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We are planning our 7th cruise and have narrowed it down to Holland America or Carnival. Weve cruises carnival before. No kids this time!! We are both in our early 50s.

 

Any suggestions?:cool:

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Depends on where you want to go and what you like to do. I'm partial to Carnival since we are two cruise away from Diamond. My favorite place and cruise was to Hawaii on the Legend. I loved it! Other than that I can give you some ideas on places to go and things to do in the Caribbean and Bahamas. Haven't been on Carnival Vista but are booked to do it in January. At present it is listed as the second best ship of the top ten. Happy Crusing!

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We are planning our 7th cruise and have narrowed it down to Holland America or Carnival. Weve cruises carnival before. No kids this time!! We are both in our early 50s.

 

 

 

Any suggestions?:cool:

 

 

How important is entertainment / upbeat music to you? If it is , stick with Carnival. I am mid-50s and cruised with HAL in January for the first time and probably will not cruise with them again unless the itinerary is something I can’t find anywhere else. It is the first time I actually felt bored at times on a cruise. There was no sail away party, no live or upbeat music in the pool area, no live / upbeat music at night (did not check the disco), the entertainment was below average, etc. We also found the food and service to be below what we experienced on Carnival and Royal Caribbean.

 

If reading, crossword puzzles and card games are fine for your daily entertainment and you don’t care much about the nightly shows, then you will enjoy HAL. If you want an upbeat atmosphere, comedy shows, lots of options during the day, etc., stick with Carnival.

 

 

 

 

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We’ve both cruised Carnival before and it’s not one of my favorite lines. We like a mix of things-coffee and cards on the deck is fun, but so are the shows and parties.

 

I’ve been all over the Caribbean and Mexico so it was hard to find just the right itinerary with ports neither of us has seen.

 

Thanks for your reply

 

 

Depends on where you want to go and what you like to do. I'm partial to Carnival since we are two cruise away from Diamond. My favorite place and cruise was to Hawaii on the Legend. I loved it! Other than that I can give you some ideas on places to go and things to do in the Caribbean and Bahamas. Haven't been on Carnival Vista but are booked to do it in January. At present it is listed as the second best ship of the top ten. Happy Crusing!
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We cruised Miracle out of LA in 2016, and doing ourselves bored a lot. Never had that on a ship before. Also, swimming with diaper kids, screaming preteens running wild, and toddlers dripping ice cream in the hot tub are not my idea of fun. That’s why we’re considering a more “adult” line this time.

 

 

 

How important is entertainment / upbeat music to you? If it is , stick with Carnival. I am mid-50s and cruised with HAL in January for the first time and probably will not cruise with them again unless the itinerary is something I can’t find anywhere else. It is the first time I actually felt bored at times on a cruise. There was no sail away party, no live or upbeat music in the pool area, no live / upbeat music at night (did not check the disco), the entertainment was below average, etc. We also found the food and service to be below what we experienced on Carnival and Royal Caribbean.

 

If reading, crossword puzzles and card games are fine for your daily entertainment and you don’t care much about the nightly shows, then you will enjoy HAL. If you want an upbeat atmosphere, comedy shows, lots of options during the day, etc., stick with Carnival.

 

 

 

 

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We cruised Miracle out of LA in 2016, and doing ourselves bored a lot. Never had that on a ship before. Also, swimming with diaper kids, screaming preteens running wild, and toddlers dripping ice cream in the hot tub are not my idea of fun. That’s why we’re considering a more “adult” line this time.

 

 

Then you will probably be fine with HAL. You may check Celebrity or Princess as well.

 

Also, the length of the cruise and time of year make a big difference on the passenger mix. I do not cruise during the summer, holidays or spring break for many of the reasons you mentioned. Cruises of 8 days or longer also tend to have an older average passenger age. Cruises out of San Juan also tend to skew older as well due to the additional air fare / time to get there.

 

 

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We have cruised both Carnival and HAL probably 6 times each. Since you have posted this on the "Caribbean" board assume you are looking at Caribbean cruises. We in our 60's and really don't need to be entertained all the time. There are pros and cons to both but we definitely prefer HAL. No screaming kids especially. Last cruise they literally drove my DH back to the room. And actually we much prefer the entertainment on HAL. Why? Because they have BB King Blues Club (on many of their ships but not all). Band performs blues, rock and roll, soul, Motown. We just love it and go about every night. They have other music venues in the evening also but we just love the Blues Club. Nothing like that at all on Carnival. Occasional we go to a comedy show but the last ones we have been to both on Carnival and HAL not that great IMHO. We don't do the showroom song and dance shows so can't really compare those. Food definitely better on HAL, but more European flair than Carnival which is pretty much all American type food. They also do full room service and can order from main dining room menu in evenings if you just want to chill in your cabin.

HAL has some really great southern caribbean cruise itineraries and, in fact, we are taking one of those in December. But not so hot on HAL's western caribbean itineraries so we did that on Carnival in February. Also I was recently looking at HAL's cuba cruises which look very interesting so may try that next. Also did partial Panama Canal on HAL couple years ago and loved that.

Anyway, if I were you I would give HAL a try and see how you like it. Definitely more laid back and quieter atmosphere than Carnival so don't expect non-stop entertainment. But we like that. Hope this helps a bit.

Jane

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We've done 6 HAL, 4 Carnival and will be taking our 5th Royal (one each on Princess, Celebrity & Costa as well). As stated by others, much depends upon your priorities and preferences. We too never cruise when school is out regardless of the line. I have 3 grandchildren who live with me, I don't go on vacation to be with other people's children! We always found the service superior on HAL, but like most of the moderately priced lines, food quality has declined (to get you to go to the pay-for dining???). However last time we did Carnival with a spa cabin (their thermal suites are the BEST), and we paid extra for faster to the fun, we found dirty undies on the shelf in the closet when we were unpacking (UGH!, and not even an apology from the room steward).

 

Some trips we choose for itinerary, (Med, Alaska etc.) some for service, some for price (we live within easy driving distance of 4 ports!) and some just to get away and relax. IMHO it all depends upon your tastes and priorities

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DH and I are in our mid 40s. We love HAL! We like the calm, relaxing vibe during the day and food/service is awesome. A no kids/few kids environment is important to us, so for that reason we prefer HAL. If you are looking for more of a party vibe, the Carnival might be best.

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I’m a teacher and must cruise during times when families travel. I usually cruise Princess and find it is a more “adult” experience, but still has lots to do around the ship. I’m trying Norwegian for the first time next year because I’m joining friends.

 

 

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We started twenty five cruises ago, with RC on a short Mexican trip! We fell in love with sailing! HAL became our favorite, we loved the waitstaff,

the food, however as others have pointed out, it’s the itinerary and to us the price point of where you want to go on land. That said HAL has in my experience, Princess beat for both its offering of a variety of tasty meals and important to us is the comfortable mattresses. Waitstaff is comparable. Entertainment about the same. But I must admit HAL’ s passengers are older towards 70-80 then 50-60 in age. HAL has a movie theater inside, Princess outside under the stars. One is over air conditioned the other air conditioning according to the weather.

 

To add to the mix each ship has its own personality.

 

We never travel during holidays unless we have grands with us. Not only is it busy but kids run. Off board as it was in Venice the crowds are horrid.

 

BTW...loved Cuba!

 

Ann

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We are planning our 7th cruise and have narrowed it down to Holland America or Carnival. Weve cruises carnival before. No kids this time!! We are both in our early 50s.

 

Any suggestions?:cool:

 

Please keep in mind .... Carnival and HAL are total opposites. ;)

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I have cruised both lines. Carnival is much more of a party ship. HAL is more quiet and a great cruise if you are looking to relax. I would also do some research on the actual ships that you are looking to book. HAL ships usually have a smaller passenger load. Carnival ships, the newer and bigger ones have a lot more bells and whistles.

 

Visit both cruise lines boards, maybe that will help you in your decision. Bottom line any day at sea beats just about any day on land.

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