Just returned, 09-27-08, from Alaskan Cruise on Golden Princess, our first cruise. Overall it was great and would do it again.
The only negative really was the smoke. We would not let it ruin our trip nor obsess over it so much that we would only think of that. But on an Alaskan Cruise leaving the balcony door open was just fantastic for us. Except when our neighbors would come out to light up and the smoke would filter into our room. Great wakeup call early in the morning!
And sitting out during scenic cruising days was a tad bothersome.
Again, not the main focus for us but was wondering if there were any non-smoking cruise lines. Searched posts here and were several years old.
to answer your question, no, there are at present no "non-smoking" cruise lines. Carnival tried it unsuccessfully a few years back on one ship.
Smoking bans are so common in public places we just take it for granted. Then we board a ship and we are suddenly in an environment where it is controlled, but not banned.
Princess does a good job of controlling smoking in interior public venues, allowing it only in the Casino and areas of a couple of lounges. And outside it is only allowed on one side of the ship. But this dosen't help the balcony issue.
I know a couple of lines have banned smoking in the cabins and on the balconies; I don't reacall which lines, but maybe someone can jump in here and help me out.
I know it's a thorny issue; people like to relax on their balconies and enjoy a smoke. But the smoke is going to go someplace; and it's usually into a non-smokers cabin.
I would like to see cabins in certain areas set aside as "smoking cabins". When you book your cruise can select "Smoking" or "Non-Smoking". I know the logistics would be difficult, but something must be done, short of an outright ban.
Thanks and I agree I thought Princess does a good job in this regard. And I did not think of it until you mentioned it but everywhere else we go it seems there is less and less smoke and suddenly here we are on the ship and it is back. Again, not bad but just enough to annoy.
And I have nothing against my smokin' friends but as you said just maybe they could reserved specific rooms.
Well we are new to cruising so we will adjust. It is common for newbies to came in and wanna change everything but we will make it positive and not let it spoil our trip. Everyone was nice and really no problems. We never asked anyone to stop and just delt with it. The Alaskan air was nice, cool and fresh that it pretty much took care of itself.
I think we will look for the best positions we can get and move on. We are ready to go again I can tell ya that!
The other thing to consider is to ask for a cabin in the bow (front) of the ship. That way, at least while moving your chances of having smoke drift into your room it less. The further back along the side your balcony is, the higher the chance of a smoker up wind of you...
Jim's right... If you book a balcony at the front of the ship, you wouldn't have to deal with second-hand smoke (unless you were moored in port). I am not a smoker and I tend to ask for nonsmoking areas in restaurants but, as of this post, smoking is a legal activity. Perhaps ships should go a little further with their "smoking side" idea. Maybe they should establish the port side balconies as nonsmoking and the starboard side the other.