Now that summer has officially arrived, so has hurricane season in the Caribbean, lasting from June through November, affecting tourists and residents from the Southern Caribbean, and on north to the coast of Maine. Should that stop you from booking a Caribbean or New England cruise in late summer or fall? No, and here’s why.
Caribbean cruise rates are never better than they are in fall, especially from late August through mid-December. Crowds diminish, the kids are back in school, and cruising is generally quieter. It’s an ideal time to cruise.
Chances are good that a hurricane will not affect your cruise plans. Cruise ships use the latest weather-tracking systems to steer around the path of storms. While you may encounter some rough seas, the crew will do a marvelous job of keeping you safe and the ship as steady as possible.
If you are planning a Caribbean cruise in fall, you can take a few extra precautions to lessen the chance of weather-related mishaps.
- First and most importantly, buy a good travel insurance policy. You might even consider one with a cancel-for-any-reason feature.
- Arrive at your port a day or two ahead of your sail date, especially if you need to fly. While the cruise itself may not be an issue in a storm, getting to your ship on time could be. Weather delays and flight cancellations may leave you stranded at home. Getting a jump start to the cruise port will increase the likelihood of getting on board.
- When choosing a late summer or fall tropical cruise, consider a destination less likely to be in the path of a hurricane, such as Panama or Costa Rica.
- Use a travel agent. They have the resources to keep you alert to delays and cancellations and can get you where you need to be with minimal stress.
- If a storm does come your way, keep in touch with your travel agent for the latest cruise line updates and advice.
If you are cruising during hurricane season, keep an open mind and board your ship with the right attitude. If a hurricane messes with your vacation, the ship’s itinerary may change, and you may find yourself in ports you weren’t expecting. Go with the flow, and enjoy your cruise, wherever it may take you.