Is anyone heading off this week on a cruise somewhere? Unfortunately I’m not, but with the Easter holidays looming in a few days, I have been thinking about the options for getting away from it all at key times of year.

Like any kind of holiday, there are pros and cons to taking one during a major holiday season. For one, getting to your destination can be not only more expensive but take more time – whether you are hitting the road in your car, or heading for the airport. Some holidays can also cost more at certain times of year, such as as during school holidays or Christmas. And then there’s the crowds.

That’s one reason why cruising is an option worth considering. If you take a cruise from your home city, you can eliminate the journey to get to your holiday destination. And that’s another thing – why spend your entire time in one place when you can visit several?

There are other benefits to cruising at key times of year. Instead of having the entire family around for lunch, why not organise a cruise instead? With so many cruise ships becoming family friendly, there are options for dependents of all ages to travel safely and keep occupied.

So while the kids are happily busying themselves at their clubs drawing or playing the latest Nintendo Wii game, and your parents are playing bridge or attending a lecture, that leaves plenty of time for you to relax around the pool with a cocktail or a cold beer. Sound good?

Key holidays are also the time for you to either escape from it all, or take the festivities and family with you. On our last Christmas cruise – Azamara Quest in Asia – if you were following my weekly blogs you may recall we opted out of Christmas Day events, and very much opted in to New Year’s Eve.

That’s the beauty of cruising – something for everyone. Want to have a traditional dinner with all the trimmings? Your cruise ship is bound to be putting one on. Fancy spending your time around the pool or dining al fresco on something more simple? That will be available too.

Things to bear in mind about holiday cruises, however, is that they tend to book up quickly, and on family friendly cruises there will be plenty of kids around. If you have some yourself this will be a blessing, but if you are looking for some quiet romance, it could prove challenging.

Also, if you need to travel somewhere to join your cruise, you may also need to book your flight early if they aren’t already included in the fare. Closer to the date, they will get more expensive and, worse, sell out also. The key to a happy holiday cruise is to plan well and book early…you might get lucky and bag a late deal, but if you don’t want to be disappointed be an early bird instead.

Whatever you do this Easter, be safe…whether you are enjoying home comforts as I will be, or exploring on the high seas. And if you do take a cruise, drop into our Facebook page once you are home and tell us a bit about it! We’d love to hear your stories and experiences – the good the bad and the bizarre. Happy cruising!