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Cruising 101: Choosing an ocean cruise line

For cruising veterans, it may seem obvious how to choose the best cruise line for your vacation, but for newbies, it’s the crucial first step and begins by asking the right questions.

To start, ask: What is my budget and what is my traveling personality?

There are four main categories of cruise line quality increasing in cost in order of standard ones, premium ones, upscale ones and luxury ones, and in each category, there are a number of different lifestyles to be expected onboard each individual line.

Walter Christen's insight:

There is definitely a cruise line for any type of travel personality. Understanding what you are looking for in a cruise vacation is the first step. Other articles for newcomers to cruising:

As a cruise veteran (first cruise in 1990 and 30 cruise to my credit) my style may be different from yours.  I like the large ships like the Royal Caribbean's Oasis of the Seas, where the ship is as much a destination as the ports the ship goes to but this does not stop me from taking cruises on smaller ships. Living in Florida, much of my cruising has been to the Caribbean as I have quite a few ports within driving distance and I love the beach and snorkeling.

Using Cruiseable is a great way to find out what the different cruise lines offer and what may be important to you on a cruise. See Cruiseable's Bliss Filters, there at the top right of the page, to research the cruise lines and ports of call to find your perfect vacation.