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Berlitz Complete Guide to Cruising and Cruise Ships 2012 Paperback – Oct 19 2011

4.5 out of 5 stars 4 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 720 pages
  • Publisher: Berlitz Publishing; Twentieth Edition edition (Oct. 19 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1780040008
  • ISBN-13: 978-1780040004
  • Product Dimensions: 15.1 x 3.5 x 22.2 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 1 Kg
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars 4 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #448,981 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product Description


“The newest edition of the Berlitz Guide To Ocean Cruises is now available in bookstores and online. Like a vintage bottle of wine that only improves with age, the Berlitz Guide keeps improving with each new edition: graphics, ease of navigating through the various sections, lots of photos, and a slew of informational text boxes inserted throughout the book.”
(from Ships and

“Anyone who loves to cruise will love this book. The Berlitz Complete Guide to Cruising & Cruise Ships is one of the best "general" cruise guides you can buy. The author Douglas Ward provides an in-depth review of 285 cruise ships in this cruise guidebook, now in its 26th year of publication. Mr. Ward is certainly a cruise expert--he has spent 5600 days at sea! The guide book has exceptional information on ships of sizes and prices. Like me, Mr. Ward believes there is a cruise ship to suit everyone's taste.”
(from - Linda Garrison)

About the Author

Douglas Ward, the world's top authority on cruising and cruise ships, is president of the Maritime Evaluations Group, an independent international agency that rates cruise ships worldwide. With more than 40 years' experience, he spends up to 200 days a year aboard cruise ships, meticulously inspecting and evaluating their facilities.

Customer Reviews

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
It was required for the Tourism & Travel program at my college, complete waste of money as we never required it at all. Sheridan Institute makes you spend on textbooks because the Profs get paid for every book that the students purchase from the college bookstore, it came from the horses mouth. I got this via amazon to save some money, unfortunately I was misled by the faculty.

There's nothing wrong with the book itself, I just didn't require it.
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Format: Paperback
Douglas Ward is the top authority in the world on cruising, the 2012 guide is the 27th year of publication. I am always referring to it, it is full of information for anyone interested in the world of cruising.I strongly recommend it having been on 39 cruises myself.
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Format: Paperback
nous commendons ce livre depuis l'annee 2006 et nous en sommes tres satisfait. Ca nous tient au courant des nouveaux bateaux. Nous aimons le format et les photos.
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Format: Paperback
For cruise lovers this book is a must. Everything you ever want to know about cruise lines and cruise ships.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) HASH(0xa7c74228) out of 5 stars 22 reviews
10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa7b19534) out of 5 stars THE COMPLETE CRUISING GUIDE....... Oct. 29 2011
By DOPPLEGANGER - Published on
Format: Paperback
A mighty work of over 600 pages covering just about every aspect of cruising whether it be on big, medium,or smaller ocean going vessels, boutique vessels, coastal boats, adventure, or exploration vessels, river cruising or barges. The first section is an overview, explanation, tips and advice on just about every aspect of a cruise experience from accommodation, cuisine, entertainment and leisure facilities etc. which helps the reader to determine the type of vessel to consider.

The second part is a most detailed look at of all the currently available cruise vessels giving both technical information, details of accommodation, food, facilities etc., and importantly a quality rating of up to 5 stars.

This book is worth every penny of it's price because it covers just about everything anybody needs to know about the world of cruising thus enabling an informed choice to be made.
15 of 17 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa7b19588) out of 5 stars Cheap Shots at Royal Caribbean! Dec 1 2011
By Lee K. - Published on
Format: Paperback
I wonder what Royal Caribbean ever did to Mr. Ward? As a Diamond member of RCI's Crown and Anchor Society and with over 100 nights total cruising on 4 different lines, I can honestly say that there is a lot of misinformation in the book regarding Royal's ships. One glaring inaccuracy that comes to mind is that in 10 years of cruising with RC, I have NEVER seen paper napkins and plastic cutlery in any Windjammer cafe. The only time I've ever seen it used was occasionally at poolside events and ashore (Labadee and Coco Cay) at the beach bar-b-ques which makes obvious sense. If you consider the general tone of Ward's remarks towards RC in numerous editions of his book, and the fact that he (or a researcher) apparently over time has been too lazy to verify what's been previously written, one must take it all with a grain of salt and question the value of the book. I have also found inaccuracies regarding Celebrity's Millenium class ships and the Carnival Freedom. Readers would be advised to cross reference with other guides and online sources to verify "information" found in this book before making any decisions based upon it. As Ronald Reagan once said, "Trust, but verify!"
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa7b199c0) out of 5 stars great book: authoritative and complete! Feb. 3 2012
By J. Brown - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is my second purchase of this book. Previously, I owned the 2008 edition and it was a valuable resource.
i work in the cruise ship industry as free lance performer, and the details in this book are most useful.

for the casual traveler or industry highest recommendation!
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa7b199a8) out of 5 stars Good Overview of Subject Jan. 5 2012
By Charles M. - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Book attempted to cover too much material and in the process lacked the detail that I was looking for on the subject. The book appears to be written for both first time cruisers and those who have cruised before. The situation is so different for those two groups of readers that a book should be written for each to do justice to the subject. Overall I believe this book has greater value for those who have cruised before and know what to expect but are interested in the differences between ships etc.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa7b19d68) out of 5 stars Happy cruising July 26 2012
By geneseo_rick - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The 2012 edition of Berlitz's Cruising & Cruise Ships does not disappoint. The first third of the book has well written sections on: a comparison of the major cruise lines, the appeal of smaller operations, destinations, life on board, cuisine, entertainment, cruising for families, cruising for seniors, cruising for romance, cruising for gays/lesbians, destinations and ports of call, sailing ships, river cruises, expedition ships, freighter travel, the best shore excursions, etc.

The remaining two-thirds of the book gives detailed reviews on almost 300 individual ships. Each review starts with a silhouette of the ship, followed by the ship's specifications (builder, when entered service, tonnage, length, number of passenger decks, etc). Two interesting specs are passenger/space ratio and crew/passenger ratio. Other useful spec's include whether or not the ship has self-serve laundrey facilities, a library, etc.

Following this, there's is a detailed narrative divided into: Overview, The Ship, Accommodations, Cuisine, Entertainment, and Spa/fitness. The overview is important because it tells you whether this ship is best suited for young adults, families, seniors, adventurous souls, those seeking luxury, what languages are spoken, etc. You can also look back in the first section of the book, under "Compare the Major Cruise Lines" and "The Appeal of Smaller Operations", which talk in detail about the characteristics of each cruise company. Often, the character of a given ship will be similar to that for the company as a whole.

Each ship gets rated in six categories: ship, accommodations, food, service, entertainment, and cuisine. Then, the ship gets an overall rating. I would not pay too much attention to the EXACT score, because some ships, such as an expedition ship, will often have a slightly lower score since it's intended purpose does not usually include luxury.

At the very end of the book are a few final, but important, sections on booking and budgeting, don't leave home without, what to expect, and what to do if.

Overall, I believe this book is the best source for planning a cruise, especially when used in conjunction with websites such as "cruise critic". It is also an excellent source for those that are simply interested in ships and maritime affairs.

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