8 Cruise Services That Could Change How You Cruise Forever


cruise services

8 Cruise Services That Could Change How You Cruise Forever

I want to share with you eight amazing services that I think could help you think about and cruise very differently. This could change the way you cruise, forever!

#1 Finding a cruise mate

If you’re a solo traveller, you are often hit with a big surcharge for double occupancy. So, finding someone to cruise with you is one way to go. However, you might not have friends or family that want to go cruising.

So, there are a whole bunch of really interesting services that help you find a cabin mate. There’s probably three big ways that you can do that.

  1. First of all, there are very specific cruise agents that will actually package singles holidays that offer a matching service as part of the deal. And if they can’t find a suitable match, you will still pay the lower price.
  2. A good example of that is Vacations To Go. They put together solo cruises throughout the year in all different regions, and they do a matching service. So that’s a good one to look at if you want someone else to do the job for you.
  3. Secondly, there’s a few websites that I have come across such as cruisemates.com, there’s cruisetrends.com, silversurfers.com, Cruise Mate Finder.
  4. There is a bunch of sites that are cruise related – there’s lots of forums there where you can find a cabin mate. Another one that’s really popular and a lot of people have found, have worked for them is using the site meetup.com.

#2 Luggage transfer services

It can be a real big hassle taking your bags on flights, getting them, transferring to the buses, getting to the ship, carrying on the ship and all that – there are a whole bunch of luggage transfer opportunities that you have.

Many of the cruise lines partner with different companies to do that, but you can also go to the companies direct.

The main company that cruise lines partner with is called luggageforward.com. Princess Seabourn Regent Services, Cunard, Holland America, Oceania, Uniworld, Viking and Windstar, at the time of recording, all use luggageforward.com.

Crystal Cruises uses a different company which is called luggageconcierge.com.

But if you want to do it yourself there are many other sites online. So, for example, there is another site which is also very popular, which is called luggagemule.co.uk, out of the UK.

It can be a relatively expensive thing to do because they charge between $5 to $8, a pound, roughly. So, it could cost you $200 or $300 to send your bag to the ship and vice versa, but it could take a lot of hassle away.

If you want a less expensive way of doing it, also understand what other options your cruise line offers.

With Royal Caribbean, you have an opportunity where you can actually check your bags in on the ship and they take it to the airport. Or you have Disney, for example, where if you are staying at one of their resort hotels in Orlando, they will then transfer that bag right through to the ship.

cruise excursion

#3 Independent Cruise Excursions

The third service that could transform your cruising experience, a lot of people might already know about, and that’s Independent Shore Excursions. But they’re a couple of services which are really great because they integrate really seamlessly with the cruise experience.

On these sites you basically go, you input your cruise and then for every single port it will give you the excursions which they offer.

You normally find there are smaller groups and they are a cheaper price. Some of the ones to look at are shoretrips.com, cruisingexcursions.com, and shoreexcursionsgroup.com.

They also will include guarantees that we’ll get you back to the ship on time and if they don’t it will be their cost and hassle to get you to get back to the ship. But these are companies that have been around for a long time and really integrate seamlessly with the cruising experience.

And that’s something that people are using more and more, because excursions can be a big cost and the advantage of some of these services is you can do some different excursions often with smaller groups and at a lower cost.

But always check the terms and conditions and make sure things like getting you back to the ship on time is covered.

#4 Mobility and Accessibility Equipment

Another service that I came across that is fantastic because it makes cruising possible for people that have accessibility or other issues, and this is companies that you can hire accessibility equipment. You can hire things such as wheelchairs or mobility scooters,
right through to equipment that help make your cabin accessible friendly, specific things for your bed or bath or whatever.

And these are great, because it means people that perhaps couldn’t cruise before can now make sure that the cruising experience is set up for them.

These are companies that partner with different cruise lines, and they set it up on the ship themselves, because they have an arrangement with the ships.

If you ever looking at anything like that, the companies that I know, and have heard people use and are very happy with include companies like specialneedsatsea.com, mobilityatsea.com and another company called scootaround.com.

Even if perhaps one day you’ve injured yourself and you’re going on a cruise, and you just need a wheelchair because you’ve broken a leg or something, take a look, because it’s going to revolutionise the way that you cruise, great services.

Princess cruises San Diego

#5 Companions, Carers, offering medical support or just help

Linked to that is another great service which is perhaps a little bit more specialised.

You can actually get a companion or a carer on board. These are carers with medical backgrounds, so they’re normally nurses, who will come on a cruise with you if you do have any medical needs and it avoids you, then having to use the medical centre, but also a lot of cruise lines won’t let you on unless you have someone who cares for you, so they can make sure that they will escort you on excursions, they’ll sort out your cabin if there’s any any special needs and deal with any medical issues you’ve got.

One of the companies that does that is a company that’s called Medicaltravelcompanions.com. And these are really helpful whether you have a medical issue, a mental issue or anything like that.

And they will come on a cruise with you and they will look after you and all of your needs. So that’s a great service, again, because it means that people who perhaps couldn’t go cruising before can now do so.

#6 Gentleman or lady dance hosts

One of the services that isn’t going to cost you any money is if you’re travelling by yourself whether you’re lady or gentleman and you love to dance, a lot of cruise lines
have gentlemen or lady dance hosts.

These tend to be on cruise lines which will have live dance, music and it means that you also have someone to dance with without having the embarrassment of trying to find someone to dance with!

You have to be careful if you are interested in that particular service, who provides it. Some lines like Cunard have it. I’ve been on Saga Cruises who also have it. So, take a look at the cruise lines, and you’ll tend to find that it tends to be that cruise lines have a slightly more traditional cruising experience.

cruise ship Caribbean

#7 Online shops

Another service which is really great, particularly if you’re going on a cruise for a special occasion, is that many cruises have massive online shops, which you can order online before you go.

You can order things like room decorations, or treats in the room – whether it’s champagne, chocolate strawberries, flowers, special gifts, merchandise, there’s all sorts of crazy things that you buy.

Some of the gifts you can then buy and have delivered at home. The great thing is if you’re going on a cruise with friends or family or partner, and you’ve got some event coming up like an anniversary, a birthday, something like that, you can order some crazy things for your cabin.

So, when you arrive at your cabin can be decorated, which will be a nice surprise!

Some of the ones to look at are the Carnival Fun Shop, which is at carnival.com/funshops, Royal Caribbean have royalcaribbean.com/royalgifts. The Norwegian site is norwegiangiftshop.com.

#8 Shops for crew

When it comes to shopping and buying things online for cruising, there’s another service which may not be applicable to you (unless you’re crew), but I thought it was worth mentioning.

So, for example there’s a site called forcrewonly.com, and they’ll do all the shopping in certain ports for crew, they bring it to the ship, and so the crew just has to come off and fetch it from the delivery people there.

It means that when crew members have that limited amount of time, they can actually go and relax, and enjoy themselves or have a nap, or whatever, and let someone else do the shopping!

There are loads of different services growing and popping up all around the place, as cruising becomes more and more popular. Those are eight of them that I’ve come across that I think will change the way that people cruise, and the things they do on cruising, a really big way.

Watch my video about cruise services

Watch on YouTube: https://youtu.be/PkWPvgrNbNs

I have many more videos, packed full of cruising tips, advice and ideas. So, why don’t you watch another one of those right now?

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Gary Bembridge

I grew up in Zimbabwe, but I have been based in London since 1987. My travel life spans more than three decades and that includes more than 95 cruises. In 2005, I launched Tips for Travellers to make it easy and fun for people to discover, plan and enjoy incredible cruise vacations. And the rest, as they say, is history. I have the largest cruise vlogger channel currently on YouTube, with more than 3 million video views per month.

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