Choosing a Cruise Line

michie1March 15, 2005

My husband & our daughter who will be 4 then, are thinking about taking a cruise in Sept. We live in NY & are thinking either Bermuda or some other Carribean islands since we probalby can't take most than a week. I've only been on 1 cruise before - Royal Carribean to Alaska & it was absolutely spectacular. My husband has been on plenty of cruises before me but those were moslty meet gals & get drunk cruises. I want to make sure that while the ship has accomodation for kids, like a kids camp & activities I want the food & accomodations to be top of the line. I thought I had heard that Carnival was mostly a kiddie type or booze cruise but not the top of the line. Does anyone have any info they can offer?


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We have been on three Celebrity cruises. Although we don't have young children, others we met raved about the children's program --- the kids seemed to like it, too :) And the adults never even knew there were youngsters aboard.

    Bookmark   March 22, 2005 at 5:22PM
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The worst vacation of our lives was spent on a Carnival cruise. It was a mostly drinking type cruise. We were quite bored and haven't considered a cruise since.

    Bookmark   March 29, 2005 at 12:08PM
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if i may make a suggestion........
i was watching the discovery channel
the other evening about Walt Disneys cruise lines
they have some really great cruises
as they have 2 ships they go to the camans and other
popular caribbean islands .
they also have their OWN personal island which only
Walt Disneys cruise patrons are allowed to go to
while on the cruise .
also they they have it set up so the parents can have a few hours to get away ( while on board ) from the kids
enjoy some time alone in a spa, etc. while the kids are kept entertained and also singles are allowed to go on the cruise .
but mainly their cruises are family oreintated so fun as well as some r-n- r can be had by all .
i do remeber that one of the ships stays out for a whole week .
i think ( if i rember correctly ) that one of the ships disembarks from N.Y. State ??

    Bookmark   April 10, 2005 at 10:50AM
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We did a 1-week Carnival cruise four years ago - Mom, Dad, two teen daughters. Booked it quite last minute, paid retail, but loved our two rooms, right in the front of the ship (the bow, sez DH) - both rooms were very spacious, with nice portholes, we were very comfortable. Loved sleeping to the roll of the ship, and we loved being able to look out to see the ocean from our rooms (I would be claustrophobic in an inside cabin I think). HOWEVER we hated the Carnival program - mediocre food 24-hours a day at various central feeding facilities; CONSTANT merchandising from on-board tvs and deck microphone announcements; hawking of drinks at 8:00 o'clock in the morning; solid cloud of cig smoke on the gaming deck, where the smokey casino was attached to the kids' videogame room, so the kids were getting as much 2nd hand smoke as the rest of us... Everytime we found a nice quiet spot for sunning on the deck, someone would plug in the extra-loud salsa music, or start exhorting everyone to get up and join some idiotic game...we were on that ship for a week and could not wait to get off. The land excursions were fine, and we managed to do some Puerta Vallarta snorkling through an outfit that unfortunately made everyone play those embarassing "sit in the stranger's lap and pop his balloon" games. Ugh. Even our kids were mortified... too crude. I guess this was not the cruise for us - next time, we'll look for a slightly smaller outfit, with a less manic program -- maybe an environmental adventure cruise to Alaska? And we'll definitely book a non-smoking cruise. Good luck in finding the right cruise for you - I keep hearing that they're out there.

    Bookmark   April 17, 2005 at 2:14AM
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Definitely stay away from Carnival. After our dining companions found out I worked for a law office, they asked me if it was legal to pick up a dead deer on the road and take it home for dinner. Yuk!

They also tried to force everyone to play the crude games--nothing but drunkards and gamblers had any fun. They had a topless sunbathing area at the top of the ship where someone's grandpa parked a deck chair and desserted the family for the whole trip.

My husband was in the Navy and felt like he was enlisted again--especially when you had to run when the buzzard sounded or you would miss your meal--such as it was.


    Bookmark   April 21, 2005 at 1:59PM
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OK so it IS Carnival that I should stay away from. I didn't know which of the C cruises it was. Thanks everyone.


    Bookmark   April 21, 2005 at 2:26PM
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My SIL has had good luck booking thru Auto Club with Holand Cruise. They do not have any children, but were very happy with the food etc. If you do belong to Auto Club of NY, or even go into a office you might find brouchers etc.

    Bookmark   April 22, 2005 at 12:22PM
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We have been on three R.C. cruises and love it. I know they have alot of children and youth activities. This past Feb. we went on Adventure of the Seas out of San Juan and there was a childrens waterpark on the ship.

    Bookmark   April 24, 2005 at 10:30PM
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I have heard great things about Celebrity, but do not have 1st hand experience. But I have been on Norwegian (not bad) and Royal Caribbean (fantastic!). The thing about the RC cruise was the staff! Great shows...caring people. These folks love what they do and it shows through everybody. Not a surly person to be had. Great food. One of those vacations you wish would never end. Hmmmm... I better go see about scheduling some time off!

    Bookmark   April 27, 2005 at 5:53PM
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I've been on three ... two Carnival and one Royal Caribbean. RC was the winner, hands down. Head and shoulders about Carnival, IMO. Carnival is "the party boat", after all, and if you really want to make yourself miserable, book a Carnival cruise to coincide with spring break! (Ugh! I actually made that mistake!) RC is a classy, attentive line -- much more family and adult-oriented, instead of geared towards drunken college kids.

    Bookmark   May 24, 2005 at 6:45PM
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Go to You can read first hand experiences of all of the cruise lines.

    Bookmark   July 14, 2005 at 12:15AM
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OOPS.. is the site I'm more familiar with... lots of active boards.

    Bookmark   July 14, 2005 at 12:19AM
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