The Top 5 Cruise Lines For Shopaholics

The Top 5 Cruise Lines For Shopaholics

Cruise holidays are not just a luxury way of seeing spectacular destinations around the world. These days, many cruise ships offer the chance to enjoy some fabulous cruise shopping.

With a wide range of duty-free shopping on board, there are plenty of opportunities to snag amazing deals on everything from designer clothing and jewellery to souvenirs and local crafts.

If you love to shop and are wondering which are the best cruise ships for shopping, read on to discover our pick of the top 5 cruise lines for shopaholics.

Where to shop on a cruise ship

Holland America Shops

It wasn’t long ago that guests were asking if there were shops on cruise ships at all, as their presence was understated; small spaces where you could pick up some duty-free or find the item or two that you’d forgotten to pack.

These days, you’ll find mega-ships with mall-like shopping promenades lined with designer stores, high-street brands and luxury goods to tempt you on your evening stroll. The best cruise lines for shopping will sell everything from clothing, jewellery and watches to perfume, makeup, alcohol and cigarettes.

You’ll also likely find great souvenirs to take home for your friends and family and holiday essentials, such as sun cream, toiletries or travel adapters.

Typically, on most ships, shops are clustered together and located around the central area of the vessel. Positioned to ensure maximum traffic, they are generally effortless to find!

Are there duty-free shops on cruise ships?

MSC Divina shops

Duty-free is one of the outstanding benefits of cruise shopping, and you’ll generally find some impressive deals. Duty-free items (where you don’t have to pay the local VAT) include alcohol and cigarettes. Jewellery, makeup and clothing are also some of the duty-free luxury items.

Nearly all cruise ships offer duty-free shopping. However, shops generally only open when the ship reaches international waters and is no longer under local tax law. Most cruise ships also hold sales, so be sure to check your newsletters to learn the best times to buy.

5 of the best cruise lines for shopping

The best shops on a cruise will ultimately depend on your personal taste and what items you hope to purchase.

However, several cruise lines have upped their game in recent years when it comes to cruise shopping and offer great appeal to shopaholics.

P&O Cruises

P&O Cruises offers an excellent onboard experience for the shopaholic.

Label-lovers will enjoy the impressive number of top brands on their ships, including Clinique, Clarins, Chanel, TAG Heuer, RayBan and Michael Kors. Its wide range of products includes exclusive items, such as gifts, fragrances and skincare products. The cruise line also stocks the latest season’s fashion and holiday essentials. 

A great benefit of shopping with a UK-based cruise line is the peace of mind of it being close to home should there be any issues. P&O offers a one-year money-back guarantee on all products, so you can easily return or exchange items if needed.

One of P&O’s best cruise ships for shopping is Iona. It certainly had the wow factor when it first set sail in 2021 as the biggest cruise ship ever built for the UK market. And the impressiveness extended to its onboard shopping.

Designed to offer a shopper’s paradise, Iona has a great variety of outlets, from fashion and beauty to accessories and P&O-branded gifts. Shops that are on the Iona cruise ship offer many of the well-loved brands. They also showcase sustainable luxury collections and British design.

Royal Caribbean Cruises

Royal Caribbean delivers as much delight and variety in its shopping experiences as it does across the other elements of its mega-ships. Its shops offer deals on gorgeous luxury products, including Swiss timepieces, designer handbags and fine fragrances.

When sailing on Quantum of the Seas, you can experience all this and more by exploring its Royal Esplanade and The Via. Offering a multi-level shopping experience, its spectacular design and range of designer brands, including Cartier, Kiehl’s, BVLGARI and Hublot, provide the ultimate retail therapy.

The recent $165 million upgrade to Oasis of the Seas saw some stunning updates to its retail offering. One of the highlights is ‘What Goes Around Comes Around’, where you’ll find luxury brands, such as Louis Vuitton, Chanel and Gucci.

You’ll also arguably find one of the best shops on a cruise, Island Market. Here, its destination-inspired retail includes coastal beachwear, colourful jewellery and glass designs that radiate Caribbean vibes.

Celebrity Cruises

Celebrity Cruises is known for its elegant and sophisticated ships, and its shopping options reflect this style. Its boutiques feature world-class brands like Bulgari, Michael Kors, and Tiffany, as well as exclusive items that can only be found on Celebrity ships.

On board Celebrity Edge, The Celebrity Shops aim to offer a sensory-driven shopping experience. You can design your own one-of-a-kind jewellery piece, sample the flavour of its finest spirits or discover new fashion styles to suit you.

Princess Cruises

Princess Cruises caters to a more discerning clientele, and you can expect the same from its shopping experiences. Greeted by first-class customer service, you’ll discover shop rails filled with high-end brands and luxury goods.

The Shops of Princess have been repeatedly voted “Best Onboard Shopping.” Here, you can expect to find brands such as Cartier, BVLGARI and Chopard. There are luxury watches from OMEGA, Blancpain and Gucci and skin care products from Estée Lauder, Clinique and Lancôme. 

One of Princess Cruises’ standout shopping features is its partnership with EFFY Jewellery. With over 5,000 beautiful designs offered on select ships, there could be the perfect gift just waiting to catch your eye.

Carnival Cruise Line

Carnival Cruise Line takes a more light-hearted approach to its cruise shopping. It’s even named its retail outlets The Fun Shops.

If you’re looking for where to shop for cruise clothes, this is the place to go. Alongside exclusive Carnival logo-wear, there is an excellent variety of designer fashion, top trends and accessories.

You’ll also find fine jewellery, watches, alcohol and cosmetics in The Fun Shops. And, for a delicious sweet treat, head to the fantastic Cherry On Top.

To learn more about shopping on your cruise holiday, please do not hesitate to get in touch with our cruise specialists.

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