I am going to be honest, I always thought of going on a cruise as a senior living activity. Being stuck on a luxury water hotel did not strike me as a good time. News reports playing to fears of sickness or the Captain abandoning ship didn’t help. It is quite a bit of money to spend on a small room while floating on the ocean. Needless to say, my expectations were less than high for my first cruise!
The local chapter of my sorority decided going on a cruise would be the perfect way to celebrate an anniversary milestone, so I didn’t have to go through the process of researching a cruise line. On this trip to the Bahamas leaving out of Miami, we would be using Norwegian Cruise Line.
We had regular communication with a NCL agent and could pick a room with a balcony or upgrade to a larger space for an extra $300 per person. I seriously thought about paying for the larger space but you’re not supposed to be in your room that much right? This was an all-inclusive three day cruise. We knew about this trip for some time and could make payments if needed. The cruise was scheduled for the beginning of April and all monies were due in December. I downloaded the NCL app and made payments, got useful travel information about the documents I would need, and could pay ahead of time for activities like excursions.
I was able to find a cheap flight to Miami and spent a couple days taking in the city. I experienced Cuban food in Little Havana, took in some local history and sites on one of those Big Bus Tours, watched the little old men play dominos, and last but not least, hit a local outlet mall that had to offer the best deals in the world on suitcases because everyone had one!
Arriving on the cruise, you were greeted by all staff members as you walked through each floor. At one point I thought they would breakout a lively rendition of “Be Our Guest” but that didn’t happen. You can’t go to your room right away because they have to give everyone time to board and sort out the luggage. So your first stop will be food. All-inclusive allows you to eat and drink as much your body can hold. There was a buffet that was pretty much open all day. If you’re not a buffet person, they had several restaurants that were also included. I happened to be on the Keto diet while on the cruise and was able to be good most of the time.
I am not really a lay out in the sun or beach person. I enjoyed the pool on a very hot day, watched a movie, enjoyed my share of naps, sipped tea on the balcony outside my room, and partied with friends. Walking around the Bahamas was beautiful. I probably wasn’t that impressed with the island owned by the cruise line, but that was my only disappointment. My fear of sickness was put as ease when I saw the constant cleaning taking place on the ship.
Being on a cruise was an interesting experience. You’re shipping off onto to ocean for 3, 5, or maybe 7 days with a bunch of strangers trusting that google maps is still working and the Captain will be able to get you back safely to land. Overall it was a relaxing vacation and I would definitely do this cruise thing again!