If you are anything like most people you are eagerly awaiting spring time and all of the newness it promises. On the last leg of winter we have our eyes and hearts set on adventure and warmer weather. This is a perfect time to plan ahead for an easy and fun filled vacation. Of all the ways to get away, a cruise to an exotic location should be on every ones list. Today we well give you the scoop on how to make the best of your first cruise. Based on personal experiences we have complied 5 cruise tips to have the best experience.

    1. Be Specific; Pick a cruise that caters to your interest or demographic. If you are looking for a young and fun crowd, a family themed cruise may not be the best fit and vice versa. There are specialized trips that cater to a variety of different desired experiences, search for one that will fit your idea of fun best.
    2. Plan ahead; With cruises there are a lot of things to consider. One major thing to consider is your current location and where you will port out of. If you are in the Midwest or a landlocked state, popular ports in places like Houston, New Orleans, and Florida may be a bit far from you. Be sure to factor travel time to and from ports in your travel itinerary. Use the same cautions when packing and bring “traveling clothes” that are weather appropriate. You may have been in sunny Mexico last night, but don’t forget that you live in the blistering cold Midwest.
    3. Bring your appetite; For the money that you pay for food and drinks take full advantage of that. First things first; if you are trying to have a “LIT-cation” get the unlimited drinks package if they offer one. Prices could range from $150-$180 but it is very much so worth it. Although “unlimited” is really 15 drinks per day… that is still a lot and from personal experience it is quite difficult to make it to the cap and live to tell the tale. Those bartenders did not come to play. Cruises are a heaven for foodies because there is always something new to eat at the buffets and restaurants on board. For the night owl or club goers there are stations for 24 hr brick oven pizza and ice cream machines for a nightcap. For those who want a taste of the lavish life there are formal 6 course dinners offered every evening. Your dinner time is determined by your floor and there is a dress code. Yes, real fancy. The great thing about this is that for picky eaters it is an opportunity to try foods that you normally wouldn’t. Yes, you are technically paying for it, but the catch is that if you don’t like it you can get something else. The menu changes daily and is yours for the taking. Each night could be your own personal taste test. It’s your world.
    4. Your fun is not limited to the cruise line; there are tons of things to do on the ship every day from comedy shows, game shows, mixology classes, day spas, kids activities and so much more. When the ship ports, there are even more things to do like excursions. From swimming with dolphins, tours, hiking, and private beaches, there are a slew of other chances to make the most of your time. Use caution, but do not be scared to look outside of the confines of the cruise line to have different experiences for less money. Often times once you port, there are local companies that offer excursions and activities that are cheaper than those of the cruise line. They offer an experience that is richer in culture and authenticity, not money.
    5. Just do it; because yolo, right? Taking a cruise is an experience that encompasses the best things about vacations and makes the traveling part just as fun. Yes, the rooms may be small, and you may get sea sick but it is worth it. Remember to bring some Dramamine and that your room is only for sleeping and you’ll have the time of your life. There’s an inexplicable feeling that comes over you that first day when you realize how small you are in the grand theme of things. Bask in the beautiful sunsets, indulge in the food and culture that surrounds you and exhale.