How to Celebrate Holidays Aboard a Cruise

Cruise Ship

How to Celebrate Holidays Aboard a Cruise

The most popular holiday cruise is on New Year’s Eve

Celebrating a major holiday aboard a cruise ship might seem a little strange, until you start thinking through the benefits: no intense home preparation, no cooking deep into the night, no elaborate coordinating of schedules with relatives. In short, a holiday away takes the pressure off and lets you just enjoy the celebration while staffers do most of the work.

Add to that the standard pleasures of cruising—ocean views, all you can eat and drink, impressive entertainment, and stops at some of the world’s most interesting places—et voila, you’ve got yourself a recipe to replace holiday stress with relaxation and joy.

The catch is, you have to book way in advance—at least nine months out to get ahead of the crowd, secure lower rates, and nab adjacent cabins if you need them. Keep in mind, too, that the winter holidays are a very busy (and expensive) time for cruising, so if you prefer to be on an emptier ship, choose a holiday that doesn’t coincide with a school break.

“The most popular holiday cruise is on New Year’s Eve,” says Rebecca Brooks, who co-founded Alter Agents, a research firm that represents cruise lines. “Which makes sense, given that you have a big, fun party right outside your door and you won’t have to worry about having to drive after a night of drinking.” Though New Year’s Eve cruises tend to be on the pricier side, Brooks says the revelries are typically included in your rate, so you won’t face sticker shock at the end of the night.

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