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How to Find the Perfect European Cruise

If you think cruises are too expensive, too long, or too (insert adjective here), you just haven’t found the right one. A cruise through Europe can be the trip of a lifetime with a price tag you can afford if you know how to find it.

Whether you’re looking for adventure, history, or a trip for the whole family, you can cruise to destinations familiar and exotic. When searching for the perfect vacation, make sure you’re following these tips and tricks to find the perfect itinerary to meet your needs.

Length

Start planning early in advance so you have plenty of options for cruises to fit your itinerary needs. You can find cruises in Europe as short as one day and long as several months. 

A popular option for those who hate flying, consider a transatlantic cruise, departing from Florida or New York and arriving in Southampton or other European ports. These journeys range from seven days and offer plenty of onboard activities and comfortable amenities during your trip.

Vatican city cruise

Audience

Make sure you know who will be on your cruise so you can have the perfect vacation. Some cruise lines, like Oceania tailor to a mature audience. Research ahead to find the activities and programs for specific sailings so you know exactly what you can expect to experience onboard.

If you’re more interested in sightseeing, consider a slower river cruise where you can make long stops in all your favorite port cities along the Rhine, the Seine or the Danube. Luxury river cruises attract a more affluent traveler, but some are surprisingly affordable and all-inclusive.

Several cruises have a plethora of activities for families and offer complimentary childcare throughout the day and evening.

Luxury

You can find great value and deals with cruises through Europe, but research what the ship offers and consider suites if you’re interested in luxury cruises. Regent offers all-inclusive luxury cruises, so you don’t have to worry about anything except enjoying yourself. You can find multi-room suites to accommodate more people and enjoy great views of the ocean.

For a lower cost option, check out great deals on Norwegian, with popular destinations throughout the Mediterranean. With great deals from indoor staterooms to luxurious suites, you can find something within every budget for the solo traveler or extended family.

Destination

When most people hear European cruise they think Mediterranean, and while there are plenty of those cruises, you can also find destinations throughout the Baltic and English Channel. More adventurous travelers mean more exotic locations, so places you might not know of could be on an itinerary.

St. Petersburg monument

Research little known stops like Gibraltar and Dubrovnik for some excellent sightseeing and picturesque towns. You can take a traditional Mediterranean cruise with stops in popular ports like Barcelona, Marseille, and Naples, or opt for something out of the ordinary and sail through the Baltic to destinations like Gdansk, Tallinn, and St. Petersburg.

Ad-Ons

Many cruises offer packages that will turn your cruise into a vacation package. Let the cruiseline handle airfare for you, so you only need to show up. 

For the more adventurous travelers, cruiselines offer before or after cruise tours extending your trip for several days and providing in depth tours of famous locations by knowledgeable English-speaking guides. You can choose different lengths and itineraries based on what you want to see and do during your tour.

Remember to book your cruise as early as possible for the best available deals and take advantage of special offers like free drinks, shore excursions, fine dining, and reduced deposits.

By: Devyn Woolsey

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