Follow my blog with Bloglovin
When taking a cruise we all wish it could be as easy as just showing up and walking on the boat. Unfortunately, it’s not quite that easy, there’s a lot you need to know, but it doesn’t have to be difficult at all. We have come up with some great tips to make your boarding and first day on the boat go as smoothly as possible. There’s a lot of things you need more than just what you pack. Entering through customs can either be very slow and difficult or you can make it go very smooth. Packing a carry on is more than just things to entertain you and that you may want easy access to. And do you check your bags or carry them on with you? All these questions and more will be cleared up for you right now.
Key point number one is to decide how you will get to the port that your ship is docked at. It is always a good idea to call the airport you fly into or your cruise line to see if there is a shuttle that will take you to the port authority. You may also to choose a cab or Uber ride. Whatever you choose, be sure to be at the ready so that you get to the port in the most efficient way.
One of the most simple things to decide is what to wear when you are ready to head to the ship and get ready to depart. This may seem simple but depending on where you are launching from it may be much chillier than your final destinations. Most likely it will be so a hoodie and jeans will suffice. One key mistake is to wear warm or hot weather clothing. Even though you will most likely find your way to the main deck it is not likely going to be the right time to be stripped down to a bikini or swim trunks. People will be grouped together at the most in this area as everyone will be waiting to get into their rooms so space will be sparse. Jeans and a hoodie or t-shirt are most likely going to suffice.
So what should you have on your carry on? It makes the most sense to check your large luggage backs and have them brought to your room when boarding the boat but it is very wise to have a carry on bag with you when going through check on and customs. The most crucial things to have are all your documentation such as your boarding passes, picture ID and depending on your destinations you will at the very least need your birth certificate but if you have a passport it will make all things much easier. Keep all of these documents in a folder and carry it with you so that you don’t have to go digging through your carry on looking for them when someone asks for them. The more prepared you can be the faster you can get on the ship and start unwinding. You make also want to have sunglasses and some sunscreen in your carry on because you may have to be on the main deck for a few extended periods of time like when you go through muster drills which we will discuss later. Also and medications you have or need should be kept close to you in your carry on so that you never go without them. You may want to have any cameras because most likely you will be overwhelmed by the size of your ship and will want to capture those initial reactions with several pictures of the areas you explore before heading to your stateroom.
So once you get through customs and check-in and you start boarding the boat, how soon can you get in your room? This all will depend on what time you get to the launch site and what time you can get on the boat. One thing to remember is that your ship most likely just docked and de-boarded early that morning so the crew has been working hard to have everything just right for you. So be prepared for your rooms to be ready around 1:30-2:00 pm. If you board earlier than that there is usually plenty of food to be consumed and as long as you are not carrying around tons of luggage it will also give you time to familiarize yourself with the ship and the several maps so you can begin to know your way around. If you checked your large luggage it will be brought to your room as quickly as possible and generally after you have been able to have access to your room. So the best thing to do during this time is to enjoy the food and sights that the ship has to offer.
The next thing to be ready for is one thing I (Marc) had no idea was coming but it is incredibly important is the muster drill. This is a mixture of a fire drill and when a stewardess gives all the safety instructions when you get on a plane. The difference is that while most of us know what to do in those situations, not many of us know what to do in case of an emergency on a massive cruising ship. It is very important to pay attention during these instructions and attending this is MANDATORY and they will not start until they have everyone in their designated muster drill group so don’t be that one person that holds up the entire group. It is not very time consuming but like I said it is very important.
Day one on the cruise everyone aboard will be exploring all areas of the ship at likely all the same times so don’t be surprised if many of the dining areas and buffets are packed with people but you don’t necessarily have to expect it to be this way for the whole trip. Everyone eats at different times so there will usually be plenty of space throughout your trip and wait times will not be as long as that first day will be.
Those are some of the basic yet most important things to know for boarding and day one of your cruises. As always if you have any questions or comments to help improve our information, feel free to email us firstname.lastname@example.org or join our face page and send us a message there. once again thanks for stopping by and happy cruising!