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What to Expect When Traveling on Your First Cruise

What to Expect When Traveling on Your First Cruise


As the cruise industry begins to set sail again, many people are choosing to cruise for their next vacation. If you can’t decide on a destination, cruises are a great way to travel and see the world, without having to worry about getting there by yourself. From the turquoise blue waters of the ocean to all of the amenities on board a modern cruise ship like shopping centers, cinemas, swimming pools and even casinos, there’s something for everyone. 

As a first timer, it can be difficult to know what to expect on a cruise. However, we’ve got you covered with the below top tips to help you prepare for your first cruise. 

What to wear on a cruise:

Cruises are a little different to wandering around a holiday resort in your shorts and flip flops. While casual beachwear is needed for the daytime when you’re lounging at the pool or visiting a beach, you’ll also need to pack a few more formal evening outfits. Men should have plenty of shirts and trousers while women should wear their ‘Sunday best’, whether that be a dress or smart trousers and a nice top. Some cruises also have formal evenings where a suit or ball gown may be required so it’s worth checking with your provider before you go.

It’s also important to bear in mind the places you’ll be stopping to visit on your cruise. Consider the cultural norms of the country and whether you’ll be stopping at any religious places like a temple. In these cases, men should wear trousers and women should have a long dress with sleeves and a scarf to cover hair if needed. 

Choosing a room:

Just like staying in a hotel or resort, cruise ships like the ones you can find at borrowaboat have many options. The cheaper rooms on a cruise are often found in the middle of the ship and have no windows or portholes. They will usually have a TV, air conditioning, Wi-Fi and an en-suite as a minimum. Many interior rooms now also feature virtual balconies which are a screen that give you a real time view of what’s going on outside the ship. 

The more expensive rooms will lie on the outer sides of the ship and feature port holes, windows or even balconies with stunning ocean views and room for a sunlounge so you can enjoy your own private outdoor space. 

On shore excursions: 

Throughout your cruise, you will be stopping at a number of destinations where you’ll get time to go and explore. Many cruise companies will arrange excursions for guests when stopping ashore, in which you may need to purchase tickets in advance. This is often a good option if you’re less confident exploring independently or would like the planning work to be done for you.

However, it’s also possible to venture by yourself. To do this, you will need to plan ahead of time in order to make the most of your time on shore. It’s a good idea to look at what transport will be available when you arrive, whether that be a taxi, a shuttle bus or by walking. It’s also a good idea to check whether you need tickets to attractions in advance to avoid any disappointment. It’s also important to make sure you get back to the ship on time as otherwise you could find yourself stranded in a foreign country without your belongings!

Entertainment at sea:

Depending on where you have chosen to take a cruise, you may spend a few days at a time at sea. Don’t panic though as everything you need is on the ship and today’s cruises have everything from shopping centers to libraries, spas, cinemas and even bowling alleys. Some of the most unique experiences you can find on larger cruise ships include a rollercoaster, water flumes, a planetarium, a 4D cinema, an ice bar, bumper cars and even an outdoor cycling track. 

There will also most likely be a number of activities or classes you can participate in for an extra fee, from salsa dancing to cooking classes. And if you’re travelling with children, there’s usually a number of amenities to keep smaller guests entertained, from arcades to kids pools, climbing walls and kids clubs which are great for if you want a few hours to yourself. 

Boarding your cruise:

Depending on where you have chosen to begin your cruise, you may be catching a flight to another country first, or you may simply be driving to the port. It’s important to make sure you get there in plenty of time so that your boarding passes can be issued, and details taken for check-in. 

A little patience is often needed while waiting to board your cruise as there are many other passengers trying to board the ship at the same time. Waiting lines are often around 40 minutes to board your cruise so it’s worth packing entertainment in your hand luggage if travelling with younger guests.

Overall, cruises are a fantastic way to get around and see multiple destinations on one vacation. Whether you love to go on lots of excursions and adventures or simply lie by the pool for the whole time, a cruise offers the best of both worlds. With a huge range of amenities on board, guests will never get bored and are guaranteed to have the best time. 

About the author

Carmen Edelson is the Founder of Carmen's Luxury Travel. Carmen has been traveling the world for over a decade. Her travels allow her the opportunity to pursue her itch to travel to the best luxury destinations, and experience those first class tastes from around the world.

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