My Top Ten Things I Avoid When Cruising

You may remember that I recently decided to do a three part series on cruising top ten lists. A few days ago I did the first post in my series that covered my top ten favorite things about cruising. I hope you enjoyed the first list.

Today, I continue this short top ten series with my second top ten list. Today’s new top ten list is The Top Ten Things I Avoid When Cruising:

  • 10. Spa Seminars: I find these seminars to just be sales pitches for expensive, unnecessary, possibly ineffectual products and procedures. My time is probably better spent eating right, exercising, and staying out of the sun.
  • 9. Bingo: I know Bingo is popular. My husband’s family loves bingo, but its just not my thing. There are plenty of other things to do during the day.
  • 8. Shopping Talks: I don’t generally buy any high ticket items while on a cruise. Most of the shopping talks are just advertisements for the higher end stores in the ports. I personally don’t think it makes any sense to buy jewelry or electronics or collector’s pieces thousands of miles from home. If the merchant is unethical, even with the ship’s guarantee of these stores, correcting problems seems to be more hassle than the savings would be worth. I don’t need the shopping expert to help me find the t-shirt and hat shops.
  • 7. Coach Tours: In some ports, they are just unavoidable. For example, on the Mexico cruises, there are some sights like inland villages or ancient pyramids that are best reached via these types of ship arranged coach tours. However, our family generally prefers to stay close to port and utilize more personalized transportation like a taxi or a rental car. Hawaii was a great destination for rental cars, and in Mexico, even our ship arranged tour of Mazatlan featured open air electric “Jeepies” for just 4 passengers. We generally prefer the flexibility and lack of crowds afforded by the taxis and rental cars.
  • 6. Auctions At Sea: Our favorite line, Celebrity offers both wine and art auctions. Both concepts seem to be a way to make buck off a captive audience who is uneducated about the products being sold. I’m not really into fine art, and prefer to buy my wine from my own distributor or a local winery here at home.
  • 5. The Casino: Its smoky and my money seems to disappear faster than if I just stood at the rail and threw it overboard.
  • 4. The Buffet: I don’t completely avoid the buffet, but as often as possible, I prefer to eat in the sit down dining room for breakfast, lunch and dinner. The food is usually pretty good in the buffet, but I just prefer not have to fight the lines and then search for a table. The choices are usually more limited in the sit down dining room, but for relaxation, it is just nice to be seated at a table and have my meal brought to me and my companions.
  • 3. The Sun: Nothing is quicker to ruin a vacation than a scalding sun burn. I’m fair skinned and don’t tan at all. The worst thing I could do is to lay out in the sun all day. SPF 50 Sunscreen doesn’t even work for me or my kids. We wear protective clothing and hats whenever we are in the sun. This includes a wetsuit style UV protective swim suit or a surfer’s shirt called a rash guard. I see people who lay out by the pool every day and usually end up bright red. I don’t want to end up with sun burn sickness like I did on a trip to the tropics over 15 years ago. I was sick and miserable for days after that time that “I tried to just get a little sun.” I’m sure I also did long term damage to my skin on that vacation too. Now, I cover up and stay in the shade.
  • 2. Mega Ships: Some folks love them, feeling like the bigger the better. In contrast, I prefer a small ship with less bells and whistles and a more intimate experience. But maybe some day??? Never say never!
  • 1. Nitpicking: No cruise is ever completely perfect. I focus on the overall quality of the cruise experience and don’t sweat the small stuff. Nitpickers focus way to much on a few unimportant details and wind up making themselves miserable.