Sabrina – what a great pic of your dignified and darling kids on the balcony!!
Here’s some of the best tips provided by military families who’ve cruised before and know exactly what to do. Listen up new cruisers, we couldn’t have said it better!
Dannielle N. “A cheap over the door shoe hanger is great for storing toiletries in your state room. It takes up minimal space and prevents items from sliding all over the bathroom during rough seas!”
Cindy P. -“I found out on my first cruise that I could have used a small air freshener for the bathroom, a few extra hangers to hang my clothes, and an extra swim suit. My kids wanted to swim so much my suit never had time to dry. I hate putting on a wet swim suit and could have used an extra one to allow drying time for my other suit. The dryers are few for as many people on the ship. The app that is free to stay connected with others in your party was a great! I always knew where to find my party if I had to separate from them for a moment.”
Eileen M.– “We collected all our receipts for drinks- turns out with two kids and me not drinking alcoholic drinks we only spent $350 but had paid $595 for the packages. I kinda wish i knew the drink prices when making the decision. Next time I’ll put $300 on the cruise card and just reload as needed (since you don’t get unspent back).”
P.S. The beverage page on our web site agrees with Eileen. We tell you that we don’t recommend drink packages for most folks for just this reason.
Honorable Mentions and a summary of their best tips.
MJ Johnson -“Royal Caribbean’s harmony of the seas or oasis are the very best cruises to go on… book excursions before cruise and vouchers will be in cabin. This saves your time, pre book shows even tho they are free so you are not on the waiting list to get into them as they do fill up. Watch for daily activities sheet in your room. This tells you everything going on each day! Most of all, have fun and enjoy. If you go on either of the two ships I mentioned, you will not be disappointed. Feel free to PM me for questions as I’ve cruised a lot”
Erica S -“My tip: I prefer paying cash to all my attendees (waiter, cabin boy, assistant water, etc) and they like it better because they can spend it faster!!
Nowadays when you get on the ship, it automatically deducts your tip for all the attendees. All you have to do is go straight to the service desk and request them not to charge your card daily for the tips and let them know you will be paying cash!! Easy peasy!! You will wake in the morning to a itemized bill under your door showing that they have corrected it and you’re good to go!!!”
Erin B– “Travel light.Take lots of pictures. Enjoy everything.”
Jennifer F“Bring extension cords (with surge protectors) if allowed. Sometimes there are only one or two outlets and with everybody needing to charge their phones, etc. just one outlet makes it pretty much impossible. Also, find out what kind of outlets the ships have. Obviously your ones that sail often out of the U.S. ports will have 110, etc. But, for instance, I found out our particular ship we’ll be sailing on soon should have both 110 and 220! I just have to find out how many outlets and where now. The reason it matters is because some people, like my husband, have a CPAP or breathing machine that is medically necessary. We found out one of our cabins on a previous ship didn’t have an outlet near/behind the bed, so we had to bring an extra long extension cord to make sure it works. (We just keep an extra one in our suitcase for all trips now.)”
Bob B -“After packing, take 25% of the clothes out. You will not need it all. Pack a small flashlight. Take a few extra days of Meds along. Go back into your packed suitcase and remove an additional 25% of the clothes. Trust me, you were still overpacked”
Jennifer W -“Go to the dollar store and pick up a few things as a back up medicine cabinet. It’s so much cheaper (some things are $10 on the boat!) and you just never know if you’ll need it. Tums, gas pills, Dramamine (haven’t needed it but jic), Benadryl, mylanta, heartburn medicine, cold medicine pills, Sudafed. And I like to take extra probiotics and digestive enzymes to help with digestion. Most people don’t eat that much every day and it can be quite uncomfortable. Sunscreen w zinc is a must! I love the sunbum brand. It works really well. You’ll pretty much live in a swimsuit, flip flops and a cover up or T-shirt for guys. Then just pack for evening attire. What you’ll wear on the boat and off. If you bring 12 packs of soda, bring some tape in case they open it. It can be a pain to carry an open box. Last time they didn’t open but once they did. Keep it simple. I always over pack “
Albert L – “If you are looking to hang out at a beach with chairs and bathrooms. Look for day passes for resorts at the ports. Paying for it on the boat will be extremely expensive. We went on a Mexican Riviera cruse and we spent an average of 35 dollars for adults and 15 per child per day pass. Cruise ship cost was 120 per adult and 60 per child.”
Naomi – “Our first cruise! I cannot wait to go again!!!! Tip is to bring a refillable water bottle. Can refill on ship and carry with on excursions. Just don’t leave it in the Cayman Islands like me lol”
Ashley S– “Always buy the insurance!!! Missed my last cruise due to plane issues but because of insurance cruise line was able to put us up in hotel, catch us up at next port and I filled a claim and got a good chunk of money back. Well worth it.”