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  • Writer's pictureJason Leppert

The Only Guide You Need To Picking Your Perfect Cruise Category

Choosing a cruise line can be hard enough when you realize just how many brands exist, but selecting the best for your personality is easier when you understand the different lifestyle categories, how they are described and which company fits in each.

The widely recognized buckets, in ascending level of overall quality and often cost, are standard, premium, upscale and luxury. Let’s take a closer look at each below.


These days, standard does not necessarily mean basic or generic as every line in the category has upped the bar substantially over the decades of modern cruising. It merely means they are mainstream – generally the most affordable, offering something for nearly everyone to enjoy – and feature some of the largest ships in the world.

Activities and entertainment are usually the areas where these lines most excel with a range of accommodation and dining options. Plenty is complimentary onboard, but a la carte specialty choices also abound. Included brands are Carnival Cruise Line, MSC Cruises, Norwegian Cruise Line and Royal Caribbean International.


Traditionally, the premium category was a means of offering luxurious cruising elements at a fraction of the cost, albeit still more exp

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