Frequent Cruise Questions From Travelers
We have spanned the web, asked our friends and clients, for common, and frequent, questions every tourists ask about taking a cruise tour. Thanks to Titanic, sometimes there is still a stigma that cruising is “dangerous”, “very expensive and luxurious” and most of all, boring. Apart from these, travelers who are new to cruising seem to have a lot more excuses than reasons to join one.
We have compiled the most common questions and answered them below for you to learn more about getting to your first cruise.
1. Why do cruises and cruise tours look expensive?
Cruise fares vary from the duration of the cruise (3 days, 7 days, etc) to the number of ports or cities to disembark, but most of all – the cruise fares are almost “all inclusive”. Accommodations, meals and entertainment on board are already included in the fare, regardless of where you go and how many stops you make. Comparing it to an almost similar land tour, you will see that you could save a lot of money and time in cruising. Let’s take a look at a Japan cruise from Beijing and see the table below for comparison:
7 Days Cruise
|Fare per person on Interior Cabin||US$ 530||–|
($50/night x 6 nights)
($30/day x 7 days)
|Airfare (Manila – Beijing – Manila)||US$ 420||US$ 420|
|Transfers (Airport – Port v.v.)||US$ 120||US$ 120|
|Transportation in between cities||Included||US$ 400
($100/way x 4 cities)
|Tour ($35/tour x 3 cities)||US$ 75||US$ 75|
TOTAL PER PERSON
This is considering that you were able to get those airline fares and hotel rates at those numbers, and the lowest interior cabin category. Aside from the obvious savings, you save the hassle of checking in and out of several airports, you get to enjoy a lot of on board shows and amenities (free!) and you don’t have to pack and unpack your clothes on every city. So it is not at all expensive, and like any package tour, just book early and way ahead of time to get the best deals.
2. Are cruises boring, just for newly weds and oldies?
Like the airline industry, cruising has evolved a lot in the last decade. There are Disney cruises and Royal Caribbean have select cruises with Dreamworks characters (Kung Fu Panda!) for the kids. There are Mexican and European cruises that visit ports with World Wonders. In 2013, there were 1.6 million children worldwide ages 18 and below who took a cruise with their parents – that’s a lot! If you are there just for a party, there’s always one every night! There are sport activities, children play areas, gym, spa, casinos, bars, shows, dancing at almost every part of the ship, and a whole lot more! If you want some peace and quiet, there’s always the sun deck where you can just lay all day, sipping your favorite drink or melt with that soft ice cream.
3. Is cruising safe?
Safer than air travel. Between 2002 to 2012, there were 170 airline related incidents per year compared to 1 incident in 2 years for cruise liners. Every safety measures have been placed to make your cruise experience fantastic – from your regular security checks to sanitizers at restaurant entrances, there’s no reason for you not to enjoy every bit of the cruise.
4. Can I update my Facebook status in the middle of the sea?
Yes, but it is highly recommended that you wait until you get to shore where wifi charges are cheaper, or free! You can still get in touch with the world miles away from shore with on board satellite internet and phone, but for a hefty price that can be a meal on shore for 10Mb or 15 minutes of internet use.
5. Is it true that you could get fat on board?
Yes, and no. It really depends on what you have been doing all day. Breakfast and dinner are buffet (or you can opt to the fine dining restaurant or pay restaurants), so you can literally eat to your heart’s (or belly’s) content, but there’s a gym/fitness center, a jogging track on the sun deck and guilt free snacks like dairy-free ice cream at the swimming pool deck.
6. Is there a cruise that starts from Manila?
Only to Corregidor Island. Other than that, you need to fly to a nearby country (either Singapore, Hong Kong or Kota Kinabalu) to start a cruise. Occasionally, there are cruise liners who dock in Manila Bay, like Holland America’s MV Amsterdam and Star Cruises’ Superstar Aquarius, but were just bringing in tourists and not letting new ones in. There are a lot of rumors (and more road blocks) about opening an international cruise port in Manila Bay, but it seems that Puerto Princesa (Palawan) is a more likely candidate as it receives weekly cruise guests from Star Cruises’ Superstar Aquarius that originates from Kota Kinabalu. We just hope that government would take interest in building an international cruise port in the country and cruise companies take interest in including the Philippines as a regular cruise destination.
Knowing how cruising work makes your travel more wonderful, and in the future, cruise liners will offer more destinations (over 2000+ ports worldwide already) and on board experiences. Royal Caribbean have already installed North Star in their ship, Quantum of the Seas, where you can ride in a capsule that would take you to heights above the ship, getting a 360 degree view of the surrounding seas. They also have Ripcord by iFly where you can enjoy a skydiving simulation. The possibilities are endless in the newest trend in travel.
Did we miss anything? Have questions? Send your questions in the comments and we’re surely happy to answer them for you.
resource: Cruise Critic