Today’s the day – the day you set sail and never look back. OK, maybe you will look back, but it won’t be for at least a few days. Most people who have never been on a cruise before make at least a few mistakes. Even seasoned pros make mistakes. Here’s what you need to do to prepare for boarding, and what to expect as you depart.
Before you leave the house, make sure you have all of your paperwork, like tickets, insurance policies if you bought traveller’s insurance, and any coupons for the boat. Some cruises offer special deals on meals, dancing, and other events, but only if you have the coupon with you.
If you purchased your tickets through a vendor like on this website, call their customer service department to verify the dates and ask any last-minute questions you might have. Better safe than sorry.
Bring ID with you. This includes passports, driver’s licenses, other photo IDs you may need. If you’re travelling outside the country, always bring your passport. In fact, even if you’re not travelling to a destination that requires a passport, bring it anyway. Why? Because if something should happen to you or one of your family members, you may need to dock in a foreign country or somewhere that will require you to have a passport.
Who would leave home without their medications? Surprisingly, many people do. They’re easy to forget because you see them everyday. You take it for granted that they’ll be there. You may not have them in a neat pill dispenser that’s fit for travel, either. So, get yourself a pill dispenser and load it up prior to the trip.
It’s an odd thing to forget, but it happens. You rush out the door with your mind on the deck already and you forget that you need clothes. The best way to prevent this kind of silly mistake is to make a checklist of all of the things you’ll need before you head out. Put luggage high on the list.
While you’re at it, make a separate list that contains all of the things that go in your luggage. For example, include the usual suspects like underwear and socks, but also include makeup, toothbrushes, and other toiletries you might use.
A lot of travelling is having patience. You’ll be standing in long lines, handing tickets to several people, going through security checkpoints, and waiting in line for practically everything once you’re on board.
That’s not to say that cruises are stressful, but many people have false expectations when they get on a boat. They forget that they’re on vacation, that the “pace” is necessarily slow and that they should relax and take whatever comes at them with ease.
Often times, it’s a just a simple matter of spending the first 30 minutes in your room decompressing, meditating, and trying to relax before you go out and have fun.
Ryan Posa has cruised to such fascinating places as Alaska, the South Pacific, and New Zealand. His deep passion for the high seas led him to leave his job as the District Sales Manager for Carnival Australia and establish Cruise Republic in 2008. He often blogs about the fascinating discoveries and practical tips for modern cruising and you can keep up with Ryan on Twitter here.
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