What's the best cruise line?

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#1
Potomac, Maryland
2,254 Posts
Joined Feb 2005
We've been on HAL and found the passenger group to be really older. What's another good line?
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Sun Princess - August 2, 2005 - Alaska
NCL Spirit - February 9, 2006- S. Caribbean
NCL Dawn - December 17, 2006- W. Caribbean
HAL Volendam - March 13, 2007- P. Canal
RCCL Navigator - October 6, 2007- Canary Isl.
NCL Gem - February 6, 2008- S. Caribbean
NCL Jewel - July 28,2008- N. Europe/Baltics
Wind Star - February 14, 2009 - Costa Rica
Celebrity Summit - April 18, 2009 - Trans-Atl.
Celebrity Infinity - Jan. 17, 2010 - S. America
HAL Amsterdam - July 12, 2010 - Alaska
RCCL Brilliance - Jan.10, 2011, United Arab
HAL Ryndam - July 24, 2011, Norway
Princess - Oct.19.2011 - Med & Trans Atl
RCCL - Grandeur - Oct.17.2013-Canada&NE
Wind Surf- Feb.15,2014-BVI
#2
Ontario, Canada
5,181 Posts
Joined Feb 2006
Originally posted by Len3
We've been on HAL and found the passenger group to be really older. What's another good line?
Len3, from your list of past cruises I don't see Celebrity. Normally considered to be a premium cruise line more or less equal to HAL but with possibly a bit younger clientele. Celebrity is owned by Royal Caribbean. Princess is another normally considered to be on a par with RCI maybe just a small notch below HAL and Celebrity. Princess is owned by Carnival which also owns HAL and others. Hard to go wrong with any of these main stream lines. Of course you could consider Crystal, Regent, etc if it fits your budget.
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#3
292 Posts
Joined Aug 2006
have to agree, go with Celebrity.
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#4
Cincinnati, OH
6 Posts
Joined Dec 2006
Originally posted by Len3
We've been on HAL and found the passenger group to be really older. What's another good line?

Let me be quick to point out two things: (1) For the Price & Value (2) for the ship amenities (3) For an ADULT Cruise without kids...and I love 'em too...

OCEANIA GETS MY / OUR VOTE HANDSDOWN!!!
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#5
Dayton, OH, USA
1,778 Posts
Joined Dec 2002
How old are you? I am 63 and DH is 66. We cruise Celebrity and Royal Carib.
There is a good mix of ages on both, although X may have a few more "older" pax. It all depends on what you mean by "older". When we were planning our first cruise, my TA steered us away from the Carnival "young and crazy" image and the HAL "old and stodgy" image. The two we have stuck to are somewhere in the middle.
In general X has fewer children, at least it seemed so on the longer cruises, which have hooked us even more. RCCL had an enormous # of kids on the 7-night Carib. winter cruises we've taken. They were not a problem, though.
We are extremely happy with both lines.

1/02 Explorer E. Carib.
1/03 Explorer W. Carib.
8/03 Summit Alaska cruise/tour
2/04 Adventure S. Carib.
2/05 Galaxy Panama Canal
6/06 Jewel Brit. Isles/Nor. Fjords + 3 nights in London
1/07 Mercury Mexican Riviera
1/08 Mercury Aust/NZ + extra days in Syd and Auk.
#6
85,261 Posts
Joined Jul 2000
There are a variety of cruise lines you could consider from Princess (Mass Market) to Celebrity and Oceania (Premium) to say Crystal or Regent (Luxury).

Keith
#8
The Third Coast - Nashville
7,461 Posts
Joined Mar 2001
Len,

How old are you, and how old do you estimate the passengers on HAL to be? The reason I'm asking is that HAL is my favorite line, and I've sailing them since I was 48. I found the clientele to vary according to destination, time of year, and length of cruise.

Roz
#9
Minneapolis, MN, USA
146 Posts
Joined Mar 2001
Len, I'm 60 and I want to put in a plug for Royal Caribbean, my favorite. First, I love their ShipShape $ program, which always offers a very wide assortment of activity levels - walking the deck, aquatics, line dancing, stretching, beanbag tournaments, etc. etc. You get rewarded for participation with the ShipShape dollars, which you can use to "buy" from a nice selection of logo products at the end of the cruise.

Some other reasons: their live shows have terrific production values - they will really knock your socks off. The ships are SO beautiful, especially the Voyager Class, you will enjoy just wandering around and discovering the artwork, and then returning to your favorites. Finally, every Royal Caribbean ship I've been on has a distinctly superior library, well stocked, conveniently located, filled with comfy chairs and terrific views. The library usually winds up being one of my favorite hangouts on every cruise.
#10
GTA, Ontario, Canada
33,020 Posts
Joined Apr 2005
Originally posted by CharlieT
OCEANIA GETS MY / OUR VOTE HANDSDOWN!!!
Not so loud .....we will never get a cabin!!
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#11
Coastside south of San Francisco
426 Posts
Joined Mar 2005
Stick with any and every other cruise line out there, but please don't bother with Oceania!

Their prices have already risen significantly since I booked our first cruise with them a year and a half ago, and they are fast getting to the point where, if they rise any higher, they will be out of our price range.

People who must have their formal nights will absolutely despise the fact that you need only be clean and comfortably presentable, a la "country club casual", to partake of their delicious evening cuisine in the Grand Dining Room. (And don't tell my DH I said this, but I saw more foxy looking 55+ dudes in their polo shirts and chinos per capita on my O cruise than all the guys in tuxedos of any age on my other 6 cruises put together! Must be either that being comfortable makes a man look happier and therefore more attractive, and/or, the successful but not stuffy demographic that O pulls in?)

People who don't like books will absolutely hate the fact that so much space and elegant ambiance is dedicated to the lovely library on board.

People who need continual rock music fed into their ears will go through withdrawal.

People who love the smell of stale smoke from previous cabin occupants will find their olfactory sense wanting.

I could go on but, after all, I agreed not to mention Oceania.
#12
GTA, Ontario, Canada
33,020 Posts
Joined Apr 2005
Originally posted by Beach Nut
Stick with any and every other cruise line out there, but please don't bother with Oceania!
I could go on but, after all, I agreed not to mention Oceania.
You forgot to mention the lack of lines to get on/off at the ports ..people will not be able practice the elbowing techniques
Those fattening desserts at tea time & lunch/dinner OMG I can hear the GYM calling my name...

Lyn
#13
Coastside south of San Francisco
426 Posts
Joined Mar 2005
Hi Lyn

Regarding Oceania, I'm glad you mentioned the tendering experience. There is an absolute lack of that special sense of closeness that one experiences when being herded to the tenders on the mass market lines. This, IMHO, is a real deficit on O. After all, when oh when, will I get to interact with fellow passengers if not in the mad competition to get onto a tender?

Also, the horrible fact that one doesn't have to wait long at all for tenders. Because of this efficiency, I have less time for daydreaming while waiting, and also less time to practice that ultimate virtue, Patience!

Keep the humor coming!

Susan
#14
651 Posts
Joined Jan 2005
I guess I'll be the only one to mention Carnival. We have sailed on serveral lines, both stateside and from European ports, and I have to say our Carnival cruises have always been great. I think one of the most important factors is that we can now cruise during "off" times, since our children are all out of college and either in graduate school, law school, married, working or parents themselves.

My husband is a retired colonel from the USAFR and Carnival offers the BEST military discounts, another reason. We generally stay in a Cat 11 or 12 suite and have found the service wonderful. Also, all of the suites have a jacuzzi (which is important to me as I have had major spinal surgery and refuse to use a public hot tub). If there's a downside it is that room service does not serve hot meals. I believe Porthole magazine did an article a few months ago basically stating this same opinion.

Our favorite ship is the Conquest, it is just great. The food, in the dining room, is generally very good (we always allow or head waiter to decide upon an entree as they seem to know what is best that day) and the supper club (an additional $30.00 pp charge) is to die for. Yes, they do play all of the silly games but if you don't want to be involved you can sit on your balcony with a book, some tea or wine and just laze the day away.

I think that only you can determine which line is "best", because it's best for you and the only way you can decide upon a favorite line is to try them all. *shaking my head* It's a hard job but someone has to do it!
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Suse






#15
Ohio
2,455 Posts
Joined Jun 2003
RCCL gets my vote.
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Pat

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#16
Ottawa, On, Cda./Naples, Fl. USA
6,087 Posts
Joined May 2004
I am 57 and my DH is 60; we enjoy RCI and have always felt comfortable with the balance of ages on the cruises we have taken. Generally we avoid spring break however we are sailing this Thursday and much of Florida is now on spring break so we'll see how it goes.
We enjoy the artwork on the ships, music (especially in the Centrum); lounges, spa areas, theatre, dining rooms and specialty dining rooms.
Kathy
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Tomko2 D+
Live, Laugh & Love.
#17
Lynn Haven, Fl
2,736 Posts
Joined Mar 2007
Our thoughts regarding this issue are probably different from most folks here. First, my 88 year old mother says HAL is for old fogeys. She found it boring. Second, account price/value ratio, we usually cruise Carnival. At 65, we find we are not among the oldest group aboard. The spread of ages on Carnival is what one would find in any random group--all over the place. It is not a line that caters to a younger crowd; that is a myth perpetrated by some travel agents.

Doc
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I cruise for Warm Chocolate Melting Cake!
#18
Church Point AKA Cajun Country
10,759 Posts
Joined Jan 2008
Originally posted by JudyM
Len, I'm 60 and I want to put in a plug for Royal Caribbean, my favorite. First, I love their ShipShape $ program, which always offers a very wide assortment of activity levels - walking the deck, aquatics, line dancing, stretching, beanbag tournaments, etc. etc. You get rewarded for participation with the ShipShape dollars, which you can use to "buy" from a nice selection of logo products at the end of the cruise.

Some other reasons: their live shows have terrific production values - they will really knock your socks off. The ships are SO beautiful, especially the Voyager Class, you will enjoy just wandering around and discovering the artwork, and then returning to your favorites. Finally, every Royal Caribbean ship I've been on has a distinctly superior library, well stocked, conveniently located, filled with comfy chairs and terrific views. The library usually winds up being one of my favorite hangouts on every cruise.
I just turned 59 (Feb 26) and my sister turned 61 during our last cruise. I have to agree about the Voyager of the Seas (RCL) being a beautiful ship. I didn't know about the ShipShape program, even though we did walk the track every day. I am glad you mentioned it since it sounds like fun. We will definitely sign up for it next January.
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Rosemarie
#19
Georgia
5,040 Posts
Joined Nov 2007
Originally posted by Len3
We've been on HAL and found the passenger group to be really older. What's another good line?
The best line and ship is very subjective, as I have not found the perfect ship. That said, sail on the line and ship that you enjoy, as the saying is "different strokes for different folks."
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Mike
#20
N. Calif., USA
3,190 Posts
Joined Aug 2007
it s the time of the yr. my wife and i cruise that most of the younger
crowd is back to school..

Jan usually ..and we ve sailed on RCCL, Carnival and more recently
NCL..all have been wondeful..there s no such thing as a bad cruise
and inbetween we ll usually take a 3 or 4 day cruise out of San Pedro..

being quite price consious now that im retired..a Carnival agent has been most helpful in getting us the best military pricing among the lines..