Taking a cruise lets you experience exotic getaways, luxury accommodation, and exciting excursions all in one easy-to-book trip. Most cruise experiences allow you arrange your shore time into a range of off-ship excursions to suit your interests. However, sometimes it’s difficult to choose which excursion is best for you—they all sound so interesting! Follow these tips when booking your trip’s excursions to fully enjoy your cruise holidays 2014!
Before booking, think about what kind of cruise passenger you are. Generally, there are three kinds of cruise passenger:
- Traveling with family and friends
- Traveling solo to meet others
- Traveling solo to relax
Traveling with family or friends
People who are traveling with family and friends will need to take their traveling companions’ interests and physical restrictions into consideration when deciding on excursions. Cruisers with kids may want to follow some of the ship-recommended excursions specifically for younger travelers. These may include getting up close and personal with local fauna at zoos, wildlife parks or discovery centers, or museums with hands-on exhibits.
On the other hand, cruise ship passengers traveling with elderly friends or relatives might double-check if excursions are wheelchair accessible, and if there are long flights of stairs or walks up long inclines ahead of you. Even when traveling to developed areas, such as the Mediterranean or Singapore, some excursions can require travelers to walk quite a long way, possibly in the sun. To make sure that everyone in your group enjoys their trip, make sure that the conditions of the excursion are suitable to everyone. Luckily, there are usually so many excursions available at each destination that there should always be a suitable alternative if you suspect your number one choice will be too demanding for the younger or older members of your group.
Traveling to meet others
Travelers who go on a cruise alone, or with a partner, with the express interest of meeting others and socializing with new friends should plan their excursions accordingly. Any kind of group tour, craft class or sporting opportunity should allow you a chance to get to know your fellow passengers. Cooking classes, craft/cultural classes and demonstrations that ask you to work with others are a great opportunity to get to know your fellow passengers. Excursions that will be harder to help you make new friends are any tours where you have to listen to a guide the whole time, or where you’re put into very small groups, like helicopter tours.
Traveling to relax alone
And, what about the traveler who prefers to leave the socializing to his or her hometown? Plenty of cruise passengers enjoy going on a cruise alone because of the potential for anonymity and complete relaxation. If this suits you, then perhaps you’d enjoy taking advantage of self-guided tours when the ship comes into port, a hop-on-hop off bus tour, or exploring a local museum or botanical garden with an audio-guide. Another option is to skip a few excursions—the ship will be plenty peaceful when everyone else has gone ashore!
No one excursion will suit everyone’s needs, but every cruise ship itinerary will have a few excursions that suit your needs. Make sure to think carefully about what kind of trip you’d like to have, and then book the trip that best matches your travel style.
Ferdz Decena is an award-winning travel photographer, writer and blogger. His works has found print in publications such as Singapore Airlines’s Silver Kris, Philippine Airlines’ Mabuhay, Cebu Pacific’s Smile and Seair InFlight. He has also lent his expertise to various organizations like the Oceana Philippines, Lopez Group Foundation, Save the Children and World Vision, contributing quality images for their marketing materials.