By Lynn and Rob Belles
Independent Vacation Specialists
The most affordable location to cruise is the Caribbean and the most affordable cruises can be taken September to November, during hurricane season. Embrace the experience, and you can have a great time while saving money. For our honeymoon cruise, in 1996, we embraced hurricane Lili. Read the back story on our blog: book-a-cruise.info/cruising-in-hurricane-season/
Standard cruise line strategy is to avoid storms, even small ones, as nobody likes bad weather on their vacation. Cruise ships can outrun storms, as they move about 8-10 knots, while ships cruise at 22-25 knots. Cruise lines operating in the Caribbean have, from decades of experience, hurricane/tropical storm plans. They are prepared to keep passengers safe and happy.
Embracing new experiences means you are willing to miss a port of call. To outrun a storm, the ship may change stops. They might re-route you to a calm, sunny port, or you may get to embrace a day-at-sea, laying by the pool, playing games and relaxing. You might even be compensated for your disappointment with a little on-board-credit (OBC) to embellish your sea time.
Sometimes even the best plans make it impossible to completely miss storms and storm remnants. Embrace what you receive and enjoy the rocking and swaying of the ship, it may offer you the best night’s sleep you’ve had in years. For your waking hours bring sea bands or other seasickness remedies. The ships today are large, and have stabilizers to eliminate motion. When waves reach 16′, they only reduce, not cancel, the motion.
Finally, embrace change. Occasionally a ship will miss, change or delay the home port. If weather is impacting the home port, this can be changed, meaning you will get on, or off, in a different city than planned. Be prepared, buy trip insurance, have your passport and arrive a day or two early. Also, be prepared to debark a day or two later, as the ship may wait a day to return home. Your insurance will likely cover a change in your air flight, and yes, you get an extra vacation day free.