Pros and cons of cruises: what you should consider

Are you thinking about taking a cruise for your next vacation?

Well then you might be wondering what are the pros and cons of cruises, and whether they are worth it or not.

Cruises are a popular way of traveling, especially for people who want to see multiple destinations, enjoy a variety of activities and entertainment, and have everything taken care of for them.

However, there are pros and cons of cruises: cruises do have some drawbacks, such as being expensive, crowded, environmentally unfriendly and potentially risky.

Let’s look into this and explore the pros and cons of cruises in detail, so you can make an informed decision about whether they are right for you or not.

Pros and cons of cruises

Pros of cruises

  1. You can visit multiple places in one trip.

One of the main advantages of cruises is that they allow you to see different places in one trip, without having to worry about transportation, accommodation, packing your bags each night or logistics.

You can choose from a wide range of destinations, such as the Caribbean, the Mediterranean, Alaska, or Asia, and enjoy the scenery and culture of each place.

You can also take advantage of the shore excursions that are offered by the cruise line or book your own tours independently.

This way, you can make the most of your time and money, and have a diverse and enriching experience.

  1. You can find everything you need on the ship.

Another benefit of cruises is that they provide everything you need on board, from food and drinks to entertainment and activities.

You don’t have to worry about packing too much or having spending extra money on meals or attractions. You can enjoy unlimited food and beverages at the buffet or the restaurants, or opt for specialty dining options for an additional fee. You can also have fun with the various amenities and facilities that are available on the ship such as pools, spas, gyms, casinos, theaters, clubs, shops, libraries and more.

You can also join the organized events and activities that are suitable for different ages and interests, such as board games, trivia, quizzes, dance classes, cooking demonstrations, lectures, shows and dance parties.

There is something for everyone on a cruise ship, believe me!

  1. You can meet new people and make friends.

A third advantage of cruises is that they offer a great opportunity to meet new people and make friends, if you are open to that of course.

Cruises attract people from all over the world and from different backgrounds and lifestyles. You can interact with them at the dining tables, bars, lounges or during the activities and excursions. Why not join social groups or clubs that match your preferences or hobbies, such as singles clubs, book clubs, or fitness clubs.

You might find some like-minded people who share your passion or curiosity for travel and adventure. Share travel experiences. You might also find some lifelong friends who will keep in touch with you after the cruise.

Our first cruise with HAL on the Holland America Rotterdam ship in the Baltic Sea: how was our experience and the food? Would we book again?

Cons of Cruises

  1. It can be expensive.

One of the main disadvantages of cruises is that they can be quite expensive.

The initial cost of the cruise ticket might seem reasonable, but there are many hidden fees and extra charges that can add up quickly.

For example, you might have to pay for gratuities, taxes, port fees, fuel surcharges, internet access, laundry service, photographs, spa treatments, specialty dining, alcoholic beverages, shore excursions, travel insurance and more.

You might also have to pay for airfare, hotel stays, transfers and visas if you are traveling to or from a foreign country.

All these expenses can make your cruise vacation much more costly than you expected.

  1. Cruises can be crowded.

Another drawback of cruises is that they can be very crowded and noisy.

Cruise ships are designed to accommodate thousands of passengers and crew members at a time. This means that you might have to deal with long lines, limited space, noise and lack of privacy on board.

You might have to wait for elevators, tables, chairs, sunbeds or service at the buffet or the bars.

You might also have to cope with the crowds at the ports of call, especially if there are multiple ships docking at the same time. You might not be able to enjoy the sights and attractions as much as you would like because of the congestion and chaos.

Our first cruise with Regent! Here is how our trip went on board the Regent Seven Seas Mariner, and what our experience was.
  1. Cruising can be environmentally unfriendly.

A third disadvantage of cruises is that they are harmful to the environment.

Cruise ships consume a lot of fuel and emit lots of greenhouse gases and pollutants into the air and water. They also generate a lot of waste and sewage that can contaminate the marine ecosystems and wildlife. They also damage the coral reefs and other natural habitats by anchoring or scraping them.

Cruise ships also contribute to overtourism and cultural degradation by bringing too many visitors to fragile and sensitive destinations such as Venice.

Some cruise lines are trying to reduce their environmental impact by using cleaner fuels, recycling waste, installing scrubbers and supporting conservation projects, but there is still a lot of room for improvement.

So how to choose the cruise line that suits you best?

Choosing the right cruise line can be a daunting task, but it is essential to ensure that you have a memorable and enjoyable experience.

The first step is to research the different cruise lines available and understand what each one offers. There are dozens of cruise lines, and no two are alike.

Some only operate big ships, while others operate small ships. Some sail only in North America, others all over the world. Some offer ships designed for family fun, while others don’t allow children.

When selecting a cruise line, it is important to consider the the pros and cons of cruises, your budget and preferences.

There are cruise lines for people on the tightest of budgets and cruise lines that cater to people for whom money is no object. Think hard about the type of vacation you want and read up on the lines and ships that seem the closest fit for your travel style.

Fan of megaresorts? Royal Caribbean operates the biggest, most activity-packed family oriented vessels at sea.

If you are looking for luxurious touches like Bulgari or L’Occitane toiletries and high thread-count bedding, Silversea and Windstar offer port-intensive itineraries.

Azamara Club Cruises is known for its immersive experiences in destinations around the world.

By doing your homework in advance, considering the pros and cons of cruises and understanding what each cruise line offers, you can find your perfect cruise line.

On board the Silversea Silver Moon on a trip from Stockholm to Southampton. What did we think of our first Silversea cruise ever? Let's take a look!

Things to keep in mind

Cruises are a popular and convenient way of traveling, but there are also pros and cons of cruises that you should consider before booking one.

Cruises can offer you a chance to visit multiple places, have everything you need on board, and meet new people and make friends. However, cruises can also be expensive, crowded, and environmentally unfriendly.

You should weigh the pros and cons of cruises carefully and decide whether they are worth it or not for you. Do some research on the cruise line, ship, itinerary and ports of call that you are interested in.

Read reviews from previous passengers to get a better idea of what to expect about the pros and cons of cruises and certain cruise lines.

Happy cruising!

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