Travelling by cruise ship is one of the most exciting and relaxing ways to see the world. Once you try it, you’ll fall in love with the unparalleled onboard hospitality, rousing evening entertainment and staggering array of shore excursions. That’s what happened to Leona Manna, whose personal cruise count stands at 16. As an AMA Cruise Specialist, she helps others select the vacation that’s right for them. Westworld asked Manna to describe the cruising experience.
Westworld: What are the top three cruise destinations?
Leona Manna: Alaska, the Caribbean and Europe are the most popular places to visit. Who wouldn’t want to escape our cold Alberta winters and soak up the warm Caribbean sun? Europe is all about the history and culture – museums, galleries, architecture and iconic landmarks. Alaskan cruises let you take in the spectacular natural scenery.
WW: What’s there to do on-board if you’re not an active person?
LM: The ships have activities for people of every physical level and interest. At night, there are Las Vegasstyle shows, stand-up comedians, casinos, dancing and cocktail parties. You’ll never run out of entertainment options. On the flipside, if you want to relax, go to the spa or read a book, you can do that too.
WW: When the ship arrives at port, how do guests discover the area?
LM: Most ships offer a wide range of organized excursions for the day – tours of historic sites, shopping trips, adventure activities. When you book a tour, the cruise line takes care of everything, including returning you to the ship on time.
WW: Is it advisable to book at the last minute if it means getting a deal?
LM: Last-minute deals have lots of restrictions and it can be difficult to coordinate convenient flights. We recommend that you book in advance, especially if you require a larger cabin to accommodate additional passengers or want the best selection of cabin locations.
WW: Why should people book through a cruise specialist?
LM: Booking a cruise can be complicated because there are so many variables – airfare, type of cruise, destination, pricing, value-added incentives, on-board activities, pre-boarding documentation and excursions. Cruise specialists are familiar with which cruise lines and destinations are best suited to your needs.