My wife occasionally suffers from seasickness and was wondering what to expect on our Inside Passage cruise in August. I've heard that it is generally pretty calm but would like to hear about some first hand experience.
Also, I've read the Pharmacist section about sea sickness medicines but would also like to hear some first hand comments. What has worked best for those of you Alaskan cruisers?
The inside passage is fairly calm. It can be a little rough between Vancouver and the inside passage and between the inside passage and Seward. The big ships do handle it quite well. I do get motion sickness quite easily but the only time I have needed something is on the small tour boats. Dramamine works for me. I tried the patch one time for my first cruise and it really messed up my system so I could not see well or walk. We had a fellow passenger on our last cruise in May who passed out from using the patch. Many people use the patch but I would try it out before boarding a ship to see if it has side effects on you.
I used sea-bands on my first cruise - they worked wonderfully! The only time I took them off was in the shower. No side effects, no drowsiness. You can buy them at any discount store (Kmart, Walmart) or drug store. (or check on the internet)
Best bet is to ask your pharmicist and read the instructions on the bottle. Like PEB said, the most likely place you'll even feel the ocean is outside the Inside Passage, so your 1st and last nights could have more movement...You really need to try the over-the-counter types like bonine or dramamine before you leave for your cruise. That way you'll have a better idea of how it will affect you. Except for small boat cruises, I just bring a small container of candied ginger to nibble on (of course, you have to like ginger! :o)) Others have mentioned ginger ale and other ginger related products like ginger tea or ginger pills. I just like candied ginger because it settles my stomach. It also comes in handy after eating one or two of those 6 course meals!!
I get seasick on anything that rocks, even gently. I can get sick on the calmest day. So on our first cruise I used the patch and lost my vision and was sick for a week afterward. It took me 10 yrs and a super deal on a cruise to Alaska to dare it again. I used Bonine, started the morning before we left and continued for the entire cruise. I also used sea bands but took them off after the first day since they pinched my wrists too much. I'm happy to say that I felt great the entire cruise. In fact, great enough that we're going back to Alaska again this year! Watch out if you make your wife feel too good, you may become a cruise addict!
My wife gets motion sick watching television, but had no trouble in June on the Ocean Princess. (She did get helicopter sick in Juneau.) She used Sea-Bands at all times and did not get sick on the train or the bus.
The stretch between College Fjord and Glacier Bay, and during the night before Vancouver was definitely noticeable, but she had no trouble. She brought the whole pharmacy with her but only had to use the Sea-Bands.
Very little movement on the ships in the inside channel. We just went on the Ocean Princess May 21st. We have been on the RC Vision, and Celebrity and think they have better stabilizers than the Princess. Anyway probably won't be a problem for your wife......
It is a myth that the inside passage is always "smooth as glass" 3 out of 9 Alaska cruises I have taken encountered very rough seas- those 3 were all round trip Vancouver. Many sick passengers but not us, bonine is an excellent product.
This is totally untrue, it is a myth to state "very little movement". Very rough seas can be encountered on the inside passage. 3 out of my 9 Alaska cruises encountered at least 1 very rough sailing day.