Saturday, January 30, 2010

Family Reunions at Sea

Growing up I remember spending holidays, Thanksgiving in particular, amongst a barrage of aunts, uncles, cousins and grandparents. Years passed and slowly, people moved away; a different town, another city, or even across the country. Our only connection now is the occasional email and yearly Christmas card. Last year a cousin of mine was determined to reunite our geographically sprawling family and suggested a reunion at sea! When you look at all a cruise vacation has to offer, it’s clear to see why it’s a great option for multi-generational get-togethers!

Cost is probably the most important issue when planning any type of family reunion. Everyone may have a different budget to work within and cost should not be an excluding factor. The virtually all-inclusive nature of a cruise allows each guest more control over their spending. When you cruise you pretty much know what your costs will be upfront. Cruise fare includes your accommodations, all of your meals (though not necessarily in every restaurant), a selection of beverages, and entertainment. The accommodations, or staterooms as they’re called, are available at such varied price points that it’s easy to find an affordable option for everyone!

The nice thing about a cruise is that there are so many opportunities for families to be together. Imagine everyone at dinner together, laughing and catching up on each other’s lives. Delicious meals that cater to kids, picky eaters, vegetarians, special diets, or those that want to try everything in sight! The best part is the cooking and the clean-up are left to someone else! Wouldn’t it be fun for everyone to share a day in port on some exciting excursion? Some families may want to spend every waking hour together…or not! Don’t worry, even the smallest cruise ship provides enough space to be alone or pursue personal interests.

Cruise ships are multi-generational floating resorts! Whether family members are five, seventy-five, or anywhere in between, there will be activities for everyone to enjoy. They all have children’s programs and teen clubs and when the kids are occupied and happy, everyone can have a better time. There are pool games, trivia, sports, art auctions, spas, gyms, dancing, Broadway caliber shows, and enrichment programs for all to enjoy. And if all you want to do is kick back and relax there are plenty of places to do that too!

We all live busy lives. There’s always so much to do that often we lose touch with some of the most important people in our lives…our extended families! But it only takes one person to change that…one person to put out an e-mail blast to everyone in the family that says, “Hey, it’s been a while. Let’s get together. What do you think about a cruise….”

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