Archive for November, 2015

Things to Bring on a Cruise to the Bahamas

Going for a cruise vacation is certainly an exciting thing, but packing luggage is certainly not that fun. If an individual is traveling to Bahamas for the first time, then he/she might not have a clear idea on what to carry and what to leave. The best that first time travelers can think of are clothes and money and in this confusion the chances of forgetting important items is very high. Hence, it’s better to do all the packing at least one week in advance.

What to bring for a Cruise to the Bahamas

People from all sides of the globe flock to the Bahamas to enjoy its white sand and heavenly waters. The island is situated on the eastern coast of the US which helps this tiny piece of land to avoid various natural calamities. The bright sunshine makes it one of the top golf destinations of the world. Apart from the countless water activities, Bahamas also offers an amazing view of the flora and fauna for its visitors. Many people don’t know but Bahamas is an independent nation and hence it is essential to make pack necessary items before heading towards it.

What to Wear
Bahamas normally experiences warm weather. Hence, people traveling during summer seasons, should carry light-weight clothes as temperatures run up to 90°F. Avoid dark-colored clothes and wear comfortable slippers and shoes. People who are planning to spend most of their time near the beach should carry more swimsuits. Men and women should also carry an extra formal suit and a beautiful gown for attending any formal parties hosted on the cruise.

Important Documents
Place all you personal identification documents and paperwork in a separate backpack. Carry airline tickets, cruise documents, proof of citizenship and driver’s license, and carry multiple copies of all these documents and keep them separate in case they are lost. It is a good idea to carry additional traveler’s checks and cell phones.

Personal Care Items
A cruise liner is a place where customers are provided with all the possible comforts they need. Although complimentary personal care items such as shampoos, shower gels, razors and sunscreens are available it is a good idea to check with the cruise liner just to be sure. People who plan to spend most of their time outside will need loads of sunscreen, if they don’t want to get sun burned.

Bring Books
If you are traveling alone, then carrying a book to pass time is a great idea. Bring your own reading material because books and magazines available on the cruise ships would be more expensive. Most of the Bahamian population speaks English, but many of the locals might use regional phrases which might be unfamiliar to tourists. In such cases guidebooks prove very helpful.

Luggage
Luggage rules on cruises are much more relaxed than luggage rules on aircraft. It is advised that each tourist carries not more than two suitcases weighing less than 50 lbs each. Some cruise liners also allow guests to carry small coolers filled with non alcoholic drinks. People who want to shop around this beautiful nation should get a duffel bag and take advantage of the duty free shopping experience.

Sports Equipment
It’s also a good idea for tourists to bring golf clubs, scuba diving equipment, tennis rackets and balls from home. This would help save lots of rental fees.

Bahamas is a beautiful destination and a place which offers something for everyone in the family. It is important to know when to set foot on this little slice of heaven, tourists should be aware that hurricane season begins from 1st June to November 30th. However, many cruise liners still travel between this time even though there are high chances of coming face to face with harsh weather conditions.

Helpful Tips to Find the Best Cruise Deals

Sea cruises, without a doubt, spell class, style, and luxury. They seem to have it all―spacious cabins with top-of-the-line amenities, multi-cuisine restaurants, spas, swimming pool(s), recreation areas, and amazing live entertainment. And move over seasickness; because most cruise liners today are the very definition of comfort.

So, when you’ve got a liner that lets you travel in style to the most exotic destinations in the world, from Scandinavia to Antarctica, you naturally assume them to be jaw-droppingly expensive. Well, some of these sure are, but there also are a variety of options to suit your budget. The following pointers will come in handy to find you that dream cruise vacation.

How to Find the Best Cruise Deals

Begin with Research
The first rule is also the most obvious one on the list; to be able to find a bargain on your cruise vacation, you need to invest a good deal of time in research. Get the basics in place by deciding:

– myour destination
– myour choice of ship (big or small)
– type of cruise (adventure/family/singles/exotic)

Once you have these answers in hand, you can get to the task of zeroing in on the cruise that ticks all your boxes. Read up on cruise companies and their reviews on the Internet. This will help you shortlist a few options. You can even order brochures of the trips that interest you.

Proceed to Booking
If this is your first cruise trip, it is suggested that you book it through a travel agent. A cruise, unlike a regular holiday, is like your mode of transport/accommodation/sightseeing all rolled into one. Which is why a travel agent’s expertise will come in handy to book a trip that suits your needs. An agent can help you pick the right cruise, a good cabin, food and beverage options, age-appropriate entertainment for the family/group, include a few steal-deals, and perhaps throw in a discount as well.

A few cruise companies even appoint certain agents to accept bookings from customers. In such cases, the agent will not charge you anything for the service rendered, as he is already being paid a commission by the company. So, in case an agent is trying to coerce you into choosing a particular cruise, give it a deeper thought before you come to a decision.

Usually, the good agents are sure to have a Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA) affiliation. A CLIA-certified agent is considered to be worthy and experienced to offer the best services, having completed a training program. Plus, you may also look for referrals, and pick an agent that has been recommended by someone you trust.

Finding the Best Deals
Finding the best cruise deals requires some amount of experience as well as expertise. To a first timer, it is akin to rocket science; and there are more chances of the person being taken for a ride, rather than a cruise. But here’s a thumb rule―your best chances of snagging a steal are at least 8 to 10 months before the sailing date. The best cabins are on sale during the early days, so you’re ensured a wide choice. This is especially true of popular destinations like the Mediterranean or Caribbean. If you’re thinking of going off-track, say Antarctica for instance, then you have to book at least a year in advance. Such cruises are not as frequent as the others, but are phenomenally popular (and not to mention, expensive).

Getting in Last-minute
Last-minute deals are a bit of a gamble when it comes to cruises. This is because, unlike regular vacations, your options are severely limited. So, while it’s true that you may find some last-minute value deals, they may not necessarily be to your liking. If this is your first trip to the seas, it is recommended that you play it safe and book in advance. Once you gain experience, you’ll automatically be trained to snag a steal at the last moment.

Be Weather Wise
Ensure that you complete your homework regarding weather-related aspects before you book your trip. Be in the know about the kind of weather to be expected at your destination, plus the general conditions of the sea throughout the duration of your trip. Doing so is important because lull-season cruise trips may fit perfectly in your budget, but the dowdy weather conditions throughout the cruise may dampen the overall experience. This may seem a bit trivial to some, but keep in mind that if you don’t like the weather, you simply can’t leave a cruise midway, for obvious reasons.

Consider the Whole Hog
A cruise isn’t just about the ship. You need to add the cost of traveling to the port of departure, perhaps a night’s stay here, and the return flight from your destination. Adding up all these things will give you an accurate picture of your actual expenses. Just ensure that your pre- and post-cruise expenditure does not eat into what you thought was a bargain cruise price.

There are endless number of things to consider when you’re booking a cruise trip. But listing them all out would translate to a lot of confusion. So, don’t be too pressurized, and book your trip in a relaxed state of mind. You’re sure to get the best deal this way.

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