Travel Tuesdays: Cruising for Students

ruby-princess

You might assume cruising is just for old married couples, but in this week’s Travel Tuesdays Danielle Scattergood explains why it’s perfect for the younger generation.

Travelling has become very popular over the last few years and it’s practically on every student’s bucket list. No matter if it’s traveling to countries on the other side of the world or exploring places closer to home; planning your journey can become quite tricky and stressful.

Some people fly, others take trains and busses. However many people forget about cruising as an option to get around beautiful places.

The advantages of cruising

I have been on several cruises around the Caribbean and Mediterranean; on all of which I have met lots of people my age.

The best way to describe a cruise ship would be a holiday resort, but on a boat.

On-board there are pools, Jacuzzi’s, waterslides, bars, cinemas, ice skating rinks, theatres, restaurants, spas, casinos, nightclubs, a shopping mall, a sports hall, arcades, a gym, and including all of this, it has around 10 floors filled with cabins, which serve as rooms.

If you'are brave enough - jump up on stage and join the entertainment team!

If you’are brave enough – jump up on stage and join the entertainment team!

Cruising is a great way to visit multiple places all in one go.

When you pick one holiday destination, you stay there the entire duration of your trip. On cruises, depending on the duration, you can visit up to 10 different places; and that in the space of just two weeks. Cruise companies also offer great all-inclusive package deals, which are simple and easy to book.

pool

Top left: The atrium on the Emerald Princess Cruise ship. Top right/bottom left: The top deck including the pool side cinema screen, bar, pools and Jacuzzi. Bottom right: The bedroom of an inside cabin with bed bunks on the side of the walls (up to 4 people per room)

All-inclusive package deals

Some students who are inexperienced in booking holidays by themselves may find it difficult to organise the necessary arrangements. Cruise companies make it easy for worried travellers by including everything they need.

These package deals include a person’s cruise fare, lodging, food and a variety of on board entertainment and sightseeing. Similarly, students can benefit from cruising instead of other types of transport as it guarantees an easy journey with no delays, traffic or need to get connecting flights for instance.

Half the fun of cruising is the ship itself.

The rooms

When it comes to lodging, like hotels, there are basic cabins and more luxury cabins to sleep in. The basic ones are called inside cabins, which aren’t as large as hotel rooms and have no windows.

My personal experience

I can honestly say that you meet so many other young people by going to clubs, bars and just being confident enough to introduce yourself. I have been cruising for years now and on every cruise I have made to 30 friends at least and I still talk to most of them now.

Cruising is an excellent way to travel the world and meet new people along the way.

Both pictures show friends that I met on two separate cruising holidays. The left picture was taken on-board and the right was taken off-board in the Bahamas.

Both pictures show friends that I met on two separate cruising holidays. The left picture was taken on-board and the right was taken off-board in the Bahamas.

Some disadvantages to think about

Although a cruise is all-inclusive, there are several things the traveller has to pay extra for, e.g. excursions when a ship reaches destination. On the plus side these include sightseeing and activities such as snorkelling, horseback riding or scuba diving.

Sadly you only get one day in each place. This is because the cruise needs time in the evening and overnight to sail to the next destination.

Also, cruises come with meal times. Breakfast, lunch and dinner are scheduled and end at a certain time. This can be quite inconvenient for some people who may like to sleep in or prefer eating dinner at earlier or later times.

However, there is always a 24-hour buffet open to those who do not want to be restricted to meal times in the restaurants.

The left cruise ship is the Carnival Freedom; the left is from the Princess cruise liner and the middle is much smaller because it is a Thompson one.

The left cruise ship is the Carnival Freedom; the left is from the Princess cruise liner and the middle is much smaller because it is a Thompson one.

A big worry for some people before cruising can be sea sickness, but most of the time you feel no motion at all on the ship, due to its size and weight.

I highly encourage all students interested to take a book a cruise and to experience a new and better way to travel.