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Recommendations for a short cruise departing Tampa

Recommendations for a short cruise departing Tampa

Old May 2, 18, 9:53 am
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Recommendations for a short cruise departing Tampa

Looking for something with good quality.
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Old May 2, 18, 11:59 am
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Originally Posted by honores41 View Post
Looking for something with good quality.
Any chance you can be more specific? What is short? What do you consider good quality? What time of year?
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Old May 2, 18, 12:02 pm
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Try www.vacationstogo.com

Do a Custom Search.

Pick your date and nights ranges.

It looks like only Royal Caribbean, Norwegian and Holland America have trips out of Tampa at the 4.5* ship level. Carnival has 4* ships out of there. If you don't prefer one of the cruise lines, you can exclude it.

Pick your minimum ship rating. When I checked, 4.5* was the highest out of Tampa.

Pick Tampa as departure port.

See what shakes out. Then for the interesting ones, check www.cruisecritic.com for reviews.
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Old May 2, 18, 12:51 pm
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Originally Posted by Randyk47 View Post


Any chance you can be more specific? What is short? What do you consider good quality? What time of year?
3-5 days, good food and accommodations. Next 3 months.
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Old May 2, 18, 3:20 pm
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Originally Posted by honores41 View Post
3-5 days, good food and accommodations. Next 3 months.
Your choices are limited, actually slim. For one prime Caribbean season is over, for two even during prime season there aren’t many 3-5 day cruises, for three there are only two lines cruising out of Tampa doing 3-5 day cruises, and for four the two lines are Carnival and Royal Caribbean. Personally I don’t consider either “quality” but they’re not bottom of the barrel either and for a short cruise you’ll probably be fine and have a good time. Royal Caribbean might be marginally better but the ship out of Tampa is the Majesty of the Seas which is one of their older ships (built 1992), not one of their mega liners that do longer cruises out of Ft Lauderdale. If you could stretch your time and budget and be willing to cruise out of Ft Lauderdale then Royal Caribbean and one of their mega ships would be a much better choice.
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Last edited by Randyk47; May 2, 18 at 3:33 pm
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Old May 2, 18, 9:07 pm
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Originally Posted by Randyk47 View Post


Your choices are limited, actually slim. For one prime Caribbean season is over, for two even during prime season there aren’t many 3-5 day cruises, for three there are only two lines cruising out of Tampa doing 3-5 day cruises, and for four the two lines are Carnival and Royal Caribbean. Personally I don’t consider either “quality” but they’re not bottom of the barrel either and for a short cruise you’ll probably be fine and have a good time. Royal Caribbean might be marginally better but the ship out of Tampa is the Majesty of the Seas which is one of their older ships (built 1992), not one of their mega liners that do longer cruises out of Ft Lauderdale. If you could stretch your time and budget and be willing to cruise out of Ft Lauderdale then Royal Caribbean and one of their mega ships would be a much better choice.
Thank you very much!
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Old May 3, 18, 7:11 am
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Aside from Carnival maybe being a little behind, the options are generally the same and subject to personal preference. Tampa tends to have smaller, older ships, as I understand it for two reasons. First, the sunshine skyway bridge at the mouth of Tampa Bay limits size, and secondly, Tampa is treated as a secondary Florida port to MIA, Fort Lauderdale and Port Canaveral.
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Old May 3, 18, 8:48 am
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My brother and sister in law are doing a 4 day Tampa-Key West-Havana trip this month on Royal Caribbean. A cruise to Havana might be a good option. [Omni comment removed by moderator.]

Last edited by l etoile; May 3, 18 at 1:21 pm Reason: Omni comment removed
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Old May 3, 18, 8:58 am
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on a 4 day cruise, pack light(really light) one day getting on board, one day getting off, and 2 days going nowhere. not much time to unpack.

we like RC and have done 4 x 9-12 day cruises with them. all out of baltimore, on a smaller, older boat. so old, it has been rebuilt. we keep going back, cause we think it to be great value.
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Old May 3, 18, 9:17 am
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We've done short cruises on RCL's Brilliance of the Seas, an older ship, a bit smaller, but fine quality for what it is. One route is Tampa-Key West-Cozumel-Tampa, another is Tampa-Cozumel-Tampa. If you depart from Tampa, the Epicurean Hotel and dinner at Bern's Steak House is very nice for the night before.
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Old May 3, 18, 2:08 pm
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Originally Posted by Romelle View Post
Pick your minimum ship rating.
I wouldn't put much stock in ship ratings on online cruise booking agency websites. The reality is that the ratings people enter confound at least two completely different metrics: grade and quality. People allergic to nuance don't care to differentiate between the two, so rarely are the two assessed separately, as they should be, so you end up with completely useless information ranking (for example) a Cunard ship slightly below a Carnival ship.

Originally Posted by Randyk47 View Post
Your choices are limited, actually slim. For one prime Caribbean season is over, for two even during prime season there aren’t many 3-5 day cruises
Some good insights here. One cruise line, Holland America, for example, moves its entire Caribbean to northern waters from May through September (every year).

Also, the OP is skewing things against his/her own interests a couple of other ways, starting with looking for a short cruise. Short cruises (less then 6 days) are a lot rougher on ships, crews and customer satisfaction, in general. Figure that on short cruises any little thing that goes wrong represents a failure of so much more of the cruise, so problems get magnified. Also, a lot of the really positive feelings about cruising emanate from experiences that simply take longer to percolate. Some people love short cruises, but all in all if you're looking at a short cruise because it is less money at risk, please know that you are not really going to get any real inkling of what a 7, 10, 14 or 18 day cruise is like.

Leaving from Tampa is also another artificial restriction that I feel undercuts the chances of having a great cruise. Cruise lines generally run smaller, older ships out of Tampa. If you live an hour away, you cannot beat the convenience, but it is really important to place a high value on that convenience and recognize that you're making compromises that you wouldn't have to make cruising out of Miami, for example.
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Old May 24, 18, 12:32 am
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If you don’t mind having the most basic amenities on the ship, Royal caribbean is doing 4-5 night cruises out of Tampa to Cuba. Some of those Cuba cruises even overnight in Havana.

Majesty of the Seas is doing the run out of Tampa.. not much to the ship when compared to their newer ship but it has the most basic amenities.
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Old May 24, 18, 7:35 am
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Originally Posted by SkaterJasp View Post
Majesty of the Seas is doing the run out of Tampa.. not much to the ship when compared to their newer ship but it has the most basic amenities.
I did Majesty out of Port Canaveral 4day March this year. While the ship is much smaller for a short cruise I kinda liked it. Of course, in 1995 I was on her sister ship Monarch of the Seas when that class was the largest cruise ships afloat so had some nostalgia. The crew was great, no long lines anywhere, we just did two beach days and one sea day. At the time I was looking at the RCI 5 day Tampa and 4 day Port Canaveral equally both leaving the same day. Went with the 4 day just because of the return timing, spent the day at Kennedy Space Center and an evening flight home.

Majesty cabins are SMALL, we had the Superior Ocean View on deck 9 which are larger than anything but a suite. 157sqft. Ocean View 122sqft, Interior 119sqft. Jr. suites start at 255sqft and go up.
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Old May 24, 18, 8:43 am
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for a 3 day,you will get on the boat at around 2pm, have a whole day, and then get off the boat at 10am the next day. you will hardly have time to play the slot machines.

i like RC. we yacht(fly?) out of Baltimore. they only have one boat that services Balt. it is old, and been rebuilt a time or two. the something of the sea. cooking is very good, staff is terrific. one gets nickel and dime to death, but the berths are cheap. my understanding is that both balt and tampa have a problem with water depth, so the monster boats do not fit.
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Old May 24, 18, 1:08 pm
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Originally Posted by slawecki View Post
for a 3 day,you will get on the boat at around 2pm, have a whole day, and then get off the boat at 10am the next day. you will hardly have time to play the slot machines.

i like RC. we yacht(fly?) out of Baltimore. they only have one boat that services Balt. it is old, and been rebuilt a time or two. the something of the sea. cooking is very good, staff is terrific. one gets nickel and dime to death, but the berths are cheap. my understanding is that both balt and tampa have a problem with water depth, so the monster boats do not fit.
Doubtful, since Baltimore is also a commercial port. I think it's more the fact that Baltimore is a "downmarket" port of origin.
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