TraveLuxe

Choose the Right Cruise

Cruising seems to have a bit of a cult following – people either love cruises and rarely travel any other way, or they prefer to stay on land.

Whether your a veteran or rookie cruiser, your enjoyment of the experience hinges largely on choosing the right cruise. The notion that cruises are essentially all the same can be easily disproved by looking at the incredible variety of cruise ships, types, destinations and themes.

Some critical points to consider when choosing a cruise include:

1. What type of overall experience are you looking for? Cruises range from family-oriented to couples oriented to themes such as jazz, shakespeare or motorcycle groups.

2. Would you prefer a smaller, more intimate ship with more personal attention or something more grandiose with a rock wall, a skating rink and theater performances.

3. What time of year are you cruising? This is critical. There is a reason that cruises to the Western Caribbean are cheap during September – it’s the middle of hurricane season and the Western Caribbean is the most often hit. Possibly more than any other type of vacation, bad weather can affect your cruise vacation.

4. What type of dining experience are you looking for?  Do you want scheduled dining times or open dining? Are you looking for all you can eat buffets and 24 hour dining or higher end restaurants. How personalized do you want your dining?

5. Start your planning by asking yourself what you want to see and experience, rather than which destination you want to visit. You might have the Caribbean in mind, but realize through the planning process that the mediterranean better fits your interests.

6. Ask if a cruise really is for you. The pool games, casino, and rock wall sound like they’ll fill up your day at sea but will you really participate? Will six to twelve hours in each destination be enough for you? Are you happy with the stateroom options?  If the answer to these is yes, you’re probably ready to set sail! If you’re not so sure, discuss other options – or possibly a different type of cruise – with your travel planner.

Welcome to TraveLuxe!

Traveluxe, a bimonthly emagazine, was created to provide the ultimate traveler with all the tips, tricks, and suggestions for their next great adventure. Travelers can enjoy  on topics such as destination discovery, hotel and resort reviews, local language tips, worldwide events and festivals, international gastronomy and new travel accessories. Each issue will be centered on a specific theme, allowing our readers to delve into new types of travel with publication.

TraveLuxe Promotion:

Each issue, one TraveLuxe subscriber is randomly chosen to receive up to $300 off their next trip. Congratulations to last issue’s winner, Brandi McLemore! To make sure you’re subsribed for your chance to win, sign up now by filling in your email address.

About the Author:

Maya Northen is the primary author and editor in chief of TraveLuxe. She is also the owner of Chimera Travel, a travel planning company which creates customized itineraries for individuals and groups. As a specialist in Luxury Travel, Destination Weddings & Honeymoons and Adventure Travel, Maya has traveled to six continents (excluding Antartica) and has worked with clients traveling all over the globe. In addition to producing TraveLuxe, Maya has served as a travel editor of Maven Mag Philadelphia and has been featured in Ladies Who Launch Philadelphia and the Philadelphia Women’s Journal.

November-December 2009 Issue – All You Can Eat and Drink

The holiday season will be quickly upon us. Virtually all around the globe, that means a marjor focus on seasonal food and drink. Since we all have food on the brain, I figured why not explore the opportunities for exceptional gastronomic experiences throughout the world.

Merriam-Webster defines gastronomy as “the art of science or good eating”. Wikipidia defines it as “the study of a relationship between culture and food”.  While both definitions refer to food, the term can be extended to drink as well.

In the travel industry, gastronomic vacations are on the rise. In some cases, food or drink is the main activity of the trip, for instance a whisky tour of Scotland. In other instnaces, such as a Tuscan wine and bike exploration, culinary pursuits are combined with sightseeing, cultural experience or physical activity. Whatever your culinary preferences, there’s most likely a tour that features it!

If you have trouble finding a group or private tour that truly fits your preferences, not to worry – personalized gastronomic itineraries can be created specifically tailored to your interests. I hope you enjoy reading about these journeys as much as I enjoyed writing about them!