7 cruises to avoid
A cruise vacation can be exciting, with all kinds of onboard events to look forward to and a charming itinerary filled with nightlight, buffets, and the open seas. However, not every cruise package is created equal, and some trips on the sea can be underwhelming. So, it is important to do a little research before booking a cruise and choose top-rated options. Further, here are a few cruises to avoid for a hassle-free vacation:
1. Short cruises during spring break
A cruise trip during spring break can seem ideal because of the perfect weather in places like the Caribbean. Even the ports are not too crowded, and one can take kids along during their school break. However, even college students get a break during this time and tend to book cruise trips. So, the cruise ship can get overwhelming and chaotic because of the noise and non-stop partying. Instead, one should book a cruise to the Caribbean during January if they want a more relaxing experience at the sea. If one must book one during spring break, they should look for less party-centric cruise lines.
2. First and last Alaska cruises of the season
Destinations like Alaska are perfect spots for tourists because of the rainy weather and luscious green mountains they can experience. Here, cruises that sail in May and September are comparatively cheaper than June, July, and August packages. But for new travelers, this might not be the ideal cruise destination in May and September. This is because there is a high chance of experiencing bad weather during these months, with May being slightly colder and September bringing heavy rains in the region. It may also disappoint shoppers as the port shops at the beginning of the season are usually not fully stocked yet. Further, by September, these shops usually run out of prime goods and do not restock until next spring. Some retail stores and restaurants in the region might not even be open in May and September. So, one should avoid the risk of sailing in bad weather and book a cruise to Alaska in June, July, or August.
3. Mid-summer cruises in the Mediterranean
Another type of cruise that travelers, especially first-time cruisers, should avoid is mid-summer Mediterranean packages. Of course, this would be an ideal time to take kids on vacation. Further, it is easy to find many ships in the region, allowing one to pick from a variety of itineraries and dates. But this could turn into a poor experience for new tourists quickly, as European port cities attract all sorts of tourists, not just cruisers. So they might be overcrowded, irrespective of how many ships are in port. Additionally, let’s not forget the hot weather. The periods of May to June or August to September are more suitable for those who want to try and avoid large tourist crowds at ports.
4. Inaugural cruises
Being one of the first to sail and enjoy a brand-new ship might sound like a worthwhile adventure. Further, the ship may be more appealing as it would be cleaner and more hygienic than others that have been sailing for years. However, this is one of the cruises to avoid because the staff, entertainers, and other professionals still need to get accustomed to the situations onboard. So, one may have to prepare for outcomes like delays while boarding, technical difficulties during shows, and poor customer support. Further, newer ships tend to limit the time spent at dry docks so that the ship is not out-of-service for those periods and keeps making money. What’s more? Sometimes, the work on the cruise may not be complete, so any kind of repair, construction, or renovation work on the cruise can be disruptive to relaxation onboard. If one still wants to experience a newer cruise, they could skip the first one or two trips before purchasing the ticket.
5. Cruises to nowhere
First-time cruisers might try short trips to nowhere to understand how it feels to be on a ship. If one has a good time on the trip, they can then book a full-fledged package next time, and if they don’t, they don’t lose out on many vacation days or a lot of money on the trip. So, cruises to nowhere seem like a good idea. But there is a good reason for one not to book them. First, a day or two is not enough to experience everything a ship has to offer. There are multiple decks to explore, each with its own events, activities, views, and cuisine to indulge in. Second, one would also miss out on port visits, which are usually half of the cruise experience. So, first-time cruise travelers should consider booking a 7-night trip to the Caribbean. If dealing with a time crunch, they should try a short cruise to the Bahamas for a more wholesome experience. As for budget, there are several websites that offer deals, such as all-inclusive cruise packages, that could help one save a lot of money on their booking.
6. Repositioning cruises
These are one-way cruises that leave one home port and region to sail to another and begin new cruise itineraries. Most of the time, it involves crossing the Atlantic or Pacific oceans. Some love repositioning cruises if they have the time to spare, especially because of the unbelievably low ticket prices. The problem for new travelers here is that the repositioning happens at the beginning or end of a season. So, the weather could be cooler and may limit the time out on decks. Even seas could be rough, especially for those with motion sickness.
7. Cruises during the hurricane season
Both first-timers and experienced cruisers should avoid going out into the sea during hurricane season. This is because the ships are sometimes delayed, asked to change routes, or even canceled due to unusual circumstances in this period. Hurricane season typically lasts from June through November, so cruises to the Caribbean are likely to face the brunt of the weather in late August through November. If one wishes to travel during this season, they should make a flexible plan and get travel insurance while booking the trip.