Need First Time Cruise Recommendations!

#1
Hello everyone,

I'm getting a group of friends together for a good friend on mine's bachelor party, and I would really appreciate any recommendations/feedback that you guys can give me. None of us have been on one yet.
Right now, it's looking like a group of around 8 of us. We all live in South Carolina, so ideally we would leave out of Charleston but northern Florida will also work.
We wanted to go on around a 4 day cruise, ideally leaving Thursday and coming back on Sunday or Monday.
We want to go around August or September of this year.
We wanted to go south down into warmer weather, preferably the Bahamas or the Caribbean.
We plan on drinking a good bit, so we would like to avoid families and children if at all possible.


My question are:

Are there cruises/companies that you guys would recommend/we should avoid?
Do we have to book based on the number or rooms or number of people?
Are we allowed to buy/bring bottles of alcohol, or do we have to order per drink?
Are there cruises that are more/less friendly on drinking, and/or any that will accomodate for it (ex: buying bottles/unlimited drinking packages)?
Is there a way to get better packages/deals since we will have so many people going?
Any other tricks/tips that you guys could give me?

Nothing is set in stone yet, and anything is subject to change if it would be more beneficial for us.
Any and all recommendations and feedback is much appreciated.

Thanks
 

bob

Community Manager
Staff member
#2
We wanted to go on around a 4 day cruise, ideally leaving Thursday and coming back on Sunday or Monday.
We want to go around August or September of this year.
We wanted to go south down into warmer weather, preferably the Bahamas or the Caribbean.

We plan on drinking a good bit, so we would like to avoid families and children if at all possible.

4 day and August or September not an issue, leaving on a Thurs or Friday will depend on the cycle. Usually a cruise line will alternate
3 and 4 day with in a week period.
From Charleston or Jacksonville for anything less than 7 day you will be looking at Bahamas, 3/4 day is too short to go to Caribbean.

If you plan your cruise after school starts you will have your best chance of avoiding families/children.

Are there cruises/companies that you guys would recommend/we should avoid?
Carnival, Royal Caribbean, the ones you should avoid won't be doing 4 day out of those ports
Do we have to book based on the number or rooms or number of people?
Cabins are booked based on double occupancy, to book an individual cabin you pay a hefty single supplement, usually 80-90%
Are we allowed to buy/bring bottles of alcohol, or do we have to order per drink?
Bring on board at embarkation 1 bottle wine or champagne per person no beer or hard liquor. It varies by cruise line but you can
buy drink packages which might be your best bet if you're going to "drink a bit" or slightly more

Are there cruises that are more/less friendly on drinking, and/or any that will accomodate for it (ex: buying bottles/unlimited drinking packages)?
Carnival aren't called the "Fun Ships" for nothing. Alcohol is a cash cow for most all cruise lines and Carnival has a nice heard
Is there a way to get better packages/deals since we will have so many people going?
8 people / 4 cabins not enough bodies for for any real deals but seriously consider using a travel agent, might get some perks that way
plus not to mention good advice if you pick a cruise specialist agency

Any other tricks/tips that you guys could give me?
Lot of states legalizing pot but it is still not legal on cruise ships and if you go to Bahamas the guy that sells it to you will probably
throw you under the bus on your way back to the ship so settle for happy hour.
 

BSeabob

Forum Manager
Staff member
#3
I think he's got it covered but Don't overlook Port Canaveral. I didn't look at short cruises but a good TA will have that info handy. YOu start out further south and would hit warmer quicker.
PS one of those cruise lines you would not want to take is here. (Disney..$$$$ and kids) after all it is Disney.
 

George C

Well-Known Member
#4
You will want drink package, I would recommend rccl if you are heavy drinkers ( like me) rccl has no limit on amount of drinks, carnival has 15 drink limit.
 

John

I'm on Island Time
Staff member
#6
I would look into Carnival Liberty from Port Canaveral. It does some great cruises, we did one last July and loved it. This short cruise will give you a great short cruise experience without breaking your bank. You can always do longer cruises on the newest ships to more exotic locations but, this is a great first step. Happy Shopping! Let us know what you end up choosing.

Carnival Liberty Ship and Itinerary Info
 

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