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Looking for the Perfect Group Holiday? Why Not Cruise?

January 16, 2018 |

Planning a group holiday can be tough. You’ve all got conflicting schedules, varying budgets and different tastes. All you want is your friends or loved ones in the same place at the same time for some quality memory making but what to do? Last year’s camping trip was a washout and the summer before’s city break ended up with two of the gang getting lost on the wrong train. Normally, not a problem but they had everyone’s reservation forms, resulting in the rest of you having to waste an afternoon in the hotel foyer and pay late booking in fees. Surely there’s a simpler way? Why not try cruising?

Just like with cruising as a pair, with larger groups, there’s a ship and destination for everyone, whatever your age, wage or interests. Cruising would be perfect for a large family reunion as the young ones can go and play at the kids club or waterslides while the adults wine and dine till late or a group of veterans having a good game of cards in the casino and catching up as they make way to another port. While at the casino, they may bump into the party of stags starting their night before the big shenanigans in port the next day. Unluckily for the groom, they’ve bumped into a wedding party actually taking place on the ship that are enjoying the sun on deck as they take over the disco at their private function. Further down the deck is the hobby club practicing their bowls on their annual tour to play in a tournament on land tomorrow.

Whichever one of these groups you are, there are countless benefits to choosing cruising for your gang- namely value for money as, as a group, you’ll likely get more for less than your average guest. Kids in large groups can often go free while, as an organiser, you can often get free passage for you and a plus one (take note, best men). As well as these great offers, extra treats for your group such as free upgrades, all-inc packages and complimentary sessions of the entertainment and activities on board are available, that would normally be extra, plus options to have private tables and functions booked. This is also great for the hobby group who have invited a guest speaker to the lecture theatre or the fitness freaks morning yoga sessions on deck. Whatever it is (and however weird) the booking company and crew will do their best to accommodate someone bringing so much business.

With different cruise lines battling it out, there is always good value for money to be found. Royal Caribbean provide a ‘group specialist’ who can help you with any requests such as cocktail hours or tickets for you to see a show together. Fred Olsen let you have private functions with a photographer thrown in to capture the event’s special moments with the more people who book, the more free places offered. Other possible group package benefits with Fred Olsen include discounted transfers and parking, a free on board spend per person, private dinner parties or tea, priority bookings to events and meals or exclusive access, priority debarkation at port and private tours. Meanwhile, with Cruise and Maritime, a ‘group’ is only defined as 12 adults who get 10% discount, or a free place for the 21st booking ,as well as a preferential dining area and exclusive welcome party as well as special excursions.

Another massive benefit is the ease of cruising- especially if you get a special group leader or rep in your package. First off, booking a cruise is so much easier than a ‘normal’ group holiday, as everything is on board- no confusing travel, no pokey hotels and no awkward people it’s impossible to please. As there’s so much choice on board and various destinations along the way even the fussiest of fussers will be forced to smile. Rest assured, cruising won’t be the usually calamitous affair that makes planning a group holiday akin to getting a dozen cats/stags/relatives in a bath. The same can be said on board. Sure, the ships are floating cities with tonnes to do but at least you know your guys are on board somewhere. Just set up a meeting point or arrange to meet up for meals, this way you and a few of your gang can take in a show while the rest sleep off the big dinner and hook up again for evening cocktails.

With cruising, however you want to spend time aboard with the people who mean the most to you, you’ll breeze across the oceans without a care in the world, safe in the knowledge you and your crew are enjoying the best of plain sailing.

Category: Outdoor Travel

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