First-Time Cruise Tips
Best Time to Book a Cruise: Wave Season (January–March) is when you'll score the year's top deals, including free perks (like upgrades & onboard credits) and discounted fares.
Avoid the Queasy Stomach: Sensitive to motion sickness? Choose a cabin on a lower deck, mid-ship.
Arrive Early at the Cruise Port: Plan to arrive at least 2 hours before your ship's departure time. If possible, fly to your embarkation city the night before in case of flight delays.
Get Onboard Spa Specials: If you're a spa seeker, look for specials on days the ship is in port. You can save up to 25%a great way to kick-start a vacation!
Ask for a Wakeup Call: Most cabins don't have alarm clocks, so plan to bring your own, or request a phone wakeup call.
Celebrate Special Occasions: Celebrating a birthday or anniversary onboard? Preorder flowers, cakes, champagne, and more on your cruise line's website.
Check the Daily Onboard Schedule: The ship newsletter is delivered nightly to your cabin. Here, you'll find the next day's entertainment schedule, special events, dinner themes and attire, and other helpful tips.
Pose for Pictures: If you don't like lugging your camera around, don't worry! A professional photographer will be onboard to capture special moments, and the photos will be available for purchase at the end of your cruise.
Keep Essentials with You on Embarkation Day: When you hand over your luggage at the dock, it may take a few hours to be delivered to your cabin. Make sure you keep essentials like prescriptions, swimsuits, and sunscreen with you in a separate tote bag or backpack.
Plan Ahead: Popular shore excursions, spa treatments, and tables at specialty restaurants tend to fill up fast, so check your cruise line’s website to see how far in advance these can be booked.