This is it; you've made your decision, it’s happening! This year, you're going on your first cruise. And, as with all firsts, the unknown elicits equal parts apprehension and exhilaration. On a cruise, where should you go? Is the cruise all-inclusive? How can you keep from becoming seasick? These are just a few of the many questions you'll have before embarking on your journey. Let’s go through some important points to keep in mind to make your first experience memorable.
Choosing the Destination
The first thing you need to decide is where you want to go on your first cruise. You don't have to be overtly adventurous if you're a first-timer. Set sail for the Caribbean or Asia to get your feet wet. But, wherever you choose to go, bear in mind that it's always better to opt with a firm that offers an All Inclusive plan, since "extras" can soon pile up and cost a fortune. Drinks can be quite costly on cruise ships that do not have an open bar. It's time to plan your trip now that you've decided where you want to travel.
Making Proper Arrangements
You'll want to share your vacation with your friends and family back home, so make sure you have a phone plan that permits you to do so. Before you set sail, check with your operator to see if you can use your phone and how much it would cost. A word of advice to avoid uncomfortable situations before you even board: if you have to take a plane to the departure port, try to come a day in advance. Last-minute snafus (misplaced bags, missed flight, etc.) can always happen, and with a couple of extra hours before your trip, you can solve any inconvenience of the sort.
Food and Cabin
With regard to onboard services, people's first thoughts are about the cabin and cuisine. Even though the food on luxury cruises is usually great, don't expect too much from the accommodations. A cabin is a practical location to sleep and shower. The majority of the voyage is spent elsewhere. Select a cabin with a balcony if you want to upgrade the cabin experience and wake up to a different vista each morning. In terms of the rest, most cruise lines provide similar amenities to hotels, such as TV, a mini bar, and room service.
What to Pack
Next you’ll need to pack your bags. Fortunately, there are few things considered indispensable, making the to-bring list rather short. Bring copies of all of your documentation, such as ID card, vaccine and health records, passport, among others. As for clothes, daytime outings require comfortable attire and evenings, formal clothing. Also, evenings on the deck might be chilly, so bring a light sweater. Don’t forget to pack a swimsuit for relaxing in the pool. Bring gym attire if you exercise or if the cruise has a gym.
If you've packed all of the above, you should be fine, and if not, there will be a store on board that can meet the majority of your needs.
Activities Available on the Cruise
Once you have set sail, you have the option of participating in all of the activities (refer to the daily schedule provided in the cabins). On board, boredom is never a problem. You'll always be able to find something to entertain you, whether it's dance lessons, yoga classes, or shows. Stopovers are the best thing about cruises, since you are allowed to get off and visit the cities and towns along the way.