Have you ever been on a cruise? Adam and I just returned from our first large ship cruise this fall with Holland America on the Eurodam, 2,104 passengers and 929 staff to be exact. Our past cruises have been less than 20 passengers, so we had no idea what to expect on such a large ship. Here are my 7 misconceptions of cruising I had about cruising on such a large ship.
1. Long Lines
For some reason, I thought it would be the biggest headache getting on & off the ship. I expected lines, LONG lines. Boy, was I wrong. We visited 4 ports on our recent 7 day Caribean cruise and never waited in line getting on or off the ship. Just make sure to have your ship card with you and a photo ID (required at some ports) and you’ll be back on the ship in minutes.
2. No Wi-Fi
Our cruise ship had Wi-Fi that worked all over the entire ship. We were able to upload pictures, Snapchat/Facebook/Instagram/Twitter without a problem. If you don’t want to purchase Wi-Fi on the cruise there will be plenty of free Wi-Fi places at the ports, just grab a bite to eat or a drink somewhere and take advantage of the free Wi-Fi.
3. The Pool Would Be Massive
When I first saw the size of our pool on the Eurodam I was not impressed, I expected this massive pool with slides/etc. But honestly I never once went to the pool. We were off exploring all day at every port. We had 2 full days at sea in which we: slept in, got room service (included no extra fees), worked out in the massive fitness center, went to the spa got a pedicure, saw a movie in the movie theater, and worked (go figure)!
4. Drinks Would Be Expensive
I’ve heard stories of people smuggling alcohol onto the ship due to the prices of drinks on cruises. So when we first arrived and I saw the price of a mojito/margarita is only $8.50 I pleasantly surprised. Adam and I made sure to take advantage of the happy hours around the ship, buy one drink get the second for only $1. Every night you will get a newsletter with tomorrow’s port, weather, movie playing in the theater, and most importantly the list of bars and their happy hour times! Just make sure to take advantage of the happy hours on cruises and you won’t spend much on drinks.
If you’re used to an all-inclusive package, Holland America does have a beverage package for $44.95 a day per person with up to 15 drinks a day. If you aren’t planning on drinking heavily purchase drinks individually. Adam and I spent less than $50 on beverages for a one week cruise. One night there even was a “bar crawl” on the boat, it was $25 per person and included more than enough booze!
5. Room Would Be Small
Who would have ever thought there would be a bathtub in my room?!?! Not only that, we had our own private balcony, sofa, table, and queen sized bed. Our room had ample closet space, and room under the bed to slide our bags. There are several different room types available, so depending on your budget will determine the size and amenities your room will have.
6. I Wouldn’t Feel The Boat Moving
My prior two cruises were on a much much smaller cruise ship, a luxury 20 person Galapagos cruise for a week and 20 person cruise in Croatia. Most of the time if the boat was moving I had to be laying down, otherwise, motion sickness would kick in bad. Our Holland America cruise ship the Eurodam was massive, holding more than 3,000 people including staff. I was told by other “veteran cruisers” I wouldn’t even know that I was on a ship, and I have nothing to worry about. I will admit you can barely feel the boat, but at times I did have to be laying down. I did find it hard to work on my computer for hours on end while we were at sea. But now having been on small ships and large ships, I now know I will be cruising on larger ships in the future.
7. Food Would Be Buffet Style
I was terrified I would be stuck in yet another line, the buffet line. Adam and I never actually went to the buffet our entire cruise. We ate at all the restaurants around the ship. However, there is a buffet for breakfast/lunch/dinner.
We ordered room service for breakfast every day, the night before you just place your breakfast order with desired delivery time and just like magic it arrives when you wake up! For lunch, we typically ate at Dive In, which if you guessed it is right by the pool. Dive In had amazing burgers & fries (dare I say as good as In&Out Burger?), we are guilty of eating there 6 times during our cruise…cheeseburgers with caramelized onion/bacon and french fries cheese, yes please! For dinner, we rotated between all the restaurants on the boat, with the Pinnacle Grill steakhouse being our favorite.
After a spending a week on Eurodam it is safe to say I would cruise again on a big ship. My biggest misconceptions of cruising weren’t true at all, and I was surprised how much I liked food & room. I know for sure I will be cruising again, the question is only where… Adam is dead set on going to Antartic and I would love to cruise to Alaska!
Have you taken a cruise before? We’d love to hear about your misconceptions of cruising, and where you’ve cruised!
*We were guests of Holland American Line but as always opinions are our own*