FAQ: A guide to cruising

If you’re considering going on your first cruise but are unsure about what to expect and whether you’ll enjoy it, our FAQ should help to answer some of your questions and put your mind at ease.

Meanwhile, you can find out more about specific itineraries and ships on this website.

  • Can I cruise from the UK?

A lot of cruises – especially those that whisk you to far-flung destinations – begin overseas, which means you need to fly to the relevant country and departure port to board. This just means that you’ll have more time soaking up some overseas sun, rather than cruising all the way from the UK to your chosen region.

But that’s not to say you can’t cruise directly from the UK. Indeed, there are plenty of itineraries that do set sail from British ports, and these are often great if you’re brand new to cruising. After all, driving to a nearby port rather than flying to one is typically much easier and quicker, so will help you relax ahead of your first voyage.

  • Do I have to be away for several weeks?

A common misconception about cruises is that they always span at least a few weeks – and often a number of months. And, while it’s true that there are certainly plenty of itineraries that do offer you week after week of leisure, there are lots of shorter options available too.

So, if you’re short of time or you’re simply not sure whether cruising will suit you, you have the freedom to opt for a more modest itinerary. Going away for six nights is ideal, allowing you to get a decent taste of what life is like onboard without the commitment of a longer trip.

  • Where can I go?

The beauty of cruising is that is lets you travel all over the world. If you like, you can simply explore some of Europe’s prettiest destinations, or instead set sail for further afield – the US and Canada, perhaps.

You can also travel as far as Australia, and if you’ve always fancied going Down Under, a cruise is a brilliant way to do so – and not only because it gives you the chance to explore other destinations too. After all, flights from the UK to Australia are incredibly long, so opting to cruise instead means you sidestep what is often a very uncomfortable journey.

  • Are there any themed cruises?

When browsing cruise websites, you’ll find most itineraries are grouped by the regions they visit. But, this isn’t always the case, because some voyages focus on a theme rather than a particular part of the world.

Food and wine cruises are an excellent example. An absolute dream for any keen foodie, itineraries like this will often whisk you to places like France and Spain to get a taste of the finest local wines and dishes. What’s more, there will also be a distinct focus on fine food and wine onboard the ship, too.

  • Are there extras for special occasions?

Because cruises are so luxurious, many people book them to celebrate special occasions. And while the holiday could certainly be celebration enough in itself, it’s worth bearing in mind that a lot of cruise providers will offer you the chance to add a few special touches to make the trip all the more memorable – a grand birthday cake for a milestone birthday, for example.