Planning a vacation is never a walk in the park. There are a lot of strategies that go into creating the perfect trip for you and your travel companions. The biggest part of the planning process is finding out where and when you want to go. Once you have this settled, you can start considering hotels, flights, attractions, and travel.
This May, Michael and I have decided to spend our vacation in the beautiful Bahamas for the first time. Not only that, but we also decided to go on our first cruise! As you may know, there are quite a few cruise lines to choose from. Each cruise line and ship is geared towards different types of people and families. Out of all of them, we choose Royal Caribbean International. Majesty of the Sea with Royal Caribbean was just what we were looking for. It has a relaxed atmosphere, poolside movie screen, Broadway-style entertainment theater, fitness and spa center, rock-climbing wall, and much more.
Not only are there multiple onboard activities, but even more shore excursions! We were passionate about choosing things we would both enjoy together. One activity that we are going to do is the Blue Lagoon Island Dolphin Swim. In this excursion, you are guaranteed to get pushed through the water by a dolphin! The other excursion which we decided to do was a 40-foot scuba dive exploring the Cococay reef! To prepare for the scuba diving trip, I am currently enrolled in a scuba diving class!
Now how are we going to get there? Obliviously, we will not be sailing out of Indianapolis. Therefore, what is the best way to get to Orlando (Port Canaveral)? Personally, I have always been a fan of Southwest Airlines. They have affordable prices and I’ve experienced great customer service. While looking for the best priced tickets, I decided to use Southwest’s Low Fare Finder! Here they show you the cheapest flight each day, that way you can choose which flight compliments your budget. They were even worked with me to switch my flights to a different day with no fees, the difference in flight cost was only $4.00 each. I was so amazed that there were no additional fees, I even had to double check!
Finally, we had to figure out how we were going to get around and where we were going to stay in Orlando, on the days before the cruise! For this, we researched a few rental car sites to see how little we could spend since we would only be on shore for 2 days. Here we decided to go with Budget Rent-a-Car since it saved us over $50, compared to the closest competitor! For the hotel we chose, our budget was not as important. For every family vacation I ever took to Orlando growing up, we always stayed within the Orange Lake Resort, at the Holiday Inn Club. They have various pools and activities right onsite, which makes finding things to do easy!
There is nothing worse than making it all the way to vacation, than having nothing prepared. That’s why it always helps to do all your research and plan ahead! Looking through multiple sites and comparing hundreds of prices can be overwhelming; however, you will thank yourself when you are sitting in a pool chair with a Pina Colada in hand waving goodbye to all of your troubles!