Here at Seabrook Travel we love cruising! Karen has been on over 50 cruises in her career, with many more planned. Over the years we've learned a thing or two about how to get the best out of your cruise experience.
1) Take precautions and pack anti nausea remedies.
With the size of the ships in this day and age, its rare that people get sick. But medical care on the ship can be very expensive, so its always best to air on the side of caution and pack anti nausea medicines. Personally, Dramamine and essential oils are a must to have on hand. Get Dramamine here, and try this essential oil blend.
2) Get Travel Insurance
Like I said, medical care on the cruise ships can get very expensive, very quickly. Travel insurance can help defray the costs if something should happen. Better safe than sorry!
3) Pack enough sunscreen!
The ocean acts as a mirror reflecting light onto the ship, which means even if you don't usually burn, you may get burned on the ship. Make sure you pack enough sunscreen so you don't end up paying a premium at the ship gift shop. Get our favorite brand Supergoop! here, or try Neutrogena Beach Defense.
4) Pack some nice dinner outfits
Some specialty restaurants on board do have dress codes, plus many ships have dress up nights. Even if you aren't sure if you'll need it, its always best to pack something you know you'll look and feel your best in. Always be camera ready!
5) Book shore excursions ahead of time
Don't wait until your on the ship to book activities. Booking ahead of time might save you money, since it allows you to book from a third party. A word of caution, make sure you check the times if booking on your own! You don't want to get left behind.
6) The water bottle package is worth it.
Being exposed to the sun as much as you are on a cruise means water is a priceless necessity. The water on board is expensive, but saves you the hassle of bringing your own water on board. You can get as many glasses of filtered water as you want, but going off the boat its easier to have a bottle. Follow the cruise guide lines and don't fill water bottles from the sink to avoid germs, but you can pour water from glasses into a refillable bottle. Try the S'well bottles for a chilled drink.
7) Pre Night Hotel
Going to the port area the night before saves so much unnecessary stress. There's nothing worse than waiting in an airport, praying you'll make it on the ship in time. Avoid the headache and go the night before and arrive to the ship on time and refreshed the next day.
8) Book your shows ahead of time
Don't waste precious vacation minutes by waiting in line at the box office when you could be drinking on the pool deck.
9) Put your phone on airplane mode
Unless you need your phone for work, putting your phone on airplane mode might just save you hundreds in accidental charges. International roaming is very expensive! While we're on the subject, save yourself the hassle and buy wifi package the first day if you know you'll need it. We once got charged $250 in 25 minutes from wifi charges because we didn't have the package. Yikes.
10) Carry on necessities: Sunscreen, bathing suit, charges, medication, sun glasses.
It can take hours for luggage to be delivered to your room, so make sure you have everything on hand that you'll need (or want) for the sail away day. The pools are open and ready to be enjoyed!
Another tip that didn't quite make the cut is to get something easily removable, like a magnet or wall decal, to mark your cabin door...especially if you tend to get lost in the twilight zone maze of identical cabin doors. Always check with your cruise line to make sure this is ok on your sailing.