If you are going on a cruise for the first time, you probably have a lot of questions about what to expect during your holiday. Many people don’t know what cruising is actually like and there are a lot of misconceptions floating around about the cruise ship experience. Before you go on your trip, you might have a few questions about how things work and what you can expect after the ship leaves the harbour.
In order to prepare you for your trip, here are a few of the most commonly asked questions about cruising:
Is a Cruise Completely All Inclusive?
While the answer will depend on the cruise, the answer is usually “not completely.” Usually, your cruise fare will cover your accommodation, your meals in the main dining venues, your activities and your entertainment – it won’t cover everything on the ship. You will still need to pay extra for soft drinks and alcohol, anything you order from the coffee shops, spa treatments, souvenirs, any shopping that you do on the ship and any gratuities. Also, on many cruise ships you will need to pay for your own on-shore excursions. Make sure that you factor in these extra costs when you are determining the cost of the cruise itself and making your budget. Use cruise comparison sites and look for branded cruises like P&O before making a booking.
Will I Get Seasick?
Many large cruise ships are designed with built in stabilisers that minimize the movement of the ocean, so you will barely be able to tell that you are moving. However, sometimes ships do pass through rough water and if you are prone to seasickness you might feel a little queasy. This is why it is important to bring some motion sickness medication with you on the ship, just in case.
Will I Get Bored?
Absolutely not. A modern cruise ship offers so many activities and attractions that it is almost impossible to be bored. You can watch entertainment, exercise at the gym, swim in the pool, attend a lecture or a workshop, go shopping at the boutiques, pamper yourself at the spa or just relax and read a book.
What Should I Wear?
The dress code for the cruise will depend on the cruise line, but usually most cruises will require formal or at least smart casual clothing at the evening meal. If you walk into the dining room expecting to be served in a swimsuit cover up and sandals, you might get a nasty look or in some cruise lines – might even be denied entry. It is always a good idea to bring a few nice outfits with you on your cruise so that you can be prepared. To find out more about the dress code of your specific cruise, you can visit their website.
Should I Give A Tip?
Yes, it is usually customary to give a tip to the service providers aboard the ship – so make sure that you allow extra money in your budget for gratuities. Keep in mind that different cruises have their own policies and some might charge a “service charge” on your fare which is shared amongst all of the crew members from the hotel and the dining area. If this is the case, you might not need to tip anyone on top of this. However, if someone has gone out of their way to help you, you might want to give them a little tip to show your appreciation.
Can I Smoke on the Ship?
For the safety and comfort of other passengers, most public areas on a cruise ship are non-smoking. However, many cruise ships will recognise that some guest do smoke – so they will have a designated smoking area in one of the outdoor parts of the ship. Also, depending on the ship itself smoking may or may not be allowed on your stateroom balcony. Make sure that you find out the policy regarding this in advance, because if you smoke on your balcony when you are not allowed you could be charged a hefty cleaning fee.
These are just a few of the common questions many first time cruisers ask – so now you will be more well informed for your upcoming cruise holiday.
Ryan Posa loves to travel and has been to several amazing destinations all over the world. He is the General Manager of the company Cruise Republic and he loves to blog about helpful travel tips. Visit Ryan on Twitter.
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