Q – Eleven years ago this April, we went on a mega-ship cruise. We vowed we would never do it again. The people aboard our seven-day western Caribbean ship seemed determined to embarrass themselves by showing up in the dining room in jeans and tee-shirts, getting drunk each day in the pool area, and whistling loudly during the evening entertainment. Quite frankly, we couldn’t believe it then and we still have nightmares about it now.
You would be doing some of us a great service if you would do a “Slob Rating” for each of the lines so we know where to turn for an educated group of fellow travelers, fine cuisine, and a generally educated and cultured environment. We may sound like snobs but we’re not. We are, I suppose, looking for the “Country Club” set when we travel along with a staff that knows how to treat us. I sense your writers will know what we mean. But all these cruise web sites seem to push the bargains.
A – We understand. The fact is that many of the same people who vacationed on Greyhound are now on cruise ships with a few thousand of their friends. We don;t need to name names and make people feel bad who have limited income for their vacations or who are seeking a genuine party atmosphere. In many cases, families choose the mega-lines because they have excellent children’s programs and extra-cost food options that keep getting better. So we’ll decline the “Slob Index” – for now. But we will update our Cruise Sophistication Index if that will be helpful:
THE CRUISE LINE SOPHISTICATION INDEX
# 1 – Hapag-Lloyd
# 2 – Silversea
# 3 – Seabourn
# 4 – Cunard Liners
# 5 – Regent Seven Seas