Being a first time cruiser Oct 13th on Grand Princess, I have found CM's forum informative, clever and invaluable in making the plans for our cruise. (Thanks all!) I noticed that a good percentage of you seem to have this "cruising thing" down pat. I know part of the fun and excitment of "unchartered waters" will be in the learning and experiencing on our own... But, if asked, (I'm asking) What would be the ONE piece of invaluable advice or best tip you could give those new to cruising?
Pack a good book, bring sunscreen,sunglasses, a good companion, a flexible and relaxed attitude. Then go and enjoy blue skies, blue water ,sunshine, new friends and new places.
Let us know how it all went .
we have been on the Grand twice. You will LOVE it!
I have lots of photos on my website. http://www.bensleyraceteam.com
Just look in the drop down box for both cruises. Make sure you read the reviews for tips and hints, and email me if you have any questions.
Best piece of advice for a cruise I think is relax and let the crew take care of you. Do not try to do everything on the ship or tours because it is impossible. Pick out a few things you enjoy and focus on those things.
Do NOT expect crew members to be at your beck and call. There are 2600 people on that ship (excluding crew and staff) and they can't possibly jump for everything you want and get it to you in a split second. These people work everyday of the week from sun up till 10 p.m. and later. They deal with nice people, rude people, and people who think they are personal slaves.
Enjoy your trip, remember to "talk" to the crew and staff and thank them for their help.
Take it easy. Don't try to do EVERYTHING, it can't be done without stress.
If something doesn't happen as quickly as you would like, remember, you could be at home doing it for yourself. :o)
Have a great time on my favorite ship!
Good advice here. I agree about not trying to do everything (because you can't and you'll just get frustrated if you try), but here's a related suggestion.
Don't overplan (that's not quite the same thing).
I often see people on cruises who have all of their movements and activities laid out down to the last detail. Even if they're not trying to do too much, what they ARE doing is absolutely locked in.
Me, I pick up the bulletin late at night or in the morning, circle a few things and stick it in my pocket. I might do them and I might not. Depends on whether I run into somebody interesting, or get a better offer. Some of the best things on cruises are things and people that surprise you, and I think you have the most fun if you're open to discovering them.
Naturally, there needs to be some planning for shore days, especially if you want to take a tour. In Hawaii earlier in the year we pre-booked rental cars at each stop (but had only some "bullet point" lists about where to go). And in Europe we pre-book some things like taxis for the day, etc.
So I think the Golden Rule is: Don't fret about "missing something" (even if it's a meal) if you're enjoying what you're doing.
After you pack, take out about half of what you packed. You really don't need 5 different swim suits and 20 pairs of shoes! Also, like someone else said, talk to the crew, wait staff, etc. They love it when passsengers are instreated in them, their families and their country. Sometimes you even get better service when you get to know your staff!
Emerald Seas 1990, 1991
Soveriegn of the Seas 1998, 2000
It was almost like you were reading my mind. Its scary!!! I was so busy planning what to do, what to wear, lists, lists, lists... It took away most of the excitment and anticipation. Its relax and go with the flow for me now. I also thought since we were driving, I though I could pack the whole house, thanks for bringing me back to earth, I needed that! My wonderful mom use to say, "never EXPECT, and there will be no disappointment", thanks for reminding me of that. There will be no fretting, if I miss something, there's always the NEXT cruise. Thanks All! for some great advice. Cookie
GREAT advice from all. I had packed clothes for a month,instead of 7 days. WE are the other couple traveling with COOKIE.MY only fear is getting SEA SICK.this is also my first cruise. I got sick on the gamebling boat a few times.my husband said it was after i lost my money.I hate taking a pill,then walk around half asleep.thats not fun. NORMA
The ship is so big the motion is little noticed. Unless the weather is particularly bad and the seas extremely rough you will walk around the ship thinking you are in a resort hotel. But if you're really sensitive to sea-sickness take some of the over-the-counter medicines. They all work pretty well. Just remember though, they don't work after you've gotten sick.
THOMAS,thank you for the advice. I was told about a bracelet to wear,it prevents getting sea-sick. To have fun,i will get the bracelet,pills anything. i should also not think about getting sick. Just FUN FUN for 7 days. NORMA
Norma, here's a suggestion. Try taking ginger pills if you start feeling queasy. Ginger is an all-natural home remedy for an upset stomach. Best part - no side effects!
Then if they don't help, you can take an over-the-counter pill. Bonine doesn't cause drowsiness but Dramamine does. Something to think about.
Now posting as MichelleP.
Norma, One other thing to bring is any medication you might want. Even if it is allergy over the counter medicine. I bring a little of aspirin, Ibuprofen and allegra just in case. I spent a few hours in Caymans looking for allergy - cold medicine one time and paid three times as much - wasting those few hours is what hurt. They are tiny and don't take up much room. Also if there is any medicine you can not do without and you can get 2 of it - put some in the carry on and some in the check luggage - the luggage you will give to the porters at the pier so no matter what you have it.
If you can pick up the little plug at Walmart that has three plugs in it so you can plug a hair dryer and a curling iron in at the same time.
Keep an open mind if if things aren't perfect dont' worry - vacations are never perfect but they are so much fun! If you have any major problems go to the pursers desk and ask them about it. Be firm if you need to and ask for a manager if you need to. Always get names and times you called as you would at home. Do not let anything ruin your cruise.
You will have an awesome time I know. I've seen passengers that let things ruin their cruise that could have been easily fixed at the pursers desk. I myself have had to call them on only one occasion in 14 cruises and had to get a manager and be firm to get what I wanted (no A/C in my cabin) but I noticed that the others that called who did not get names and times did not get the service I did and also their calls were not recorded in the computer like mine were when I said I talked to so and so at this time. It can happen on any cruise though. I was lucky it happened on my 10th. Debbie
DEBBIE,THANKS FOR YOUR ADVICE ON THE PLUGS,I DIDNT HAVE IT ON MY LIST.WILL TAKE ASPIRINS,BONINE,GINGER PILLS,ACID REDUCER PILLS.MY ONLY FEAR WAS GETTING SEA SICK.I THINK I HAVE IT COVERED,WITH WHAT I AM TAKING WITH ME.THIS IS MY FIRST CRUISE. PLAN ON HAVING A GREAT TIME. THANKS AGAIN NORMA