Cruising does not get better than this. According to the CLIA (Cruise Lines International Association), about thirty million people will sail the high seas this year. That is about twice the number of people who sailed in 2009. Moreover, about 21 ships will be launching this year, adding more service options to a flooded marketplace. Even better is that you can easily find a boat to match your personality, regardless of whether you are traveling solo or you are a family traveling with the crew. A question, however, comes up: where can you start? We tapped into some sources and rounded up the best cruise ship lines out there. Read on to find out the best cruise ship lines to see which one best matches your preferences.
10. Regent Seven Seas Cruises
Immediately cruise line Regent Seven Seas launched the luxury Seven Seas Explorer in 2016, it marketed it to the world as the most luxurious ship ever made. According to the line, the vessel exemplifies the standards of exquisite cuisine and the all-inclusivity that the line is well-known for. If you seek to have above par accommodations while at sea, do not look any further than this line. All cabins in all its ships are suites; the cabins feature balconies that range from 55 to 990 square feet. Similarly, the public areas are also stunning; all ships feature a huge amount of marble and granite plus chandeliers made of glass and crystal.
9. Crystal Cruises
Notwithstanding the fact that the line is expanding into the yacht and river cruise sectors, Crystal Cruises has placed an enormous amount of emphasis on ocean-going ships. The line’s flagship boat, crystal serenity, got a massive makeover last year. Crystal Cruises is more formal than other luxury lines, even after it relaxed its dress code policies a few years ago. The line still attracts a good number of professionals and old retirees. In most cases, North American passengers fill up the line’s boats, but you might bump onto Australians and Brits as well.
8. Oceania Cruises
The pricing structure for Oceania Cruise is less all-inclusive and more of la carte. Certain aspects, such as accommodations, dining venues, and itineraries, are all priced separately just as in a la carte restaurant. The cruise line fare is generally in line with other luxury line’s prices, mainly because the line offers a choice of free perks like shore excursions, shipboard credit, house beverage package, and free Wi-Fi to all passengers.
7. Viking Ocean Cruises
The Viking Ocean Cruises line was established due to requests from passengers who loved the overall experiences enjoyed while onboard the line’s flagship boat, Viking star. The loyal passengers hoped that the company would reproduce the onboard experience on many more ships. The line began navigating the seas in 2015, and in less than four years it has earned enough praise from past passenger and traditional seas cruisers. The line’s boats are modern and sleek, and they also sail to some of the best ports in the world. The line places massive focus on the intended destination thus stays longer in the port so that the loyal passengers can get a taste of the locality. Additionally, the line provides a vast range of choice of tours in every port with itineraries ranging from eight-night voyages to cruise trips extending more than one month.
6. Seabourn Cruises
Most travelers who scout for friendly but top-notch services are partial to this cruise line. Seabourn Cruises’ all-inclusivity is very compelling. The line’s fares include entertainment, meals, and other exciting itineraries. There is, moreover, no surcharge for the cruise line’s restaurant (The Thomas Keller restaurant), which is available fleet-wide. The fare pricing also includes open bars that offer free wines, spirits, and wines throughout the ship. However, there is a particular list of vintage wines and spirits that might cost extra.
5. Silversea Cruises
Silversea Cruises shines bright in as far as personalized services are concerned. The crew members are intuitive and friendly; they know exactly what you want even before you speak it out. This is evident in the lounges, especially where the bartenders are trained to memorize your drink preferences and understand your favorites in a short time. All staff members are trained by Leading Hotels of the World, which is a global hospitality consortium.
4. Crystal Cruises
The venture into smaller ships enables the cruising line to focus more on some of its strengths: customized services paired with top-notch cuisine accompanied by the best wines in the world. The cruise line has translated usual crystal experience and improved it for clients who prefer attentive services on a small boat. The Crystal Esprit is earning good reviews, and it is progressively making way for the line’s new yacht – the crystal endeavor which will launch in 2020.
3. SeaDream Yacht Club
The cruise line offers a number of unique experiences across its fleet of ships. One of the most memorable experiences offered is sleeping under the stars. This pastime is usually booked on a first-come-first-served basis. Staff members put a rope around the area and set the beds with pillows, duvets, and linens. Sleeping on a yacht’s deck is one experience that cannot be replicated easily – unless you own a yacht.
2. Royal Caribbean
Royal Caribbean offers a wide array of activities that can be done on its ships – think of activities lie skating rinks, bumper car tracks, and surf simulators. The line ensures that your sailing experience is fun. With time, the company hopes to unveil its private island.
1. Celebrity Cruises
In as far as stylish cruising is concerned, this line delivers its mandate like no other. The line runs some expedition-type voyages in the Galapagos. This year, the company will launch the Celebrity Flora, which will take in 100 passengers and sail with them through the Ecuadorean Islands.
Written by Dana Hanson
Read more posts by Dana Hanson