The best cruise for the money is the cruise that: - Is within your budget - Is going where you want to go - has the amenities that you want What is included depends on which cruise you choose. Start booking as soon as possible. A year in advance is better than a month.
As far as how far out you should be booking this, the answer is a year or more. Why? the further out you book, the more choices you have in picking your cabin. The closer to the cruise there is less choice which could mean having to take a cabin that is less preferable. As to pick which cruise. Start with where do you want the cruise to start at. Then figure out where you want to stop at, and at what time of year. With just that little bit of information, you can narrow your search down to a manageable number.
If someone were to tell you that there were places where you could see the sky smeared with bright neon patches that seemed to play hide and seek over the canvas of the night sky, you would probably say it was coming straight out of a fantasy book. But, strange as it may seem, this phenomenon is not only real but something that can be seen multiple times in all its glory in multiple countries worldwide. Northern lights, also known as Aurora Borealis, are a series of multi-coloured patterns- ranging from neon green, to violet to purple and even red- that can be seen across the sky for the about six months a year in the Scandinavian countries of Norway, Iceland, Greenland, Finland and even some parts of Alaska, Canada and Scotland. Specifically, it occurs within the Northern Lights zone (at latitudes 65 to 72 degrees). It is truly a spectacle that cannot be justified by mere words, rays of lights stretching out like the hands of some heavenly body, sometimes with unmistakable grace, and sometimes, with a velocity so fierce it looks as if there is a celestial power hell-bent on forking the sky into two. https://www.cruisebay.com/blog/northern-lights-cruises.aspx
Shall I list out a hundred cruises for you and the detailed list of what is included in each one for you? WHY? BEST WHAT. Buffet line in dining room. Casino layout. Deck chairs. Slide in pool. Entertainers scheduled for your cruise, ports of Call. Price per day Care to narrow it down a bit to say best Mediterranean cruise, best South Pacific cruise best trans Atlantic cruise best round the world or best 3 day adventure from Miami? Book ahead as far as you want. Most plan about one year in advance. As you get closer to departure date most of the lower priced rooms are taken.At peak travel times they do get full many months before sail date. Some reason in particular you are not using a human travel agent that has cruise experience? Sorry cannot guess how much a view of Greek Islands is worth to you or the view of an Alaskan Glacier. What is day shopping on some Caribbean Island worth to you? Maybe you want to see Antarctica on your cruise. It is cold and some think it is a priceless thing and worth the price charged. Shall I guess if you feel a bottle of champagne is necessary for your cruise enjoyment. A cruise ship is basically a moving hotel. Sorry no such thing as best port of call for everyone. Sorry cannot guess if you want to see a Polar Bear or scantly clad swimmers on your cruise.
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Where are you thinking of cruising from and to, how long do you want to cruise for, will you travel alone or with partner and/or family. Give us a bit more information.
IT's very much a matter of what you are looking for. Cruise lines appeal to different demographics. Royal and Carnival tend to attract younger people. HAL and Princess hew toward an older crowd. Are you in non-stop action? You should consider one of the huge RCL ships. If you like good food, for not a whole lot more money than other lines, try Celebrity. Cruisecritic.com is a great place to start to get an idea of the demographics of cruise lines and ships. Large ships have more amenities, smaller ships can get into ports the large ships can't manage. You also have to factor in getting to the port. If you live in the north east, you can get cruises out of Bayonne NJ or Baltimore to Bermuda. There are also cruises to the Caribbean out of NJ, but you spend a lot of time getting there. If you have the money for air, cruises that start in Puerto Rico are great. 7 night cruises with 5 ports. Many airports have relatively inexpensive flights to Fort Lauderdale. There are ports in Lauderdale and Miami. So assuming you are going to the Caribbean, you can go on Expedia, put in the destination and length, and it will display all major cruise lines, prices, etc. You pay less for an inside cabin. And keep in mind, the shorter the cruise the harder the partying. I won't do a cruise under 7 nights.
Pick an amount of time and where you would like to go and do it in the off season.
I have been on three different cruise lines, around the world,. Cruising is great! But if something goes wrong, know you are at the mercy of the crew and you have no rights on international waters.
Go to any travel site, such as Travelocity, or any cruise company's website and see prices and what is included. Generally all food, except specialty restaurants and maybe fancy ice cream, and tea/coffee/juice/punch are free. Alcohol and soda are extra. Entertainment is free. Excursions cost. Of the majors, Carnival and Norwegian are probably cheapest. Best for the money depends upon what you want. When to book is anybody's guess. Normally, $100/day/person assuming double occupancy works.