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Cruise Critic Rating Details

Cruise Critic rates cruise ships based on the amenities required to enjoy a cruise vacation, such as the quality of its lectures, itinerary and/or exotic destination and the unique experience of the vessel. It then awards cruise ships and specialty vessels with orange stars to show how they compare- below is a list of star ratings and their definitions:

5.5 out of 6
Expect a luxury cruise experience with the finest service, food and amenities; extraordinary attention to detail and perfect maintenance. Cabins are spacious and meals are memorable. This is a cruise of a lifetime offering the highest level of personal service available. The decor emphasizes authentic furnishings. The dining alternatives provide a variety of menus using the freshest quality foods available. And although, typically not a ship for small children ,the fitness/spa facilities are top of the line.

5 out of 6
The highest levels of food and service in a premium market are signatures of this star. Dining is typically two seatings with high quality meals and attentive service. Experience a full range of standard cruise ship activities with a few unique offerings. Cabins are well equipped but not necessarily large, with amenities such as, bathrobes and hair dryers; butler service is available. The vessel is beautifully decorated, the staff warm and gracious and fitness/children's facilities are extensive and well-run.

4.5 out of 6
A ship with amiable decor, warm service and tasty cuisine create this category. Cabins are equipped with basic amenities, good maintenance, and vary in size depending on category. There is a full range of ship activities; fitness, recreational and children's activities are extensive and well run.

4 out of 6
Enjoy a great overall cruise experience, with above average levels of food and service. Staterooms may vary in size, depending on the specific vessel. A full range of fitness/recreational activities is provided and entertainment is generally satisfactory.

3.5 out of 6
Expect an average cruise experience. This vessel offers cabins ranging from minuscule to large. The staff is generally good and food may be surprisingly tasty for the amenities. Smaller gyms, children's facilities without special areas, and mediocre entertainment accompany this rating.

3 out of 6
Be prepared for a modest cruise experience. The ship will probably be older with limited facilities and in need of a refurbishment. Cabins come in varying sizes from minuscule to large. Some ships in this range do not have balconies. Cuisine is generally mediocre and service will be lacking. These ships may, however, have interesting itineraries.

2 out of 6
Bypass this ship for a better vessel in its price range. Staying on this ship is comparable to staying inmost budget hotels. This ship will be in need of an upgrade to its public areas and cabins. The staff will pay little or no attention to detail and will only supply the most rudimentary service.