partial power failure like this:

Passengers: Mayo sandwiches, showering in the dark on cruise ship
http://www.cnn.com/2010/TRAVEL/11/11/cruise.ship/index.html?hpt=C1
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He said he ate a lot of bananas and dry cereal, but at one point didn't want to eat anymore because the smell of overflowing toilets, spoiled food and rotten milk was overwhelming.

Once the USS Ronald Reagan showed up to assist, passengers felt safer, he said. And the Navy provided good food -- Horace said he particularly enjoyed the bean burritos.
Bean burritos? On a ship with flooded toilets? Really?  icon_lol
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DarkEL
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« Reply #16 on: November 11, 2010, 10:38:27 PM »

Taken the family on Disney Cruises the last two years and we've really enjoyed them.

Last year we did a four-night cruise with an inexpensive inside stateroom
This year we did a three-night cruise but had an Deluxe stateroom with private verandah

Both trips went to Nassau and Disney's Private Castaway Cay Island. The main difference between the two trips is that on the four night cruise you get a day at sea to enjoy everything that the he boat has to offer. Tons of things to do... In fact even after two trips there are still a good number of things that we still haven't had time to enjoy yet.

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Ironrod
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« Reply #17 on: November 11, 2010, 11:25:50 PM »

Quote from: Doopri on February 11, 2005, 05:49:24 AM

i always much prefered to go somewhere and thoroughly explore it, not spend 5 hours doin the tourist routine then the rest of the day in the hotel (cruise ship).  ... if you like to really explore places, take in all they have, find the exclusive / remote / "hidden" spots, temples, museums, galleries, clubs whatever then I would say no way.  if you like to hit the big things then move on it might be more to your likin but i always prefered travellin on my terms than island hopin with a curfew - "ooh ah, now back on the bus" smile

This. Not to mention interacting with the locals. But I'm sure we're in the minority. I wouldn't try to talk anyone else out of a cruise...it's just not something I'd ever choose personally. I came close once when my wife won a cruise in a raffle, but we were able to trade it in for an equivalent trip of our choice. We had a 2-week adventure in Italy instead.
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ericb
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« Reply #18 on: November 11, 2010, 11:39:33 PM »

Quote from: SpicyJ on February 12, 2005, 03:20:03 AM

For those of us who get ill riding small sailboats, how do the big cruise ships compare, nausea-wise?

I get sea sick just looking at a boat rocking in the water but had absolutely no problem with the cruise I went on...even when there was noticeable motion.   I have to say though that you're either a cruise person or you're not.  Some people think it's the greatest vacation in the world and others absolutely hate it and there doesn't seem to be much middle ground.  I'm one of the "loved it" people and we already booked a longer cruise for next year.  One tip is to book the excursions yourself if you have enough time and are going to established sites.  The ones you book are often longer (watch your timeframe), leave from the exact same spot and are often half the cost of the cruise version.  As for the days at sea we actually wanted more of them.  It's nice sitting in the adult area in a deck chair (or by the pool), watching the ocean go by and having food available anytime you want it.  If you are a heavy soda drinker get the all you can drink pass for sodas...typically only fruit juice, water and tea are included.
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« Reply #19 on: November 12, 2010, 12:22:49 AM »

My wife and I will be taking a ten day cruise in February.  It is scheduled to hit four French Islands (Martinique, St. Barthelemy, Guadalupe, and St. Martin) along with one cruise line owned island (Coco Cay).   The kicker is that this is a clothing optional cruise so we will likely spend a great deal of the time naked.

From what I've heard I can expect to see a lot of old naked people.  At least my wife is hot so I'll be staring at her all the time anyway.
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« Reply #20 on: November 12, 2010, 12:51:11 AM »

Quote from: Ironrod on November 11, 2010, 11:25:50 PM

Quote from: Doopri on February 11, 2005, 05:49:24 AM

i always much prefered to go somewhere and thoroughly explore it, not spend 5 hours doin the tourist routine then the rest of the day in the hotel (cruise ship).  ... if you like to really explore places, take in all they have, find the exclusive / remote / "hidden" spots, temples, museums, galleries, clubs whatever then I would say no way.  if you like to hit the big things then move on it might be more to your likin but i always prefered travellin on my terms than island hopin with a curfew - "ooh ah, now back on the bus" smile

This. Not to mention interacting with the locals. But I'm sure we're in the minority. I wouldn't try to talk anyone else out of a cruise...it's just not something I'd ever choose personally. I came close once when my wife won a cruise in a raffle, but we were able to trade it in for an equivalent trip of our choice. We had a 2-week adventure in Italy instead.


I have never been on a cruise but I would much rather spend a week or two touring the east coast or Hawaii. I like to move around and see things. And even great food gets boring after awhile.
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« Reply #21 on: November 12, 2010, 01:02:00 AM »

The cruise line matters, too.

Princess and Royal Caribbean were top notch
Norwegian was mediocre

Not to say that Norwegian wasn't fun.  It was the only line that hit the Hawaiian islands we wanted to see, and the destinations are really important.  The on-ship experience was lackluster, though.

Unless you really need handholding for your shore activities, don't take any of the cruise associated excursions.  You'll find the exact same things offered by hordes of tour guides as soon as you step onto land, and for half the price.  The cruise associated excursions do have the advantages of helping you meet other shipmates, and having the ship wait for you if you get held up unexpectedly.
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