Cruise Debates: 7 Things that Always Divide Cruisers

Cruise debates are not uncommon among regular cruisers, as there are several topics that always seem to divide them. From formal nights to cabin category choices, tipping protocol to cruise line loyalty, and even the controversial subject of cruise ducks, these discussions can get quite intense. Some cruisers enjoy dressing up for formal nights, while others prefer a more casual approach. Traditional dining offers consistency and the chance to get to know tablemates, while anytime dining provides flexibility but potentially different companions each night. The decision on whether to bring kids on cruises has its own arguments, with options for adult-only cruises and family-friendly activities. Cabin category choice varies between those who opt for interior cabins to save money and those who prefer the privacy of a balcony cabin. Cruise line loyalty is another point of contention, as some cruisers are devoted to one brand while others enjoy exploring different options. Tipping protocol is yet another debated topic, with some preferring prepaid gratuities and others opting for cash tipping. And let’s not forget about the beloved or criticized practice of hiding rubber ducks on cruise ships. With additional debates on smoking areas and saving loungers on the lido deck, the diversity of cruise experiences allows for personal preferences and spirited discussions.

Formal Nights

Formal nights on cruises have long been a topic of debate and discussion among regular cruisers. There are two distinct groups when it comes to this issue – those who enjoy dressing up and those who prefer a more casual approach.

For those who enjoy dressing up, formal nights are a chance to showcase their style and elegance. They relish the opportunity to don their finest attire and participate in the glamour and sophistication of the evening. With the chance to wear ball gowns, tuxedos, and elegant suits, they believe that formal nights add a touch of class to the cruise experience.

On the other hand, there are those who prefer a more casual approach to formal nights. They may find dressing up to be uncomfortable or unnecessary, preferring to relax and enjoy their vacation without the constraints of formal attire. This group typically opts for more casual outfits such as dresses, skirts, or slacks paired with a nice blouse or shirt. They believe that a cruise should be about relaxation and comfort, and formal nights may go against that principle.

Ultimately, the debate over formal nights boils down to personal preference. Some cruisers see it as an integral part of the cruise experience, while others would prefer a more laid-back approach. Cruise lines recognize this diversity of opinion and often provide options for those who do not wish to participate in formal nights, such as alternative dining venues or dress codes that are less formal.

Traditional Dining vs. Anytime Dining

When it comes to dining on a cruise, there are two main options – traditional dining and anytime dining. Each option offers its own advantages and appeals to different types of cruisers.

Traditional dining refers to a set dining time and assigned seating arrangement. This means that you have a designated table and dining companions for the duration of your cruise. The consistency and familiarity of traditional dining can be appealing to some cruisers, as they have the opportunity to build relationships with their tablemates and develop a sense of community throughout the voyage. Sharing stories and experiences with the same group of people can create a unique bond that enhances the overall cruise experience.

On the other hand, anytime dining offers more flexibility and the ability to dine whenever and with whomever you choose. Whether you prefer an early dinner or a late-night snack, anytime dining allows you to cater to your own schedule. This option is particularly popular among cruisers who enjoy a more spontaneous approach to their vacation and prefer the freedom to decide their dining plans on a daily basis. However, one potential downside is that you may have different tablemates each night, which means there is less opportunity to form lasting connections with fellow cruisers.

Ultimately, the choice between traditional and anytime dining depends on your personal preferences and travel style. If you value consistency and getting to know your fellow cruisers, traditional dining may be the better option for you. If flexibility and the ability to dine on your own terms are more important, anytime dining may be the way to go.

Bringing Kids on Cruises

Bringing kids on cruises is a topic that sparks intense discussion among cruisers. There are those who believe that cruises should be adult-only experiences, and others who embrace the family-friendly activities and amenities offered by cruise lines.

For those who prefer adult-only cruises, the appeal lies in the peaceful and relaxed atmosphere that comes with a child-free environment. They envision a cruise as a chance to unwind and escape the responsibilities of parenthood, and believe that children may disrupt the experience for other passengers. This group often seeks out cruise lines that have strict age restrictions or adult-only areas, allowing them to enjoy a cruise tailored to their preferences.

On the other side of the spectrum, there are those who believe that cruises are an ideal vacation option for families. Cruise lines have recognized the demand for family-friendly activities and amenities, and have responded accordingly. From kids clubs and teen lounges to water parks and family-friendly entertainment, there is no shortage of options to keep children of all ages entertained. This group of cruisers values the convenience and all-inclusive nature of cruises, which allows them to enjoy quality time with their children while also having access to adult-oriented amenities.

Ultimately, the decision of whether to bring kids on a cruise depends on your personal circumstances and preferences. If you are seeking a child-free vacation, there are cruise lines and itineraries that cater to this desire. On the other hand, if you are looking for a family-friendly vacation that offers something for everyone, the options are plentiful.

Inside Cabins vs. Balcony Cabins

Choosing between inside cabins and balcony cabins is a common decision that cruisers face when booking their accommodations. Each option has its own advantages and appeals to different types of travelers.

For budget-conscious travelers, inside cabins are often the preferred choice. These cabins are located in the interior of the ship and do not have windows or access to natural light. While the lack of a view may be a downside for some, these cabins offer a comfortable and affordable option for those who prioritize spending their budget on other aspects of the cruise experience. Inside cabins are typically smaller in size compared to balcony cabins, but still provide all the necessary amenities for a comfortable stay on board.

On the other hand, balcony cabins offer a private space with access to fresh air and scenic views. These cabins have their own private balcony, allowing passengers to step outside and enjoy the sights and sounds of the ocean. Many cruisers value the ability to have their own outdoor space, whether it’s to relax with a book or simply take in the breathtaking views. Balcony cabins also tend to be larger in size compared to inside cabins, providing more room to spread out and make yourself at home during your cruise.

The choice between inside and balcony cabins ultimately comes down to your personal preferences and budget. If you are looking for an affordable option that still provides a comfortable space to relax and rest, an inside cabin may be the way to go. If you value a private outdoor space and the ability to enjoy the views from your own balcony, a balcony cabin may be worth the splurge.

Cruise Line Loyalty

Cruise line loyalty is a topic that often divides regular cruisers. Some cruisers prefer to stay loyal to one brand, while others enjoy experiencing different cruise lines and ship offerings.

For those who choose to stay loyal to one brand, the appeal lies in the familiarity and consistency that comes with cruising on the same line. These cruisers have found a cruise line that aligns with their preferences and meets their expectations, and they see no reason to deviate from this choice. By sticking with one brand, they become familiar with the ship layouts, onboard amenities, and overall cruise experience, which can enhance their enjoyment and comfort during each voyage.

On the other hand, there are those who enjoy trying new cruise lines and ships. They see each cruise as an opportunity to explore different itineraries, experiences, and onboard offerings. These cruisers appreciate the diversity and variety that comes with each new adventure, and thrive on the excitement of discovering something new. By sampling different cruise lines, they are able to broaden their horizons and find what truly resonates with them.

The choice between loyalty to one brand and trying different cruise lines ultimately depends on your individual preferences and sense of adventure. If you value consistency and familiarity, staying loyal to one brand may be the best option for you. If you enjoy exploring new experiences and branching out, trying different cruise lines can provide an exciting and ever-changing cruise journey.

Tipping Protocol

Tipping protocol is another topic of debate among cruisers. There are different approaches to tipping, with some cruisers opting for prepaid gratuities and others preferring cash tipping.

Prepaid gratuities have become increasingly popular in recent years. This option allows passengers to prepay the gratuities for their entire cruise at the time of booking, which ensures that the crew members receive their tips without any additional effort or hassle. Prepaid gratuities are often automatically added to the cruise fare, making it a convenient and straightforward option. For those who prefer to plan and budget in advance, prepaid gratuities can be a convenient way to take care of this aspect of cruising.

On the other hand, there are cruisers who prefer cash tipping. This allows passengers to personally hand out tips to crew members based on the service they have received. They believe that cash tipping allows for a more personalized and meaningful gesture of gratitude, as it allows them to directly recognize and reward exceptional service. Cash tipping also provides an opportunity to interact with the crew members and have a sense of appreciation for their hard work and dedication.

Ultimately, the choice between prepaid gratuities and cash tipping depends on your personal preferences and the experience you wish to have on your cruise. If you prefer the convenience and ease of prepaid gratuities, this option may suit you. If you value the personal touch and connection that comes with cash tipping, it may be worth considering this approach.

Cruise Ducks

Cruise ducks are small rubber ducks that some cruisers bring on their voyages to hide throughout the ship. While this may seem like a quirky and harmless tradition, it is a topic that divides cruisers.

For those who love cruise ducks, it is a fun and lighthearted way to add an element of surprise and discovery to their cruise experience. These passengers enjoy hiding the ducks in various locations around the ship, such as lounges, stairwells, and even in public restrooms. They take pleasure in imagining the delight of fellow cruisers when they stumble upon a hidden duck, and the camaraderie that comes with participating in this shared game. Cruise ducks can also be a conversation starter and a way to connect with other passengers who are equally enthused about the tradition.

On the other hand, there are those who criticize the practice of hiding cruise ducks. They may see it as a nuisance or a form of littering, as the ducks are often left behind by passengers who forget to retrieve them. Some argue that it detracts from the elegance and sophistication of the cruise experience, and may be seen as childish or frivolous by others. This group of cruisers prefers a more refined and relaxed atmosphere, and may not appreciate the added clutter and distraction that comes with the presence of cruise ducks.

In the end, whether you love or criticize cruise ducks is a matter of personal preference. If you find joy in participating in this unique cruise tradition, go ahead and join in the fun. If it’s not your cup of tea, there are plenty of other aspects of the cruise experience to enjoy and appreciate.

Smoking vs. Non-Smoking Areas

The debate over smoking vs. non-smoking areas on cruise ships has been ongoing for years. There are passionate arguments on both sides of the issue, with each group advocating for their preferred environment.

For some cruisers, designated smoking areas are a must-have on a cruise ship. They value the freedom to enjoy a cigarette or cigar while onboard, and appreciate having designated spaces where they can indulge without infringing on the preferences of non-smoking passengers. They argue that cruise ships should provide options for both smokers and non-smokers, and that designated smoking areas can help maintain harmony and accommodate the needs of all passengers.

On the other side of the spectrum, there are those who strongly prefer non-smoking areas on cruise ships. They may be non-smokers themselves or simply do not enjoy being exposed to secondhand smoke. This group believes that cruise ships should prioritize the health and comfort of non-smoking passengers, and argue that smoking should be confined to designated areas to minimize its impact on others. They appreciate cruise lines that have implemented strict smoking policies, including banning smoking in cabins and on balconies, as they feel it creates a healthier and more enjoyable environment for all.

Ultimately, the debate over smoking vs. non-smoking areas comes down to personal preferences and concerns. If you are a smoker, it’s important to research the smoking policies of different cruise lines and choose one that aligns with your needs. If you are a non-smoker, look for cruise lines that prioritize non-smoking areas and have established policies to ensure a pleasant and smoke-free environment.

Saving Loungers on the Lido Deck

The practice of saving loungers on the lido deck is a hot topic among cruisers. There are those who adamantly defend their right to reserve a lounger, and others who oppose the practice as unfair and inconsiderate.

For those who save loungers, it’s all about securing a prime spot for relaxation and enjoyment. They may wake up early in the morning to claim their preferred lounger with a towel or personal items, ensuring that they have a comfortable space to soak up the sun throughout the day. These cruisers argue that it’s a matter of first come, first served, and that as long as they are physically present at their chosen lounger, they have the right to reserve it for their own use. They see it as a part of the cruise experience to find the perfect spot and enjoy the amenities of the lido deck without having to worry about finding available loungers later in the day.

On the other side of the debate, there are those who oppose saving loungers. They see it as a selfish and inconsiderate act, as it prevents other passengers from having access to available loungers. This group argues that cruise lines should enforce policies that prohibit the saving of loungers, ensuring that all passengers have an equal opportunity to enjoy the amenities of the lido deck. They believe that it promotes a more fair and inclusive atmosphere, where everyone can enjoy their time by the pool or in the sun without feeling frustrated or excluded.

Whether you support or oppose the practice of saving loungers on the lido deck, it’s important to be respectful of others and considerate of the needs and preferences of fellow cruisers. If you choose to save a lounger, be mindful of the cruise line’s policies and ensure that you are present and actively using the lounger you have reserved. If you prefer a more egalitarian approach, consider speaking up or addressing the issue with the cruise staff if you witness the saving of loungers causing frustration or inconvenience to others.

Personal Preferences and Debates

In the world of cruising, there are endless opportunities for personal preferences and debates. From the choice of cruise lines and itineraries to onboard activities and dining options, there is no shortage of topics that can spark intense discussion among cruisers.

The diversity of cruise experiences allows for different preferences and opinions. Some cruisers prefer large ships with a multitude of onboard amenities, while others enjoy the intimacy and personalized service of smaller vessels. Some prefer an action-packed itinerary with multiple stops and excursions, while others prefer a more leisurely pace with ample time to relax and enjoy the onboard amenities. For some, specialty dining and gourmet cuisine are a highlight of the cruise experience, while others prefer the simplicity and convenience of buffet-style dining.

The beauty of cruising lies in the ability to tailor the experience to your own preferences and desires. Whether you are a first-time cruiser or a seasoned veteran, there is a cruise out there that caters to your specific tastes. The key is to do your research, read reviews, and consider what aspects of the cruise experience are most important to you.

As you embark on your next cruise adventure, remember that debates and differing opinions are a natural part of the cruising community. Embrace the opportunity to engage in friendly discussions and learn from the experiences and perspectives of fellow cruisers. After all, cruising is about exploring new horizons, connecting with like-minded individuals, and creating memories that will last a lifetime.