While most people associate cruises with sunny Summer weather, winter cruises are becoming more popular as well. Therefore, when planning your cruise, one of the first things you should consider is whether you want a hot and sunny cruise where you can enjoy the outdoors, swim and sunbathe or a colder one where the emphasis would be more on exploring new destinations.

Deciding Between a Hot and Cold Weather Cruise

Unless you have a very restricted holiday period, we suggest you first decide where you want to go and then look at what times are best to go there.  For instance, you can go to hot destinations like the Mediterranean, Mexico, the Bahamas and Caribbean all through the year. However, you will only be able to visit places such as the Baltic, New England, Canada, Bermuda and Alaska during Summer months.  Popular winter cruises include trips to Asia, South America, Costa Rica and even Antarctica for the more adventurous souls out there.

Things to Consider when Booking a Hot Weather Cruise

Top hot weather cruise destinations include the Mediterranean and Caribbean as well as some more off the beaten track cruises to Africa, South America, or Asia.

Far East Cruises

  • Summer is peak travel time because of the lovely weather and school holidays. While some people love the hustle and bustle of the busy Summer cruises, some people hate crowds and find it really off-putting. If you’re one of the latter group and still love your sunshine cruises, perhaps rather book your cruise in the shoulder season (Spring and Autumn) when it’s bound to be quieter and better value for money.
  • Summer is a great (and sometimes only) time of year for school children and teachers to enjoy a cruise. Book really early or at the very last minute if you want to enjoy a discount price cruise.
  • Think about who you are travelling with. Families looking for convenience and short or no flights should first look at Mediterranean Cruises. Couples looking to recharge and relax, often opt for the Caribbean. And if you’re going on an adventure cruise with a partner or friend take a look at Peru, Cambodia or Vietnam
  • Not all destinations have great weather in Summer. For instance, Alaska’s rainy season falls in summer, which is also its busiest cruise time, which may be a deal-breaker for some.
  • Always pack: Flip flops or pool shoes, a scarf for sun protections (which is also required in some stop off destinations), sun cream, sunglasses, a sun hat and a water bottle.

Things to Consider when Booking a Cold Weather Cruise

Millenium cruise liner in Alaska

  • As mentioned above, cold weather cruises have fewer crowds. There are however some exceptions to steer clear of if you would like to enjoy peace and quiet on board.  Winter cruises during Christmas and New Year and some late-winter cruises to warm destinations are busier than the rest.
  • Cold weather cruises are much cheaper than hot weather cruises.
  • Winter is the perfect time of year to enjoy an adventure cruise. These cruises are becoming more popular as the newer cruise ships are much better at handling tough terrains, like the Arctic, Canada, Alaska and even Antarctica. One of our favourite winter cruise destinations is Scandinavia for its sheer beauty at this time of year, as well as the possibility of seeing the Northern Lights in all their glory.
  • Consider the weather where you live before booking your cruise. Leave enough time to get to the airport or port if snowstorms or blizzards are predicted and make sure you park your car somewhere that is protected from the elements.
  • Always pack extra thin and thick socks, thermal layers as layering is key in these extreme temperatures. A pair of well-insulated winter boots and a good winter coat, at least knee-length with a hood, is also necessary.

Word of warning

Like any other vessel that sails the seas, cruise ship is at the mercy of the weather.  While cruise ship companies do their best to avoid inclement weather they cannot guarantee good weather.  You need to look up the weather in the area you’re planning to go to see for any warning signs or whether the area is prone to hurricanes, such as the Caribbean, Bermuda, Bahamas, and Mexico.

Booking a Hot or Cold Weather Cruise through Cruise Nation

As we’ve established, both hot and cold weather cruises can be fantastic experiences.  To make it more magical, book it through the nation’s Best Online Cruise Agent, Cruise Nation. Here are some hot cruise deals.