Embark on a Baltic Cruise Adventure

Cruise trips give passengers an enjoyable experience while taking them to unique and beautiful locations in different parts of the world. This is most apparent in Baltic cruises. Revisit historic Europe and see castles from different eras, sample local European cuisine, and experience native culture, all the while taking part on a Baltic cruise. What’s more, you get the chance to discover the beauty of the local cultures of several port cities from different countries in one trip – explore cities along the Kattegat Bay, the Skagerrak Strait, and the Baltic Sea.

Baltic cruises visit several exciting ports of call from a number of countries such as Sweden, Finland, Denmark, Poland, Latvia, and Russia. Each locale is unique and offers its own attractions. For example, a stop in Denmark can take you to Aarhus, a quaint town with an open-air museum and reconstructed old Danish structures. It can also take you to Ronne, an island with a laid-back yet rich culture evident in its museums. The port cities of Gdansk and Gdynia, both in Poland, are also common stops. Sweden boasts of the towns of Visby, a picturesque city with Medieval architecture, and Gothenborg. Riga, in Latvia, offers a scenic view of history. Each Baltic cruise offers different ports of call.

It is important that you are well rested before starting on a Baltic cruise. One of the best ways to do this is to arrive at the port of origin a couple of days before the scheduled start of the trip. This will give you ample time to rest and to adjust to the local time difference, if any. Typical ports of origin are London, Kiel, Amsterdam, Copenhagen, and Stockholm. Check with your cruise line regarding any packages that they may have. A majority of cruise lines have options that include a night or two in a local hotel before the cruise starts. And while on board the cruise liner, enjoy the services and amenities that they provide. These include fine dining restaurants, swimming pools, fitness centers, spas, lounges, and clubs. Also ask the staff for their schedule of activities and take part in the ones that you find interesting.

Baltic cruises are usually offered from May through September and last from four up to sixteen nights. When planning to go on one, check out internet sites that specialize in cruise vacations. These sites have partnered with cruise lines and typically offer huge discounts for registered members.

Visit Unspoiled Vistas with Cruises to Antarctica

One of the best places to visit to see nature at its finest is Antarctica, a continent that offers unparalleled vistas. Several cruise lines offer Antarctica cruises – voyages that imbue a sense of adventure and endless discovery. Taking a cruise to Antarctica brings you to a place that can leave you in awe: see whales, sea lions, and other wildlife in their natural habitat, set your eyes on majestic and tall glaciers, and visit unique ports of call. What’s more, you can take in all of nature’s beauty from the comfort of the cruise ship.

An Antarctica cruise liner will most probably set sail from a South American port. The usual ports of origin are Buenos Aires and Ushuaia in Argentina, and Port Stanley in Falkland Islands. As cruise travelers usually need to take long flights to get to the port of departure, it would be ideal to fly in a day or two before the scheduled cruise date. This will also allow one’s body to adjust to the time difference.

Along the way, the cruise liner may stop at different locations such as Deception Island, where you can view several colonies of penguins or take a warm bath on the beach; Half Moon Island, where whales can be seen along the shore while mountains with breath-taking views surround you; the Orkney Islands; and Elephant Island.

If you are planning to take an Antarctica cruise, you would need to consider the time when the cruise is being offered. Such cruises are usually made available during the middle of arctic summers, which runs from December to February. This is partly because temperature during arctic summers is the best condition for baby animals to come out and learn about their environment and life on the ice. Another reason is because the sun comes out for almost twenty hours during arctic summers, giving tourists more time to view nature at its finest.

As Antarctica cruise liners only have a short cruise season, trips are often met with a high booking demand. Because of this, it is essential to plan your trip in advance. To catch great deals, check out websites that partner with well known cruise lines. At times, these sites require that you register and become a member. But it is well worth the time taken to register as membership allows you to take part in exclusive deals that can save you a lot.

Cruise Lines Based in America

Cruise lines operate cruise ships and strive to provide passengers with a full array of activities to create an enjoyable journey. Many of the world’s top cruise lines are based in the United States, though they operate in different countries across several continents. These cruise lines include Carnival, Royal Caribbean, Norwegian Cruise Line, and Oceania. Some American cruise companies operate multiple cruise lines under different names, such as Carnival Cruise Lines, which operates Carnival, Princess Cruises, and Holland America. Royal Caribbean Cruises also owns the Royal Caribbean International and Celebrity Cruises. In some instances, the parent companies of American cruise lines own and operate cruise lines based in other countries.

These well-known American cruise lines set themselves apart from the rest by providing distinctive service, exceptional on-board amenities, and a vast array of destinations and ports of call. They travel to international destinations such as the Caribbean, the Bahamas, Europe, Asia, Central America, South America, and Australia, as well as to local areas like Hawaii and Alaska. For example, Carnival has cruises that take passengers to different ports in Central and South America, the Bahamas, Europe, the Caribbean, Canada, Australia, and the United States. However, they do not travel to Asia. The same goes with Celebrity Cruises and Norwegian Cruise Line. Only a few cruise lines have voyages that bring their passengers to Asia; these include Royal Caribbean, Holland America, Oceania, and Princess Cruises.

If you are looking to find the best deal when it comes to cruise trips, visit online sites that specialize in American cruise lines. Some websites can give you a complete list of American cruise lines, together with details regarding trip destinations and cruise ships. These websites may require that you become a member; this is a simple requirement considering that you can get discounts of up to seventy five percent off from the list price. Further, some do not charge membership fees – you just have to register. Such huge discounts are only for a limited number of cabins per voyage so it would be best to plan for your vacation ahead. You can find cruise trips that can fit different budgets.

Tips for Finding the Best Cruise Offers

In the 1980s, the cruise industry was struggling. The reason was cost of cruises: cabins were expensive that only a few affluent individuals could afford them. Cruise ships had to set sail with many empty cabins, causing cruise companies to suffer considerable financial losses. That’s when travel agencies like VacationsToGo stepped in to help bring more passengers to cruise liners and, at the same time, make cruises accessible within most people’s budget. Their efforts paid off. Thanks to these online travel agencies, millions of people every year are able to take cruises at low prices.

Unfortunately, despite the overwhelming array of discounts and packages available to vacation-goers today, there are still many who are not able to enjoy these amazing cruise offers. If you’re one of those who keep missing out on great cruise offers, do some travel site research following the tips below.

  1. Create a list of your top three to five destinations. There’s an itinerary for every type of traveller. Are you interested in history or do you want to read a book a day on the beach? Choose a travel site that offers cruises to many different destinations and has partnership with many different cruise companies.
  2. Decide how long you’d go on vacation and when. Most ships offer enticing discounts for people who book months ahead in advance so they can fill their ships early, but many also offer last minute deals. Seasonal deals are also popular. For instance, Caribbean cruises in the fall are generally cheaper than any other times of the year, while prices for European cruises are more reasonable in the spring or late fall. If you plan ahead of time, you’re more likely to save a lot of money.
  3. Decide on your minimum requirement for a cabin and go up from there. Can stay in a room with no window or do you prefer a room with a view of the outside. Are you traveling alone or with your family? These are some things you need to consider when deciding on a cabin.

As always, deal only with legit and well-reviewed travel booking sites. Look for the BBB logo or equivalent agency when comparing booking sites to avoid being scammed. A travel agency with a long history of providing cruise offers has more established connection with companies in the industry and so is more likely to provide better cruise offers and packages than new ones.

Cruise Liner Basics

Vacations help us relax and recharge. They take our minds off work for a while and allow us to enjoy our time. Taking a cruise is one vacation option that has strongly been gaining popularity these days. Operated by cruise lines, cruise liners have grown in number. Cruise ships – another name for the cruise liner – transport passengers from one port to another while providing them with a fun time on board. A ride on a cruise liner is typically considered as a pleasure voyage.

A journey on a cruise liner starts at the port of origin. The port of origin varies with each cruise liner as this can depend on the route to be taken by the ship.  For example, a cruise liner going to Hawaii may have Los Angeles as its port of origin while one that is going to the Bahamas will start its trip in Miami. Along the way, the cruise ship will stop or dock at different ports. This allows passengers to see or visit more than just one place.

The sizes of cruise liners differ vastly; some can carry only a few passengers while others can cater to thousands. But regardless of size, what is important are the various on-board amenities offered by the ship. This is because the liner’s amenities form part of the experience. Most cruise liners have indoor pools, restaurants, spas, fitness centers, and parlors. Some also have a theater, shops, clubs, lounges, miniature golf courses, basketball and tennis courts, and even casinos. In a way, they are like floating resorts that provide you with the facilities to enjoy and do almost everything you can think of.

Cruise liners are rated based on a system that gives you an idea of the overall quality of the service, the amenities and the ship. Ratings for cruise liners start with one star – the most unexceptional – and go all the way to six stars. A cruise liner with a rating of six stars signifies a topnotch ship.

If you are looking for a cruise liner to fit your budget and your needs, you can make an online search for websites that have partnered with several cruise lines. These sites can offer you discounted rates if you book in advance.

Tips for Finding the Best Cruise Deal

With plenty of cruise deals and packages around, taking a cruise is no longer a luxury exclusive to the rich and famous.   According to Cruise Market Watch, an estimated 19 million people took a cruise in 2011.

Before the days of the Internet, purchasing a cruise would mean going to your local booking agency and browsing through some brochures. Today, anyone with an Internet-connected computer and willingness to spend time and effort can do an in-depth travel research. There’s a wide array of itineraries, packages, prices, and payment options available. By learning how to navigate through all these information, you can take the vacation you’ve been dreaming of without having to break the bank. Here are some tips on how to find the best cruise deals.

Check Online Cruise Booking Agencies

Everyone seems to be selling cruises online nowadays. You’ll find hundreds of websites offering low fares, discounted fares, or last minute deals. Before grabbing any deal, you should check two things:

  • The legitimacy of the site. Look for seals of approval, such as by the Better Business Bureau or the American Society of Travel Agents.
  • The fine prints. The online travel industry is very competitive, so travel sites post attention-grabbing captions such as “Cruise Bargains!” or “Lowest Prices Ever!” Before grabbing any deal, reading the fine prints. Is the advertised price inclusive of other fees such as taxes and port charges, or are there additional fees?  What about their cancellation fees?

Narrow Down Your Search into Regions

Cruise to some places would be more expensive than others, and your choice would depend on your budget. A Caribbean cruise, for instance, may be more expensive than a European cruise. Create a wish list of the destinations you want to visit (3 -5 is good), and check available prices on those destinations.

Sign-up for Membership Programs          

Some online travel agencies like Vacations To Go offer free membership programs. They don’t advertise their deals on their website. Instead, they send the latest deals and discounts on cruises to members via email.

Just as when shopping for a pair of shoes or a new cellphone, always compare prices and deals of different travel sites before buying a cruise. With proper research and planning, you’ll find the best cruise deal that fits your budget and ideal location.

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