What Cruise Ships are Like for the Ordinary Person

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Cruise ships are a blast to be on. We enjoy getting away and seeing the many places on the itinerary. When we go on a cruise, though, it may not be all that we expect it to be. Here are a few expectations and realities you might consider before your next cruise.

1. Boarding the Ship

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Boarding the ship may take several hours. You may expect it to be like the movies where you will take beautiful pictures by the entrance of the ship. You will, however, wait in a long line and be queued. The line may take hours to get through. You might not get that perfect picture.

2. The Actual Boarding

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The actual boarding will take place in a terminal. It will be much like an airport. When you finally get on the cruise ship, you may not want to take that picture by the pool out in the sun. The actual boarding will be a long and time-consuming event, with the hundreds of other passengers going on the cruise with you.

3. Our Expectations for the Pool

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The pool is an essential part of the cruise. It is something that prompted us to use the cruise line we chose. Our expectations are peace and quiet at the pool. A time to relax. Our reality is much different. The pool area is a shared experience and tends to get crowded at sometimes during the day.

4. The Reality of the Pool

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The cruise ship will have many people on-board. There will be limited pool space. When you are out by the pool and expect it to be a peaceful experience, you are going to want to go in the evening, or when it is not so busy. Otherwise, there will be many playing watersports, as well as children running and playing.

5. Our Hot Tub Expectations

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Other than the pool, we might think of the hot tub as ours. We want to enjoy a moment with our cocktail and watch the ocean pass us by. But the hot tub is not going to be just ours. It is something we need to share. We must share it with strangers, as well as loved ones.

6. What We Really Get in the Hot Tub

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When it comes to the hot tub, we will experience many things—privacy is not one of them. When we are on a cruise, we must share things like the hot tub with others. That means you cannot stretch your legs and relax in the hot tub. Of course, let us not forget to add these facilities are on a first come and first serve basis.

7. What are Your Expectations for the Room?

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What are the expectations you have for the room on the cruise you are taking? Is it to have a beautiful view of the ocean from your quarters? Maybe, you are expecting 5-star hotel accommodation style rooms. That is typically what you might think of when you see the brochure for the cruise line.

8. What the Room is Going to be Like

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The cruise ship will have 5-star rooms available. These, of course, will come at a cost. When you rent a room on a cruise ship, you must consider the mass number of people who are going to be on the ship with you. There will not be enough space onboard the vessel to accommodate everyone with a 5-star room.

9. What Kind of Entertainment are you expecting?

Many going on a cruise are going to expect the latest headliners in the entertainment industry to be performing while they are on this cruise. That is not going to be the case, though. There will be much for your enjoyment pleasure. It is just not going to be the hottest names in the industry.

10. What the Live Shows Will be Like

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Many times, a cruise line will book a struggling artist. That is the type of entertainment you are likely to get when you book a cruise. It is not likely that you will see live entertainment of any other type. Also, you may end up with a night of karaoke. You may want to check out the proposed lineup for entertainment before booking.

11. What Your Expectations for the Cruise Casino Are

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Many cruise ships offer a casino as part of the entertainment package. Guests of the vessel except that if the live entertainment and the pool were not up to par, the casino should at least make up for it. Sometimes, though, the casino is equally disappointing to cruise goers. Read more.

12. What the Casino Actually is

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As you may have been disappointed by the lack of space for a five-star accommodating room, you will be disappointed in the casino. There is typically not much space on a ship to create the gaming experience that many would have is Las Vegas. Sure, there will be a few slot machines, but not much more.

13. The Overall Expectations of the Cruise Ship

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When many thinks of a cruise ship, they are undoubtedly thinking of a vessel of size and stature of the Titanic. The typical cruise ship is nowhere near the likings of the Titanic, though. Many will be disappointed if they looked at a photo online and the boat, they are assigned is nothing like the picture.

14. What the Ship Will Actually Look Like

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You should bear in mind that these cruise liners have been on the water for many years. The picture you looked at online, may have been taken at the beginning of the sailing for that vessel. It should be no surprise to you, then, that the ship you are going to be on will be dirty and grey on the outside.

15. Our Expectations of the Social Scene

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When many of us think of a cruise, we think of a young crowd that may have a family. A cruise liner is not typically filled with families or even younger couples. It is generally attractive for those in their ‘Golden Years.’ These folks are not wanting to party throughout the duration of the trip.

16. What the Social Scene is Going to be Like

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There are some cruises that are specific for those who are looking to party and have a good time while on their vacation. Mostly, though, it is going to be a ship full of elderly people. They may not meet the expectations of a younger crowd. If you are looking for a young crowd, be certain to book a cruise for young people.

17. The Expectations We Have of the Dining Facilities

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For those of us who are used to 5-star hotels and expect the 5-star dining experience on a cruise, we may be disappointed. That is, the food is usually served in a buffet-style and is not of the quality you may expect from a 5-star facility. When you are booking the cruise be certain it is a buffet of food with variety and flavor.

18. What the Dining Room Will be Like

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The dining room will likely have long lines. It is going to have foods laid out and you choose the options that are best for you on that day, or night. When you arrive at the dining room for the first time, it may remind you a bit of the high school cafeteria. The food should be the least of anyone’s concerns when booking a cruise.

19. The Drinking Expectations

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When you think of your cruise, you may think about those cocktails you are going to be sipping by the pool. The idea of booking a cruise package without the drinks is next to a nightmare. The alcohol should be served in a tall glass, with many decorations. No better yet, a coconut.

20. Let us Take a Look at the Cocktail Experience a Little Closer

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Of course, like everything else on your cruise, the drinks you will be sipping will depend on the cruise you paid for. If you are planning on drinking at the pool, be certain you book a cruise that is serving alcohol during the daytime. It would be a disappointment if you could not.

21. The Romance we Expect

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Many couples who marry will take a cruise as part of their honeymoon. These couples may be expecting that they will have space and time to spend with each other in a romantic setting, such as watching the sunset fade. It is not going to be like that on your cruise ship, though.

22. The Type of Romantic Scene we Will Get

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Despite being on the cruise with many others, there are ways to get around and find some privacy with your loved one. There are also some cruises that you may take that book specifically for couples. It may make it more fun to be on a cruise with other couples if you are on a honeymoon.

23. The Weather we Want

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To make the most of your cruise, you are going to want blue skies, sunny days, and warm temperatures. That is because you will be outside most of the time you are on your cruise. Researching the weather for the area you are going to be in, and for that time of the year is a must.

24. The Type of Weather we Get

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As you may know, it is impossible to predict the weather months in advance. There may be a day or two during your cruise that you will want to stay at the casino, stay in your accommodations, or just do another indoor activity the cruise ship has planned for days like that.

25. The Types of Activities You May be Looking For

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Many cruises will offer the passengers an opportunity to participate in activities while onboard. That is, these passengers may get to go hiking, snorkeling, or just walking around at the specific destinations the cruise ship will stop at. These activities can go either way—good or bad. Read more about that.

26. What the Tours are Actually Like

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Many times, customers on a cruise liner will get the opposite. The activities are still like how they were described. It would be impossible to book a cruise and not have to be transported in a hot van with no air conditioning. Just make the most of it and enjoy the scene. It is likely you will make lasting memories.

27. The Kinds of Onboard Activities we are Looking to Get

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There are expectations we will have for the onboard activities that we are offered. That is, we will be curious to know if there will be water skiing available while on the boat, and what other types of activities are available. All the shipping companies try to compete in this area. Shop around.

28. The Activities we Can Expect

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While the cruise ship will have other fun activities to do, the activities that are most sought after will book quickly. These activities typically come with a price tag as well. You must book your spot with water sports and other activities while booking the cruise itself. Read more about the spa.

29. The Expectations we Have for the Spa

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What better way to get away from it all on a vacation than to have someone pamper us? We typically would want to put on the robes the spa offers and have a deep-tissue massage. It is expected that the spa area of the cruise will be the one place that meets all our expectations.

30. What the Spa May be Like

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The spa on a cruise ship is generally like that of a beauty shop. There will be many chairs lined up, and you are typically not going to get the best of the best massage. You may get pampered a little, but it is likely these areas of the ship might be a little unclean. Check out the area before sitting down.

31. What Kind of Souvenir Shop we are Looking to Find

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The souvenir shop may not be the highest priority on your list when booking your cruise, but it should bear some weight. It is a time when you will pick up something for family and friends who could not make the trip. You should expect to find a variety of selections when at the souvenir shop.

32. The Souvenir’s the Ship is Likely to Have

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The souvenir shop on the ship is not likely to be full of extraordinary gifts. You will more than likely buy that family member a shirt or dress while touring the islands you visit during your stay. These shops are tourist attractions and tend to be pricier than the souvenir shop onboard the vessel.

33. What Your Expectations for Tour Destinations Will be

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The tour destinations are one of the main reasons we take a cruise. We expect to see exotic places that were once only available in the brochures we found in magazines or online. In fact, choosing a cruise specifically for the tour destinations is the reason we go. Buyer beware, though.

34. What the Tour Destinations May be Like

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The tour destinations are likely to be beaches that are not suitable for everyone. Be careful when you book your cruise not to book one that has some of these beaches. They could be trouble to travel for children, the elderly, and those with mobility concerns.

35. Our Expectations for Sightseeing in the Ocean

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Some of the cruises allow passengers to swim with the whales, dolphins, and other aquatic life. There are some who will book the cruise just for the opportunity to see some of these water animals. They have visions of taking pictures of the animals and may spend all their time on-deck.

36. What the Ocean Sightseeing Will be Like

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Chances are not likely that you will get to view any dolphins, whales, or other aquatic animals. While you might dream of taking pictures of these animals doing fantastic tricks. You may not get the opportunity to see any of them. It might be that you will only get a view of the ocean, and nothing else.

37. Our Expectations for the Beaches

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Our expectations of the beaches on the cruise path are to have a long time to sit in the sand and soak up the sun. Though, cruise ships are typically on a tight schedule. With, you likely only spending a few hours on the beaches during each stop. That is, if the beaches are what you envisioned them to be.

38. The Beach Experience we are Likely to Have

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We are likely to have to share our beach experiences with hundreds of strangers. We should keep in mind that the cruise ship is going to stop at some beautiful places and let you off to enjoy a little downtime, but these are going to rowdy times, with many people.

39. Are You Expecting Sea Sickness?

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If you are not expecting a little bit of sea sickness when on your cruise, you are not alone. Many do not think of the boat rocking on the water. They tend to forget motion sickness medicine at home. The motion sickness can be excruciating, it may ruin your trip. Beware of these thoughts.

40. The Sea Sickness Experience

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Sea sickness is a real thing. If you are not prepared for it, it can take you by surprise. When you are nauseous and maybe wanting to vomit on the deck, it can be enough to ruin your trip as well as the trip of others around you. Also, they may cancel some of the tourist destinations if too many become motion sick.