As an avid cruiser....(cough...cruise addict) I enjoy helping the cruise world newbies. There's nothing better than sharing my love (cough...cough...addiction) of cruising with someone. I can get quite animated (cough...obnoxiously excited) talking about different cruise lines, cruise ships and ports.
It all depends on what you're looking for. Do you want to get your feet wet by taking a short cruise? Are you looking for a certain destination or do you want to go all out on a luxury cruise line?
Getting the best results is all about knowing what you want, and just as important, having realistic expectations. Don't expect perfection, although I have had perfect cruises; and don't expect doom and gloom either.
One of the most amazing questions that I hear is the worry of getting a)sick, b) stranded in the ocean, or c) gaining weight. Let's address those issues.
There is the possibility of getting sick anywhere you go. The Novovirus is not exclusive to cruise ships. It can happen wherever people gather in large numbers, however, a ship IS a closely-contained unit. That's why you will find hand-sanitizing stations all over the ship, especially in the dining room.
Getting stranded...I dream of getting stranded as long as there is water, food and air conditioning. Not the kind of Carnival Cruise Line fame with people being stranded with no toilets, not enough food, etc. That wouldn't be fun. The chances of getting stranded are so minimal it's laughable. Any time you travel you have the chance of getting stranded, but really, what are the odds? Not very high in my estimation.
Gaining weight. Now this is has a higher probability of happening. The food...oh the food! Not to mention the empty calories in alcoholic drinks. I recommend losing 5 pounds prior to the cruise. Then is you gain ten, it's not really that bad.
If you don't cruise for fear that "something" could happen, you will not experience the sheer joy of it. Cruising isn't for everyone but count me in. The best times in my life, I've had on the sea.