Thursday, March 31, 2016

Gratuity rates from Cruise Hive

Cruise Hive put together an updated list of gratuity rates and policies on the major cruise lines. They also remind you that you should not use tips as a penalty or to show your frustration. The cruise staff depends on those tips and are often not in control of the major issues and problems on board.

Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Cruise Needs' Instagrams of the Week

Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Viking River suffers bad PR after charging dead woman rebooking fee

Rules are rules, but sometimes cruise lines need to think about common sense. When they don't, it makes them look cold and uncaring. Take this Colorado man's situation. His wife died before their planned European cruise. Respecting her wishes, he decided to continue on the trip. He let Viking River know that he would still be going but his deceased wife would not. Of course the cruise company charged him a change fee of $850.

Aside from being uncaring, this rule makes no sense to me. The cruise takes on no extra cost by her not being there. He has the cabin, so they can't resell the room.

The media got a hold of the story and Viking dropped the fee. A relatively happy ending. Let's hope Viking learned their lesson.

Monday, March 28, 2016

Video Review: Viking Hlin

With so many questions about river cruising, every video is helpful. This one from Sixty and Me is very casual but also very personal and provides a good sense of the space and intimacy on board.

Sunday, March 27, 2016

Cruise Needs' Tweets of the Week

Thursday, March 24, 2016

More details on Carnival's Cuba plans

President Obama's trip to Cuban provided the perfect backdrop for Carnival's latest announcement. The company's Fathom brand received permission from the Cuban government to stop at the island. The new Cuban-bound itineraries will start in May.

Look for other cruise companies to announce their Cuban plans soon.

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Cruise Needs' Instagrams of the Week

Atrium of #carnivaldream #cruiselife #cruiseship #carnivalpicks #carnivalcruise #funships #funships #cruiseships #ccl

A photo posted by Circle Limit Images (@circlelimitimages) on

Fantastic #sunny welcome into the #port 😎. Brilliant photo by @babuk.babuk #nice #sun #ferry #pretty #photo

A photo posted by Stena Line Nederland (@stenaline_nl) on

Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Cruise Needs' Instagrams of the Week

#celebrity #constellation #Miami #princesscruises #cruiselife #cruiseship #emeraldprincess

A photo posted by Denis (@denismariner) on

Welcome home. (Photo: @erinburrsir) #CastawayCay #DisneyCruise

A photo posted by Disney Cruise Line (@disneycruiseline) on

Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Cruise Needs' Instagrams of the Week

Tuesday, March 8, 2016

Video Review: Disney Dream from

This video pushes's sales services a bit much, but it is super thorough and takes you on a tour of the ship form top to bottom. Definitely worth the watch.

Monday, March 7, 2016

Celebrity makes change due to terrorism concerns

Terrorism still looms over certain cruise ports. On Monday Celebrity Solstice passed Bali based on threats of terrorism in Indonesia. Because of the change, the ship arrived early in Darwin, Australia.

While some passengers were likely disappointed, the move makes sense. It is better to be safe and keep all the passengers and crew out of harms way.

Friday, March 4, 2016

Cruise Needs' Tweets of the Week

Thursday, March 3, 2016

Video Review: Travel Weekly's Flora Ioannou on the Disney Dream

We've seen plenty of Disney Cruise reviews and even ones with any adult only focus. Yet this one from Travel Weeklys Flora Ioannou is well-produced, concise and showcases the ship well. Through the above video you can see that the Disney Dream is for more than just kids.

Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Cruise Needs' Instagrams of the Week

Just an ordinary view from the local bar #disneycruise #disneymagic #fishlips

A photo posted by @blairwdw on

Roam in #Rome. Who's ready for their next #adventure? #CelebrityCruises

A photo posted by Celebrity Cruises (Official) (@celebritycruises) on

Tuesday, March 1, 2016

More Anthem of the Seas problems

The Anthem of the Seas is having a rough go of it lately. The ship had to alter its most recent itinerary and return to New Jersey two days early in order to avoid another storm. The good news is that Royal Caribbean learned their lesson and erred on the side of caution this time. A shortened cruise is a better experience (and better PR) than another trip that puts passengers and crew in danger.

The decision was based on the new weather policy. Passengers will get a partial refund for the inconvenience.

Weather wasn't the only issue. There was a small norovirus outbreak too.

The new ship remains popular so this should not hurt future cruises or sales. Just hope that those future passengers don't run into the same bad luck on their trips.