Why should you consider a cruise for your next vacation? Or why should you consider
combining a cruise with your next land vacation? We provide answers to these questions
and also dispel some myths about cruising.
In a nutshell, here are the benefits:
- You pay just once and it includes it all
- No packing and unpacking every night
- No taxis from stations and airports to various hotels
- A wide range of cuisine options to choose from
- Cruises to every destination are available and of varying lengths
- Cabin types to suit every budget
- Don’t come back from your holiday needing another holiday – cruises are so relaxing that you come back refreshed
- Plenty of onboard activities to choose from to keep you and your children going – most included in the price
- Shore excursions: It’s not like you are on board the ship all the time. You can get off at exotic ports of call and experience destinations with minimum hassle.
- Family time: It’s the best option for families. You get to see new and exotic places without the hassle of taking your kids from station to airport. Cruise companies offer baby sitting facilities if you want to enjoy a shore excursion or some onboard entertainment that the children may not.
We believe that cruising is one of the best vacation options in terms of value. Moreover there are cruise vacations to suit every budget. The cost of your cruise includes all meals, your accommodation, on-board activities and entertainment, plus transportation from port to port. This means that you know exactly what your vacation will cost you before you leave home. (Typically, your only extra expenses will be drinks, optional shore excursions, and personal services such as massage or hairstyling) When you consider all the extras that a land vacation can cost, there’s no better value than cruising.
More and more cruise vacations are being booked by families with children. Reason: Better value for money without the hassle of packing and un-packing every day. Most cruise lines provide plenty of supervised activities for youngsters, especially during school holidays. If your children enjoy swimming, sports, games, movies, and the adventure of new places, they'll love a family cruise. You'll find that children adapt to shipboard life with ease, and you won't have to wonder what they're up to every minute. Ships even offer different types of age-appropriate activities, suitable for toddlers to teens. Best of all, children often travel at a reduced rate and in many cases, even free.
Do pay attention to the type of cruise you choose, however. If you book a small upscale ship with enrichment lectures and out-of-the-way ports, your children might not have as much fun as if they were on a large resort-style ship with a full children’s program, ice cream parties, pizza parties, a waterslide and videogames. Our cruise consultants will be able to advise you on such cruise lines.
There's no such thing as a typical cruise passenger. All kinds of people take cruises now – people of all ages and from all walks of life. - singles, couples, honeymooners and families. Moreover, you can decide how much, when and where you want to interact with your fellow cruisers. On larger ships, you may go through your entire vacation without seeing the same person twice! Just ask us for advice on the best ship for you, based on your tastes and lifestyle. Of course, on a theme cruise, everyone brings a common interest on board.
Not in the least! Being at sea gives you a feeling of total freedom that no land-based resort can offer. It will probably take you two or three days just to discover everything that's on board a ship. Plus, you get the added adventure of exploring many exciting ports of call. Cruise ships are like floating resorts with all the choices fine resorts have to offer.
If you're more active, join in an exercise or dance class, or a sports contest. Some of today’s ships have huge video game rooms, rock-climbing walls, rollerblade tracks, basketball and tennis courts, golf simulators and even ice-skating rinks! So you could practice your tennis stroke or golf swing, or take in some fresh air on the jogging deck. Alternatively, you can swim, stretch out in the sauna or work out in the gym. For cruises that offer spa facilities, you can pamper yourself with a massage or a facial.
You can also watch movies, attend an enrichment lecture by experts, play backgammon or bridge. Cruise ships also offer high quality entertainment at night ranging from cabaret shows and musicals to comedy theatre, casinos, night clubs, bars etc.
And when you’re done with all this, you can lie back in a lounge chair, breathe in the sea air, soak up the sun, read good books, or watch the ever-changing seascape.
For children, cruise ships have playpens, crèches, game centers, activity centers for teenagers and toddlers alike – there is enough and more to keep them occupied. Cruises also offer baby-sitting facilities, however this may be at an additional cost.
Almost all activities, including night entertainment on board the cruise ship are free of cost – you may however have to pre-book your activity. There's no cover, minimum, or charge for an admission ticket. The shows are live, films first-rate and are all included in your cruise fare. Some ships feature celebrity entertainers and many in the cast have performed on Broadway or in Las Vegas or even appeared on television. The competition to become a shipboard entertainer is fierce and only the best make it afloat.
There are cruises designed to suit virtually every interest and personal preference.
The choices include: luxury cruises with globetrotting itineraries; large, contemporary ships with a fantastic array of recreational facilities; classic vessels evoking the time-honored traditions of cruising; special-interest or exploration cruises specializing in unique destinations with an accent on cultural enrichment.
There are cruise lines that feature soft adventure expeditions to such unusual and rustic frontiers as Antarctica, the Amazon rain forest or African Serengeti. Or discover historical legacies with itineraries to the Mediterranean, Northern Europe, South America and closer home to Vietnam, Hong Kong etc. Or enjoy spectacular scenic cruises to destinations like Alaska, Norwegian Fjords, the Caribbean and Greek Isles. Plus, many cruise lines create special "themes" on-board, with entertainment ranging from jazz festivals and classical music concerts to golf clinics, special wine cruises and murder mysteries at sea!
Not at all. Not only are the destinations covered by cruise liners varied, even the ships are quite different. Cruise ships range from intimate and yacht-like vessels to some that stretch distances longer than three football fields. You can sail with fewer than 100 fellow guests or with more than 2,600. Enjoy atmospheres ranging from casual to formal, contemporary to classic. Enjoy the endless activities offered on a contemporary resort-style cruise, or immerse yourself in the culture of a destination on a special interest cruise. If you like an intimate bed and breakfast, you might want to choose a smaller ship. If you enjoy vacationing at a luxury spa or vineyard, then an intimate yacht-like upscale ship may be for you. If you love large resorts and theme parks, then a large ship with many activities may be your best bet. There is a cruise ship for every type of holiday.
A cruise can be as long or short as you want it to be. Cruise lines offer itineraries to virtually every part of the world and the durations vary from three days to three months. Most of the popular cruises are 3, 4, 5, 7 or 10 days in length – a duration which would fit in quite well with most people’s vacation schedules.
Wherever you want! Cruises visit nearly 2,000 ports worldwide and practically every destination accessible by water. Infact, in some places like the Caribbean and Alaska, cruises are the best way to visit these places. In continents like Europe and South America, they are a very hassle-free way of seeing many countries in an entire region - all without packing and unpacking each night.
At each port of call, you can explore on your own or take a guided tour (referred to as shore excursions). All cruise companies offer a range of shore excursions for you to choose from in every single port of call – to suit every budget, pace and interest. In some of the larger places, there may be as many as 20 shore excursions for you to choose from. Search ancient ruins or hunt for shopping bargains. Follow in the footsteps of history or simply walk around the place and soak in the atmosphere.
If you want to do your own thing at the port, then you pay for what you do. There is no cost to simply disembark. If you want to book a shore excursion from the cruise company, there will be a cost to it, which is not included in the price of the cruise. You can pre-book shore excursions before you travel so that you know the final price of your holiday. While these shore excursions are to be booked directly with the cruise company either online or on board the ship, we are happy to advise you on which excursions to take.
Yes, cruise companies offer a variety of accommodation options to suit every budget and taste. From the simple interior cabins and cabins with portholes or windows to balcony or verandah cabins and large spacious 1 and 2 bedroom suites, the variety is enormous. Some cruise ships also offer mini or junior suites.
The service standards for all cabins are the same. However, just like hotels, some higher level cabins can get access to additional facilities like butler services, in-room dining etc. But once you’ve left your stateroom and entered the public areas, you’ll find an array of choices and activities open to everyone.
That is what we are here for. Our trained cruise consultants will help you pick the cruise that fits your vacation schedule, requirements and budget. We can make all the arrangements to get you from your doorstep to your ship and back. And also advise you of the latest deals. In addition, we can advise you of airfares, hotels and visas as well. It’s a one-stop-cruise-stop!
Most cruise prices across the world are given in US Dollars. You can pay for your cruise vacation either in Indian Rupees at the prevalent rate of exchange or you can pay by credit card, with no surcharge.
In almost all cases, cruises include accommodation, all your meals, most on-board activities and entertainment and of course, not to mention luxurious, hassle-free transportation from port to port. Certain cruise companies even include alcohol and shore-excursions in their total cost.
Generally, any items of a personal nature will not be included. For example, shopping on board, gambling in the casino, alcohol, spa & beauty treatments etc – these are at an extra cost. Shore excursions at each port of call are also not included in the cost of the cruise. Some ships have fine-dining or specialty restaurants that might either charge for meals or may have a modest surcharge to cover the cost of gratuities for the service staff. Costs such as airfare and visas are typically not included. However, we at CruiseBay can create special Air-Cruise packages for you.
This would depend on the destination/s you visit. For example, on a Caribbean or Bahamas cruise, since most of them start and end in the USA, you only need a US Visa, even if your cruise visits Mexico or Belize. On a Mediterranean or Scandinavian cruise, you will require a Shenghen visa but it needs to be multiple entry. In addition, when on a Scandinavian cruise, you may or may not require a Russian visa if visiting St Petersburg. On a South American cruise, you will require a visa for every country you visit – Brazil, Argentina, Chile but not for Uruguay. Either way, our cruise consultants will be able to advise you correctly depending on the cruise you have chosen.
Pack like you would for any resort. Cruise vacations are casual by day, whether you're on the ship or ashore. In the evening, different ships have different dress codes. As in a hotel, attire is dictated by occasion. At the Captain's Gala, for example, you'll probably want to wear something more formal, such as a dark suit, or cocktail dress or sari. Some ships have requested dress codes each evening but more and more are letting passengers choose to be casually-attired the entire cruise if they choose. Some ships have specialty restaurants that might be a bit dressier than the main dining rooms so it’s best to look through the cruise brochures or check with our cruise consultant to find the line that’s right for you. It’s all up to you because there’s a cruise for everyone.