We’re planning on taking a cruise to celebrate our 40th wedding anniversary. I haven’t been on any cruises since I was 12 when my parents took my sister and I to Bermuda; my husband has never taken one. We were in Bermuda together seven years ago and loved it, so this time we’d like to travel by cruise ship to add to the fun. I hadn’t realized there is so much to consider when choosing cruises, ports of call, the size of the ship, what activities are offered, where you want your cabin – inside or outside – which deck, and what cost you want to spend – elegant or cheap cruises or somewhere in between…and then there’s the time of year which influences the weather. But, most importantly…what to wear!
I’ve asked friends and family for their tips on planning a cruise. I’ve chosen the 10 best tips for planning a cruise to share with you:
- Ask the cruise line representative what necessities they recommend you bring (to avoid buying them on the ship)
- Make a detailed packing list way in advance; divide it into Must Pack (passport, license, medicine, medical cards, essentials – clothing, toiletries, umbrella, etc.) and Want to Pack (camera, batteries, extra clothing, reading materials, etc.) and add to it as things come to mind; check them off as you pack them.
- Pack some of each the essentials that you can’t do without in a carry on bag, just in case your luggage gets lost.
- Book your cabin early as you can – if you wait too long, you might not get the location you want which may increase the cost to your cruise – if you want a cheap cruise, see Tip #10!
- Compare the cost of a shoreline tour given by a local tout waiting at dockside with the cost of the cruise line’s tour service (you’ll save money)
- Choose the largest size dining table offered – you’ll meet more people and bound to find some other couple whose company you will enjoy
- Since cruises are all inclusive, you can order as much as you like to eat so don’t be shy if you are hungry – and be sure to let them know ahead of time if you have certain preferences or needs
- Expect some things to go wrong – it’s only natural that they do so present yourself with a good attitude and keep your sense of humor – a little kindness goes a long way especially on a large cruise ship
- Leave copies of all important documents with a family member or friend – if you lose yours, they can fax copies to you or get replacements
- To get the best cruise deals, book a year ahead or last minute cruises for a cheap cruise – it depends on the flexibility of your vacation schedule
If we want to get the best cruise deal, we best be starting our research so we can get the best cheap cruise deals by booking early. See you in Bermuda?