Caribbean Cruise Lines

| January 19, 2009

Various cruise lines excel in certain cruising regions; a look at the better Caribbean cruise lines.

For many people the word cruise is synonymous with Caribbean, but which cruise lines are the best at Caribbean cruises? Obviously, Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines has the word Caribbean in its name, and Norwegian Cruise Lines was once known as Norwegian Caribbean Cruise Lines.

Carnival doesn't have the word Caribbean in its name, but Carnival is arguably one of the top of Caribbean cruise lines. Let's take a look at who is best in Caribbean cruises.

Caribbean Cruise Specialists Almost every cruise line in the world offers some Caribbean cruises, but not every cruise line focuses on Caribbean cruises as their main offering. Holland America is very well known for its Alaska cruises, as is Princess Cruise Lines, although Princess made its name with Mexican Riviera cruises back in the original Love Boat Days.

Which cruise lines concentrate on Caribbean cruises as their main moneymaker? You might as well ask, "which cruise lines are most mainstream and popular?" because Caribbean cruises are the most popular cruises in the world by far.

Carnival Cruise Lines sails more Caribbean cruises every year than any other cruise line. Of the 21 ships in the Carnival fleet and two more on order, it is easier to count the ships that do not sail in the Caribbean. Carnival has four ships that sail to the Mexican Riviera every winter and one of those repositions to Alaska every summer. That means they average at least 16 ships in the Caribbean year round. In the past they would reposition one or two ships to Europe in the summer, but not in 2009.

Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines is also very popular in the Caribbean, but don't let the name fool you. It also has a number of ships in Europe, one year round, and other ships permanently deployed in Asia and South America. In general, however, Royal Caribbean is very strong in the Caribbean with at least 12 of their 21 ships (and two more on order) in the region almost full time.

Norwegian Cruise Lines has at least seven of its ten ships deployed in the Caribbean during the winter months and several of those sail there all year long. Other cruise lines that have ships in the Caribbean year round include Princess Cruise Lines, Holland America Lines and Celebrity Cruise Lines.

Disney Cruise Lines has two cruise ships that sail out of Port Canaveral. One ship is usually combined with three or four-day visits to the Magic Kingdom in Orlando, which means they spend three days in Orlando and four days onboard one week, and the next week they do the opposite. The other Disney ship sails typical 7-day eastern Caribbean cruises.

Some of the European cruise lines essentially become Caribbean cruise lines during the winter months, choosing to reposition the ships they have deployed and targeted to the European market in the summertime to the Caribbean for cruises for North Americans. These include Costa Cruises and MSC Cruises, both Italian cruise lines (although Costa is actually owned by parent company Carnival Corp.) MSC is a true European cruise line and subsidiary of Mediterranean Shipping Company of Genoa. Both of these cruise lines position two ships in the Caribbean during the winter season.

Continue Article >> The Best Caribbean Cruise Lines (Part 2)

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