Is it time for the C-Suite to make a Sea-Change?

Windstar Yacht - reasons to meet at sea

Time to plan another meeting or event for your organization. Did you know that choosing a cruise ship venue can save you up to 30% when compared to a comparable hotel property…and it will simplify your planning?

“Sounds great!”, you’re thinking, “but how do I get consensus from the executive decision makers?” If they’re used to meeting at traditional land-based properties, you’ll have to give them plenty of  smart reasons to meet on a cruise ship. (Right: Windstar Mega-Yacht Marina)

 25 Smart Reasons to Meet on on a Cruise Ship

1. Cost Savings: The average per person cost for a cruise event on a contemporary ship is $160 per day, based on double occupancy, while a resort meeting can cost up to $500 per person, per day. And cruise programs are more inclusive!

2. Better Budget Control: Meals, meeting space, use of AV, recreational activities, and evening entertainment are included.

3. Ease of planning: You can cross these off your task list: menus to study and negotiate, decor to arrange, off-site activities to plan, A.V rental, entertainment to book – it’s included.

Allure of the Seas Theater - reasons to meet on a cruise shiip4. Creative meeting spaces lead to creative thinking, new ideas. Most ships have dedicated conference space plus a variety of beautiful venues and theaters that can be booked for general sessions, break-out meetings, awards presentations and group events. Sterile hotel meeting room or brainstorming sessions in comfortable lounges with ocean views – which space do you think is more inspiring? (Right: Allure of the Seas Amber Theater accommodates 1,394)

5. Humongous Savings on A/V: There’s never a charge for meeting space on ships, and use of audio/visual equipment is also complimentary, including AMX touch panels, monitors, DVD Players, microphones, LCD projectors, video walls, teleconferencing, plasma TV’s.

6 More bang for your buck: Theaters and lounges feature state-of-the-art sound, light and projection systems with  built-in décor, saving you considerable time and money and giving your presentations a greater “wow” factor.

7. Don’t skip meals or have attendees pay on their own. Meals, snacks – even room service on most ships – are included. Unlike hotel banquet meals, guests order “off the menu” in the dining room and enjoy unlimited servings.

Koningsdam dining room - reasons to meet on a cruise ship8. Abundant dining options and ever-changing menus make meals memorable – from elegant dining rooms to intimate specialty restaurants and casual poolside grills (surcharges in specialty restaurants may apply). Guests order “off the menu” in the dining room and enjoy unlimited servings.

Special dietary needs? No problem! Cruise ships can accommodate most special dietary needs – including vegan and gluten free – at no additional cost. (Right: Holland America Koningsdam Dining Room – always complimentary)

9. Welcome Reception included: Most cruise lines offer groups a complimentary one-hour cocktail reception with hot and cold canapes and open bar in a comfortable lounge. Stunning views and decor included, and live entertainment can also be negotiated.

10. More networking opportunities: A ship is a self-contained environment, fostering relationship-building and encouraging greater meeting attendance. There are fewer outside distractions on a ship, so your attendees can focus more on the program agenda.

WiFi Meeting on Royal Caribbean ship - reasons to meet on a cruise ship11. Easy to Stay Connected: New satellite technology is making cruise ship Internet access faster. more reliable, and more accessible than ever – and the costs are steadily declining. For example, most contemporary ships now offer unlimited Internet access or inexpensive social media packages for a daily rate. (Right: meeting on a Royal Caribbean cruise ship with Voom rapid-speed WiFi)

Many premium and luxury ocean and river lines offer free WiFi to guests in select suites or to all passengers. 

12. Cruises offer multi-generational appeal: With a choice of  entertainment, dining options, and shore excursions to appeal to all generations, your cruise program will motivate and reward everyone and simplify your planning.

13. Included activities and entertainment create a built-in Norwegian Breakaway Sports Deck - cruise event trends guest/spouse program and a variety of options for your group when they’re not in meetings. Kids and teens even have their own activities and lounges on ships, making family program planning a breeze. (Right: Norwegian Breakaway Sports Deck)

14. Less expense for attendees: They’ll appreciate not having to pay out-of-pocket for meals, snacks, valet parking, taxis and show tickets.

15. Superior Service: Ship staff-to-guest ratio is generally three times that of most resorts, so everyone in your group will receive attentive and personalized service.

16. International programs purchased in U.S. dollars: Cruises allow you to offer international programs without the financial risk of currency fluctuations.

Alaska Zodiak during Lindblad Expedition - 25 reasons to meet at sea17. Adventure and convenience included: Your group can visit multiple destinations with comfort and ease on a cruise ship – no extra packing and unpacking. Each day in a new port brings anticipation of exploration, discovery and adventure. Cruise lines are adding more authentic and immersive excursions, and upscale ships offer longer stays and overnight port calls. (Right: Exploring Alaska, a popular incentive destination, with Lindblad Expeditions)

18. A secure ship environment, particularly on a full-ship charter, protects company privacy and reduces risk.  Cruise ships are tightly controlled environments and passengers are protected by a comprehensive system of security.

Harmony of the Seas AquaTheater - reasons to meet on a cruise ship19. Blockbuster entertainment options – without spending a dime. No need to leave the ship for spectacular entertainment including Broadway shows, cirque-style aerial performers, live music, dance and comedy clubs, deck parties, movies under the stars, high-tech immersive experiences and more! (Right: Royal Caribbean’s AquaTheater offers complimentary shows)

20. Unique experiences on a ship build company/brand identity loyalty and lasting relationships to deliver a solid return on investment.

21. Sports for fitness, fun and team-building events: Ships feature AquaParks, rock-climbing walls, sports decks with basketball/volleyball/soccer courts, mini-golf, even ice skating, zip lines and challenging ropes courses on many large ships. Nearly all are complimentary, by the way.

Crystal Esprite Yoga on deck -why meet on a cruise ship

22. Wellness Activities: Complimentary use of Health and Fitness Centers with state-of-the-art cardiovascular and workout equipment -some are open 24 hours and nearly all offer stunning ocean views. Premium and luxury lines are adding new wellness initiatives onboard and ashore. (Right: Yoga class on Crystal Esprit deck)

23. Close to home: Ships sail from more than two dozen departure ports in North America as well as on rivers and waterways, so chances are good there’s a port within driving distance, saving you flight expenses and stress.

24. More short itineraries: Cruise Lines are adding more 4 and 5-night sailings to appealing destinations, so you can schedule your meetings and still give attendees time to connect with each other and explore new ports of call. Visit our Cruise Gem page for unique short sailings.

25. No worries about sneaky “hidden fees”. Hidden hotel fees like resort charges (up to $70 per day), mini-bar restocking fees, and astronomical valet parking rates have many planners feeling hotel sticker shock. Your cruise pricing is transparent: Room rate, gratuities, and port fees are clearly outlined in your group quote.

Need more reasons to meet on a cruise ship?

To explore cruise options for an upcoming incentive, meeting, or corporate event, please give us a call at 305-661-1880, send an email to, or request a group or charter quote.