I’m a travel agent specializing in cruises, and over the years I’ve seen a lot of people get excited and packed, only to be denied of boarding the cruise ship for their vacation. The most common reason is not having a passport. Trust me, you don’t want to have this happen to you, so read these simple tips to make sure you have a valid passport in time for your cruise.
You can visit the cruise websites for guidelines on tipping on their ships to be sure that you are in line with what the workers are accustomed to receiving. You don’t want the attendants to ruin your cruise vacation because they become disgruntled with “cheap” tips that you thought were generous. Most of the workers on the ships depend on gratuity to make up the majority of their income so providing tips is pretty much expected.
All cruise companies have their web sites and you can search and explore the different cruises on offer. You can also tour the ship and look at what all there is on board. You can look at the different cabins and select a cabin of your choice. This has made it much easier for prospective holiday makers to select a cruise of their choice.
What good are cruises bargains if you find yourself spending lots of dollars on board that you had not budgeted for? When you have a short list of some of the cheapest cruises then look for those extras, and believe me they can mount up. It may surprise you but cruise operators expect an average of $100 per day spend from their passengers! You can get an idea of what sort of extras could be incurred by looking at the amenities offered on board. Cruise bargains are only a part of the cruise vacation. Think of the overall cost as a package. You are living on a ship, think of those everyday items you use (e.g. toiletries). Cruise ships have shopping arcades offering these everyday items but at a price. Your cruise bargain can rapidly turn into a more than you bargained for cruise!
The cruise itinerary will of course have a bearing on what to pack. You would not necessarily want to pack summer dresses for an Iceland cruise. You probably would not want your best winter gown for a cruise to the Southern Caribbean.
During the day, t-shirts, shorts, and sandals are the most popular ensemble. But at night, it can get quite cold. If you have never been on a cruise before and you need a frame of reference, think about the boardwalk at night. Even during the dog days of summer, the wind from the ocean can make it seem much colder than it really is. Therefore, it is always a good idea to pack a sweater, a sweat shirt, or a windbreaker. Khakis and jeans will also be required on most nights.
Most cruise ship musicals, plays, shows, and other live entertainment are included in the price of your cruise. But you may want to confirm this ahead of time. Other than that, cruise ship casino gambling is obviously at an extra charge to you. Also, don’t forget to figure in the high costs of cruise ship telephone connections and cruise ship internet charges that you might incur (these can be pricey) if you need to call home or check your email during the cruise.