Prior to Hurricane Dean hitting Mexico the first time, it was an extremely strong storm. Dean is the 3rd strongest Atlantic storm to make landfall since the recording of such information. Dean could have hit in more populated areas in Mexico causing a lot more damage and devastation. But what Dean did do is remind me why the cruise vacation is really the only logical choice if you are traveling in August, September, or October to the Caribbean, Mexico, and even Florida.
We only get so many vacation days each year. For many of us that is only two weeks. Free time is less readily available than money in many cases. So when it comes time to planning your end of summer family vacation and your choices are the St. Lucia all-inclusive or the 7 night eastern Caribbean Cruise reflect on hurricane Dean. Don’t get me wrong, I love land based vacations. But when I spend 6 months planning and waiting on a vacation to get away, relax, and spend time with my family, I do not want to have to worry about cutting my vacation short or endangering our lives. All of the cruises this past week sailed. They made changes to their itineraries, but everyone still got to go on their planned vacation. As long as the destinations of the cruise do not make or break your trip, then you would be much happier than the land based traveler who had to leave early or who did not even make it to their island this week. I’d rather be on a cruise ship navigating around the storm then sitting at home trying to talk my boss into letting me come into work and taking another week off later.
Here is a secret: Travel Agents cruise during hurricane season. The rates are discounted (we all like a good bargain!), we buy travel insurance, and we understand that we may need to be flexible with changes in our itinerary. We also know that the cruise line may give away some freebies if the itinerary is changed. Cruises are not 100% failproof but during hurricane season, it is a much safer bet than a land based vacation.
Last nugget on Hurricane Dean, I noticed the cruise lines did a better job getting info out to the passengers about the impacts to their itineraries. Most of the cruise lines have kept an update of the storm and the impact on the cruise itineraries on their websites. They all have invested a lot of money in their technology, so I anticipate that this will continue to improve.