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Cruising: Must Know Tips For First Time Cruisers

Travel can be on the of the best things you can ever do for yourself. It’s therapeutic and allows you to unplug from a stressful and busy life. Regardless of how much it might cost, it is definitely worth every dollar.  If you are a travel enthusiast, you can bare testament to the above fact. However, travelling by plane or even by car it can get mundane or boring. If you are looking for a new way to travel, give cruising a go.

Travelling by a cruise ship will allow you to see and experience multiple places. Every day, you’ll have a new place to look forward to visiting. Additionally, you can do all these without having to worry about your luggage. You’ll have it everywhere you go as you travel in your floating hotel.

However, if you are considering a first-time cruise, there are a few things to keep in mind. Let us take a look at a few tips that will help you during your first time travel on a cruise ship so you know what you expect.

Step out of your Comfort Zone

It can be challenging, but step out of your comfort zone and try everything the cruise ship has to offer.  That includes talking to strangers, you never know the people you will meet, they could become your life long friends.

What to take on a Cruise

As previously mentioned, travelling by a cruise ship will allow you to travel to different places. Hence, it is necessary that you pack for different types of weather.  Sometimes it can be 4 Seasons in One Day. Always pack comfortable and relaxing clothing. There is theme nights on Cruise Ships, which include formal nights, don’t forget to dress to impress! Your Cruise Planner will tell you if your ship participates in theme/formal nights.

Maintain Your Weight Fitness Goals

Sure, you may be indulging in certain cuisine and foods. It can be quite overwhelming the amount of food available on offer.  However, you can counter this by remaining active on the cruise ship. Walk loops of the Promenade Deck, don’t take the lift and always take the stairs or even sweat it out in the onboard gym. Even though your on holidays you can still maintain your fitness goals.

Be Respectful

Travelling on a cruise ship isn’t a private event. Other families and individuals will be travelling on it too. Hence, you need to watch how you interact with others.

Ensure that you are respectful to others, including the elderly and the disabled. Even offer a helping hand when they need it. This way, they can also enjoy their vacation as well. Always be patient with them, and give them first priority.

Additionally, do not be rude to the staff on the cruise ship. Remember, they are working hard days and nights to ensure that you enjoy your holiday. By being respectful and patient with them, you can help make their work less stressful and enjoyable.  As always If you have an issue on the ship, speak to someone who can do something about it.

Don’t Hog Tables, Chairs and Sun Lounges

Remember that you are not the only individual on the cruise ship. Others would like to enjoy the sun lounges or use the chairs and tables as well. Avoid booking chairs or sun lounges for your friends. Maybe get their earlier if you want to sit together.

 Pack Your Supplies 

Ensure that you carry more than just your first aid kit. Carry painkillers, travel sickness tablets and other types of medicine, in case of emergencies. It is always better to be prepared than to have an incident cut short your vacation. Unfortunately Cruise Ships have a history of Gastro Outbreaks, make sure you have GastroStop, Hydrlight and Glen20 packed. When in the food areas, always wash your hands  and use the hand sanitiser that is provided.

Sea Sickness is common on Cruise Ships, with Stacey’s first time experience she found by taking sea sickness tablets, it made her feel tired and exhausted. The best tip is to give your body time to get use to “sea legs”

If you need to do Laundry onboard the ship, bring your own Laundry Pods & Pegs as these can be costly for you if you need to purchase.

Watch Your Space

When you are in a queue, don’t jump them or cut in line. Other than it coming off as extremely disrespectful, you end up angering people in the queue. Ultimately, this could cause a commotion and who really wants to cause a seen and be the next crazy thing on social media. As much you might want to cut in, be patient. You’ll embark or disembark in due time.

Cash or Card- That is the question

Load up your cruise card before you go on the ship, this is preloaded cash on your cruise card. Some ships offer this, some don’t. Regardless you need to have a credit or debit card attached to your name to track your spending on the ship. By pre loading your cruise card,  you have a realistic budget set on board and now all you have to do is not exceed it. Do take some cash on board or use the ATM on the ship to tip your cabin steward and if you chose to tip another cruise staff you have the option too.

If you want to stay connected on the ship, it can be very costly! You can pay for internet and phone usage however rethink this as in some cases it  can cost $0.80cents per minute.  It does get charged to your cruise card and sometimes cashless cruising can create financial strain. Be careful if you chose to use the internet on board.

Professional photographers are on board the ship and they LOVE taking your photo. This is to encourage you to buy, however we would recommend only buy the photos if they mean something to you. Another hot tip is if you want to purchase the photos buy them on the last day, as you never know if you will catch a huge discount!

Stay Connected

Be sure to put your cell phone (if you take one) on airplane mode as soon as you leave port. You can text others on the ship free of charge by using shipboard wifi with your phone in airplane mode. The service desk can give you directions once you’re onboard.It’s much better than trying to use walkie talkies to communicate or trying to find your traveling companions.


Cruising – Shore Days & Sea Days

The choice is up to you when its Shore Days. You can chose to get off the ship to explore new found land or you can chose to stay on board. Heads up however, if you chose to get pampered on the ship, its cheaper to book in on on Shore Days rather then At Sea Days.

Exploring a new city of country is exciting. There is many cruise excursions available that your cruise company will offer you, however some can be quite costly. Another personal tip is to just wait until you get off the ship, you will find there is information stands when you disembark with other tours available at a cheaper price. Sometimes there is shuttle buses available to take you to the key places to visit, or just talk an enjoyable walk.

The biggest thing to remember is NEVER GET BACK TO THE SHIP LATE, it will not wait for you! Always be on Time.

It Pays to Rest & Relax

The main idea of taking a cruise is to relax and getting your mind off things. There is always plenty going on, make sure you read the daily digest so you know whats on when. If you like to sit back a read a book, bring your favourite books or kindle, or check out some books on the onboard library. The Big Screen Movie is a personal favourite!


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9 thoughts on “Cruising: Must Know Tips For First Time Cruisers”

  1. I have only been on a cruise a couple of times and am going on another one in six months, so I found this post very helpful. Do you have any tips for choosing the best sleeping cabin on the ship? I appreciated the section regarding excursions. We want to get off the boat and explore, but I would like to not have to pay for an expensive excursion to have a good time.

    1. Hi Sarah 🙂
      Stacey has been on one cruise in which she had a balcony room and would highly recommend a balcony room if you can afford it as they are expensive. We are doing another cruise next year and we are only having an internal room (no windows) as the cruise is only 3 days. Were as the other cruise she did it was a 14 day.
      There is always plenty of buses, she found it easy to just walk the cities she visited. Got to see more that way!

  2. Cruising is a great way to travel. There can be so many things to do on a cruise that I usually can’t fit the “relaxing” in. And definitely, DO NOT get back to the ship late from a shore trip or excursion. On one cruise I was on, 8 passengers missed the ship in Juneau, Alaska. An expensive mistake as the only way to meet up with the cruise again was via plane or by boat.

  3. Some good tips and thanks for sharing your experience. I don’t go on cruise much because I am in an constantly fear that I might get sea sick (and I actually did), but maybe in the future, I will consider go back on a cruise to visit places in the Caribbeans and I will take note! @ knycx.journeying

  4. Good reminders for cruisers. I’d definitely need to stay on an exercise routine and watch the calories. Cruising seems great for multigenerational groups too – something for everyone. I liked that you suggested we try things.

  5. These all sound like great tips for going on a cruise. I like how you’ve included tips that are common sense, but that are sometimes forgotten, like manners and walking on the ship for exercise. I haven’t been on a cruise yet, and I’d like to experience that type of travel. I do get motion sickness and have found that taking a quarter dose of Dramamine every few hours helps regulate that and I don’t get sleepy that way too.

  6. Never been on a cruise but great tips. Since you are in proximity of many people for several days, it is so important of be respectful of space and time so that the journey is enjoyable for all. I would atay away from those over-priced photos, and take my own!

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