Calling all cruise rookies! From choosing the right itinerary to picking your perfect cabin, here are ten things you should consider when booking your first cruise.

The popularity of cruising is growing. Research conducted by the Association of British Travel Agents (ABTA) in 2017 suggests that 14% of UK holidaymakers plan on taking a cruise in the previous year, almost double the number that went on one in the past 12 months. 25% of survey respondents who had never been on a cruise were interested in doing so.

And cruising is no longer the preserve of more mature travellers squandering their children’s inheritance. The average cruiser is 47 years old and the significant growth area is millennials (2017 Year in Review Cruise Lines International Association). The ABTA report suggests that millennials were the demographic group most interested in taking a cruise, with more than one in ten of those between the ages of 18-24 planning a cruise for next year.

Wealth and cruising no longer go hand in hand; 33% of those who had cruised in the past year had a household income below $80K. (2018 CLIA State of the Industry).

So what are the drivers for cruising’s surge in popularity and the change in the industry’s demographic profile? In a nutshell, it’s all about snacking on a variety of destination with ease and comfort. The added appeal for UK residents is that with the current uncertainty around currency fluctuations amidst Brexit negotiations, cruises eliminate the stress of additional and unanticipated costs.

reasons for booking your first cruise
What do cruisers value about their cruise experience? (

But how do you go about booking your first cruise? Faced with a sea of choice, from which itinerary to choose, to what cabin to plump for, it can seem like an overwhelming task. Start here with this first in a series of posts around cruising for beginners, with a  guide to the ten things you must consider before booking your perfect first cruise.

All aboard? Then let’s sail away.