How to travel by boat to Europe from the United States (step by step guide)

To travel by boat to Europe from the United States, the season starts in April and ends in November. Most cruises crossing the Atlantic are scheduled for travel during the peak season months of April, October and November. Many may also wonder which are the cheapest places in Europe to travel.

After the end of the high cruising period in the Mediterranean and Europe, the ships have to move again.

Therefore, cruises between Europe and the United States usually depart in October and November. Some transatlantic cruises to Iceland and Greenland are scheduled for travel in August.

You can travel to Europe from the United States without ever setting foot on an airplane. But you need to make sure you have a checklist prepared before you go.

Crossing the Atlantic Ocean by boat offers a different and cost effective alternative for those trying to reach Europe without having to travel by plane.

How to take a ship from the United States to Europe?

Below are the few steps you need to follow before taking a ship from USA to Europe

Step 1

Find out about available cruises in your area to Europe. Many companies such as Cunard ( and Royal Caribbean ( allow transatlantic cruises with comfort standards and diversified amenities such as an ocean view room.

2nd step

Contact cargo companies that take passengers such as Maris ( or Mundy Cruising ( Ask about their prices for transatlantic cargo cruises.

Find out the travel times and the ports they can reach. Freighters don’t take more than 12 travelers at a time, so book in advance.

Step 3

Choose the way of navigation that best suits your requirements. Book your ticket and pay with a credit card.

Get your confirmation email to print. Collect government issued IDs, your passport card, and confirmation. Protect them; you will need it for your trip.

Step 4

Pack realistic travel clothes in your suitcase, enough to stay on for your entire trip. Prepare for fluctuating temperatures and weather conditions. If you are traveling by boat, pack movies and magazines to stay engaged during your trip.

Step 5

Check-in for boarding at an appropriate time. Take your suitcases and your papers. Show them to the ship’s agent.

Cruise ships travel between Europe and the United States

There are various alternatives for transatlantic travel between the United States and Europe, such as cargo cruises, repositioning, and luxury cruises.

Cargo cruises

All you have to do is board a freighter whose main purpose is to transport goods. It is the easiest and most affordable way to cross the Atlantic by boat.

Freighters typically take up to a dozen travelers and cost around $ 100 per day (with meals) for each passenger.

Traveling from the United States to Europe by cargo will normally take one to two weeks, so these tours are perfect for travelers with adjustable schedules and plenty of time.

Some transatlantic routes:

  • East coast of the United States to northern Europe and the Mediterranean, departing at least once a month and taking up to seven passengers, cruises from Houston to Belgium in 14 days.
  • East coast of the United States to the Mediterranean, departing every two to three weeks and carrying up to six passengers, travels from New York to Spain in 18 days.

Cargo cruises are not like your regular cruise adventures in that they don’t last to please their passengers. They offer a more minimalist experience, so make sure you know what to expect if you choose a freighter trip.

Repositioning cruises

Somewhere between luxury cruises and cargo cruises are repositioning cruises, offering itineraries on cruise ships that depart from a seasonal cruise location.

Cunard’s Queen Mary 2 makes frequent transatlantic repositioning trips from New York to the UK, Germany and France. Itineraries vary from a seven-day one-way to a 27-day round trip, and fares range from $ 800 to $ 2,500 per person, depending on the route and the season of the year.

These cruises are necessary for each ship and usually take place in the low season, so fares generally stay low. Yet travelers can experience the facilities of a cruise ship as well as the scenes of each port stopover.

Luxury cruises

Cunard offers luxury cruises from New York to the UK, in addition to its repositioning cruise offerings.

These trips are typically scheduled during peak seasons and cost more per passenger, with even the most affordable eastbound bookings for seven-day cruises operating for over $ 1,000 per person.

Main departure ports in the USA and Europe

Many cruises to Europe from the United States make trips from Fort Lauderdale or Miami, Florida. Some transatlantic crossings cross Iceland and Greenland, departing from Cape Liberty, New Jersey.

Cruises from Europe to the United States depart from Barcelona, ​​Spain; Lisbon, Portugal; Rome, Italy; and Southampton, England.

The must-see ports when traveling from Europe to the United States by boat

A cruise between Europe and the USA is not just about days at sea.

Some of the ports of call you might visit while cruising between Europe and the United States include:

  • Florence, Italy
  • Ponta Delgada, Azores
  • Tenerife, Canary Islands
  • Boston, Massachusetts
  • Agadir, Morocco
  • Bruges, Belgium
  • Cartagena, Spain
  • Palma de Mallorca, Spain
  • Paris (Le Havre), France
  • Royal Shipyard, Bermuda
  • Lisbon, Portugal
  • Malaga, Spain
  • Nassau, Bahamas
  • New-York, United States
  • Nice (Villefranche), France
  • Provence (Toulon), France

You’ll also discover several international stopovers along the way, with stops at Mediterranean hotspots like Mallorca and Lisbon, US cities like New York and Boston, and islands like Bermuda and the Azores.

If you are planning to travel to Europe by boat, the above information might help!