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Wednesday, November 30, 2011

MAKE THE MOST OF TODAY'S STRIKE DAY

With thousands of people expected to be off work due to the strike, holiday companies are anticipating a surge in holiday related online activity.  With dreary weather forecasted, a day at home provides the ideal opportunity to help the kids dig out the Christmas decorations, catch up on X Factor, write the Christmas cards, tidy the house, bake a cake and book next year’s holiday.

According to award winning cruise specialist Ideal Cruising, today will see an 80% year on year increase in holiday related online activity across the UK.  With prices from as low as £699 per person for a twelve night cruise in the Canaries in January, many people will take advantage of late discounted deals over Christmas and January and early booking deals for the summer to book a real holiday treat.

Ideal Cruising was awarded ‘Best Cruise Retail Website’ at the 2011 Travolution Awards.









Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Ideal Cruising's Christmas Wishlist

Ideal Cruising has been getting ready for Christmas by having a full make-over!
We now have a new logo and a refreshed website (the blog will soon follow) to reflect our increased drive to create the perfect cruises!

Times are tough, so to help ensure everyone gets what they wish for this Christmas, we are adding extra presents to our exclusive cruises.


Ideal's Christmas Wishlist


As you can see, a cruise from Ideal Cruising is much more than just a trip. With flights, transfers and presents included, it becomes a truly unique experience. 

Friday, November 11, 2011

Cruise Liners During The Wars

The 11th of November is the day when we remember our fallen soldiers for all previous and current wars. As a time of reflection we take a brief look at how cruise ships have played their roles in previous wars.


First World War
RMS Mauretania in Dazzle Camouflage
In the First World War RMS Mauretania was used briefly as an armed merchant cruiser, but due to its huge size and fuel consumption it was decommissioned from its military duties. Later in the war RMS Mauretania would become a troopship before it was redesignated as a hospital ship. It managed to avoid the German U-boat fire due to its speed and 'dazzle' paintwork which made targeting it difficult.
RMS Olympic, sister ship of the Titanic, served as a troopship for the British. From its highly effective operation during the war it obtained the nickname 'old reliable'.
HMHS Britannic, another sister ship of the Titanic, sadly did not make it through the war. Originally built as a passenger ship, she never saw any commercial passengers and was instead enlisted straight into the army as a hospital ship. Sadly on the 21st November 1916 she struck a mine off the Greek Coast by Kea resulting in a loss of 30 lives.

Second World War
The Queen Mary During WW2
The famous Queen Mary and Queen Elizabeth ships were used during the war as troop carriers. Both transported thousands of troops across the Atlantic Ocean, surviving attacks but U-boats and rough seas to make it through the war without major incident.
Unfortunately the Queen Elizabeth was lost in 1972 due to on-board fires. However, the Queen Mary is now permanently docked at Long Island in Los Angeles as a tourist attraction.

Other Wars
Cruise liners have been used as recently as the Falklands with Cunards QE2 (soon to be an attraction in Dubai) and P&O's Canberra being used as troopships by the British Army.

Much like everyone and everything at the time of war, cruise ships have played their part in creating the world we live in today.... least we forget..
Today (11/11/11) Ideal Cruising will donate £11 from every sale to the Royal British Legion.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Your Ideal Alaska & Vegas Cruise & Stay


Visit two Great Natural Wonders of the World with Ideal Cruising; Alaska and The Grand Canyon via Las Vegas.

Fly from London to Las Vegas and spend three nights in the Fabulous Aria Resort & Casino Hotel. Built in 2009, it is the new heart of the Las Vegas strip, making it the perfect hub to explore one of the greatest cities on the earth. Highlights of the resort include;
  • A mouth-watering 16 restaurants and 10 bars
  • 3 pools, 
  • A 80,000sqft spa and salon
  • 1,800 seater theatre which houses the Viva Elvis musical

Whilst in Vegas you will take a trip into the spectacular Grand Canyon, one of the Natural Wonders of The World. 277miles long, up to 18miles wide and a depth of over a mile; the pure scale and beauty of the Canyon has to be seen to be believed.

After your stay in Las Vegas you will then fly north to Seattle to meet with Celebrity Cruise's ship the Celebrity Infinity for a magical 7 night sailing into Alaska.
The Celebrity Inifnity boasts 10 bars, a gym, a theatre, an indoor pool, golf simulator, a cinema and a state-of-the-art AquaSpa so there will be something to do for everyone on board when not taking in the amazing Alaskan scenery.

Alaska with its natural beauty and quaint, old mining and fishing towns is a truly unique American experience 

Prices start from £1999pp based on an inside cabin on board.  
Why not upgrade to a balcony for less than £250pp 

Friday, October 28, 2011

P&O wins Best Large Cruise Line In Telegraph Travel Awards


P&O has won the Best Large Cruise Line in The Telegraph Travel Awards for 2011.
It beat off stiff competition from runners-up Cunard and Celebrity.

P&O cruises out of Southampton and a variety of other European ports for trips around the Mediterranean and the Canary Islands.
There are also magnificent cruises on offer around the Caribbean, so there is something for anyone who wishes to catch some winter sun this year.

On board any of P&O magnificent super-liners you can expect exclusive celebrity endorsed restaurants, with menu’s created by Gary Rhodes and Marco Pierre White. Or simply enjoy the ship’s many facilities and creative workshops, whilst the children are being fully entertained by Noddy, Mr Bump and the Mr Men shows.

With fantastic entertainment and facilities on board, and itineraries which include some amazing locations around the world it is easy to see why P&O was voted the Best Large Cruise Line.

To see the full run down of winners in the Travel Awards click here


Monday, October 24, 2011

Your Ideal New Orleans Cruise & Stay



New Orleans one of the world's most fascinating cities. Steeped in a history of influences from Europe, the Caribbean, Africa and beyond, it's brilliant mosaic of culture, food and music. You'll find brimming bowls of gumbo, late nights in jazz clubs, strolls through historic neighbourhoods and tantalising festivals throughout the year. Its no surprise then to find the popularity of New Orleans growing once again as tourism increases.


What better way to enjoy the hospitality of Louisiana than a 3 night stay at one of the cities many unique hotels before heading off on a 7 night Royal Caribbean Cruise. The Voyager of the Seas will take you from New Orleans through the Gulf of Mexico and onto Falmouth in Jamaica, Georgetown in Grand Cayman and Cozumel in Mexico.


And don't forget, if you happen to be there in for Mardi Gras (thats February 21st in 2012) you may well need that 7 night cruise more than anything else after joining in on that party

Monday, October 17, 2011

Your Ideal Cunard Transatlantic Crossing

There are many things that are suited to each other, fish and chips for example, Sundays and roast dinners and of course, they are both very traditionally British. Something else very British is Cunard, steeped in history from the grand days of the transatlantic crossings, Cunard still to this day offers something that little bit special and here at Ideal Cruising, we have managed to take the best of Cunard and create something a little bit more special.

How? Well, we have included not only your return flights on a 16 night transatlantic voyage from Venice to Fort Lauderdale on November 20th of this year, we have included a lagoon tour on an old merchant vessel in the Venice Lagoon while you are there. That’s not it however, but on its own would be a talking point. No we have managed to include tickets for Verdi’a opera La Traviata in Venice on your first night.

The Opera is held at the Musica a Palazzo on the Sunday night. For those of you who don’t’ know, the Musiza a Palazzo is a Venetian Palace from about the 15th Century located on the Grand Canal. With such a unique building, the acts of the Opera are held in different rooms really building the atmosphere and also creating almost a sense of involvement as you move from room to room, act to act.

Something that will last with you for your 16 night cruise and beyond, find out more here

Monday, October 10, 2011

Discover the West Coast of USA

There are so many iconic places to visit along the coast of California, many of the cities have featured in so many movies over the years that once you get there, they will seem very familiar indeed. Starting from San Francisco, famous for the Golden Gate bridge and of course Alcatraz situated in San Francisco’s Bay are two of the many highlights you can explore whilst your enjoy your first stop on this one of a kind itinerary. Choose the route that best suits you as you leave the city and head South for Los Angeles. Taking Highway 5 is the easy and quick option, however dare to take the coastal road, while slightly longer will take you along the winding road tracing the Pacific Ocean through Monterey, picking up the section known as “Big Sur” onto Santa Maria and Santa Barbara before cruising into L.A. Here you have a few days to relax and maybe do a spot of shopping in Rodeo Drive or just unwind on the beaches or Laguna or Huntingdon.

The Drive to San Diego is only a few hours and takes you through San Clemente, Oceanside and Carlsbad before heading into San Diego. Famous for the San Diego zoo and many great restaurants, and its only a short hop over the border to Mexico from here. After your 2 nights in San Diego, what better way to unwind than on the 5 star Holland America ms Oosterdam and you cruise the Mexican Rivera calling into Puerto Vallarta, Mazatlan and Cabo San Lucas. Car hire is included in the package, along with 4 star hotels in San Francisco, Los Angeles and San Diego. For those of you who don’t fancy this amazing drive, we can arrange all of your internal flights for you so give us a call and speak with one of our cruise specialists today. Alternatively, you can find out more by clicking here.



Monday, October 3, 2011

Ideal Cruise & Stay Of The Week

There are not many cruises that involve driving, however it would seem that Ideal Cruising have found one. Although before you jump to conclusion its not just any drive. Its actually an amazing cross state drive from Los Angeles to Las Vegas. For those of you who have not experience this, its amazing, its only 4 hours away from the city of Los Angeles, yet its a world away from anything you have ever seen before, the skyline of Vegas appears in the desert like a mirage in the vast desert.

How did you end up here, well thats the cruise part. The package in question is 2 nights in Los Angeles, 7 nights on the Carnival Splendor sailing the Mexican Riviera and then 3 nights in Las Vegas. Its an amazing combination of hotel stays and cruise, Carnival Cruise Lines will pamper you and keep you entertained for a week while you sail the west coast of Mexico, stopping at places such as Cabo San Lucas and Puerto Vallarta before arriving back into LA and picking up a car ready to hit the road and head east into the desert.

Things to do in Los Angeles

Go Celeb Spotting
Hollywood celebrities are never far away in LA. To catch a glimpse of stardust, take the Hollywood Walk of Fame, where 2,000 figures from the entertainment world are immortalised in pink terrazzo with symbolic gold lettering. If you're a film buff, look out for the famous hand and footprints at Graumans Chinese Theatre. Countless premieres and galas have passed through, adding to the renowned pagoda's star quality.
Shop Rodeo Drive
Many people dream of being Julia Roberts shopping on Rodeo Drive, but few can afford to buy from the array of high-end designers seen in the film 'Pretty Woman'. So window-shopping is the order of the day. Along the $200-million ersatz European cobbled walkway Two Rodeo, browsing tourists mingle with serious spenders. A hop away is Anderson Court, which is the only shopping mall designed by Frank Lloyd Wright.
Things to do In Vegas
Bellagio Fountains
This show is a light and sound show, coupled with the fountain display. This takes place in front of the Bellagio Hotel, and is acceptable for everyone of all ages.
Las Vegas Space Flights
The zero gravity Las Vegas experience is now available for those who wish to feel weightless. A specially designed Boeing 727 will perform effects of a real space flight including flying smaller parabolas that recreate lunar gravity.
Find out more here.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

National Cruise Week 2011


This is the Association of Cruise Experts (ACE) fourth National Cruise Week and this year runs from Sunday 18th to Sunday 25th September 2011.
With all the cruise lines fighting for customers attention, there are some great deals to be had, including free onboard spending money, free cabin upgrades and early booking discounts.
Find out more about the event and these amazing booking benefits, by contacting Ideal Cruising today.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Celebrity Silhouette Launch

I recently visited the Celebrity Silhouette ship and WOW what an experience it was…..The service on arrival was impeccable, check in was easy and hassle free. 


The size of the ship is phenomenal; it has to been seen to really understand the enormity of this beautiful ship. The interior design is that of a 5* luxury hotel (and more…) the attention to detail and different areas are fantastic, from the outside lawn area, the Hideaway, to the relaxing library and cards rooms – There is something for everyone on this ship.


The service is second to none, and the food and drinks are out of this world, watch out though it’s easy to pile on the pounds! There’s excellent variety in the buffet restaurant and main evening restaurant and for those extra special evenings try the speciality restaurant, there’s not many places you can order your dinner from an Ipad. 


The entertainment on board the ship is as a good as the west end, you can even see shows similar to Cirque de Soleil.


The staterooms range from interior, which are comfortable and very spacious up to some ships. I stayed in a balcony stateroom and it was lovely, just sitting on the balcony of an evening was very relaxing. If you are feeling flush, the suites are astonishing.


The pool area is fantastic, with plenty of sun loungers in the sun or in the shade, a visit to the Spa is a must with its wonderful facilities and great gym – You can eat what you want and then enjoy a morning of yoga or jogging around the deck.


Try out the lawn area, where you can play giant Jenga, crocket or just relax in the hubs! 


What can I say, you need to see this ship to believe it…..Go on treat yourself!

Michelle
Head of Groups
Ideal Cruising

Monday, June 27, 2011

Bangkok in Brief



Welcome to Bangkok : The city of culture.
Welcome to the metropolis of Bangkok, one of Asia's most thriving commercial centres. Many first-time visitors to Bangkok have little idea of what they'll actually encounter, Bangkok metropolis, accommodating around 8,000,000 residents, is a sophisticated, fast-growing and occasionally traffic-jammed city.
 
 
Referred to today as the City of Angels (Krung Thep in Thai), Bangkok was once called the Vanice of the East because of its many canals. Although many canals have been filled-in, taking away some of the city's old-world charm, it's still one of the most intriguing places worth visiting in Asia. Numerous visitors keep coming back to the city, some for vacations, some for business and some even to settle down here. Without doubt, modern-day Bangkok is a tourist destination of the East offering a greater variety of things to see and do than any other city in Asia.

Established in 1782 as Thailand's capital, the official full name of the city is probably the longest in the world:
Krung Thep Maha Nakhon Amon Rattanakosin Mahinthara Ayutthaya Mahadilokphop Noppharat Ratchathani Burirom Udom Ratchaniwet Maha Sathan Amon Piman Awatan Sathit Sakkathatthiya Witsanukam Prasit.

Bangkok (City of Angels) offers an abundance of sites and attractions for tourists and is famous for its Buddhist Temples (Wats) including the famous Temple of the Emerald Buddha (Wat Phra Kaeo), adjacent to the Grand Palace. This temple and other beautiful examples of carefully-preserved Thai architecture are referred to in more details in the following section. Bangkok, located in the center of the country, is also an excellent stepping-off point for visiting other parts of Thailand. Although the measured pace of old Siam is now a thing of the past, the country's rich cultural and natural heritage still survives.


Accommodation in the city covers a variety of price ranges, but all offer high standard of service presented by friendly staffs. The city probably has the highest concentration of luxurious hotels in the world.
Currently, hotels and shopping venues offer amazing bargains, following the depreciation of the Thai baht currency in 1997. And for those in search of bargains, Bangkok has excellent examples of Thai handicrafts, Thai antiques, paintings, T-shirts in-fashion accessories, high-grade Thai silks and high quality jewellery.
 

The city also boasts a cornucopia of inexpensive restaurants featuring mouth-watering dishes from all regions of Thailand and international cuisine from just almost everywhere in the world. Many gourmets of Thai food, now rated No. 5 in the world's culinary top ten, considering Bangkok to be on a par with Hong Kong for gastronomic experiences.
 

The city offers a broad variety of restaurants, ranging from simple noodle stands to the most elegant dining rooms. Visitors from Europe and North America who consider themselves connoisseurs of Thai food will find Bangkok a gastronomic paradise. Despite the country's economic downturn, Thai people continue to be outwardly friendly, greeting visitors with their usual gracious hospitality and sincere expressions of friendship-traits which have earned Thailand the title of "Land of Smile"



 
And that is no gimmick as you will discover by the time you have to leave Thailand. When the time comes, we hope you will leave the city of Bangkok feeling a deep warmth for its many charms and find it fascinating enough to enable us to welcome you back again and again.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 




Bangkok Geography:
Located in the center of the country, quite close to the Gulf of Thailand, the greater Bangkok Metropolis (including the former capital of Thonburi on the other side of the Chao Phraya River) covers an area of 1600 km2.

The city is situated right in the middle of the rice bowl of Asia, also known as Chao Phraya River Delta.




Bangkok Weather:
If you like the hot weather, Bangkok is the place for you. Average temp. rarely dip below 25 degree Celsius during the city’s 3 seasons. Between Nov. and Feb. the weather is warm and dry with temp. from 19 – 33 degree Celsius.; Mar – May is hot with temp rising to as high as 42 degrees, and from Jun – Oct (rainy season) it is warm and sometimes wet, but never cold. Even the rain is warm.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Cities in Thailand to Savour



The tourist in Thailand can probably trip a carillion of famous Thai cities off their tongues although their claims to fame may well be more notorious than famous and remembered for reasons that may well be better forgotten. Clearly Bangkok, being the capital city, holds its own claim to fame. Chang Mai, being the ancient Siam capital, also holds a claim to fame. Thailand's peninsula offers names to travellers to Thailand that many know by heart, whether they have visited Thailand or not: Phuket, Pattaya, and Koh Samui.



Udon Thani, to the north-east of Thailand, amidst the Isaan countryside, is really only a town but it has a couple of claims that ought to bring it to the attention of the traveller to Thailand. Hua Hin, Krabi, Khon Khan and Surat Thani are all cities in Thailand and known to a greater or lesser extent. Other famous cities in Thailand include Koh Phangan, Koh Phi Phi, Kanchanaburi, Ayutthaya, Nakhon Ratchasima although these are lesser known to the international world outside of Thailand.



City of Angels and Rose of the North
The city of Bangkok, is the capital city of modern Thailand, colloquially known as the City of Angels. Meanwhile, Ayutthaya and Chang Mai each share historical claims to being capital cities from ancient Siam. Rose of the North is the title given to the ancient city of Chiang Mai. As with any capital city Bangkok reveals a cosmopolitan diversity, five star hotels rubbing shoulders with dilapidated roadside food-stalls.
This diversity is further exhibited in Bangkok's wide range of excellent hotels and restaurants offering a truly international range of cuisine. Shopping offers the tourist a truly absorbing pastime, especially as Bangkok lays claim to some of the biggest shopping malls in Asia. If shopping malls seem rather tame, you can always visit Chatuchak, a particularly large outdoor market held at weekends, or other outdoor markets with similar characteristics.



The famous Thai city of Chiang Mai lies along the Ping River. It has long spread its suburbs out from around its original 700 year old limits. Apart from being the old capital city of Thailand, Chiang Mai is particularly noted for its innumerable Buddhist temples, each one surpassing the previous one in exquisite decor. The oldest of Thailand's temples, Wat Chiang Man, is located here. Another 'must-see' for any visitor to Chiang Mai is the lake, Huay Tung Tao, nestling amongst a mountain-bound terrain. There is also a zoo which cares for the welfare of more than 7,000 animals.



Pearl of the Andaman Sea and other Coastal Cities
Phuket has the honour to be known as the Pearl of the Andaman Sea. Other coastal cities include Hua Hin, Krabi, Pattaya Beach, Patong Beach, Rayong, Chumphon: in fact, with Thailand having 3,219km of coastline there are far more cities than could possibly be included here. Much of Thailand's coastline could be designated as areas of outstanding beauty, especially Hua Hin and Krabi. Many beaches cater for the family; there are some areas where young people party all night and sleep all day, however.

 

Different Cities Reflect Diversity of Provinces
Thailand has many different provinces, each one different from the next. Some of this difference can be due to a range in temperatures, some due to specific handicrafts being traditional to that village or province: there are silk villages where silk material is produced and woven and other villages where this silk is tailored into beautiful garments. The temperature in Chiang Mai is vastly different to the temperatures experienced in the beach resorts to the south of Thailand so naturally this would be reflected in how different the cities in the north are to those in the south.


Nevertheless, regardless where tourists to Thailand go, they cannot fail to be moved by the beauty and history each of Thailand's famous cities evokes. Busy these cities might be, but the evocative aura experienced as travellers visit each city is something that will always remain in their memories: these cities will provide the traveller to Thailand with a lifetime of never-to-be-forgotten reminiscences to savour in the future.

 by Soophott Lert

Saturday, June 18, 2011

New Layout, New Destionations and More!

 Summer Vacations 2011 are finally here!

Isn't it a great occasion to introduce a few changes on my blog? As you have probably already noticed, the website has undergone a major redecoration. I hope you will like the new layout as well as new navigation and search options.

Additionally, several new articles appeared in the Asia section, as it is one of the most popular travel destinations. I'm sure you will find something just for you among all the new resources. Don't be surprised if it inspires you to plan new trips!



Remember, any feedback is welcome. If you have any suggestions, do not hesistate to write.

Oh, and one more thing... happy reading!

Friday, June 17, 2011

P&O Cruises Ventura Ship Visit

I just wanted to share with you all my day abroad P&O Cruises Ventura.

It was just lovely. I had previously seen the Oriana and found that superb and this was even better!

All the public areas were stunning, the cabins lovely; tea & coffee in all.

We explored the kids clubs and the night nursery and it was just amazing.

Finally, lunch was just lovely and the staff as always excellent. Truly great day and experience.

Would most definitely look forward to a cruise aboard P&O Ventura.

Carrie
Sales Consultant
Ideal Cruising

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Celebrity Eclipse Ship Visit

I recently went on a ship visit on the Celebrity Eclipse in Southampton and can honestly say that this was my favourite visit for a long time!

For those of you who may not be familiar with the term ship visit, this is where, usually for a small charge of around £25pp, your taken on a guided tour of a ship and get to discover all the ships amenities, public areas, staterooms (or cabins) and if your lucky, lunch in the main restaurant! It really is a great way to find out about the ship before deciding to take a cruise on her. 

Celebrity Eclipse was amazing and certainly lived up to her reputation! A few of my personal highlights included:

The real lawn at the Lawn Club, yes real grass on a cruise ship! Tended by a resident gardener it was receiving a clipping as we were being shown round.

The speciality restaurants look like an absolute must whilst onboard, the innovative Qsine where your orders are placed by ipad and dessert chosen by rubiks cube!

Murano for fine dining and the Tuscan Grill for melt in the mouth steak.

In the main dining room which is white, light and bright there is an amazing showcase two storey wine rack surrounded by mirrors and lights.

The two storey Eclipse theatre was just like being in the West-End.

Although kids are well catered for with the two separate kids club areas, this ship will definitely appeal to couples looking for sophisticated cruising.

The whole ambience was relaxed, there were plenty of different bars to suit all tastes including a separate Martini bar.
Kirstin
Sales Consultant
Ideal Cruising

Monday, May 16, 2011

Wow the fjords are just out of this world!!


Norwegian fjords cruise on the 5* ms Ryndam.

Cruising from Dover, we were just a day at sea away from Oslo, Norway and the start of this incredible cruise itinerary taking in a total of 3 scenic Norwegian fjords! Some of the days were early starts to see the fjords but well worth it and an experience I'll never forget.

Ryndam is a fabulous mid size ship – cabin and ship facilities were excellent – she features a fantastic pool with a roof, so when the sun shone they opened the roof (we were really lucky with the weather so roof was open most days!) an alternative pool on the back of the ship if you wanted ‘quiet’ as there were 130 kids on this cruise, mainly due to the £99pp for 3rd and 4th promotion they had.

Food was excellent in both the main ‘Rotterdam’ rest and the buffet ‘Lido’ rest

Kids club was well attended, and there was plenty to keep kids amused, daytime entertainment for adults was a little ‘refined’ for more liking so aimed really at older guests (lots of grandparents on board with kids) or for those looking for peace and quiet.

Overall a fantastic week, and if anyone is considering the Fjords, I'd definitely, definitely recommend it – absolutely fantastic place!

Donna

Monday, May 2, 2011

Cruises are becoming more affordable

Over the past several years, cruises have become more popular and more affordable. And the variety of destinations available has increased considerably.

The rising fuel costs, more stringent environmental regulations and the economic crisis have affected the cruise industry prospects. However, cruise providers expect to see modest growth in 2011, helped massively by the launch of eight brand new large ships and the price reductions. According to the Cruise Lines International Association, it is expected that 16 million people will take a cruise in 2011, with three quarters of these people coming from North America. This is an increase of almost 7% year on year. Last year, despite the lasting effects of the recession, the industry actually exceeded growth expectations.

The top cruise lines are optimistic about the industry future as they try to encourage the industry development in those parts of the world where this type of travel is not particularly popular. Australia is one area which is seeing massive growth in the cruise industry, with more and more big names heading down under every year.

One of the measures taken by the top companies to expand their customer base during the recession has been cutting prices. By doing that cruise companies have managed to keep their ships pretty much full to capacity, even during economic crisis. What they aim is to hook prospective customers with affordable cruises and expect that they will keep coming back for more.

Compared to 2 years ago, cruising prices has definitively plummeted and cabins are becoming more luxurious, more comfortable while onboard entertainment and activities just keep growing. These factors have influenced the rising popularity of cruise holidays. Today one in every 12 package holidays booked in the UK is a cruise. That number is set to increase, with indicators predicting that the number of UK passengers will reach 2 million by 2012 at the latest.


Ideal Cruising endeavours to go out of our way to find you the very best deal. Some of our latest offers are:



3 night Bahamas Cruise from £160
Depart: 14 Oct, 2011from Port Canaveral
Get £10 OFF for online bookings

9 night Barcelona Stay & Italian Mediterranean Fly/Cruise from £499
Depart: May - Nov 2011 from Barcelona
2 FREE Nights in Barcelona

7 night Spanish Mediterranean from £499
Depart: 8 May, 2011 from Barcelona
No Single Supplements

Call  0845 839 9344  for more details.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Have a Royal Wedding

You probably won’t marry a prince but, as any other woman, you want a wedding worthy of a queen.  Forget about the Westminster Abbey or the traditional chapels. What about marrying at sea? Wonderful surrounding, amazing weather and a royal treatment for all your guests are some of the ingredients of our wedding packages.

Celebrity Cruises, Royal Caribbean, P&O are some the cruise lines that provides weddings at sea. You can make your wedding at sea a private affair or bring your family and friends and mingle with the other guests onboard.   After you wedding, the honeymoon starts straight away, no packing bags and jetting off to another country, you are already there.

Royal Romance ceremonies (from Royal Caribbean) are designed so that every detail is taken into consideration, which allows you to relax and simply enjoy your special day. You can tie the knot on-board or in exotic locations such as a Caribbean Island or Alaska.

P&O wedding cruise packages include a full wedding planning service and on board wedding coordinator, a wedding ceremony at sea, and two fresh floral arrangements among other details.

An average wedding at sea costs between £5,000 and £15,000 depending on the requirements. All the cruise lines offer tailored wedding deals if you fancy something truly special. The sky is the limit.

Due to the high demand on these services, it is advisable to book a place one year in advance.
If you want to learn more about our wedding cruises, please call 0845 839 9344. Our experts have the knowledge and experience to design an itinerary to suit your own individual requirements and budget.

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Top Best Value Holiday Destinations


Ibiza, Spain is one of the top holiday destinations in Europe.
During this weekend, thousands of British decided to travel abroad and make the most of Easter holiday. According to data from AA Travel Insurance, the majority of those who are heading abroad this month intend to spend their time on the beach. Spain and Portugal are on the top of the list of best value holiday destinations as a consequence of the gains of the sterling gains against the euro. 


Sarah Munro, head of travel money at the Post Office, said: "Restaurants and bars (in Spain and Portugal) responded by slashing prices in a battle for business and competition between the two, which together with an improving exchange rate, has resulted in a price crash in both Portugal and Spain."
 
The best value holiday destinations for 2011 are:

  1. Spain. This country is still one of the most popular destinations and according to Eurostat figures from the European Union, the Iberian country is still the most popular place to stay in Europe. Mallorca, Ibiza has wonderful beaches while Barcelona remains as one of the most exciting cities in the world.

  1. Portugal. The economic crisis has transformed the country into a very affordable place for British visitors. Its beautiful beaches, historic wonders and great food represent great value for the British pound. A cup of coffee in Portugal could be bought for just 63 pence and a three course meal for two with wine cost just over £16.

  1. Greece. Alongside its mesmerizing culture, history and landscape Greece has become the perfect place to visit this summer. The resort prices at all time low and cheap food has added value to this great holiday destination. Greece has everything that you need for a dream holiday; sun, sand, traditional cooking and great hospitality.

  1.  Turkey. It is considered the best value destination for April based on a year on year analysis of the exchange rate. With Turkish Lira at 2.6 to the Pound, accommodation from as little as £34 for a five star hotel Turkey emerging as one of this year’s most popular holiday destinations. Visitors can choose between Istanbul, beach holidays on the Turquoise coast or historical explorations around the country's archaeological sites. 

  1. Dubai. The favourable currency combined with duty free and sunshine guaranteed makes it a popular choice. The emirate ranks as one of the most visited destinations worldwide in a report from Euromonitor International, the only city in the Middle East to make the top 10. Dubai is currently the number one shopping destination.

If you missed the chance to book Easter cruise breaks to the Canary Islands or Barcelona don’t worry. There are more long weekends ahead and wonderful offers for you to have a well deserved break.

Check our best value cruise deals

Dublin Mini Cruise from £131
Depart: 13 Jun, 2011 from Liverpool
Get £10 OFF for online bookings

7nt Dubai & the Emirates Cruise from £367
Depart: 30 Oct, 2011
Do not include flight
5nt Mini Canary Islands Adventure
5nt Mini Canary Islands Adventure from £399pp
Depart: 2nd Nov 2011
Add a 5nt Torremolinos Stay from £160pp (half board)

8nt European Cruise from £499pp
Depart: 31st August 2011
Amazing Price - Peak Season

Spanish Stay & Cruise from £598pp
Depart: 16 May, 2011
FREE $100 Spend

If you want to learn more about our cruise breaks, please call 0845 839 9344. Our experts have the knowledge and experience to find the cruise to suit you. Get extra £10 off when you book online.

Celebrate Easter with us and join our Egg Hunt and get £5pp off when booking over the phone Celebrity Cruises or Royal Caribbean Cruises.
Happy Easter!

    Sunday, April 17, 2011

    Looking for the Ideal Holiday?

    After a busy week at work, you think that it would be nice to get a week holiday and head to a beautiful and sunny place to enjoy a well deserved time off.

    Wouldn’t it be nice to find yourself in a hotel with a balcony overlooking the sea whilst enjoying swimming pools, casinos and 5* restaurants? What if this hotel will transport you to a different part of the world so you could visit exotic islands, historic places, vibrant cities and white sandy beaches?

    Welcome to the world of cruising. Being in a cruise you will enjoy a wide range of top services. You could start the day with rock climbing and then head to a spa to enjoy a refreshing treatment. In a cruise you have so many options that it might be difficult to decide between play golf, go the casino, enjoy 3D theatre or a couple of cocktails in an ice bar. And these are just some of the entertainment alternatives available.

    Some people wrongly think that when taking a cruise, they will spend the whole time at sea. Most of the cruise packages include a couple of docking points that allows holidaymakers to visit wonderful destinations such as Rome, Corfu, Tenerife, Istanbul, New York and many others.

    The myth that cruises were for the rich or those who had retired has been put to bed. Cruises are now for families, singles, party animals, honeymooners and couples. Even companies wishing to hold their corporate functions choose to cruise. And the prices are very affordable. Below you can see some of our latest offers.

    At Ideal Cruising, we aim to provide the ideal holiday for all our customers. Our experts will take note of your requirements and suggest a cruise that best suit your needs and budget.

    13nt Greek Isles & Turkey Fly-Cruise from £799
    Depart: 27th September 2011 from Barcelona
    FREE hotel stay **+ $100 FREE Spend*

    7nt Spanish Med Fly-Cruise from £599 (balcony)
    Depart: 6 November 2011 from Genoa
    Last 10 Cabins - Huge Savings

    10nt Eastern Med Fly-Cruise from £599
    Depart: 30th April & 10th May 2011 from Rome
    Manchester Flights Available

    14nt Mediterranean Treasures from £999
    Depart: 7th May 2011 from Southampton
    FREE Upgrade Outside to Balcony


    If you wan to learn more about our cruise holidays, please call 0845 839 9344. Our cruise experts have the knowledge and experience to find the cruise to suit you.

    Tuesday, April 12, 2011

    Groupon Cruise Offer - Last Chance!


    Today, it is the last chance to secure a balcony cabin for £599. The offer applies to a MSC’s Mediterranean Fly-Cruise that departs on 6th November, 2011.

    This cruise is a wonderful trip along the Italian and French Riviera, Tunisia and Spain. You will also visit the enchanting island of Sicily.
    All on-board meals included in price an you can also enjoy on board a wide range of restaurant and bars

    If you are looking for relaxing and unforgettable holidays, this is wonderful opportunity to embrace new experiences and just enjoy all the facilities available. On board you can enjoy 4 swimming pools, Wellness Spa, Turkish Bath, squash/tennis courts/jogging track, casino, cinema and theatres.

    Ready to go? Call us now on 0845 839 9344 for more details!