Yes, size does matter….when it comes to cruise ships. USA Today ran an interesting piece recently on the 50 largest ships in the world. Interestingly, the top 3 ships were Royal Caribbean vessels, including the shockingly awesome Allure of the Seas, which takes the number one spot by a little under two inches. Personally, I found Allure of the Seas remarkably “uncrowded” considering I was sailing with 6,000 of my new best friends. I think the uncrowded feeling resulted from a superbly designed ship that leveraged its massive size in a good way. Yes, size matters in cruising, and here are a few reasons why.

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The largest ships might be for you if you’re looking for lots of amenities and onboard activities. Have an active lifestyle that you want to take with you to sea? You won’t find rock climbing walls, sky diving simulators or bumper cars on a 500 passenger vessel. The same goes for big Broadway style shows and 10 to 20 dining options.

On the other hand, if you’re looking for a very sedate seagoing vacation smaller-ship cruising may be for you. If sailing with thousands of fellow cruisers sounds more like a challenge than a vacation, and you have no interest in chasing your friends in bumper cars at sea, then a smaller ship might be just the ticket. Smaller ships will have fewer guests, and perhaps a main dining room with just one or two other specialty dining options. If access to smaller port towns with less of a “touristy” feel are important, then small ship cruising might be just the ticket.

Consider all your wants and desires when selecting a cruise. If you’re wanting to “turn things up a notch” and party a bit, then the bigger ships are likely to be more in line with what you want. Total relaxation and being away from bigger crowds in order? Then think smaller when it comes to your next cruise. When it comes to cruising, size does matter.

-MJ, January 15, 2015