Azamara Club Cruises Review

U.S. News Travel
Azamara Club Cruises
Courtesy Azamara Club Cruises
  • Overall Rating: 4.0stars 4.1 4.1
  • Expert Rating:4.5stars 4.5
  • Traveler Rating:4.0stars 4.0
    • Couples: 3.9
    • Families w/ young children: 5.0
    • Families w/ older children: 3.0
    • Singles/Friends: 4.0
    • Groups: 5.0
  • Health Rating:

Azamara Club Cruises Overview

How it Ranks: Azamara has been ranked based on an expert evaluation of the line's level of luxury, as well as an assessment of user reviews and health ratings. Azamara Club Cruises appears on the following ranking lists:

Azamara Club Cruises garners high praise from cruisers and critics for its upscale cabins and trips to far-flung destinations. Azamara's two ships — Azamara Journey and Azamara Quest — sail to 203 destinations across 62 countries with popular stops in the U.S., Central America, South AmericaEurope, Asia, Australia and the Pacific. Unlike other midsize ships, Azamara's ship capacity is limited to 686 guests. Plus, each ship has approximately one staff member for every two passengers, so it's easy to steer clear of crowds and locate crew members. The ships' additional breathing room can be particularly valuable on Azamara's longer cruises (journeys can last anywhere from five to 18 nights). While docked at different ports, you can choose from shore excursions that vary by activity level; a typical excursion might include visiting a museum, exploring a destination on a walking tour or sitting down for a lavish local meal. No matter which itinerary you select, you can take advantage of each ship's onboard casino, fitness classes and nightly musical and dance performances. You'll also find several dining options available on board, ranging from casual buffets to specialty restaurants like Aqualina and Prime C steakhouse. In addition to dining and beverages, Azamara cruise fares include onboard enrichment programs like culinary demonstrations, wine tastings, expert-led seminars and lectures spanning a variety of topics. 

Pros & Cons

  • Encourages destination immersion through AzAmazing Evenings (complimentary excursions)
  • Ship capacity is limited, creating an intimate experience larger vessels lack
  • Fare covers select spirits, beers and wines, and unlimited bottled water, soft drinks, coffee and tea
  • Only luxury cruises are available, and prices are expensive year-round
  • Land Discoveries (the line's shore excursions) are not included in cruise fares
  • Onboard activities are limited compared to larger cruise lines

On Board

Azamara Club Cruises are geared toward active, world travelers 45 and older. The cruise line's younger crowds tend to gravitate toward Caribbean voyages, while Azamara's European- and Asian-focused itineraries attract retired cruisers with more time to spare. Many of the guests who choose Azamara value the chance to explore less-frequented ports of call — an added benefit of the line's smaller ship size.

More about the onboard experience»

On Shore

Azamara's Land Discoveries offer diverse activities and events focused on cultural immersion in ports around the world. Popular excursions include scenic walking tours, local food tastings and panoramic drives. Land Discoveries excursion options vary by location (2015 cruises visit more than 200 destinations) and differ in price and duration ...

More about the on shore experience»

Before You Book

  • Online reservations can be made for up to four guests. Larger parties must reserve their cruise through the cruise line reservations service.
  • Guests younger than 18 must travel with a parent or legal guardian.
  • Azamara Club Cruises can impose a fuel supplement of up to $15 per day per person or up to $200 per cruise.
  • Most departure ports are located outside of the United States; however, Los Angeles is a departure port for some Central American itineraries, and Miami and St. John are the starting point for many Caribbean journeys.
  • Your reservation can be released if the minimum payment of approximately $240 per person (or full fare if within 56 days of the ship's scheduled departure) is not made during that time.
  • If you cancel your reservation for a 2015 or 2016 sailing 121 days or more before your departure, you'll incur a $25 fee per person.
  • If you cancel your reservation 91 to 120 days prior to departure, you'll receive an 85 percent refund for the cost of your cruise; if you cancel your reservation 61 to 90 days in advance of your cruise, you'll receive 50 percent refund; if you cancel 31 to 60 days prior to your cruise, you'll receive a 25 percent refund; and if you cancel within 30 days of the ship's departure, you will receive no refund.
  • Azamara requires a deposit of $1,100 per person for Club Suite guests and $550 per person for guests staying in Club Veranda, Club Oceanview and Club Interior staterooms in order to guarantee reservations. The remaining balance must be paid 90 days prior to departure.

Before You Board

  • Azamara's ChoiceAir and ground transfer program allow you to book your flights, ground transportation and pre- and post-cruise hotel stays.
  • Spa packages can be pre-purchased before boarding or on the ship during the first two days of travel. Individual spa services can also be purchased on board.
  • You may check in online three days prior to your embarkation date; if you opt to check in online, you'll expedite your boarding process upon arrival at the pier.
  • Azamara electronically sends a list of required travel documents for your itinerary, including ticket contracts and payment receipts, 20 to 50 days before departure.
  • Before you board, you must present a passport that is valid for at least six months after the end of the cruise. 
  • You must check in 90 minutes before the ship is scheduled to depart or your reservation will be automatically canceled. Boarding procedures and department times will be included in your travel documents.

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Disclaimers about ship ratings: A ship's Health Rating is based on vessel inspection scores published by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). If a ship did not receive a CDC score within 22 months prior to the calculation of its Overall Rating, its Health Rating appears as N/A; in such a case, the ship's Overall Rating is calculated using the average Health Rating of all CDC-rated ships within the cruise line. All ship Traveler Ratings are based on ratings provided under license by Cruiseline.com.