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Help me find the right line for my demographic

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I have posted a few times, we have done a few cruises on Carnival (carib), Princess (alaska), Celebrity (carib).

 

We are a couple in our mid 50s. I like to do excursions and see things. I don't get away that often, so to me the experience is more important than lowest price.

 

Our alaska cruise was 1st week of june, and average age was probably 70, maybe higher. The excursions moved much slower. I was told the week we chose couldn't have famlies due to school be in session, and also, alaska tends to have an older demographic as not lots of people can take off 2 weeks in a row unless they are retired, etc. Mind you , we have no problem speaking to people 15 to 20 years our senior, we have met some very interesting people , heard great life experiences etc., but was hoping to find more people in the 50 to 65 grouping with more similar interests and wanting to do active things.

 

I would like to go to the Galapagos, do the panama canal, Mediterranean, British Isles, and Scandanavia and more. In all of these places, I am hoping for good food, entertainment, and company on the boat, and then doing as much sight seeing off the boat.

 

When in Europe, it is not unusual for us to walk 3 - 5mi every day.

 

I am not sure I can afford 7seas level, but want something nice.

 

We also like the carrib for short vacations.

 

I know you can't really rank lines exactly, since there are all sorts of nuances, but you can rank things a bit, with 7seas, crystal etc. on the top, mid level of celeberity, princess, rc, holland, then ncl and carnival?

 

So I am interested in hearing from the experienced cruisers what their findings are, which might help me narrow down which lines to be looking at. Thanks

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Well, you have several things going on here. The axiom is, the longer the cruise and more exotic the itinerary, the older the demographic. People who have more time and have been everywhere do South America, the Galapagos, the Amazon, Asia (if they are from the Western Hemisphere). Time of year enters into it, too. More families in summer, and over holidays. European cruises, especially the Med, are very port intensive. We did 24 days with only two sea days. Ship facilities don't matter as much when all you need is a place to eat and sleep. My practice is to book for itinerary not cruise line, and sometimes I book if it is an incredible bargain. EM

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Essiesmom has it pretty well nailed.

 

We did the Panama Canal a couple of years ago....14 days, full transit on the Island Princess. There were approx. 7 children onboard. (November, school in-session. FLL to Los Angeles)

 

Average age was 50-70. Very active group. Best cruise we have had so far.

 

I suggest that you keep reading here on CC...visit the different forums and you will get an idea of what different cruise lines are like.

 

I will say this....from our experience, cruise lines are more alike than they are different. IMO, the differences boil down to minutiae.

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Look at Oceania

smaller ships, no formal nights, port intensive cruises, more mature passengers, price will be more than Carnival

ages range 40-80 depending on the cruise

most are active people

 

Book private excursions then you are not tied to a bus load of slow walkers ;)

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Some good advice above but broadly speaking if you want to stick the the Main Lines, probably Celebrity and Princess will be the best fit.

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More expensive and longer equals more retired people. The cruises you listed will be longer and more costly and the passengers older. We like Oceania for port intensive cruises - yes the demographics run older but with the fewer sea days it does not matter. They have open seating and a more upscale experience in the dining room - no formal nights but most passengers follow the country club dress. We like having the Oceania ship as our hotel - food is good and with open seating we are not confined by ship schedule. Oceania and Azamara are two cruise lines between the luxury and mass market cruises. The entertainment is limited because the emphasis is on the ports.

 

You might consider land tours - booked on your own or with a tour group. You will see a lot more of the country and have a chance to eat locally and see things that interest you.

 

If you want a 'vacation' cruise the 7 night cruises will have better demographics since that length works for many working people. If you want to sun and fun the Caribbean is great for that kind of trip. We have done 2 7 nighters in a row because we have to fly to FL. Trying to put together 'fun' and real 'travel' is almost impossible on a cruise.

 

So decide what it is you want for your vacation money - cruise critic has a lot of info that will help you make choices.

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Another vote for Oceania.

I wouldn't listen to folks who say the ship or food doesn't matter. After another day of touring on a busy vacation itinerary, I wouldn't want to sleep at a Best Western And dine at Denny's.

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Third vote for Oceania. Take look at some of the shorter itineraries for Europe, they will skew younger. Oceania has many point to point cruises, allowing you to explore two cities in more depth. If you use their air, pay the deviation fee and go in early and leave later to extend the vacation. With air fares to Europe running in prime time running over $1500, it can sometimes work out that Oceania is just a touch more expensive than the mass markets. The smaller ships can also visit more unique ports.

 

Do your own things in ports by exploring DIY options on the port boards.

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I agree with the comments about the age of cruisers--on the type of cruises you mentioned (longer, more exotic) the ages will usually be higher. There's not much way to get around that--it's just harder for younger people to get away that long, especially during the school year, or sometimes spend that much.

 

We have found that while many such cruises have a markedly older crowd, there are always some people in younger demographics aboard.

 

As to excursions being tailored to the slower pace,(and we are late 60's) that may be more true in ship tours, depending on the tour. We have found that private or independent tours fit us better--usually cheaper, better quality and we can find more active excursions with fewer limitations more easily.

 

We don't want to tour on a 50 passenger bus and shuffle along at a snail's pace behind a tour guide, and as long as we are able to, prefer private tours, or in many cases go off on our own.

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I have posted a few times, we have done a few cruises on Carnival (carib), Princess (alaska), Celebrity (carib).

 

We are a couple in our mid 50s. I like to do excursions and see things. I don't get away that often, so to me the experience is more important than lowest price.

 

Our alaska cruise was 1st week of june, and average age was probably 70, maybe higher. The excursions moved much slower. I was told the week we chose couldn't have famlies due to school be in session, and also, alaska tends to have an older demographic as not lots of people can take off 2 weeks in a row unless they are retired, etc. Mind you , we have no problem speaking to people 15 to 20 years our senior, we have met some very interesting people , heard great life experiences etc., but was hoping to find more people in the 50 to 65 grouping with more similar interests and wanting to do active things.

 

I would like to go to the Galapagos, do the panama canal, Mediterranean, British Isles, and Scandanavia and more. In all of these places, I am hoping for good food, entertainment, and company on the boat, and then doing as much sight seeing off the boat.

 

When in Europe, it is not unusual for us to walk 3 - 5mi every day.

 

I am not sure I can afford 7seas level, but want something nice.

 

We also like the carrib for short vacations.

 

I know you can't really rank lines exactly, since there are all sorts of nuances, but you can rank things a bit, with 7seas, crystal etc. on the top, mid level of celeberity, princess, rc, holland, then ncl and carnival?

 

So I am interested in hearing from the experienced cruisers what their findings are, which might help me narrow down which lines to be looking at. Thanks

 

One question has to be asked.

Do you like dressing formal for dinner, albeit a suit or Tux for the Gentlenan, with Gowns and Cocktail dresses for Ladies.

If the answer is yes, then consider Cunard.

Genteel Old Schol Cruising.:)

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I would like to go to the Galapagos, do the panama canal, Mediterranean, British Isles, and Scandanavia and more. In all of these places, I am hoping for good food, entertainment, and company on the boat, and then doing as much sight seeing off the boat.

 

When in Europe, it is not unusual for us to walk 3 - 5mi every day.

 

 

I'm in my late 50's and always book for itinerary rather than line.

 

The 14 day Panama that we did on NCL was an older group but half of the ship was European and they generally tend to be a fitter bunch than us North Americans. We did mostly ship's excursions and they moved at a good pace.

 

The 10 day Mediterranean on Celebrity had the overall best food that we've tried but that was before all the cutbacks of current day.

 

The 7 day Northern European cruise on MSC was enjoyable as the ship was beautiful and the food was Italian themed and excellent. The entertainment was also different than the North American lines.

 

I'd like to do a MCS repositioning from Northern Europe to the Mediterranean (or in reverse) in the future with pre and post stays in those cities.

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