Sailing off to the open seas on a relaxing cruise used to be a bucket list achievement for many travelers.
From live musical entertainment and all-you-can eat buffets, to days spent lounging by the pool or unwinding at the spa – cruises were known to be a FUN adventure with something for everyone.
Except now the “new normal” has replaced these favorite pastimes with boarded up buffet stations and mandatory mask and temperature areas – not to mention nearly shutting down any remote idea of entertainment aboard the ship.
Cruises may lure people into purchasing tickets at a steep discount – but what are people even paying for if everything is closed and the itinerary runs like a sick infirmary?
If you’re still considering a cruise, be prepared for a “normal” that’s been redefined as a bizarre alternate reality full of mandates and restrictions.
As Proud American Traveler reports:
Bye-Bye To Pools And Spas
The entire point of a cruise is to relax.
Women love being pampered in a spa and will often spend hundreds of dollars to have someone give them a hot-stone massage or age-defying facial.
Except now, cruise spas are no longer open.
A Germany cruise line tested the waters and departed a single river vessel cruise and showed the world the bleak future of cruise lines.
Spas and fitness centers were closed. Pools were shutdown.
It’s not exactly relaxing to be on a cruise and run into literal red tape closing off the most coveted areas of a cruise ship.
What are people supposed to do all day?
And what’s the point of paying for a cruise when you restricted from doing anything?
Sounds like a pretty miserable vacation.
Ready For Mandatory Masks?
Cruise fanatics love the experience of waking up in the early morning to enjoy a hot cup of coffee on an open deck and breathe in the fresh sea air…
…except with the “new normal, the only air one is going to be breathing in is their own!
Yes, cruises lines are considering making it mandatory for customers to wear masks while in common areas.
While they claim it “hasn’t been decided yet” – it is definitely trending in that direction.
Gone are the days of breathing in the sweet salty sea air or feeling the sun beam down on one’s face.
They’re even suggesting the possibility of forcing passengers to wear them while on excursions and tour buses.
Have fun taking family photos with everyone in a hot and stuffy mask!
Say Goodbye To Buffets
And let’s be honest… many people love the thought of a cruise because they get to indulge in a bottomless buffet feast.
After all, there’s a reason they say people gain weight on a cruise.
Many people go on a cruise JUST for the food.
But all that is about to end.
When the Germany-based cruise line recently departed a vessel, they eliminated buffets.
Passengers could no longer serve themselves and pile their plates high with their favorite food.
Instead, cruise ship employees served food in certain rounds – of course keeping passengers separated.
While the goal is “safety,” it takes the fun out of exploring different food options.
Thanks, But No Thanks
While cruise lines are desperate to get people back on their ships, it’s likely that many Proud American Travelers will say “Thanks, but no thanks” to the “new normal.”
Why would anyone want to pay thousands of dollars to board a relaxing cruise, only to discover pools, spas, fitness centers, and other group activities are closed.
Not to mention being forced to wear a mask and walk around a ship – without even being able to sample the infamous cruise buffet.
As travel begins to bounce back, it’s likely summer road trips and RV rentals will trend higher than a restricted floating ship of boredom.
Sadly, this “new normal” shows no sign of slowing down anytime soon.