Why take a cruise to Bermuda?
So you are wondering whether to take a cruise to Bermuda or fly to save a lot of time. We have done both a number of times. So what are the real advantages of cruising to Bermuda other than cost? When we decide to travel by cruise to Bermuda, there are reasons that are completely different from when we fly to Bermuda.
Well you think cost must be the only factor? Yes it is a big factor, but there are many others.
Let's take a look at what makes the real difference when you cruise to Bermuda instead of flying:
Bermuda cruise advantage: 1
Let's start with the cost which happens to be the main concern for most. A cruise to Bermuda is almost all inclusive. Which means the package cost that you pay for the round trip, should cover you for the entire package duration. UNLESS ... you start fancying stuff that are separately chargeable. There are number of facilities and services on board to pamper you.
By the way, cruise ships don't really have much choice but to lure you to spend on extras. Why? Because they do not really make any money out of the cruise package cost. They make the real money out of all the extra services and facilities that you avail on board the ship.
So which costs are covered? Your accommodation (i.e. stateroom charges), food (unless you take from the specialty restaurants), standard onboard entertainment (not the casinos), facilities like pools and fitness centers are covered in your cruise package deal. You might be aware that in Bermuda, hotels can charge scary prices, particularly during summer time. Cheap Bermuda Hotels can charge you any thing between $175 to $275 per night for a double room. Charges of the Luxury Hotels and Resorts start from $300 a day and can go well beyond $450.
Restaurants in Bermuda aren't cheap either. In a standard restaurant, a main course would cost $30 to $35. So you see, in a cruise vacation to Bermuda where your accommodation and food are covered, it makes a big difference in terms of cost.
So what costs are not covered in a cruise package and what you should be careful about? Check out my link on Save Cost on a Bermuda Cruise
to know what can actually drain your pocket.
Bermuda cruise advantage: 2
Compared to the hotels in Bermuda, the ships, whether cruising or on shore, offer a lot more varieties of entertainment. Live onboard musical entertainment, shopping arcades, games and sports, movies, night clubs, specialty restaurants and bars .. .you get almost everything on a ship. If you want to avail all these in the island, you will end up spending not only a lot of money but also a lot of time finding the right places.
Bermuda cruise advantage: 3
Most of the cruise ships to Bermuda offer excellent activities and options for the kids and children. The large ships like the Norwegian Breakaway or the Caribbean Princess have extensive kids program and facilities like mini amusement parks with tunnels, kids' pool and so on. All the ships have baby sitting services as well. And ships are quite safe as only passengers are allowed on board.
Bermuda cruise advantage: 4
Most of the cruise ships to Bermuda offer cash less transactions. You can book all your extra expenses to your shipboard account and get a detailed statement at the end of the cruise. You can then pay by credit card. So no need for you to carry huge amount of cash.
However, good things always come with some compromises. There are some shortcomings though if you are coming to Bermuda by cruise.
In a 7-day return cruise to Bermuda, you will actually get little over two days to enjoy the island. You will be on the cruise during the remaining time. And in just two days, it's really not possible to enjoy all the great things Bermuda has to offer - like the spectacular sightseeing, the beautiful beaches, the wonderful tours, the great dining options ... the list goes on.
The cruise ships do offer some shore excursions, but that will only give a little taste of what Bermuda offers to the island vacationers.
However, if you consider all the seven days as integral part of your vacation and do not make Bermuda the only target of all your desires, then the cruise stay along with all its entertainment and followed by a 2 days flavor of Bermuda, gives you a nice variation and an overall cracking vacation.
As the cruise package includes all meals, you will run into double expense if you want to go out and try some restaurants in Bermuda. So a cruise package makes dining out in the island a little inflexible. But how can you avoid experiencing the great flavors of Bermuda cuisine and the many exotic dishes prepared by the restaurants? Many tourists actually end up dining in the island, particularly when they are going out on Island Tours
when getting back to the cruise ship in time for lunch or dinner may be difficult. That would mean additional expenses.
However, NCL has now come up with an 'All shore dining' program. They have tied up with many restaurants in Bermuda. You can now get discounts and complimentary drinks at these restaurants. For example, at the Frog and Onion Pub
at the Kings Wharf, they give you free sample drinks including wine and beer, on some days of the week.
When a cruise ship unloads all its passengers in a port once it docks, you can imagine what happens. Thousands of people would suddenly be rushing for and grabbing everything that you planned for - the nearest visitors information center is full with people trying to get hold of maps and brochures, long queues at the bus stands and ferry terminals with people trying to catch the first transport into town, and of course beaches close by are not spared either. Suddenly you find that the minimum privacy that you need to enjoy an island like this is compromised with. Well, you have no choice but to get used to such situations sooner than later.