I have to admit I have had this negative thing about “cruises” in my head. I’ll get sea sick, I feel stranded, my kids will go stir crazy. You get the picture. But so many of our friends have had absolutely delightful experiences while cruising with their families. In fact, many of them swear by it and are frequent cruisers.
After watching some of the Disney cruise ship commercials, I am definitely intrigued – and perhaps could be swayed. I thought it would be best to talk to an expert about this travel option. I spoke with Cynthia Joaquin, franchise owner/manager of Expedia CruiseShipCenters about the benefits and highlights of taking a cruise with the family.
Cruises offer something for everyone. The kids can access great activities (rock climbing, kids clubs, slides, etc) and parents can use the gym, spa, adults only areas. You will never be bored and the food and facilities are fantastic!
2. What are your top 3 recommended destinations for families and why?
It depends on if we are looking at a cruise of land destination. For cruises, the Caribbean is a great first-time cruise. It gets you enjoying the ship, has a few ports to stop at and you don’t feel rushed. For land, Punta Cana has been very popular. There are great resorts for families that include water parks. Mayan Riviera is always a popular one as well, they have great highly reviewed hotels and many with great kids clubs, which helps the parents have a relaxing time.
3. How are cruises different from land only trips, and what are the benefits?
The entertainment, food and activities on a ship can’t be beat. And you also get to stop at different places where you can also enjoy some great beach time. It really gives you the best of both worlds. You also get to see different places while your hotel follows you along. With a land vacation you are tied to one resort. You don’t have the variety of food at many of the resorts and if you are not a huge beach person (like myself) you can get very bored very quickly. To me as long as my kids are happy then I am happy. I find that happens easier while on a cruise ship that is geared towards children.
4. What do you say to families who have never tried cruising (like myself)?
You have to try it. Once you try it it’s very hard to go back to a land vacation. It truly is an amazing vacation experience if you are on the right ship. And that is part of my job – to speak with my clients, figure out their likes and dislikes, what they want out of their vacation and then put them on the best ship and itinerary that will give them an unforgettable experience. I haven’t had an unhappy cruise client yet.
Cynthia Joaquin is a franchise owner/manager of Expedia CruiseShipCenters which is a global leader in the marketing and sales of cruise vacations. Expedia CruiseShipCenters also provides resort and other land vacation options, including air, car, hotel and travel insurance. Allowing the company to serve all travel needs.