How Weather Can Affect Your Cruise Ship’s Ports Of Calls
When plans are made to go traveling, the thought of bad weather is usually the last thing on a vacationer’s mind. Being caught off guard when Mother Nature is at her worst can mean plenty of inconvenience and danger to the unwary traveler. Since no one can control the weather, it’s best to be prepared and to consider established history on the region’s weather patterns before planning your next cruise ship vacation.
While cruise ships are usually safe and well built for sailing long distances, they are not invincible when hurricane weather approaches. Of course, this is entirely understandable. However, cruise ship passengers may be unaware that bad weather can force captains to change ports of call or miss them altogether. Again, safety comes first, even if it means missing the stops you had planned and paid for in your cruise package.
To minimize potential disappointment, it is best to consider which part of the world you want to sail to. Are you thinking of a Caribbean cruise vacation during the winter? Perhaps you would prefer to visit the Mediterranean in spring because it feels more romantic. Whatever region you choose for your cruise ship vacation, it is ideal to do research on the weather during specific times of the year.
Vacationers who want to travel to the Caribbean would do best to remember that hurricane season is from June to November, though most of the storms occur in August and September. For travelers looking for a bargain, cruise packages for this region are usually discounted during this time of year.
The National Oceanographic & Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) can provide up to date weather information and warnings from all over the world. Vacationers looking to do research can visit the NOAA’s website and find the latest forecasts for any area in the world, which should help minimize nasty weather surprises during your dream vacation.
Still, nothing is ever perfectly predictable. There is no denying that there has been an increase in unusual weather events in the past decade or so. Fortunately, the U.S. government has a state of the art weather alert satellite system, so emergency response to severe weather should be quick and efficient. Cruise ships are outfitted with advanced weather signaling and detection systems, which are necessary since the captain is responsible for the safety of everyone on board.
When the captain sees an indication of stormy weather ahead, he will usually sail around the troubled region or avoid it altogether, which can cause missed ports of call. While this can be disappointing, imagine how much more disappointing it would be (to put it mildly) if he endangered your life by insisting on sailing through a hurricane just to make a scheduled stop.
For extra measure, passengers should read everything that is printed on their tickets because this is where all the legal details are spelled out in the event of an incident. Before booking the ticket, it would be wise to speak to a customer service representative and to consult previous cruise customers before making your final decision.
Overall, cruise vacations are overwhelmingly safe and incident-free, which is why millions of people continue to travel on cruise ships year after year. But as with any vacation, it’s always a good idea to do your research so you can have your fun when Mother Nature is at her best.