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Cruise Critic: what's it all about, and why you should use it.

Cruise Critic is a popular website and online community that focuses on cruise travel. It provides a wealth of information, resources, and a platform for travelers to share their experiences and connect with others who enjoy cruising. If you have not tried Cruise Critic and you are an avid cruiser like me, you are missing out. Today I will go over a few things about the site and my favorite things, with some experiences I have had along the way.

  • Cruise Reviews: Cruise Critic features thousands of reviews from real passengers who have sailed on various cruise lines and ships. These reviews offer insights into the overall experience, service, amenities, dining options, and ports of call. There are over 650,000 reviews, tips about the ships, and pictures.

  • Cruise Critic has the reviews broken down by category, like for example, Alaska Cruise Ships, Adventure Ships, River Cruise Ships and so on and so forth. Also, if you want you can read reviews by cruise line instead of how they have them featured on the page. Just go to the bottom of the page, and search through until you find the cruise line you are looking for. You might be blown away by how many cruise lines there are by looking at this page.

  • Cruise Line and Ship Information: Cruise Critic provides detailed information about different cruise lines and their ships. You can browse through ship profiles, deck plans, cabin categories, and onboard activities to help you choose the right cruise for your preferences.

  • You can learn about the gross tonnage, how many people and staff the ship can hold, length and so much more. Learn about what activities, restaurants and bars on ships. Also looking at the pictures of the ship are great. They even show you pictures of the cabins, so you will know what to expect.

  • Cruise Forums: Cruise Critic's forums are a vibrant community where travelers discuss various cruise-related topics, share tips and advice, ask questions, and engage in discussions. It's a great place to connect with fellow cruisers, seek recommendations, and gather valuable insights.

  • This is my favorite part of the site. I use the forums to ask questions I do not see the answer for or read questions others have put up on the site that I maybe have not thought of asking yet. Click on "Boards" at the top right corner of the site, it will lead you there.

  • I love signing up or starting a roll call for the cruise I am taking. This is a great way to meet new people, plan special group activities and have some extra added fun while on board the ship. On one cruise I did, I was the leader of a group of over 100 people. We sat up slots pulls, poker run (go to 5 bars have a drink and be given a playing card, whoever has best hand at end wins), and special talks with people in our group who had great knowledge of their field (we had a professional genealogist on our cruise, and it was fascinating learning about her journey into finding her family history. Even the 1st night on board a couple offered up the suite for people to come and take a look at it. That way we could meet some of the people we had been talking to on the roll call. I highly recommend joining a roll call,

  • Cruise Deals and Offers: Cruise Critic also features a section dedicated to cruise deals and offers. You can find discounts, promotions, and special pricing on cruises from various cruise lines. These deals can help you save money or provide added perks like onboard credits or cabin upgrades. When it comes to finding deals, Cruise Critic's deals section is a good place to start. It aggregates offers from various cruise lines, allowing you to compare and find potential savings. It's important to note that deals and availability can vary depending on the time of year, cruise line, and other factors.

  • I do recommend doing the research here to narrow down what cruise you like but then reaching out to a travel advisor/agent that you trust. You never know if that agent has a deal due to group bookings or whatever that Cruise Critic doesn't show.

  • If you want to just book with Cruise Critic that is fine, it will direct you to the cruise lines website so you can continue.

  • Port of Call Information: Cruise Critic provides comprehensive port guides and destination information for popular cruise ports around the world. You can find tips on what to see and do, local attractions, recommended shore excursions, and insider insights to make the most of your time ashore.

  • I have learned so much from this site on the ports I was visiting. It also helps you narrow down what cruise you would want to take because you get a better idea of what is at each port. You can type in the search bar the port you are interested in learning about, and it will take you there. Or do it from the page where you are looking at a specific cruise. They use Viator for shore excursions at the specific port.

  • Cruise News and Articles: Stay up to date with the latest cruise industry news, trends, and developments through Cruise Critic's news section. You can also find informative articles on topics like cruise planning, packing tips, and cruise-related FAQs. Cruise news is broken down into categories or by what's trending now. They will tell you changes to itineraries, policy changes or any type of news related to the cruising industry. Sometimes they even break the news on there before anyone else knows about it, Sign up for their newsletters. That is another great feature of Cruise Critic, to get up to date information and news.

Please keep in mind that while I strive to provide accurate and up-to-date information, it's always a good idea to visit the Cruise Critic website directly for the most current details and to explore the full range of features and resources available. I hope you have enjoyed this article and you have learned a little something about what Cruise Critic does and why you should be visiting the site.

Cruise Critic
Crystal Travel

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