In less than two weeks I will be setting sail on a cruise with some of my closest girlfriends. To say I’m excited for a little getaway is an understatement. In planning for the trip, I was surprised to hear that most of the girls had never been on a cruise before! Having traveled on this exact Carnival cruise twice before, my knowledge is so vast that I’m pretty much qualified to captain the ship. Totally kidding. In reality I decided to put together a brief list of some of the things I wish I knew before my first cruise.
WHAT TO EXPECT //
- Expect to get a little seasick. Even if you are not the type of person prone to motion sickness, plan ahead and bring some medicine that will help you cope with the possible headache and nausea you may experience when you first set sail. But don’t worry, you will get your sea legs in no time!
- Plan to eat a lot. The beauty of a cruise is that the food is all-you-can-eat and included in the price of your ticket. It’s a gluttonous experience but nevertheless amazing. Not to mention, the free room service is 24-hours. Make sure to bring your stretchy pants.
- Prepare to dress up! Each night on the cruise, you will have the option to sign up for a formal dinner in the dining room. I highly recommend taking advantage of these dinners. Not only is it an excuse to get all dolled up, but the food and service are really high class. Make sure to pack a nice semi-formal outfit to wear to the dinners!
WHAT TO DO ON YOUR CRUISE //
- Be sure you take advantage of all the activities on board the ship. Many Carnival Cruises offer a comedy show, karaoke, a night club, a casino, a fully stocked game room, mini golf and if you’re lucky, a water slide! I was skeptical of the comedy show before attending because I’m usually somewhat picky about comedians. However I can honestly say the comedians on board had me laughing my pants off. Try your best to make the most of the endless activities while the ship is out at sea.
- When your cruise ship docks at its destination, be sure to get off the boat and explore. I am always surprised by the number of people who stay aboard the boat when it docks. There is always something to be discovered wherever you go, and although it may be hard to leave the comfort of the ship’s cafeteria, I urge you to explore the options you have on land!
- Be courteous and tip the housekeeping. The majority of employees on cruise ships work tremendously hard to make the experience amazing for the passengers. I’m positive you will notice the outstanding work ethic of all the employees on the ship. Most of their income is earned through gratuity, so be thoughtful of that before you disembark.
WHAT TO BRING //
- The following items are cruise essentials: bathing suit, sunglasses, hat and sunscreen!
- A good book to read during your down time (I’m currently reading The Story and I can’t put it down)
- Cute and casual clothing (and the before mentioned formal outfits for dinners)
- A bottle of wine (depending on what cruise line you take, each passenger is permitted to bring one bottle of wine aboard the ship)
- A warm jacket for evenings and windy mornings on the boat.
- Your favorite face moisturizer and hair wave spray (unfortunately the showers are not the most luxurious on cruises and these items will hopefully be the only life savers you use while on your cruise)
- A versatile tote that you can use on and off the ship.
Below are links to some cruise essentials that I believe will make your travels even more enjoyable. Let me know some of your tips for cruising in the comments below. Sails away!