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Old September 17th, 2008, 09:55 PM
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Default Newbie - 1st time cruiser

I will be booking our first cruise for Dec 6 on the Splendor (eastern caribbean). As a newbie I've been surfing the web looking at all the info on cruises and finally decided on Carnival, mostly due to the price.

What if any advice could you give a couple going on their first cruise?

Thanks.

Ramona
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Old September 17th, 2008, 10:09 PM
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You will have so much fun and the Spendor is a very nice ship. Even though Carnival is cheaper, Carnival is the best choice. Don't worry about overpacking becuase there is so much storage in the cabin. The only other advice that I can think of this have fun! If you have any more questions don't hesitate to ask me. Have Fun!
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Old September 17th, 2008, 10:19 PM
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you will have so much fun! i'm excited for you

search this board. there is a junk ton of threads for you to find info
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Old September 17th, 2008, 11:02 PM
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Welcome and have a great time. Remember to have fun and be patient after all you are on vacation. Like everyone else says, feel free to ask questions, there are no dumb or wrong ones, we have all been there once. This board helps alot.
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Have a great cruise all!! 8)
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Old September 17th, 2008, 11:58 PM
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Go to the drug store and get a package of "Bonine". Take one every morning, whether you think you'll need it or not. You probably won't be prone to sea sickness, but why take a chance? Relax, enjoy yourselves, and make tons of new friends. Don't try to do too much,,,but instead do the main things that seem to "turn you on" at the moment. There will be lots more cruises in the future. Don't wear yourselves out trying to do everything.

See you aboard,

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Old September 18th, 2008, 12:41 AM
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Enjoy everything most of all. Do not listen to the anti-cruising line of regimented activities which is untrue. You can do most anything you want when you want. Carnival is an excellent line for first time cruisers. Experience as much as you can, don't bring too much in the way of clothes, and take it easy on the mojitos !
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Old September 18th, 2008, 06:28 AM
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You made a great choice. I will also be on the Splendor that week. As stated most people tend to overpack. You will be surprised how little clothing you really need. Coin laundry or valet service is available should you need it. Relax and enjoy. 8)
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Old September 18th, 2008, 09:03 AM
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Bring a power strip for all your electronics, and a large gargage bag, to use as a hamper, for diry clothes in the closet, and to pack it, when you leave.
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Old September 18th, 2008, 10:17 AM
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If you want to book hair appointments for the formal nights or the specialty restaurant book it as soon as you get on board. Also your cruise documents probably show the boarding time as 1PM. Don't get there are 1PM either get there early 11AM or late 3PM. They will start board the ship as soon as it's ready, so if they haven't had any issues. Then it boards early. I like to get there early, check in, and get a good seat to wait. Always complete your fun pass on line this makes check in a lot easier. That is all I can think of now. Have a great cruise.
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Old September 18th, 2008, 07:47 PM
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You will have the time of your life!! I am so ready to book another cruise and take the kids to enjoy the same fun I had.
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Old September 19th, 2008, 10:24 PM
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I went on my first cruise in January, it was a blast!!! I think the best advice given was to not overpack, you won't use half the stuff you bring anyway...also, there is a washer and dryer available on the ship. I really hope you have a wonderful time!
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Old September 20th, 2008, 02:35 AM
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Hi Newbie,
Great tips so far. The only one I might hold off on is taking the sea sick pills. Everyone is different. For me the pill make me too drowsy. You may want to try them one day at home to see how they affect you.


I agree with packing light. Of course you need the fancy night clothes. But you can cut back on that by getting a skirt and 2 tops. Or a cute black dress and a couple of pretty shawls/wraps to dress it up.

I also bring a plug strip w/on/off switch and an extinsion cord. Sometimes I use them seperately sometimes I plug them in together to get outlets in another part of the cabin.

Here are some other things I bring and why.

Highlighters- a different color for each person and one for all. We go through the "Capers" and highlight the things we want to do. Example if my color is pink I highlight in pink for thins that I want to do and no one else does. Then we may use another color for the group. Anything we all want to do together we may highlight green. We ask our steward to give us 2 sets of Capers so we each go through and mark ours. The activities schedule is perferated and you can tear it off and put it in your pocket or purse.

Neck wallet- wth a clear ID window great for putting your Sign & Sail card. And just enough room for lip gloss or shout wipe. I also put the fold up ship map in it. If you don't find one at home they sell them in the shop on board.

Bungee cord- holds bath door open or balcony door open. and other misc things.

Post-it-Notes. Great for leaving notes to cabin mates on the vanity mirror. Or leaving notes to your steward on the cabin door.

small night light or you can just leave the bath light on or TV without sound.

Ziplock bags & small soft cooler bag. We do this because we order from room service before going on a shore tour. Put sandwiches in zip locks and also some ice in a double zip lock. Were in Belize and advised some in our group to do that. They felt we were over doing it... well the lunch stop was expensize and questionable. We enjoyed our lunch. They were worried about eating the food

When we traveled with a large family group we took a small rolling soft cooler. It was nice because we used it as our carry on and then used it to store bottled water, soda and beer on ice on our balcony. They charge for bottle water and it's not included on the soda card. So if we can we bring a case on board. We just tape a luggage tag to it with clear packing tape.

Duct tape- Sounds silly and I never thought I would use it. But I did for a broken suitcase and to emergency hem a that came down on a skirt.

Insulated drink cup or bottle. If you are a soda drinker. Get a soda card and use the mug for your refils. And it keeps it cold on deck. or use it for Ice Tea and Juice free on the Lido.

Fabric sheets- put a few in your suitcase. It will keep your clothes smelling fresh and you can use them in the laundry room. I try to pack for 1/2 the cruise now, then wash in the middle of the cruise.

Wrinkle Release Spray. I have not done this. But I saw another poster say they unpack and spray with wrinkle releaser when hanging up their clothes. I'm doing it next time. Sounded like a great idea. It's hard to keep my larger clothes from wrinkling. No matter how hard I try.

Well that all for now.

Have a great trip Newbie.
Carol
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Old September 20th, 2008, 03:01 AM
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Newbie,

You will have a great time. Carnival was our first cruise, and we try and cruise once or 2 times a year.

Carnival is a very good choice for your first cruise. I am sure you will have the time of your life, and you will want to book another cruise right away.

Have fun.
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Old September 20th, 2008, 08:37 AM
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By the way Ramona. Do you have an "Eskie"? We do!

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Old September 20th, 2008, 11:41 AM
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Originally Posted by skymaster
By the way Ramona. Do you have an "Eskie"? We do!

Ken
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Yes we have two eskies, Teddy and Sammy. They're not brothers, we got Teddy first at 8 weeks old then Sammy came to us two years later at 2 years old. They are our rescue eskies and we've been proud parents for over 10 years.

We've never been gone on a vacation longer than 4 days so I'm a little worried but we have a great house/dog sitter as well as my Mom who checks on them every day and always brings them a little treat (which they've come to expect when they see her!).

Sorry I could go on and on about the boys. What about your eskies?

Ramona
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Old September 20th, 2008, 11:47 AM
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Default great tips

Wow, these are some terrific tips, thanks particularly to Carol with some unique ideas. We will definitely bring the baggies and bungee cords! I think I have a waist wallet from traveling with my former employer (over 8 years ago).

I've been surfing the message boards and am very impressed with all the great info out there.

We're getting ready to book our trip in December but now we're thinking to book one in February instead. This would give us extra time to save money for the trip and especially the excursions. Also, by February we'll be sick of the cold weather and ready for a little caribbean sunshine!

Thanks again.

Ramona
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Old September 20th, 2008, 01:48 PM
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Eat. Eat. Eat. And, oh yeah did I mention don't forget to eat. Have fun.
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Old September 20th, 2008, 07:47 PM
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Just remember that nothing is perfect but a Carnival cruise is pretty close.
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Old September 20th, 2008, 08:23 PM
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You will have a great time. Don't listen to people who say, you won't have a good time becuase you are cruising on Carnival. I only take Carnival and I have a great time. The only suggestion that I can think of know is bring a few extra hangers if you want to hang more things up. There are about 8-10 hanger is 2 of the three closets. The other one has shelfs but can be used to hang up stuff too. I think I hope I am remembering right. Oh yea I am referring to the Spirit and Conquest class ships becuase those are the ones I have been on recently, but I am sure the Splendor has the same closets. You can always ask your cabin stewart for more hangers, I just think it is easier to bring more of your own. Also are you in a Interior, Ocean View, Balcony, or Suite stateroom. Just wondering so I can tell you about them.
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Old September 21st, 2008, 08:53 AM
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We have one female Eskie, (Maddie) and two miniature schnauzer brothers. (Fritz and Schroeder) We adopted Maddie from her "mom" who is in the Air Force and was about to deploy. She was only about 6 months old when we got her. She's had her ups and downs, but is basically a good pup, and lots of fun. She's about two now, and is getting better behaved all the time. She is absolutely beautiful, but we have two acres of property here, and when the three pups get out and run, she gets that beautiful white coat dirty, and then she's "Dingy Harriett".

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