In this episode of Travel Talk, we are joined by five experienced travel agents who have traveled on multiple cruise lines and sailings. In many ways, a lot has changed in cruise travel and yet some things are still the same. Our expert panelists explain what’s changed, why cruising is coming back big, what you need to know before you go, and why you should book your trip with Magical Memory Planners.
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How Cruise Travel Has Changed
Next, I ask the panel, “In some ways, a lot has changed in cruise travel and yet some things are still the same. For listeners that have cruised before, what is something that is different now that you should be aware of?” The agents had some great feedback about the onboard experience such as checking the app to see the locations that are open and the times. There are a lot of rotating restaurants, shows, and events so be sure to check the times.
Melinda also shares how the cruise lines are using their apps to the fullest extent. Most cruise lines are not giving a paper copy in your room anymore. Some have them available if you ask, but others direct you to the app. With this new change, the cruise lines are offering complimentary wifi to use their app so you don’t have to purchase an internet package in order to do that.
One of the things that is challenging with cruising right now is the changes that are occurring at times quickly. It is another great reason to work with Magical Memory Planners, so we can keep you updated. Instead of going through the exact details of current safety measures since they can change before you actually travel, I thought it would be helpful to discuss the best resources to review before you decide to book a cruise and then again the weeks before traveling.
It was great to hear that the agents all received regular updates from the cruise lines before travel so they knew what to expect. They do a great job of that. Most cruise lines also have a “Know Before You Go” section or a link on the home page of their website to keep cruisers updated on the current processes at any time.
Favorite Parts of Cruising
The good news is that much of cruising has remained the same. Cruising is still a great vacation option for many. The panel shares with us their favorite part of cruising that is still an amazing part of a cruise vacation.
There are many different reasons that people like to cruise. For some, it is to sit and read with a beautiful view of the ocean. Nothing is more peaceful. For others, it is the opposite with all the adventure, exciting new destinations, and activities. I think everyone agrees they love the food!
Frequently Asked Cruising Questions
For the last section of the podcast, we ask the panel to answer some questions that we frequently get from first-time cruisers. Here is what they have to say.
Will I get bored on the ship? Will there be enough to do?
Mandi shares how much there is to do onboard and what she enjoyed on her 3-night Bahamian cruise on Royal Caribbean. The bottom line? There is more to do than you will have time to do. No worries on this one.
Is cruising just for older people? Or I’m traveling without kids and I don’t want to be overrun by kids. How do I pick the right cruise line?
Melinda shares that there is something for everyone when it comes to cruising. Both the cruise line and the itinerary come into play when we think about the demographics traveling on a cruise. The good thing is there is something for everyone, including spaces just for kids and just for adults on most cruise lines.
I have food allergies. Will they be able to address my concerns?
Debi has lots of personal experience cruising with food allergies and she shares some great information with us. The good news is that she has enjoyed lots of excellent service and handling of food allergies on many cruise lines.
I’m worried about seasickness. Any recommendations for that?
Mandi had many of these concerns before her first cruise too and shares some remedies that worked for her and how she felt onboard.
What is the dress code like? Do I have to dress up for dinner every night?
Tammy will ease your mind with the options for dressing for dinner that have changed a lot. There is more flexibility now. Of course, you can dress up if you want, but there is no need for a tux or ball gown anymore (unless you want to of course).
What about groups, special celebrations, or reunions? How can you celebrate onboard?
Carla has put together several group cruises and shares some of the ways you can celebrate onboard. There are lots of options for weddings, vow renewals, anniversaries, or special milestones. You may want to pull a group together of moms, couples, or friends too! There are lots of ways that cruising can be the perfect choice for your next group or celebration.
Let’s start with introductions as our agents tell you how long they have been with Magical Memory Planners, how often they have cruised, and their most recent cruise experiences.
- Allison – Host
- Carla – Royal Caribbean
- Mandi – Royal Caribbean
- Melinda – Disney Cruise Line
- Debi – Royal Caribbean and Virgin
- Tammy – Carnival, Virgin, and Royal Caribbean
This group has a lot of experience. All have been agents for over five years and traveled on cruises. Tammy has even been on three cruises in the last three months and has another one coming up in a couple of weeks.
We hope you enjoyed our first panel discussion and getting to know a few of our agents. If you are looking to get in touch with one of them, you can view their bio pages through the links below or email them directly.
- Carla Haydt: Bio, Email
- Mandi Langdon: Bio, Email
- Melinda Garbacz: Bio, Email
- Debi White: Bio, Email
- Tammy Barnhart: Bio, Email