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Cruising Guide: How to Choose a Cruise That’s Right for You

By AMA Staff

Not all cruise lines are created equal: Speak to an AMA Travel cruise specialist to help you select your ideal ship, stateroom, onboard options and excursions—and score some perks exclusive to AMA members.


Itinerary & Cruise Line: The Caribbean, Holland America
Ports & Amenities: Going with a group? The ships in this line’s fleet offer staterooms that can comfortably accommodate up to four or five guests. Some of the newer ships even feature two bathrooms in family suites.
Good to Know: There’s something for all on Half Moon Cay, Holland America’s private island in the Bahamas. Swim with stingrays, walk on the silky white-sand beach or take a bike tour.
AMA Member Perks: On select sailings: shipboard credits, $50 beverage card, specialty dining in Pinnacle Grill and Canaletto


Itinerary & Cruise Line: Mediterranean, Oceania Cruises
Ports & Amenities: Food and wine lovers will appreciate the laid-back luxury of ships in this line. Legendary chef Jacques Pépin serves as executive culinary director for Oceania; he personally developed all the menus at the restaurants onboard.
Good to Know: Aboard the Riviera, book a wine-tasting experience at La Reserve by Wine Spectator magazine, which hosts 24 bon vivants at a time.
AMA Member Perks: On select sailings: complimentary wine tasting, pre-paid gratuities or $100 USD shipboard credit

how to choose the right cruise
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Itinerary & Cruise Line: The Caribbean, Royal Caribbean International
Ports & Amenities: Go aboard Symphony of the Seas, the world’s largest cruise ship. She holds 5,400 guests and features 18 decks, 20 dining options and a 10-storey slide. Islands on the four- or seven-night routes include St. Kitts, Bahamas, St. Thomas and Puerto Rico.
Good to Know: To appeal to all ages, the ship features seven distinct “neighbourhoods,” including the tree-lined Central Park and the Promenade, a shop-filled avenue.
AMA Member Perks: VIP pier check-in, and on select sailings: up to $100 USD shipboard credit, plus specialty dining aboard Allure, Harmony and Oasis

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Itinerary & Cruise Line: Galapagos, Celebrity Cruises
Ports & Amenities: Choose from six unique cruise itineraries, covering 15 islands and more than 30 ports of call. Onboard naturalists provide expert insight about wildlife and vegetation that only exist on these islands.
Good to Know: Michelin-starred chefs prepare onboard meals. Add a pre- or post-cruise side trip to Peru’s Machu Picchu.
AMA Member Perks: Seven-night all-inclusive cruise experience aboard all three ships and itineraries


Itinerary & Cruise Line: Antarctica, Hurtigruten Cruises
Ports & Amenities: Tour earth’s coldest and arguably coolest continent on a voyage departing from South America. Kayak the pristine waters, hike an active volcano and see penguins up-close.
Good to Know: For shore excursions, the ship provides complimentary use of boots and you can rent binoculars. Every evening, nature experts recap the day’s sights.
AMA Member Perks: Shipboard credit of up to $50 USD