If you’ve never been on a cruise, I highly recommend it. They are a wonderful method of travel and you might realize why it’s so popular! I have been on three and am already planning my next one. But when you take into account that there are two dozen major cruise lines with more than 150 ships altogether, where on earth do you start? Literally!
Personally, I like to start at the beginning. I like the idea of being able to drive to my port so I prefer cruises that depart from Galveston. It does limit where I can go, but that’s fine for now. When I run out of new destination ports from that base, I will look at expanding this criteria.
You can also narrow it down by date. Do your research about your port stops so that you don’t hit Mexico in the height of their summer heat but you don’t end up in St. Thomas during hurricane season.
Each cruise line also has its own personality. Carnival cruises are known for their party atmosphere while Disney is geared around families.
Also, check into the amenities on-board the ships. Are you interested in top-rated dining? Or perhaps educational lectures are a priority? Do you want an assigned dining time or would you prefer a flexible schedule? If daily exercise is important, check into their gym facilities and workout classes.
If you are truly nervous about picking a cruise, there are travel agents who specialize in cruise vacations. For your first time, this might be the way to go because they can give you all of the inside information and help you choose the best match. After your first one, you will have more information to make your own decisions going forward.