Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Multigenerational Cruising

Multigenerational travel has become an increasingly popular vacation trend. In fact, according to the U.S. Travel Industry Association, at least five million family vacations each year span three generations, with grandparents often paying the bill. And, according to a recent study by Preferred Hotels, many multigenerational travelers are planning Milestone Vacations; more than three-quarters had planned a vacation around a life event such as a birthday (50%), anniversary (40%), family reunion (39%) and wedding (37%).

Multigenerational travelers typically plan their vacations with several ideas in mind: they usually seek adventure, personal enrichment, relaxation and the opportunity to experience new destinations while spending time with family. One of the best spots for the multigenerational traveler is Europe; specifically, the Mediterranean. Travel to places like Venice, Croatia, Santorini, Sicily, Rome and Barcelona boast enriching cultural experiences families can share together, enjoying new experiences and creating lifelong memories.

With the cruise industry’s continued expansion, innovation and identification of new ports-of-call, cruising is a terrific option for multigenerational travelers. This is an excellent way to teach children about different cultures and gives the entire family the opportunity to experience several locations in one trip, many of which are also all-inclusive, which is important for those on a budget.

When booking a multigenerational vacation, it’s important to keep in mind the cruise line and the ship's itinerary. Hawaii, Alaska and the Caribbean tend to be a favorite among children and so are Disney Cruise Line and Royal Caribbean International. Larger ships tend to work better for multigenerational travel, as there are activities available for each member of the family. Working with a travel agent who specializes in family travel is important, as they will help develop a personalized itinerary for each group, making the complicated planning process easier for travelers, saving time and money.

Several cruise lines have created unique programs geared directly toward multigenerational family reunions. Royal Caribbean’s Royal Reunions and Holland America Line’s Family Reunion Program offer special benefits such as complimentary family photos and daily family activities to groups planning family reunions. With perks like all-inclusive offerings, reduced deposits, onboard credits and free shore excursions, cruising is as affordable as it is efficient and is perfect for multigenerational travelers. For more information, contact Kathy Freer at 888-882-5793, email at kfreer@cruiseone.com or on my website.

Monday, March 26, 2012

Touring Silversea's Silver Spirit

We were fortunate to be invited to tour and have lunch onboard Silversea’s Silver Spirit over the weekend.

Silversea is a luxury line that operates six ships with guest capacity ranging from 132 guests per sailing, to 540 guests per sailing. In a world where things just keep getting bigger, Silversea is keeping their ships more intimate. With smaller ships, Silversea can take you into areas of the world and ports that most ships simply cannot navigate. Couple that with the all-inclusive luxury experience, and you have got yourself an incredible journey! You can visit seven continents with infinite possibilities (including Antartica and the Arctic). On board you will find tastefully designed suites, incredible bathrooms, beautifully appointed public areas. (I wanted to stay on board, but sadly couldn't!)

Give me a call and let me help design a fantastic voyage on one of Silversea’s incredible ships.

So, here is what you can expect onboard a Silversea cruise (this is directly from their website):

Transcending the Trends
Renowned for extraordinary worldwide voyages aboard intimate, all-inclusive ships, Silversea is a luxury cruise line that offers unparalleled service and superlative comfort. Discover the art of luxury travel as perfected by Silversea Cruises.

• Intimate, elegant ships – extraordinary space per guest ratio
• Superlative service – nearly one crew member for every guest
• All ocean-view suites, over 85% with private verandas*
• Butler service for all ships, all guests
• Open-seating in The Restaurant – no assigned time, no assigned table
• Alternative dining options – multiple venues
• Gourmet cuisine inspired by Relais & Châteaux
• Sophisticated entertainment from live music to production shows*
• Enrichment lecturers, acclaimed chefs and destination consultants

All-Inclusive Value
• Fares include onboard gratuities
• Complimentary beverages served throughout the ship – including fine wines, champagnes, spirits, beer, bottled water, specialty coffees and soft drinks
• In-room bar and refrigerator stocked with your preferred beverage selections
• Complimentary 24-hour room service and in-suite dining* served course-by-course from The Restaurant
• Complimentary shoreside events on select voyages
• Complimentary guided excursions ashore on Silversea Expeditions aboard Silver Explorer
• Complimentary transportation into town in most ports of call

*Aboard the Silver Explorer expedition ship: select suites have verandas or French balconies; production shows and in-suite dining are not offered.

You can reach me anytime, via email at kfreer@cruiseone.com or toll free 888-882-5793. Visit my luxury website for vacation details! I look forward to hearing from you!

Friday, March 23, 2012

Spring is in the air ... so is European travel

With airfare to Europe decreasing slightly, this Spring and Summer could be the perfect opportunity for travelers to take advantage of incredible cruise line offers currently on the market, escaping to some of the world’s most unforgettable destinations. Numerous ships are redeployed across the pond each April, so there is no time like the present to begin planning that once-in-a-lifetime European vacation.

Cruising in Europe can be efficient, comfortable and economical. Travelers can explore the history, art, and natural beauty of their “must-see” spots without having to navigate tricky roads, unfamiliar driving customs or train-hopping between sometimes crowded stations. Another benefit to cruising in Europe is the fact that by experiencing the continent this way, your time is freed up to actually enjoy the highlights of each destination, rather than trying to determine the best spots to sleep and dine.

European cruises through the Baltic Sea to Southampton will give travelers the unique chance to explore London at its finest hour, as the city plays host to the 2012 Summer Olympics. Seeing Piccadilly Circus, Westminster Abbey, Big Ben and other landmarks will create lifelong memories on their own.

Another popular port of call is Dover, which is considered England's gateway to the rest of Europe. Best known for its breathtaking white cliffs overlooking the English Channel, this timeless treasure boasts a variety of things to do that many travelers don’t typically consider. Even though Dover is just over an hour from London, its proximity to renowned southeast England towns and villages means there are alternatives to big city touring, as well. Rye, a 1 1/4-hour drive south, is a charming medieval village and the city of Canterbury is noted for its breathtaking cathedral. For day trips, Sissinghurst, Vita Sackville-West's famous gardens, are near enough to squeeze into an "on-the-way-to-the-port" sightseeing jaunt, as is Leeds Castle (be sure to allow extra time there for touring).

Other hotspots on European and Mediterranean cruise itineraries this year are Barcelona, Athens and Venice. As prices are more affordable than ever; and with perks like reduced deposits, onboard credits, and free shore excursions, Europe cruising is truly the way to go for a dream vacation this Spring or Summer. For more information, contact me at 888-882-5793 or email kfreer@cruiseone.com or visit me on the web.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Royal Caribbean Specials

There are lots of specials with Royal Caribbean right now! It is a great time to book your cruise and take advantage of them.

Pre-paid gratuities for the first and second passenger on any cruise departing April 15, 2012 through December 31, 2012 booked in an ocean view stateroom or higher. To take advantage of this, your reservation must be booked by March 22, 2012.

On board credit for 6 night or longer Caribbean sailings departing May 1, 2012 through December 31, 2012 booked in an ocean view stateroom or higher. To take advantage of this promotion, your reservation must be booked by March 31, 2012.

On board credit for any Europe sailing departing April 1, 2012 through December 31, 2012 booked in an ocean view stateroom or higher. To take advantage of this promotion, your reservation must be booked at least 2 weeks in advance of sailing and booked by March 31, 2012.

On board credit for 6 night or longer Bermuda sailings departing April 1, 2012 through December 31, 2012 booked in an ocean view stateroom or higher. To take advantage of this promotion, your reservation must be booked by March 31, 2012.

And yes, the pre-paid gratuities and on board credit is combinable if the reservation is made on time!

So, now is the time to reserve your Royal Caribbean cruise! Have you been thinking of sailing on the Oasis or Allure of the Seas? Give me a call! A summer Europe cruise is the perfect get-a-way! Time is running out to take advantage of these promotions.

You can reach me anytime, 888-882-5793, or via email at kfreer@cruiseone.com or visit me on my website. I look forward to hearing from you and helping you plan your vacation!

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Norwegian Epic On Board Credit!

Now, if you have read anything I have written regarding the Norwegian Epic, you know that it is one of my favorite cruise experiences. I absolutley LOVE this ship and all of the entertainment offered (bowling, Blue Man Group, bars, nightclubs, Ice Bar, Mystery Murder Lunch and so on). It is truly a different cruising experience.

With all of that said, I have got a great deal for anyone wanting to sail the Epic between now and the end of April (this year, 2012). I have got $150.00 on board credit per stateroom, and on some sailings, an additional $100.00 on board credit. That's a lot of credit!

The booking window for this promo is March 1 - 10, 2012. Give me a call for the details and to check rates, 888-882-5793 or send me an email at kfreer@cruiseone.com.

Don't miss out on this great deal!