The pleasures of travel are many. Chief among them: the invitation and opportunity to broaden our horizons, enlighten our thinking and invigorate our senses by trying something new to us.
As was noted at a recent roundtable discussion with several Cruise Specialists team members, “new” can mean something different to everyone.
TRY A NEW SHIP
Who doesn’t love being the first to experience a brand new ship with its shiny bells and whistles and innovative new technologies and amenities?
“We get a lot of interest in inaugural voyages,” says Cruise Consultant Matt Caplinger. “In fact, there is a contingent of Cruise Specialists clients who routinely book first sailings, regardless of the cruise line.”
Keep in mind: Maiden cruises fill quickly; let your cruise consultant know if you’re interested so he or she can alert you when such a voyage is first open for booking.
TRY A NEW CRUISE LINE
Cruisers are often very loyal to their favorite cruise line. And while there’s a certain familiarity and comfort in booking the same line, it can be fun to try a new one.
For instance, one common way of upgrading a vacation, is to try an all-inclusive cruise ship, where everything is paid for in one up-front cost, saving you a lot of second-guessing during the
trip on whether you want to open up your pocketbook.
How do you know which other cruise lines might fit your “cruise personality?” Just ask.
Cruise Specialists cruise consultants are very familiar with all the lines and, being familiar with
your tastes and budget, can offer some great alternatives.
TRY A NEW SIZE OF SHIP
Do you typically sail on mid-size or larger ships? Try small on for size.
As Teresa Tennant, Cruise Specialists Director of Operations, observed, “While I was on a Viking Ocean ship in St. Petersburg, we were in port with a much bigger ship. Getting back on board, we breezed up to a very short immigration line, while others had to wait in line in the terminal. Plus, smaller vessels often have a better port location.”
TRY UPGRADING TO A DIFFERENT TYPE OF SUITE OR STATEROOM
Cruise Specialists clients Kittie and Ken upgraded to a Concierge Suite for a recent voyage aboard Seven Seas Explorer and returned home raving about their experience.
“Our suite was even more than we expected,” Kittie enthused. “Regent Seven Seas Cruises had thought of everything – down to the in-suite coffee maker that not only made espresso in tiny cups, but also regular coffee in normal-sized cups. So we did not have to order coffee
in the morning or wait until we went down to breakfast. Loved it!”
Clients Cindy and Eddie reported to their consultant Dan Twomey that they were delighted with their decision to upgrade on a recent Princess Cruises voyage to Mexico. “We enjoyed our Club Class Mini-Suite and all the privileges that went along with it. Our location was quiet and afforded us the convenience of being close to the elevators, thus making it easy to navigate our way on a new ship,” said Cindy and Eddie.
TRY A NEW DESTINATION
Cruise Specialists voyage host Deirdre Irlam recently visited Varanasi, India, for the first time, as part of a post-river cruise tour provided by Uniworld Boutique River Cruise Collection. “This was a place I had wanted to visit for as long as I could remember. Whatever one’s religion, I feel
the entire Hindu Varanasi experience was a very spiritual one, not to be missed,” recommended Deirdre.
Also, look for itineraries with maiden calls. What regions or cities are on your bucket list? Share that list with your cruise consultant, who can keep an eye out for a cruise with your dream destination.
TRY SOMETHING YOU WOULDN’T NORMALLY DO AT HOME
Cruise Consultant Carol Terhune recalls a recent river cruise with AmaWaterways.
“Local guides do the tours and they are really informative. In the final port, we did a complimentary bicycle tour, with bikes from the ship, and it was great! The guide led us on nice bicycle paths, up and down scenic hills, through villages and wineries. So glad I took the opportunity to try something new!”
BE ON THE LOOKOUT FOR NEW PROGRAMS
Cruise lines are continually evolving, with new initiatives to make travel more rewarding and meaningful. Case in point: Holland America Line’s Explorations Central (EXC), a multifaceted program with a designated area on each ship staffed with destination experts to advise on the best tours to take and sites to visit.
If there is an adventure or experience you’d like to try, there may be a cruise line that already offers it. Let us know and our cruise consultants can keep you abreast of the many opportunities.
Call Cruise Specialists today (888) 993-1318