Family Reunion Forum
Re: Family Reunion Cruises: Your Thoughts
In Response To: Family Reunion Cruises: Your Thoughts ()
I planned a 7 day family reunion cruise just this past Nov 2006 and we had a blast. It was about 32 of us in attendance, including 3 children. I presented the idea with details to my family in July 2005 and once I had agreement from a number of key folks (read 'most likely to follow through with payment/committment'), I moved forward with the arrangements. Ours was aboard Royal Caribbean sailing out of San Juan, with ports of St Thomas, Antigua, St Maarten, St Lucia and Barbados.
We had 3 price points for 'cruise only' to allow for a variety of budgets. I arranged with the travel agent to set up 'individual accounts' for the guests so that they can pay as they wanted over a one year period (Sept 05 - Sept 15, 2006). As we were arriving from all over the eastern seabord, I did not include airfare in the pricing. That they could do on their own or with the travel agent. Most chose to do so on their own.
As this branch of my family is very close, we agreed to meet for dinner nightly as a group at the formal seating. I was sure to pick an itinerary that maximized port calls, so that were only at sea 1 day out of 7. This allowed for groups to get together on tours or individual site seeing/shopping trips at their leisure. It was great, as we did not have to do everything together. Most chose to spend an afternoon with Auntie Sue & family one day, and another day with Uncle This & that's family. We wound up having impromptu morning gatherings as well, since most were early risers. We saw shows together, gambled together, went to the movies, and also spent time alone as needed. I ordered the obligatory T-shirts and took a group picture which our fellow cruisers enjoyed more than we did. Our reunion was the talk of the ship.
All in all, a wonderful time was had and I have been repeatedly asked 'where are we going next?' 2008 it will be western Mexico with the naysayers begging to be a part too.