04 January 2019

Classes of cruise companies

Cruise Line Types

Crystal Cruises ship, the Crystal Symphony, falls into the Ultra-Luxury category. Image courtesy of Crystal Cruises.

One of the key elements of a happy cruise is finding the line that’s right for your particular needs. The cruise lines fall into various categories, and to help you navigate the waters (so to speak) of choosing one, we’ve created a guide to what these categories mean. Bear in mind, cruise lines can fall into more than one category, Luxury Expedition, for example, but these descriptions should help to steer you in the right direction. See which lines fall into these categories, and what amenities they offer, by visiting our All-Inclusive Chart.

CONTEMPORARY CRUISE LINES

The contemporary cruise lines offer a variety of cruise schedules and itineraries that are perfect for younger adults and family cruises. These are the lines with the largest ships, the most onboard entertainment options, and the widest variety of amenities. This great array of options allows you to choose the type of vacation experience you want once you are on board the ship.

Lines that fall into this category are:

  • Aida Cruises
  • Carnival Cruises Line
  • Costa Cruise Lines
  • Celestyal Cruises

These lines are well suited for:

  • Families with young children
  • Families with teenagers
  • Family reunions and multi-generational families
  • 20- and 30-somethings looking for light adventure and various sports activities
  • 40- and 50-somethings looking for a couple’s vacation
  • Travelers looking for a wide array of activities
  • Seniors looking for new friends
  • Solo travelers
  • Couples looking for romantic getaways
  • Destination weddings
  • Honeymoons
  • Adventure travelers looking for high thrills

UPSCALE CONTEMPORARY CRUISE LINES

These lines offer all the benefits of the contemporary cruise lines, but take things a step futher, with finer amenities and a more upscale environment.

  • MSC Cruises
  • Norwegian Cruise Line (NCL)
  • Royal Caribbean International (RCI)
  • Viking Ocean Cruises

These lines are well suited for:

  • Families with young children
  • Families with teenagers
  • Family reunions and multi-generational families
  • 20- and 30-somethings looking for light adventure and various sports activities
  • 40- and 50-somethings looking for a couple’s vacation
  • Travelers looking for a wide array of activities
  • Seniors looking for new friends
  • Solo travelers
  • Couples looking for romantic getaways
  • Destination weddings
  • Honeymoons
  • Adventure travelers looking for high thrills

PREMIUM CRUISE LINES

Premium cruise lines tend to be large, but not mega-type ships, though they offer similar voyages, plus voyages to exotic locales. Due to the size of these ships, they do not dock in the heart of the town or village like the ultra-premium lines. These lines cater to travelers seeking luxurious accommodations, enhanced dining, excellent service, extensive activities, and enrichment opportunities. The onboard experience is sophisticated and the service above average. These lines will have enhanced spa and wine options.   They tend to cater to more mature and discerning passengers who are seeking a sophisticated level of service, ship amenities, and accommodations at somewhat higher prices. These lines also offer children’s programs for all ages.

  • Celebrity Cruises 
  • Disney Cruise Line
  • Holland America Line
  • Princess Cruises 

These lines are well suited for:

  • Those seeking both classic and modern luxury, contemporary and conservative design, and dining experiences in which the atmosphere is as important as the food and wine.
  • Families wishing to travel with young children where the environment is a little more subdued.
  • Families with teenagers
  • Families who are looking for an educational experience for the family
  • Family reunions and multi-generational families
  • 40- and 50-somethings looking for a couple’s vacation
  • Seniors looking for new friends
  • Solo travelers
  • Couples looking for romantic getaways
  • 40- and 50-somethings looking for a couple’s vacation
  • Destination weddings
  • Honeymoons

ULTRA-PREMIUM CRUISE LINES

The ultra-premium cruise lines tend to have smaller ships and offer voyages to popular ports, and unique itineraries featuring smaller, less-traveled destinations. They primarily cater to discerning passengers who are seeking a sophisticated level of service, ship amenities, and accommodations at upscale prices. Some lines may offer numerous included amenities. These lines are generally priced higher than the premium cruise lines.

Lines that fall into this category are:

  • Azamara club Cruises 
  • Cunard Line
  • Oceania Cruises
  • Windstar Cruises 

These lines are well suited for:

  • Seasoned travelers
  • Adults who are destination-oriented and enjoy the finer things in life
  • Travelers looking for a boutique experience with a destination immersion.
  • Travelers who find the small touches make all the difference—from the service to the food to the ships themselves.
  • Adults seeking a “country club casual” experience with very upscale surroundings and amenities
25 February 2019

Uniform on a cruise - what to wear?

Just about every cruise line has a dress code of some type. (Except for the occasional nudist charter, they all at least agree that clothing is required!) But, from there on, dress codes range from th

Read more
03 January 2019

How to choose a cabin?

Your room on a cruise ship is called a cabin (or stateroom) and is akin to a hotel room, but typically much smaller. Choosing a cruise ship cabin can be fun and challenging at the same time, and not j

Read more
03 September 2018

What are cruise fares, port charges and tips (or service charge)?

Port charges Whenever a сruise ship docks at a port of call, the local authorities require a fee. Before a cruise starts, the cruise line will add up the port charges from the different ports of call

Read more

Magnificent Seine and Paris 02.05.2020:

Magnificent Seine and Paris 02.05.2020