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CruiseCompete Currents
Cruise News and Information
April 15, 2014


Announcing, our first ever CruiseCompete cruise:
Join us in the beautiful Caribbean and meet the
Cruise Compete Team

Dear Reader,

Exciting News! We’re very pleased to announce the first ever CruiseCompete Cruise. This “Presidents Cruise” will take place November 10, 2014, aboard Princess Cruises’ lovely Caribbean Princess.

Please join us and meet the CruiseCompete team!

This 5-night Princess cruise is round-trip Ft. Lauderdale, with stops in private island Princess Cay and Nassau, the Bahamas.

Prices start at $499 for an inside cabin, $549 for an obstructed oceanview cabin, and $799 for a balcony guaranty. Port fees are included in pricing, additional government tax is $85 per person. This cruise comes with $50 Onboard Credit per cabin, compliments of CruiseCompete.

Also included:
  • A special gift for CruiseCompete guests
  • Private Meet & Greet Cocktail Party
  • Book a balcony cabin and receive a four-course champagne balcony breakfast – Reserve by May 10th
If you are interested in joining the CruiseCompete team for this cruise, please send me an email at

All about Princess Cruises

The mid-size and big ships are best for couples, families, multi-generational groups and singles that enjoy an active environment and want many itinerary choices. For mature travelers who want a small-ship experience with few children, longer itineraries and off-the-beaten path ports, the Ocean Princess and Pacific Princess are good choices. More…

Our readers love Princess Cruises. Read Princess Cruises reviews here:

Voyages offered by Princess Cruises:

Amenities offered:

Dining options:

Princess Cruises’ alcohol beverage policies:

About Princess Cruises’ weddings at sea or vow renewals at sea:

Want to find out more about Princess Cruises voyages or book one? Please visit CruiseCompete. 

Princess has some fascinating shore excursions, too many to list … Just visit the Princess shore excursions page here:
Multigenerational voyages on Princess Cruises: Families really can have it all – well-designed, child friendly programs and amenities, paired with adult dining, accommodations and entertainment options … all in one place. That’s the beauty of today’s cruise experience. In fact, multi-generational-trips (with kids, parents and grandparents) are becoming increasingly popular because of the variety of activities and amenities available on today’s ships. With something for everyone, families can participate in activities together, but aren’t obligated to “stay the course” together for an entire vacation. More…

Time-sensitive offers directly from the cruise lines, just for you! 

We have compiled the latest amenities (cabin upgrades and cabin credits, plus more) and other special offers directly from the cruise lines for you to see here:

And here are current offers:
American Queen Steamboat Company:  For a limited time American Queen Steamboat Company is offering 50% off regular cruise fares on June 2014 departures aboard the new American Empress sailing between Portland Oregon and Clarkston, Washington. Departure dates include: 6/7/14, 6/14/14, 6/21/14, 6/28/14. This offer expires June 20, 2014. For details click here.

Crystal Cruises: Cruise Europe with luxury cruise line Crystal Cruises from $1730. Book your Crystal Cruise by April 30, 2014, to take advantage of best available fares on Europe Cruises. For sailings and details click here.

Oceania Cruises: Oceania Cruises is offering 2 for 1 cruise fares with free airfare plus early booking savings of up to $2500 per stateroom on select cruises aboard the Regatta. Fares are subject to increase on 9/3/2014. To view sailings and details click here.

Paul Gaugin Cruises: For a limited time solo travelers can save from $734 to $4796 on select 2014 and 2015 cruises aboard the m/s Paul Gauguin. This reduced single supplements promotion expires April 30, 2014. For details and sailings click here.

Princess Cruises: For a limited time save up to $1,200 per stateroom on select cruises. Plus, you can reserve the stateroom of your choice with only a $100 deposit. The World the Savings sale runs through 11:59 p.m. PDT on April 30, 2014. For more information click here.

Silversea Cruises: Silversea Expeditions is offering complementary or reduced business class air on select Asia-Pacific expeditions aboard the Silver Discoverer. This promotion expires June 15, 2015. For sailing dates and details click here.

Viking River Cruises: For a limited time Viking River Cruises is offering special savings on select 2014 river cruises. Save with 2 for 1 cruise fares and 2 for 1 air. Offer expires April 30, 2014. For details click here.

Windstar Cruises: Windstar Cruises is celebrating spring with an Exotic Destinations Sale in April that features up to 66% savings on new voyages to Asia, Arabia and Tahiti. Guests who book a cruise by Friday, April 25, 2014, will enjoy this year’s lowest fares on Windstar’s newest itineraries departing May 2014 through February 2015. Voyages start at $2,199 per person. For details click here

For the luxury lover in you

Going on a cruise, improving your golf technique and playing on the most beautiful courses in Europe: Guests can do all this on the golf cruises with the EUROPA 2 in 2014. Two PGA professionals will accompany the golf cruises and support the guests on board with training on the simulator, as well as with shore excursions to the most beautiful courses on the cruise route. Golfing for kids & teens is now available on the EUROPA 2, making the sport accessible to all the family. More…
Like fine wine and epicurean cuisine, the artistic brilliance of staged theatrics on Broadway is an indulgence enjoyed by many guests sailing with Oceania Cruises. Today, the line announced a new “Life in the Theater” series for select sailings, starting with a voyage aboard Riviera on October 29, 2014, featuring stage legend Andrea McArdle – the original namesake character in “Annie” on Broadway. More…

River Cruising

American Queen Steamboat Company’s American Empress was christened in downtown Portland, Ore. The 223-guest riverboat, the largest west of the Mississippi River,  officially joins the company’s fleet with the Memphis-based American Queen. Claudette Waggoner, wife of chairman and CEO John Waggoner, is the godmother of the American Empress and broke a bottle of local sparkling wine on the boat’s hull culminating the ceremonial festivities. Former Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood, longtime leader for the U.S. maritime industry and champion of U.S. river cruising expansion, served as the ceremony’s keynote speaker. More…

Helpful Links

We've designed a new search category to make your cruise searches even easier! Cruise Specials by Price:
Under $300 ~ Under $500 ~ Under $1,000 ~ $1,000 to $2,000 ~ $2,000 to $3,000 ~
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What do passengers really think about their cruise experiences? asks travelers to review their cruises right after they return, while impressions are still fresh on their minds. Click here to read more and see the winners for all categories.

Cruise lines going all-inclusive? What is included on your cruise? We have put together this guide to help you know in advance what the lines are offering from airfare to pre- and post-hotel stays, to transfers, wine and liquor, shore excursions and gratuities. Some have it all, others don’t.

An airline booking tool, cars, hotels and vacation packages that you might find of interest. Visit this new section here:

Private Jets, All-Inclusive Resorts, Tahiti and the South Pacific … If this is what you want for your vacation, try the new VacationCompete:

Also check out the “Deals” section on AllThingsCruise … There are some fantastic opportunities in cruising here:

Cruise line news
There’s no better way for families and adventurers to experience Australia, New Zealand and the South Pacific than with Royal Caribbean International. The cruise line, known for its innovative cruise ships, award-winning entertainment and friendly and engaging GOLD Anchor service, announced that Explorer of the Seas will join Voyager of the Seas and Radiance of the Seas for the winter 2015-16 season at Sydney. Royal Caribbean’s winter 2015-16 Australia, New Zealand and South Pacific season will open for reservations on April 29, 2014. More…

And more from Royal Caribbean … No matter the time of year, the Caribbean offers vacationers vibrant cultures and paradisiacal beaches, and no one can deliver the region like Royal Caribbean International. The cruise line with its world-renowned friendly and engaging staff and crew  unveiled its Bahamas and Southern and short Caribbean program for the 2015-16 seasons. Independence of the Seas, Adventure of the Seas, Jewel of the Seas, Enchantment of the Seas and Majesty of the Seas will sail a variety of exciting itineraries from the easy-to-reach homeports of Port Canaveral on Florida’s Space Coast, Ft. Lauderdale and Miami, Fla., and San Juan, Puerto Rico. Whether for a short getaway or a weekend escape, guests will delight in exciting ports of call aboard some of the industry’s most innovative ships. Royal Caribbean’s 2015-16 Bahamas and Southern and short Caribbean vacations are now open for booking. More..

For the very first time, Carnival Cruise Lines is offering 10- and 11-day cruises between Galveston and San Juan featuring visits to six different Caribbean destinations on one itinerary.
Two 11-day cruises sail from Galveston to San Juan Oct. 24, 2015, and Jan. 16, 2016, and two 10-day cruises from San Juan to Galveston depart Nov. 4, 2015, and Jan. 27, 2016.
These longer-length tropical itineraries feature an array of beautiful Caribbean ports and are a first in terms of Carnival’s Texas-based cruise program, which also includes year-round four-and five-day Mexico cruises and seven-day Caribbean itineraries. A number of the ports featured on the 10- and 11-day voyages are among the most pristine, unique and less-visited islands in the Caribbean. Those are combined with several of the region’s most popular destinations to create highly attractive and diverse itineraries that provide the opportunity to enjoy a multitude of islands featuring gorgeous beaches, turquoise waters and endless sightseeing, shopping and water sports activities. More…
Caribbean cruises often make a stop at the private islands- Want to know more about Private Islands? They are a fantastic cruise experience. Read more about them here.

Fun things happening with the cruise lines

While millions of fans immerse themselves in the fourth season of HBO’s Game of Thrones television series, Crystal Cruises is unveiling a new Thrones-focused Crystal Adventure in the show’s key filming location, Northern Ireland. Crystal guests will explore several iconic production locations near Belfast, where they will step into mythical medieval life, shooting arrows, taking photographs with show costumes, and learning how real, centuries-old castles and towers are transformed into sets for the Seven Kingdoms of Westeros. The half-day excursion is offered with an August 24, seven-day luxury cruise through the British Isles aboard Crystal Symphony, and a September 5, 14-day Ireland/Iceland & New England Transatlantic voyage aboard Crystal Serenity. More…
Royal Caribbean International’s Oasis of the Seas, the world’s largest and most innovative cruise ship will be bringing the Tony Award-winning Broadway production of CATS to the high seas. Based on T.S. Eliot’s “Old Possum’s Book of Practical Cats,” CATS was one of the longest running productions on Broadway and is the winner of numerous awards including seven Tonys, two Oliviers and a Grammy. The show has been seen in over 20 countries and translated into more than 10 languages. The fully licensed production of CATS will join Oasis of the Seas once it completes its drydock in fall 2014. More…

Shore Excursions: Questions, Answers and Ideas

Are children's prices available?

Yes. Many of our tours offer children's prices for children under the age of 12 years. Toddlers aged 2 and younger sitting on a parent's lap (not occupying a seat), are not charged for most tours. Please see the individual tour descriptions for specifics on pricing.
Are there any age restrictions on tours?

For most tours, there is no minimum age for children as long as they are accompanied by a parent or guardian. Guests under the age of 18 years are not permitted to participate without a parent or guardian. In some cases, an unaccompanied minor may be permitted on a tour if a wavier is signed by the parent. Please call us for details on specific tours.

Shore Excursion of the Week:

Puntarenas Area Highlights

Famous for its large American Crocodiles, the Tarcoles River forms one of the borders of the Carara Biological Reserve. You will board a custom-built, flat bottom river boat that glides along the placid river with our naturalist guide, who will describe the flora and fauna you encounter in great detail. After visiting the river mouth, you venture up a mature mangrove estuary, where the guide stops to show you about this remarkable ecosystem.
After the riverboat adventure you will take a walk through the trails of Villa Lapas Reserve. The Sky Way walking tour of 1.5 miles in length will give you a good look at all the exotic flora and wildlife. A total of five suspended bridges at more than 180 feet about the ground, 300 feet in length gives you the ultimate eco-immersion as you walk through the tropical rainforest. Villa Lapas is a privileged location that lines the border between the Tropical and Dry Pacific eco-systems. Along the way you will also see majestic views of the Pacific Ocean.
Next, take some time to relax, absorb and stroll around the lovely shopping Village of Santa Lucia. This quaint replica of a Spanish settlement, you will be able to purchase that special gift from a big array of items, including local gourmet coffee and small oxcarts. Enjoy complementary tropical fruits and tea with your free time.

Find out more about this shore excursion here.

Dreaming of a few hours with your family on a private island, swimming with the dolphins, or participating in a yacht race? Consider the shore excursion options on your next cruise by finding your cruise here, and seeing shore excursion ideas:

Or view shore excursions by port here:

Latest diaries of the AllThingsCruise writers

Marcia Levin sails on NCL's new Getaway from Miami. Read her reports here.
Kimberly Button travels to Europe for the christening of Viking's new longships. She follows that with a river cruise. Read her reports here.
Jackie Finch sails on the Carnival Magic from Galveston, escaping the frigid weather in the Midwest. Read her reports here.
David G. Molyneaux travels in Cambodia and Vietnam aboard the 16-passenger Avalon Angkor riverboat. Follow his adventures here.
Barbara Orr is experiencing the Christmas Markets in Europe aboard the ultra-luxurious Scenic Crystal river ship. Read her reports here.
Cindy Boal Janssens sails to Alaska with grandchildren on HAL's Oosterdam. Read their adventures here.
Heidi Allison-Shane sailed across the Atlantic on the Cunard Queen Mary 2. Read her diary here.

Great quote about travel

“I can speak to my soul only when the two of us are off exploring deserts or cities or mountains or roads.”  - Paulo Coelho, Aleph

If you’d love a book of some of the very best travel quotes, take a look at:

No Foreign Lands – 100 of the Most Inspirational Travel Quotes of All Time

Click here to purchase this book:

A valuable unique feature of AllThingsCruise is a complimentary e-card with vital cruise line and cruise ship contact information travelers can send to family members and others prior to departure.

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We are interested and truly welcome and encourage feedback about our Currents newsletter. Please email any comments or suggestions to Heidi Allison, Executive VP & Group Publisher, at

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