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Have you been on one of those giant cruise ships for a holiday? What was your experience like? Did you have a good time?


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I have never been tempted by cruise ships. They have always had food poisoning problems and other issues. I just don't see the point in being stuck on a ship with a bunch of strangers for days at a time, and once in a while taking a whirlwind day tour of some foreign port.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Yeah, twice. Both in the Caribbean. They’re OK. Stopping over on Grand Caymen Island to see the row of Banks as well as renting a Jeep for a drive was fun. However, the ONLY reason was to spend time with the folks who went along. We would have never gone by ourselves.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

We did a mini-family reunion (20 of us) on a huge ship. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/MS_Freedom_of_the_Seas

It was 7 days, with 4 stops. We were captives for diner and evenings. Impossible to be off-ship for evening fun.

We'd signed up for 2 excursions. Sailing on an America's Cup yacht (canceled, no wind) and a historical tour of an island town, which was really just the cheapest, fastest, earliest, way to get to an island for some hiking and exploring all day.

The food in the main dining room was fine.

The b'fast and lunch restaurants were fine, cafeteria style. Omelets were special order.

Our cabin cleaner (forget the correct term) was from Congo. Our assistant waiter was from Belarus. That seemed to be normal for cleaning and waiters.

We didn't want to go on the cruise, but Mom was having issues getting around, so a cruise was really the only way for her to get away.

Lots of people on the ship were like us with 3+ generations together. We'd get different parts of the family together for any on-board activity - a movie, cards, trivia game in a bar, gym, spa, whatever. Some other families cruised every year as a reunion with there adult kids and grandkids.

I would go on 2 cruises - the Alaskan islands and a trip to Antarctica. Perhaps a trip to the Pitcairn Islands? No plans to do any others. Destinations are why I want to travel, not being locked up on ship with no way off for spontaneous local fun.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

@theFu. I agree with you on the Alaskan cruise and only a very slight maybe for Antarctica, but otherwise I have zero interest in going on cruises. I’ve sat on large ferries for a few hours at a time and that is more than enough.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Cruises have never appealed to me, though my mother went on plenty. But I've read online that the industry is booming, despite all the problems we hear about, especially in the Caribbean, Mediterranean and South Pacific. Cruises are booked almost two years in advance. As for me, the ships are getting too big, like floating cities.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

I think the reason cruises are booming is because the baby boomers are in their twilight years. Plus, if you watched the Love Boat in the 70s ...

1 ( +1 / -0 )

The very thought of that steaming herd packed together on a cattle boat gives me claustrophobia!

Agree with smartacus they are way too big, don’t look like ships any more.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

They are fun, should experience.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

The very thought of that steaming herd packed together on a cattle boat gives me claustrophobia!

It doesn't really feel like that, at least on the bigger ships.

There are places, outside your cabin, where you can be alone, sit, watch the world go passed, or read.

The larger common areas aren't different from what we have on land. Bars, restaurants, movie theaters are the same. Walking around the upper deck was popular for a little exercise (weather permitting).

There was nothing BAD about the ship itself. The cabin was larger than a hotel room I stayed at in Korea.

Met a few interesting families on-board too. One guy was a State Judge - he had some funny stories. Mostly regular, well-off, nice, people.

Main trick is to arrive early and do all the extra on-ship stuff BEFORE most passengers have boarded. Hop on the flowrider or climb the rock wall BEFORE there are lines.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Count me out too - no desire to spend time on these floating hotels.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

theFu's experiences illustrate the reality on board best for me. Thanks.

Never had the desire to go on a cruise, especially after reading all the horror stories of fights and Norovirus, etc., but the truth as always lies somewhere in between. When I was young I crossed the Atlantic both ways by ship and have many vivid memories both good and bad of those voyages. As a teenager I worked on a slow freighter as part passenger 40 days from the UK to Japan, giving me plenty of time to develop sea legs, listen to yarns and drink plenty of beer.

I guess some people still look ahead to a time when people will buy an apartment or condominium in a giant floating city. These cruise ships may be experiments moving ever closer to such an ideal.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

My experience was similar to others here. I would not have chosen it myself; however, my father paid for the whole family to celebrate my mother's 80th birthday by sailing from Vancouver to Alaska.

I enjoyed having a personal steward, that we could celebrate without anyone having to cook or host others in their homes as well as the meals and sight-seeing. But I wouldn't do it twice. I prefer the freedom to roam as well as the option to set my own schedule and to chart my own course.

I also am not interested in the on board entertainment which so many find fascinating. Others in my family cruise across the Atlantic and Pacific and on various European rivers almost every year. They can't get enough of the experience and people they meet. I never met a soul I wanted to talk to more than once.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

No desire to travel on a floating city with bars, theatres, and thousands of people. However, travelling on a freighter, dining with the crew, reading lots of books and maybe helping a bit in the galley - that sounds somehow enticing to me.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

I guess some people still look ahead to a time when people will buy an apartment or condominium in a giant floating city. These cruise ships may be experiments moving ever closer to such an ideal.

This already exists. People buy into a cabin like a condo and pay yearly fees for in maintenance. The residential luxury ships circle the globe timing ports during huge events. https://aboardtheworld.com/residences/ The owners never need to worry about finding a hotel for these pre-planned events. Mardi Gras in Rio? Done. I've seen prices at $350K - $4M. I would bet a few will be docked in Tokyo for the Olympics. The main "gotcha" is that these ships have about a 30 year life, so at the end, you have nothing to sell off to someone else that may have appreciated in value.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

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