Embarkation Day Tips for First Time Cruisers

Embarkation Day Tips for First Time Cruisers

Embarkation Day Tips may help your stress levels before you get on the cruise ship. We hope they help you and enjoy reading about them now. 

Your first cruise can be a hectic, exciting, and even stressful event, depending on your personality and the amount of advance preparation you put into it. There are numerous things you can do to get ready for the day that you board your dream cruise. By making sure you have all the required items needed for your vacation. Start planning how you will get to the port before leaving home. Also, think about arriving the day before embarkation, you give yourself time to relax before boarding.

7 Embarkation Day Tips for First Time Cruisers
T-Shirt – Cruisin’ Through Life

Here are 7 Embarkation Day Tips for First Time Cruisers

Here are some additional strategies that experienced cruisers use to make their cruises more relaxing:

1st Tip for Embarkation!

Always make sure that you have all the required cruise documentation needed. This includes cruise line boarding documents, passport or other approved identification (check the cruise line website for a list), and the credit card you plan to use for your onboard account. If you have arranged transfers to the cruise port and/or parking in advance, ensure you have the documents for those activities. Depending on your port of embarkation and ports of call you may also need medical documentation related to your prescriptions and vaccinations. The cruise line, Department of State (https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/international-travel/before-you-go/your-health-abroad.html), and Center for Disease Control (https://www.cdc.gov/features/travel-medicine/index.html) websites are useful resources for this information. If you have questions, ask your cruise adviser or a cruise line representative when you book your vacation.

Another Embarkation Tip for a first-time cruiser.

Before leaving home, go to a store that sells document storage products to find something in which you can organize all your travel documentation. Get whatever suits you. I have seen people using three-ring binders with section dividers, plastic sheet protectors, folders with pockets inside, and other similar systems. Your goal is to have all the documentation you need handy and in one place when you get to the embarkation terminal. A storage system can also help prevent dropping items. That happens to more than one traveler as they fumble with carry-on luggage, manage children, and try to navigate the embarkation process.

Third Useful Tip for Embarkation Day on the Cruise Ship…

Make sure that you pack items you will need on your first day in carry-on bags. In addition to all your travel documents, including prescription medications, valuables (e.g. jewelry, electronic devices, or camera equipment), swimwear, sunscreen, items to entertain small children, snacks, and a magazine or other reading material to occupy time after lunch. Depending on when you checked in there may be a gap while you wait for your cabin to be made available. Also, bring anything else you will need. This might include a change of clothing, depending on the weather at the port of debarkation.

This is a really helpful tip for Embarkation Day

On the morning of embarkation, get up and have a relaxed breakfast, then head for the port a bit ahead of your designated check-in time. This will help you beat the crowd, get on board, take care of any business (e.g. making specialty restaurants or reservations or book shore excursions), have a leisurely lunch, and explore the ship before everyone else boards and things get chaotic.

Coffee Mug – Cruiser At Heart
Coffee Mug – Cruiser At Heart

Eating and Embarkation Day – here is some useful advice to consider

Instead of going to the buffet restaurant, where most other passengers head with all their carry-on luggage. Consider asking a crew member which alternate dining venues are available. Go to one of those instead, since other cruisers are not aware of this option. There might be fewer food selections available, but you do not have to fight the crowd to get something to eat and find a place to sit.

Tip Number 6 for embarkation day on your cruise…

As you board the ship, ask a crew member if there are maps of the ship. These are often small foldable pocket-size documents that you can carry around for the first couple of days. So get a map so that you can find places you want to go around your cruise ship.

 Also, pick up a copy of the ship’s newsletter that shows important times for various events for the day (e.g. emergency muster drill before you sail). In addition to maps, larger ships also have large acrylic cutouts outside central elevators. These show all decks and locations of key venues. Many ships also have interactive wall-mounted screens that allow passengers to search for directions. These can help you learn about key activities, and view restaurant menus. These are generally located in the atrium areas near central ladder wells (stairways).

The final tip consider for your cruise’s embarkation day!

After lunch, take some time to casually explore the ship to familiarize yourself with the layout and venues. This is a great opportunity to snap some photos around the ship without having hordes of other passengers in the shots. This will be one of your best opportunities during the cruise to do this.

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Here is a list of some of the most popular cruise companies… to research more about their embarkation day requirements.

Norwegian Cruise Lines – ncl.com

Royal Caribbean – royalcaribbean.com

Carnival Cruise – carnival.com

Viking Cruises – vikingcruises.com

Thank you for reading the “Embarkation Day Tips for First Time Cruisers” blog article. We hope it has helped first-time cruisers and those that may have had a bad experience with cruising in the past. Maybe these articles can get ready for their next big cruise vacation. Did you want some useful cruise vacation books to read – click here.

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