When you sit down to plan your family vacation, it’s probably second nature to begin typing in the search box of your usual travel agent without giving alternative modes of transport a second thought. After all, for its speed, convenience, and price, flying has long been an uncontested go-to. However, you might be surprised to hear that the popularity of cruises is on the rise. I’m a travel junkie and an ex-pat, I have traveled COUNTLESS time on both planes and cruises, and now I have a family it can get hard to choose which one is better. Before going down the usual route of booking a flight and hotel getaway, give some thought to how a cruise might change the dynamic of your next trip. That’s why I have written a flying vs cruise guide, that way you can see which one fits more family travel.
To make it easy to evaluate, I have broken it down into four major topics: destination, environment, convenience, and price. So, let’s see which one is better, flying or cruising.
Flying VS Cruises
For a variety of destination
Flights will get you where you want to go, and quickly, but unless your factor in a cruise or lots of overland public transport; it’s unlikely you’ll cram more than one or two destinations into your itinerary. Meanwhile, you can stop at as many ports as there are days in your vacation on cruises, all without the disruption of unpacking, checking in, and juggling documents.
The winner: cruises
For the environment
Although many cruise lines are aware of their environmental impact and working hard to reduce their carbon footprint, it’s undeniable that air transport is slightly more sustainable, especially in the case of a fly-cruise. However, with any vacation, there are choices you can make to minimize your impact. Look for cruise lines that use solar power and biofuel, and whether in a hotel or in a cabin, don’t be lavish with the fresh towels!
The winner: flying
Once you check in on your cruise, most of the logistics are already taken care of, making for the ultimate stress-free vacation. You need only unpack once. You don’t have to fork over for dinner every night. Entertainment is all part of the package, and the options on a cruise are endless.
The winner: cruises
Apart from a few exceptions, for the solo traveler, cruises can be prohibitive, often charging a hefty supplement for empty cabin space. However, for families and couples, all-inclusive cruises can be far cheaper once you tot up individual flights, hotel bookings, transfers, and daily meals. Entertainment for the kids is taken care of as standard, as is food. There’s less time on-shore, so less chance of spending money, and as long as you watch out for supplementary activities and drinks charges, cruises can be surprisingly cheap once booked.
The winner: cruising
Which one is better, flying or cruises?
Cruises are a better option for a family trip. Despite the accidents cruises can have, they are gaining popularity for a good reason. While many cruise lines have a lot of catching up to do in their sustainability efforts, and facilities for solo travelers, for convenience and price, the traditional flight and hotel holiday may well have a worthy contender for your next vacation.