Post # 1
Fiance and I are taking a cruise to Bermuda for our honeymoon next October. Neither of us have ever taken a cruise so I would love to get some insight from some Bee’s who have…
1. How far in advance should we book? Our cruise is leaving on 10/22/11 out of NJ. It is the last cruise of the year leaving from this port.
2. We’re definitely going to get atleast a balcony. Suites arent really in our budget. I’ve heard stories about couples mentioning they are on their honeymoon and getting upgrades. Does this actually work? Not that we’re looking for anything for free but hey, who wouldnt take an upgrade!
3. For first time cruisers, is there a location on the ship that would be best for us to try to book our cabin? Neither of have ever experienced sea sickness but we’ve also never been on a boat of that size.
Thanks for the help!
Post # 3
@UpstateCait: If it is the last sailing and you have definite expectations for room category and style, I would suggest as soon as possible.
I have been on a few cruises and I haven’t heard of upgrades once you are already on the ship. But sometimes you will be picked at random for an upgrade (for a fee) prior to your sailing date. We booked an inside cabin at the beginning of this year and were called 1 week prior to sailing to upgrade to an oceanview room for $20 pp, so it was worth it.
I would personally book midship. There is less motion in the middle. In October you never know what storms may hit or how the seas will be (even though you arent sailing the Caribbean).
Post # 4
Thats awesome you are getting a cruise!
I have only cruised out of Fl but I will try my best to answer what I can. It would be helpful to know what cruise line you are going on and the length of the cruise.
1. How far in advance should we book? – Book ASAP. Most lines now have the price guarantee. They also may let you put like $200 pp down now and pay the rest 1 month before the cruise. This can help with budgeting.
2. We’re definitely going to get atleast a balcony. – A few days before the cruise you can look to see how full it is. If its pretty empty than make sure to get to the port as soon as you can to ask for the upgrade. If the boat is full, just like any hotel, there isn’t much they can do.
3. For first time cruisers, is there a location on the ship that would be best for us to try to book our cabin? – The lower on the boat you are the less “rocking” you should feel. The center of the boat is also best for motion sickness. However, being at the bottom of the boat can make it difficult to get an elevator or take the stairs all the way up to the higher floors for the activities. I usually shoot not for the bottom floor, but like the second or third from the bottom.
Post # 5
@caszos: That would be awesome if we could only put $200 down! Do you know if only certain cruise offer that?
Post # 6
I’ll answer your question #3. I would suggest the bottom of the ship, where you are less likely to feel much movement. Not necessarily the last/bottom floor, but I would avoid the top/upper parts of the ship.
Post # 7
Bermuda in October has an average of 6.6 inches of rainfall – it’s the rainiest time of year to go there. If you’re sure that’s where you want to go… then I recommend CruiseCritic.com, click on the boards and you’ll see the answer to any question you might possibly imagine. You can look for info on the specific boat you’ll be on, and ask others for advice on where the best rooms on that particular boat are. It varies from ship to ship where the most engine noise/vibration is.
As for upgrades, they can happen to anyone, anytime, based purely on whether the ship happens to have a room available at the time you set sail. I don’t think being on your honeymoon makes it more likely; the only factor I’ve heard influences an upgrade is whether you’re a repeat cruiser with that cruiseline.