Thinking Of a Cruise? Not Yet…

If you’re a fellow cruise fan or addicted like I am, I’m sorry to tell you that you should probably wait another year.

This morning I priced out a Norwegian cruise (the Bliss) from L.A. to Mexican Riviera the first two weeks in January. Its one of the blocks on the calendar when travel is at its lowest (thus should be cheapest) since people just spend a ton of money on Christmas and it’s a month before most people think seriously about any winter holiday. But the price seems way too high, the obstacles are significant, and I’m not sure you want to be that close and personal with 3,000 other people for a while longer…

The price: $2,900 all inclusive for two people for a week? No way! That’s way too expensive. Sure, they’ll include a bunch of perks right now (free wi-fi, 3 upgraded restaurant visits and unlimited drinks). Sure, the actually cruise price will drop in the next month…but that only helps people living within driving distance to L.A. The rest of us need to book an airline ticket way in advance or that already overpriced flight will go even higher!

The obstacles: If you’re not vaccinated – forget it. They may (but not with all cruise lines) allow you on the ship (the rules change weekly) but you’ll be isolated onto certain decks and sections. If you have a mixed vaccine (like I do) you’ll be allowed on (I think) but treated as unvaccinated. The CDC and all Canadian medical institutions say you’re fully vaccinated, but some cruise lines, Italy, and other countries don’t agree.

You will also need a Covid negative test before you get on your return flight. You’ll be able to get off the ship by around 9 am, but then have to find a Covid test place, and get it one, and pay for it (I think it’s around $200), and then wait for the written results, and then get to the airport. The odds of making a flight back home that day seem remote. That means you may need to pay for a night in a hotel and the cab fare to get tested, to the hotel and to the airport!

The friends who wanted the cruise info will end up at an all-inclusive in Cabo and not on a cruise. Smart decision for so many reason right now. Sure I want to cruise again but not for that kind of money and not with those hurdles and unknowns…Sad but true.

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