Taking a cruise is exciting and a hassle free way of traveling. You only have to unpack once, many activities and meals are included, and the ship sails to your next destination while you enjoy the onboard amenities.
To ensure a smooth onboarding process, it’s a good idea to know what to do before you embark to make sure that you get the most of your holiday right from the start.
Take note of these 5 tips for before you board a cruise and you can be sure of an embarkation day that is entirely stress-free.
Tip #1 Plan in advance.
If your cruiseline’s website has an online check-in process, make sure to complete this before you sail. You can print your boarding pass and luggage tags in advance, helping you get on board faster. Some cruises such as P&O enable you to pre-purchase drinks packages and shore tours, while others enable you to plan activities such as spa appointments and restaurant reservations.
Tip # 2 Organise all your paperwork.
Have your boarding pass as well as your passport ready when you arrive at the terminal.
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The crew has to check in thousands of passengers, so by having all your necessary documentation on hand, you will be helping to speed up the process.
Tip # 4 Check what you can and cannot pack.
Items such as irons, hairdryers and kettles are supplied on-board and may be removed from your luggage if you try to bring your own. Always check with your cruise line. In addition, you are not allowed to bring contraband items.
Tip # 5 Know when it’s the best time to board.
A good time to arrive at the port is around 11. 30 in the morning. This allows you to have lunch on board and do a bit of exploring around the ship before it sails.
A word of advice: Some cruise lines have started staggered check-in procedures to avoid having crowds of people boarding the ship at one time. It is therefore recommended that you sign up in advance and make arrangements to arrive at a time that is convenient for you.
Tip # 6 Relax!
Stress can put a real damper on your cruise, so start getting into that “holiday mood” as soon as you arrive at the terminal, even if there are crowds of people standing in long lines. Allow yourself to do whatever it takes to get rid of the stress before taking your place in the line – buy beverages, use the bathroom, make a call, or organise your luggage – whatever you need to do to relax completely.