5 Things to Consider Before Boarding Your Cruise

You arrive at the cruise terminal, required documents in hand. You’ve already sweat the small stuff and are about to embark on a magnificent journey to both known and unknown destinations. Here are five things you should consider before boarding your cruise.

1. Find Out What’s Covered and What’s Not

First rule of thumb is assume nothing. Unless you take the time to find out first, figure that even a glass of water might cost you something out of pocket. Package deals may include many prepaid benefits. Just know before you go.

RELATED: Tips for Making Your Cruising Day a Breeze

2. Plan Your Itinerary for Activities

It’s best not to get swept away by all the sparkling carnival lights and attractions. That wonderful at first glance port excursion might be located in a risky neighborhood where as a cruise customer you may be a target. Don’t leave common sense and security behind just because you’re on vacation. Like to walk? Great. Find out first which activities provide for safer promenades, whether on the beach or in town. Like the city lights? Again, explore the alternatives before setting out. Whatever your tastes, there are sure to be great offerings on your selected cruise journey.

3. Know Who to Contact in Case of Emergency

In general, ship to shore communication is available at $9.50 per minute from USA, so it is best to carry your cell phone. It might be advisable to take out travel or trip insurance because life doesn’t change just because you’re on a ship. You could sprain your ankle or even have a heart attack. Fortunately most cruise ships have infirmaries onboard with credentialed, certified medical doctors available even in serious emergencies. Commit a crime or are the subject of a crime at sea? Then watch out because maritime law is not clearcut and jurisdictions might overlap. Having a baby onboard? Well, first of all, maybe you shouldn’t be traveling in the first place, but in case you do wind up giving birth on the high seas, find out first which nationality your offspring will carry.

4. Don’t Plan to Climb Mount Everest

Remember your original intent when booking your cruise was to have fun, right? Then don’t overbook yourself with non-stop activities. You’re there to relax and unwind, not climb Mount Everest. Leave that for your job. There will be plenty of opportunity to check things off your to-do list once you return to shore. Take the time to appreciate your temporary oasis and metaphorically stop and smell the roses.

5. Don’t Forget to Factor in Time for Relaxation

Please do take advantage of everything your cruise has to offer in terms of activities and trips to exotic ports of call. But at the same time, try to factor in time to simply do nothing, to even contemplate your navel if you so choose. Maximize the effect of being physically separated from land for a predetermined period of time. Maybe just stand on deck and appreciate the view. Remember to enjoy every moment before boarding your cruise.