Posts tagged Family Travel
CRUISE REVIEWS: Our Family's MSC Divina Cruise

Although this was my 5th cruise, this was my first MSC cruise, and I loved it.  My mom, my husband, my 6-year-old son, my 2-year-old son, and I sailed together on the MSC Divina, from March 25, 2017 to April 1, 2017, from the Port of Miami to Ocho Rios, Grand Cayman, Cozumel, and Nassau.  We had two Bella staterooms on Deck 8, one room across the hall from the other: balcony stateroom 8251 and inside stateroom 8253.  We had a wonderful time!  The crew and staff were generally very helpful and cheerful.  Our stateroom steward, Lynyrd, was excellent in keeping our rooms in order and providing any requested services, such as

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Getting To and From Guadeloupe

Our family is looking forward to cruising from Guadeloupe on our most port-intensive cruise yet, so I was quite concerned when I realized that the round-trip cost that I was finding for flights between New York City (NYC) and Pointe-a-Pitre (PTP) was over $2000 per person!  That doesn’t include checked bags, and we are traveling as a family of five! 

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Cruising During Hurricane Season

My family and I are excited about our upcoming cruise, and as embarkation day approaches, we have watched, heard, and read a lot about the hurricanes that have already occurred this hurricane season.  Atlantic hurricane season is from June 1st to November 30th, but hurricanes are said to be more likely from mid-August to mid-October, also known as the “season within the season” or “peak season.”  Some may ask, “With all these hurricanes, are you still cruising this season?”  Our quick answer: “By the grace of God, yes!” 

We have cruised during hurricane season at least twice before.  Our upcoming cruise is a combined birthday and anniversary celebration.  Therefore, it stands to reason that the cruise will take place at or near the time of the birthday and anniversary being celebrated.  Furthermore, if you read My Cruising Family’s very first blog post, you know that I am an advocate for purchasing travel insurance before cruising, especially before cruising with young children.  Children are unpredictable.  Life is unpredictable.  As my husband said, “Cruising during hurricane season is the same as cruising any other time.  All travel involves some level of risk.”  Purchasing insurance takes those risks into account and provides peace of mind. 

Hurricanes should always be taken seriously.  However, that does not mean that successful travel plans cannot be made during hurricane season, even if those plans are to the Caribbean, Mexico, and/or parts of the United States that are vulnerable to hurricanes. 

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What My Cruising Family Packs: Carry-On Edition

Greetings!  

Today is a significant day in the countdown to our next cruise.  As embarkation day approaches, we are turning our attention to packing, so I will share a bit of that in this post.  Some may ask, “With all these hurricanes, are you still cruising this season?”  Our quick answer: “By the grace of God, yes!”  Anyway, that’s a discussion for another post. 

We usually pack the following travel-size items in our carry-on luggage

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Organized Island-Hopping and Further Globetrotting

I am Jamaican-born and first visited the United States when I was four years old.  Then, after years of visiting the United States during Easter and summer vacations, I officially moved to New York, U.S.A. in 1991.  I then visited Jamaica regularly during school vacations. 

Being born and raised in the Caribbean, I am well aware of the beauty and diversity that the Caribbean holds, and while I know that a number of Caribbean islands, including my homeland, are tourist hotspots, I also know that there are a number of lesser known islands that offer much to be experienced. 

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What Travel Documents Do I Need To Cruise?

Cruising is amazing, fun, and relaxing all in one, and in order to get to that amazing, fun, and relaxing part, it is important to first take some time to ensure that all required paperwork is in place.  Understanding what travel documentation is needed to cruise starts with understanding the types of cruises that exist.  My hope is that the information in this post will help you to prepare well for your cruise by having all the documentation that you need, and then some. 

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People-To-People Travel Is Awesome!

At the time of this writing, United States citizens are permitted to travel to Cuba; however, tourist travel to Cuba is prohibited for Unites States citizens.  Therefore, those desiring to visit Cuba must obtain a license from the Unites States Department of the Treasury or certify that their travel falls into one of 12 categories of authorized travel.  One such category permitting travel to Cuba is the people-to-people travel, which requires the traveler to participate in activities that are intended to "enhance contact with the Cuban people, support civil society in Cuba, or promote the Cuban people’s independence from Cuban authorities, and that will result in meaningful interaction between the traveler and individuals in Cuba."

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