The tickets are bought & paid for, travel date set, time to dust off the luggage, inventory the cruise/summer gear, do your personal prep, and get your family prepped too. Where to start? How soon before should you: get a mani/pedi, spray tan, apply for a passport, etc. That’s what this post is about. Helpful Hints and Tips on Organizing yourself for a Cruise Get Away.
I found out from personal experience that sooner you apply-the better (for your Passport that is).
If you and the fam are UTD with all of your travel documents, now is the time to collect everyone’s documents, and put them all together inside of a file/envelope in a safe, easy to remember place (I placed a reminder on my iphone & my “Don’t Forget” post it note at front door)
Start your arrangements for mail collection/stopping, newspaper, pets, plants, etc.
All jokes aside, I got sick on my way to the Ship last May! I did not take any “Dramamine” (or the generic equivalent) 2-4 hours before leaving that morning. I spent an hour long ride in the back of the limo, in misery, waiting for my “Wal-Dram 2″ to kick in & offer me sweet relief. This time? I am prepared! My Doc gave my an RX for “Transderm” patches. Little, circular, skin toned, motion sickness patches, behind the ear, last 3 days each. I am also bringing a box of my trusty “Wal-Dram 2″ (non drowsy, Walgreens formula) just in case..
Be sure to list all of your RX’s, dosing schedule, doctors name and number, on a separate piece of paper & keep it in your med box. Bring enough RX’s & OTC meds to last every day + 2-3 extra doses-just in case..
Before every meal (usually) there is a crew member with hand sanitizer, spraying your hands as you enter and leave the dining area. I suggest using it. Unless you have your own. It’s very easy to spread germs on a boat filled with 2k+ people from ALL over.
Packing can be fun to some, daunting to others. Depending on how long your cruise is, what you plan to do, is how you should pack. I am not into the “Formal Nights” , but I bring 1 nice outfit-just in case (my phrase for the day it seems) I want to do something where shorts and tee’s don’t cut it. Some dress to the “9′s” every night & it’s always fun to see the different, dressy, flashy, outfits. Again, it’s up to you & what you plan on doing.
I tend to over pack-so I lay out everything, and re evaluate it before it goes in the suitcase. Last time I brought 9 shirts! I wore half of them, I think. I spent a lot of time in my bathing suit & cover up. Except off the boat & meals, when I wore casual dresses, shorts, etc.
I learned to tightly roll everything up in my suitcase. The ship had an iron, so that was a big help. As was immediately unpacking and hanging things up to un-wrinkle them.
There are SO MANY things to do on & off the ship it can be overwhelming (and expensive). The best advice I have is this: look over the “off the boat” activities, their price, how long they last, if the weather is conducive to said activity, then go from there. Some enjoy walking around, exploring, chilling at the beach all day, other do a small sight seeing tour (1 hour), and then go off on their own, some do the 200$ para-sailing, ride horses on the beach, take the party boat around the island package. It’s all up to you. I believe you will have fun no matter what.
Just a few quick reminders:
- pack a basic first aid kit
- sticky note/marker to leave notes for room attendant or travel mate
- “Thank You” notes for the end of the cruise-for your room attendant
- a small surge protector power strip- if you have a lot of plug in items-this is a must
- chargers and items you need: such as tablet, phone, razor, alarm clock, etc.
- snacks, flavored water drops (MIO/DASANI make good ones), bottled water, cans of soda,etc. etc. because you will get hungry at night & 4$ candy bars & 5$ soda cans wont cut it
- plastic bags (dirty laundry, wet items, etc.)
- small Woolite if you will be 7+ days & want to clean your underthings and bathing suits
- Febreeze/Air Freshener/Lysol-rooms are SMALL, most are windowless, you will want to keep things fresh.
- Tie colorful scarf/ribbon on suitcase/bags, put name, room #, phone number, address, on all luggage.
- Have a GREAT TIME & Be Safe & BE ON TIME so you NEVER get left behind!