Originally Posted by Iluv2cruise
I compiled this list for a first time cruiser and thought some of you might be able to add to the list.
East as many meals as you can on the ship. Food on the Islands is expensive.
Bring baggies to bring snacks on your days off the ship
Shore Excursions are expensive- you will be doing this again so don’t try and do everything on one trip. Save time for relaxation.
Sign up for the Ice show the first day if you want to see it because the tickets will sell out (free venue on RCCL)
Bring an illuminated travel clock. Inside rooms have no window, hence no light
Make sure the kids wear sun screen…buy it here in bulk. They will roast in the Caribbean sun.
On sea days, people get up early and save lounge chairs by the pool by tossing a towel or book on a chair. If you want to be by the pool on these days get up early or find a nice quiet spot in another area of the ship.
Each day you will be given a schedule of events. Bring it with you so that you can take advantage of a few unique items.
Tipping is extra and is expected on the last evening of the cruise. Typically this adds about $10.00 PP per day to the cost. They will give you little tip envelopes the evening before so make sure you have small bills which you can get at the casino or the bank. There is an ATM on the ship too.
Room service is free!!
I can elaborate a little further with your tips.
Eat in the off hours to avoid the crowds. So much more relaxing.
Instead of eating on shore, buy something that island/port specializes in. Ex: Mexican vanilla, Guava liquor, mango run, etc.
Snacks is a good idea, I always forget to bring that. Pack a nylon tote to carry everything in. And don't forget the napkins or wipies.
Insides cabins are very dark. Bring a small flashlight, in case you have to get up in the middle of the night. Don't put anything in the way that you might trip on at night.
Make sure you put your sunscreen on about 2 hours before. It takes that long for it to effectively work.
I avoid the pool on sea days. I stay on at some ports and enjoy it then.
I bring a highlighter pen and mark the things I want to do on the itinerary. I usually do this the night before in bed.
I make my own tip envelopes at home and put the cash in them. I figure it out with my calculator and put a post-it on who it belongs to i.e., waiter, cabin attendant etc. When I get my official envelope, I just transfer it and write a thank you on the front with my name and cabin/table number.