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The Best Cruises For Every Family Type

  

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Cruises get a bad rap these days. We’ve all heard the horror stories of cruises gone terribly wrong. But those cases are incredibly rare. And cruises are still a wonderful vacation option. Especially for families! But be careful when looking for the right one for you and your family, because some of them aren’t right for everyone.

That’s why we made this list breaking down the best cruise options for all family types. Read through to find the one that’s best for your family!

THE BEST CRUISE FOR FAMILIES WITH A BABY

Most cruises have a minimum age limit of six months. And let’s be honest, that’s a good thing. But even babies in that 6-12+ month range can make travel pretty complicated as you’ll be spending so much time tending to them. Especially when considering that most cruises with a kids’ area have their own age minimum of two years or older.

That’s why Royal Caribbean’s Oasis of the Seas is the absolute best option for any family looking to take a cruise with a young baby. That’s because their Royal Babies and Tots program includes beautiful nurseries that cater to babies from 6-36 months. And they have all the safety requirements and activities you (and your baby) could ask for.

You’ll be charged by the hour, with higher rates at night, and everyone that works in the nurseries have been properly certified. So you won’t be worried because you’re leaving your baby with someone inexperienced. They work in pairs, can bottle feed, and can change as many diapers as need changing.

THE BEST CRUISE FOR FAMILIES WITH YOUNG KIDS

As your children get older, the troubles of traveling with a baby disappear, and all new problems arise. Keeping your kids (and, let’s be honest, yourself) in a good mood is suddenly a very difficult task. And it can become nearly impossible to provide your kids with consistent activities to keep them occupied and happy.

So, with all that in mind, the Carnival Vista cruise is the best cruise out there for any family with kids ages 5-11. From the Dr. Seuss based entertainment to the slide-heavy waterpark to the IMAX theater to the bike and ropes courses, your kids will have plenty of things to keep them busy and having fun while you and your partner can find your own fun.

They also offer a babysitting service and plenty of nighttime entertainment geared towards adults. So you can certainly have some adult fun of your own on this great cruise.

THE BEST CRUISE FOR FAMILIES WITH TEENS

Teenagers. Sometimes it seems like there are few things more frustrating! And trying to have a fun family vacation with a few moody teens can be a downright nightmare when done wrong. But the Anthem of the Seas cruise from Royal Caribbean is a fantastic option that has clearly been catered to keep your angsty teens happy.

They have awesome activities that teens can enjoy by themselves, or you can do as a family. This list is amazing: daily scavenger hunts, karaoke nights, skydiving and surfing simulators, a rock-climbing wall, circus school (what?!), a DJ academy, multiple sports courses, and nightly outdoor movies. I mean… how much more could you possibly need?!

THE BEST CRUISE FOR FAMILIES WITH ADULT CHILDREN

It’s tough to still pull off family vacations once the kids are all grown up and have their own lives. And even if you do manage to get everyone together, it’s hard to keep anyone excited and having fun. But cruises can still be a great option in that department, and the Norwegian Escape is one of the best cruises in the world for families with adult children.

For one, your children can get their own rooms. Because – don’t kid yourself – your kid hasn’t wanted to stay in the same hotel room with you since they hit puberty. This progressive cruise even lets guests under 21 drink alcohol as long as they’re under the supervision of a parent and the parent signed a release form. That’s pretty dang cool if you ask me!

But that’s not all there is to it. This cruise also offers plenty of fun activities for anyone and everyone. They have a ropes course, a lot of awesome live shows, a casino, and even a Jimmy Buffet’s Margaritaville at Sea.

THE BEST CRUISE FOR FAMILY REUNIONS

Honestly, cruises are probably one of the best ideas for family reunions. They can so easily become awkward as you’re spending so much time with people that are family, sure, but technically you barely know them! So a cruise is a great way to keep things rowdy and fun and make sure the reunion isn’t a bore.

And the Carnival Triumph cruise is definitely the best cruise option for a fun family reunion. It’s cheap, which is always good, and they definitely bring a party atmosphere. There are two pool areas, plenty of good restaurants that can be included in your rate, fun options for kids, a pool with a waterslide, and some great, nightly live shows.


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Destinations

Where Can Americans Vacation Internationally Right Now?

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Following the surge in COVID-19 cases in the U.S., one of the top trending questions among Americans today is, “Where can Americans internationally travel to now?” At the moment, only a few countries and territories are open to travelers originating from the United States.

Fortunately, several places in Mexico and the Caribbean are opening their borders to U.S. tourists. As a result, new reports mention a surge in flight bookings to Mexico, Puerto Rico, and the Dominican Republic.

Mexico

The border between Mexico and the United States remains closed to non-essential travel until at least the end of August. Nonetheless, U.S. tourists are allowed to fly to some of the country’s reopened locations including:

  • Cancun
  • Cozumel
  • Cabo San Lucas and San Jose del Cabo (Los Cabos)
  • Puerto Vallarta
  • Riviera Maya (includes Playa del Carmen and Tulum)
  • Riviera Nayarit (includes Punta Mita and Nuevo Vallarta)

For these places, masks and temperature checks are mandatory upon arrival at the airport. Tourists are also required to fill out a risk factor questionnaire both during arrival and departure. A COVID-19 test is not needed, however.

Caribbean and its Nearby Islands

Aruba

U.S. tourists entering Aruba are required to take a PCR test. Those coming from certain states with COVID-19 cases on the rise, a PCR test must be taken 72 hours before a flight and uploaded together with the filled out embarkation/disembarkation forms. A PCR test must be taken 72 hours before a flight and uploaded with the same embarkation/disembarkation forms for tourists originating from all other states. However, for this second group, an option to be tested at the airport is a given option, which requires a separate payment of $75.

Also, tourists must pay for the compulsory Aruba Visitors Insurance with premiums varying depending on age. Visitors between the ages of 15 to 75 must pay $15, allowing them to remain in Aruba for seven days. The said insurance policy can solely be purchased online and must be accomplished 72 hours before a flight.

Barbados

Besides mandatory face masks, health checks, and border interviews, visitors must take a PCR test 72 hours before a flight. The said test results must be submitted electronically, and a copy of the same test must be brought during embarkation.

Bermuda

COVID-19 testing is required. Travelers must have a negative testing result that should be taken no longer than seven days before the flight. Second testing is done upon arrival, and a quarantine period of typically 24 hours follows while waiting for the results. Besides that, tourists must accomplish a Bermuda Travel Authorization plus the payment of $75, covering COVID-19 tests done while staying in Bermuda. Testing is done after 4, 8, and 14 days. Masks are mandatory in public places as well.

Other Places

Aside from the areas mentioned earlier, Americans are also allowed to travel to several other locations. Note that specific requirements must be accomplished, as well, prior to ticket reservation.

  • Dominican Republic
  • Jamaica
  • Puerto Rico
  • St. Lucia
  • St. Maarten
  • U.S. Virgin Islands (St. Thomas, St. John, St. Croix)
  • Croatia
  • Malta
  • Turkey
  • United Arab Emirates (Dubai and Abu Dhabi)

Summary

The rapid rise in COVID-19 cases must be noted when planning a trip abroad. American need to check developing updates regularly to know the current regulations set in place by the different areas they plan to visit before buying a ticket and embarking on a trip abroad.

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Destinations

Which Countries Suffered the Biggest Losses in Tourism Revenue Due to COVID-19?

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The Official Electronic System for Travel Authorization (Official ESTA), the Visa Waiver processing agency, releases a report enumerating the countries that suffered the most massive losses due to the present COVID-19 pandemic.

Jane Forrester, the Official ESTA Director of International Development, asserts, “As travel came to a standstill for many months, countries around the world that rely on tourism for their economy and jobs are now seeing significant drops in revenue and GDP.” She adds that when we take “…into account how travel and tourism contribute $8.9 trillion to the world’s GDP alone, it is devastating to see a total loss of $195 billion worldwide in the first four months of 2020 alone.”

Below are the top nations that took the most massive tourism revenue blows due to the said crisis.

United States

The US currently has the highest number of COVID-19 cases, amounting to 6,135,598 as of writing. The country tops the list with $30,709 million losses for tourism revenue alone during the first four months of the year. On March, 31 US states were placed on lockdown with the State Department issuing a Level 4 ‘Do Not Travel’ restriction that prohibits international travel while urging residents traveling abroad to return immediately.

Spain

It reported a massive tourism revenue loss of $9,741 million in June due to the said pandemic. Almost as soon as COVID-19 transmission slowed down and foreign travelers were allowed to re-enter the country, the United Kingdom placed a quarantine restriction on British residents originating from Spain. This further deterred British citizens from traveling to Spain in the hopes of enjoying the summer.

France

Another country that suffered significant tourism losses is France. The country reported an $8,767 million tourism loss, making it the second European nation to suffer such great damage.

Thailand

The country was able to halt COVID-19 transmission, reporting no new cases during the last 87 days. Nonetheless, the government announced its intention to perpetuate its closed borders until 2021. During the first four months of 2020, the nation lost $7,822 million tourism earnings due to the crisis.

Germany

Germany closed its borders in March, resulting in a tourism revenue loss of $7,225 million. The country recently reopened its doors to tourists originating from the European Union, Iceland, Britain, Liechtenstein, Switzerland, and Norway.

Italy

The country became the center of the pandemic back in March. Because of this, fluid movement across the nation was halted during this year’s first four months, which resulted in a tourism income loss of $6,187 million.

United Kingdom

One of the few nations that did not immediately impose a travel ban against travelers coming from abroad, the country’s COVID-19 cases quickly escalated. Thus, numerous countries placed restrictions on people originating from the country and on those planning there. As a result, the UK reported a $5,816 million loss in tourism revenue.

Australia

Due to the massive wildfire that occurred during the start of 2020 and the rise of the on-going pandemic, the country’s tourism industry was heavily affected as well. The Land Down Under reported a loss of $5,674 million.

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Destinations

America Travel News: Can I Fly To The USA Right Now?

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On 16 March, the Trump Administration announced a travel ban to the US. This mandate affects travelers originating from a list of countries currently prohibited from entering the United States. Most Brits, who go on trips to the US, do so for holidays. But can they still travel to the US right now?

Brits Entering America

Unfortunately, Brits who were recently in the UK, Schengen region, Ireland, Brazil, Iran, or China during the last 14 days cannot enter the US. Exceptions to this ruling are the following:

  • US citizens and green card holders (permanent residents);
  • Brits who are married to a US citizen or a green card holder;
  • Close family members of US citizens and green card holders; and
  • Selected visa holiday holders.

If you are not among these groups listed above, you are currently not eligible to enter the United States.

Similarly, the United Kingdom added the US to its red list. This means that effective on 3 July, people who originate from the US are also not allowed to enter the UK during this time. There is no current reciprocal travel corridor agreement between both countries.

Because of the rapid increase in COVID-19 cases in the United States, it is equally unlikely that travel restrictions to the UK for Americans will be lifted soon.

Increasing COVID-19 Infection in the US

Related to this junction, the US recently eased lockdown protocols in various popular vacation spots, including Florida and New York. However, in several locations like Las Vegas and California, travel restrictions are being imposed to halt the growing number of infections further.

As of writing, the United States has the highest number of COVID-19 cases in the world. Its record has already reached 6,135,598, while the current international COVID-19 total is now 25,140,903—both alarming numbers that heavily impact worldwide public health and economic well-being.

When Will This Ban Be Lifted?

There is no definite date scheduled for the lifting of the said travel ban. The ban will continue to be in effect until authorities determine that traveling between the UK and the US is already safe.

Dr. Anthony Fauci, one of America’s leading public health officials, asserts that present travel restrictions might only be eased when a veritable vaccine is discovered and developed. During a Telegraph interview, Fauci mentions that the ban may take “months than weeks” before it gets lifted. He adds, “I don’t think there’s going to be an immediate pullback for those kinds of restrictions.”

“The US from a very early stage banned flights from the UK and Europe, so there isn’t a reciprocal relationship in place there in any case,” says Transport Secretary Grant Shapps in a recent BBC Radio 4 interview.

Even US Secretary of Treasury Steve Mnuchin supposes that the said travel ban might last until 2021—a presumption that may be further delayed given the current infection trends within the US.

Limited Flights

For those who are given the green light to enter the US, however, there are several flights between the UK and the US every day. Several airlines like American Airlines, United, and British Airways fly from London to Atlanta, Los Angeles, Miami, Dallas, Chicago, Boston, Washington, DC, and New York daily.

For canceled flights, however, passengers are eligible for refunds or travel vouchers. You must contact your specific airline for details on how to do so.

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