Travel Tips for first-time cruisers

By Tom Everett, Editor

Going on your first cruise? gives first time cruisers the basic tips to ensure you have a great time on board.

1. When booking, budget is the primary concern. To get budgeted or discounted deals and low-cost offers, book months in advance. If you are travelling with family ensure at least six months of prior booking, as this will usually allow you to select the best cabins. If you are a spur-of-the-moment person, you may get a better deal by last minute bookings as no ship likes to travel with empty berths.

2. Read the dos and don’ts written in the travelogue so as to avoid any mishap overseas. It is also important to check what can be brought on board to prevent any embarrassment. I remember bringing a picnic hamper on board, complete with cheese board and wine glasses, which was fine but the metal fork and knives were confiscated by the ship’s security and returned to me only on the last day of the cruise.

3. Do keep your original documents such as your passport, traveler’s check and identification proof with you in your carry on bag. Photocopies of your passport and visa should be carried with you at all times, although the originals can be locked in your room safe. Do not pack them in your suitcase.

4. Handling money is very important. It is recommended to get a cruise card or a credit card with sufficient credit. Keep a tab on your expenditure.

5. Remember to take your medications and prescriptions in case of any chronic illness. It is advisable to carry sea-sickness pills, hand sanitizer and basic medicines for fever, a cold or stomach pains in your carry-on. Upon boarding wash your hands frequently or use the hand sanitizers available throughout the ship. You don’t want your vacation ruined by contracting norovirus which is a possibility in crowded locations.

6. Do carry sunscreen lotion, sunglasses and a sun-hat while on the deck to avoid sun burning.

7. Carry an extension cord for charging your electronics plus travel plugs and chargers.

8. Before sightseeing use the restroom prior to leaving the ship and always carry a bottle of water.

9. Remember to leave your itinerary details with your relatives so they’d know exactly where you are as your phone may not work in the high seas.

10. Do avoid over-Packing. Two pairs of shoes, a couple of pants/shorts and shirts are sufficient. Carry a small and large towel. Luggage takes time to reach your cabin, so carry your swimming trunks, a basic t-shirt and shorts in your carry-on.

Enjoy your cruise! THE END

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