CRUISE VACATIONS‎ > ‎

Mainstream Cruise Lines

Mainstream or ‘mass market’ cruising is the starting point for many first-time cruisers.  Within mainstream cruising there’s a huge range of choice, but some generalizations can be made. Aficionados consider mainstream cruising to offer the best value of any travel product.
 

MY TRAVEL AGENT’S top points of comparison for MAINSTREAM cruises:

 

1. SHIPS - Mainstream cruises tend to feature larger ships, carrying literally thousands of passengers and crew. The ships included in this category are among the big, bigger, and the biggest afloat. They also carry the highest number of passengers per available space.

2. PORTSThe big ships tend to visit the busiest and most popular ports – in some cases because they’re the only ones that can handle these floating resorts. In recent years, mainstream cruise lines have increased their geographic spread, and now offer cruising opportunities in Europe, Asia, Mexico and the South Pacific, as well as traditional hotspots like the Caribbean and Mexico.

3. PUBLIC AREAS - Ships’ décor runs the gamut from glitz and glitter to nautical kitsch.

 

4. CABINS - Staterooms range from inside cabins for three and four to a variety of outside cabin configurations with or without balconies. Top-notch suites may, or may not, come with numerous extra amenities

 

5. DINING - Dining is generally shipboard traditional with two assigned seatings in the main restaurant. However, mainstream cruise lines are experimenting with variations of open-seating dining and alternative restaurant options that allow passengers to dine when and with whom they please. Choice is the keyword and you’ll always find something to eat, either from 24-hour room service or a variety of locations. Food is often likened to banquet style fare.

 

6. SERVICE - Service is friendly but not necessarily polished or overwhelming.  Cabin stewards attend to your room while you hardly know they were there.

 

7. ENTERTAINMENT - Entertainment tends to be high energy Las Vegas style production shows, lounges and discos for dancing, and piano bars for quieter pursuits.  Comedians and other headliners appear in the main theatres.

 

8. ACTIVITIES - Enough activities are offered to keep even the most hyperactive passenger content.  Each day’s activities schedule is placed in your cabin the night before and you will find multiple activities going on from early morning to well past midnight.  Plan to do a lot, plan to do a little, or plan to do nothing – it’s your choice.   

 

9. SPA/FITNESS - Large spas with fully equipped gyms, exercise rooms, and jogging tracks are as common as the multiple swimming pools and hot tubs.

10. FAMILY/CHILDREN - Some ships put the focus on families, with extensive children’s and teen programs and lots of planned activities for the whole family. Others offer more of a party scene, mostly geared to 3-, 4- and 5-night jaunts.

11. FELLOW PASSENGERS - First-timers, repeat passengers, young and old alike. Mainstream cruise lines are ideal for singles, families, and groups—anyone who is looking for a fun and exhilarating vacation.

 

CLICK ON THE ARROW TO THE LEFT OF THE CATEGORY HEADER IN THE NAVIGATION BOX TO CHECK OUT OUR FAVORITE MAINSTREAM CRUISE LINES.


 

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