To cruise or not to cruise

To cruise or not to cruise: should you spend your summer at sea?

Cruise ships have long been a desirable way to experience a luxury break, and have increasingly become one of the more popular types of European holidays for seniors. Despite their popularity, however, cruises might not be for everyone, and if you’re planning your summer travel you may be unsure whether or not you’d enjoy setting sail on a European cruise. To help you decide, here are some of the pros and cons:

Pros

  • Cruising is a real escape: As soon as you set foot aboard a cruise ship, you’ll feel far away from the stresses of everyday life. Everything is taken care of for you, leaving you to relax and enjoy your holiday without having to worry about a thing.
  • Food: With a wide range of food usually on offer and readily available, you’re unlikely to be stuck for choice on a cruise ship. You can get something to eat easily whenever you feel like it, and the quality is good.
  • Visit more places: On a cruise, you’ll get to visit several different ports, all without having to pack up and head to a different hotel. As soon as you’re settled in your cabin, you’re there for the duration of your trip. If there’s somewhere you really like, you can always return to spend more time there.
  • Activities: From relaxing in a spa, to bingo, to rock climbing or enjoying a live show, there’s always something to do on a cruise ship. Whether you want to take part in as many activities as possible or simply enjoy the sea air while relaxing with a good book, you’re free to do as you please. Whatever you like, you’re guaranteed to be spoilt for choice. It’s also the perfect opportunity to try out new things.
  • Excitement: If you haven’t cruised before, you’re sure to find the atmosphere and the experience exciting. Being away at sea is a unique experience and no other holiday will be quite like it. Cruise ships often sail to new ports overnight, so waking up in a new place is a fantastic feeling.

Cons

  • Not much time in each port: The downside of seeing lots of different places in a short time is that you don’t get much time in each. This can be disappointing when you find somewhere you really love, only to have to leave soon after arrival.
  • Other people: You might find that being at close quarters with lots of other people isn’t for you. Although there’s some opportunity for escape, it can feel like you’re lacking space at times.
  • Potential for rough weather: Bad weather is always a possibility at sea, and although the size of ships means you won’t notice the movement as much as on a smaller vessel, rough seas can spell problems if you’re prone to seasickness. That said, stocking up on medicine should mean you’re prepared for this eventuality.
  • Size of cabins: If you like large bedrooms, you may be put off by the size of some cruise ship cabins. Then again, with so much to do, you might find that you’re rarely in your cabin anyway.
  • Inflexible schedules: On a cruise, everything is planned and the places you’re going to visit are decided for you. That can be good for people who just want to relax and not have to make their own arrangements, but it doesn’t suit everyone. If you like to plan the details of your holidays, you may find cruises restrictive.

After weighing up the pros and cons, which way do you lean? Let us know by tweeting or posting to our Facebook!