I'm worried that I will not have enough space to store all the pictures I'd like to take while in Alaska. Is there any place on board ship or in the ports where you can transfer images from digital memory to a CD?
I think it depends on the ship, but most should now have that service for self serve or by the photo shop. It also depends on which memory card you have. On the Pride, they could not copy my xd card as their adaptor for that card was not working. If you take your USB cable with you, they could do it. I would stongly recommend that you have an extra memory card or two. I took three 256mg cards for our cruise to Mexico. If not, you can get it done at any Walmart, or SAMS, Costco. Take extra memory, its getting cheaper. Check Amazon.
Be careful when you have the ship transfer the images for you. We had neighbors who went to Alaska last year. They had the ship transfer their images to CD, but something went wrong, and when they got home they only had about 20 of the images (I forget how many were on their memory card, but it was in excess of 100). If you have them transfer, see if they will bring the CD up on a computer and verify that all the pictures transferred.
Needless to say, they were heartbroken. We were able to help them recover some of the photos that hadn't been written over, but they only ended up with about 50 total. I would rather spend the money on an extra memory card than have them lost like this.
I have two memory cards for my camera. And husband has two for his camera. We were laughing because we have enough for around 800 -1000 pics. We would just rather take extra memory than have someone else mess with our pictures, etc.
As an alternative to memory cards, have a look at a portable digital photo storage device. Vosonic's X's-Drive Pro VP300 has a 40GB capacity (more photos than you get ever possibly take). It's a rather small box that you can carry with you; has a fast USB 2.0 compatible interface; displays your pictures on a 2.5" LCD screen; can be used with all types of memory cards, and; sells for around $120 on computergeeks.com.
As I said earlier, we went thru this same thing for our Mex Riv Pride cruise. We went to SD Wild Animal Park before we left and took almost a full card of shots. We stopped at a photo store and had cd made in about 20 minutes for $5. I think they run about $9 on ship. I have also read about problems with cds not playing when people got home. I think this is a compatability problem with some cd readers and software rather than a problem with the ships cd making. While I would recomm doing this if you have a lot of shots, I also believe in extra cards, as cards can go bad also. My son also has the small portable cd maker and they took thousands of shots (group of 45) and saved them on disks. This was more like $300 but I saw it advertised in latest photo mag for about $269.