How to Prepare for a Cruise Vacation
You finally booked that cruise vacation you’ve been dreaming about for so long. Congratulations! Now you may be wondering what you should pack for your trip and what you need to do to get ready. No worries, we’ve got you covered! Here, eight tips to ensure that it’s all smooth sailing once you leave the dock.
1. Make Sure Your Travel Documents Are in Order
Celebrity strongly recommends that all passengers travel with valid passports. Having said that, passports aren’t required for U.S. passengers who board a ship within the United States and travel within the Western Hemisphere, they will be required to have either a U.S. passport card, enhanced driver’s license, or a Trusted Traveler Program card such as Sentri, Fast, or Nexus. However, passports are required for U.S. passengers who travel to any other regions. All non-U.S. passengers must carry a valid passport.
Be sure to review the visa requirements for each country you’ll visit on your cruise. You can find visa information for Americans traveling abroad and for Canadians. Keep in mind, it’s the passenger’s responsibility to make sure they’ve satisfied all visa requirements before boarding the vessel.
2. But What Will I Wear?
One of the really great things about a cruise is that your transportation and accommodation are combined, which means once your luggage gets to your stateroom, you can unpack everything and settle in. And thanks to shipboard laundry service, there’s no need to overpack.<.p>
Before you depart, review your itinerary and your ship’s dress codes. If you’re taking advantage of evening shipboard dining options, you may need to pack something a little dressier. Most nights on Celebrity Cruises the dress code is Smart Casual and Above, which means khakis or jeans and a sport shirt for men, and casual dresses or pants (including jeans) or skirts and blouses for women. Celebrity has given Formal Night a modern luxury reboot with Evening Chic night, allowing you to shine your way. Women can choose from a cocktail dress or a skirt, pants, or designer jeans with an elegant top, while men may wear pants or designer jeans with a dress shirt, button-down shirt or a sweater; a sport coat or a blazer is optional. Or if you prefer dressier attire, that’s okay too, but it’s not a requirement. So feel free to leave those tuxes and evening gowns at home, or not! And don’t worry about trying to remember which night is which. The daily program, delivered to your stateroom and available at the Guest Relations Desk, will be your guide to the correct attire each evening.
Regardless of your destination, be sure to pack a swimsuit, so you can take advantage of the shipboard swimming and soaking opportunities in the pools and Jacuzzis onboard. Just bear in mind that T-shirts, swimsuits, and other poolwear are not allowed in the main or specialty restaurants at any time, and shorts and flip-flops aren’t permitted in the evening. Jeans are okay any night as long as they don’t have any rips or tears.
If you’re into fitness, bring your workout clothes and get shipshape while you enjoy the ocean panorama from the fitness center’s floor-to-ceiling windows. There’s a fully equipped gym facility onboard, or if you prefer, you can sign up for individual classes such as yoga or Spinning.
3. Pick Up a Travel Guide
There’s nothing like the anticipation of a vacation. Why not prolong the excitement with a little pre-cruise research about your destinations? DK Eyewitness Travel Guides offer an excellent in-depth look at different locales and Frommer’s is another trusted resource. Lonely Planet guidebooks provide a little more off-the-beaten-path travel tips.
While you’re at it, peruse Celebrities’ shore excursions for your cruise and consider adding a few to your itinerary. From private premium experiences to fitness- or family-focused adventures, our shore excursions offer great opportunities to delve deeper into the culture in each port of call.
4. Onboard Activities: There’s Something for Everyone
Check out the outstanding shipboard activities and you’ll quickly see that there’s no shortage of entertainment. Brush up on your basketball, ping-pong and golf-putting skills, join a friendly game of croquet or bocce at the Lawn Club, or play pool volleyball with ship officers. Art lovers will enjoy the onboard exhibitions and art auctions. In the evenings, take in a show or listen to live music while enjoying specialty cocktails. Or stop by the casino for some high stakes on the high seas.
5. Stock Up on Any Medication
Be sure to pack enough of your prescription and over-the-counter medications to last your entire trip. There is a medical center on every ship, but there’s no guarantee that the medication you require will be available. Better safe than sorry!
6. Pack Any Special Toiletries
Your stateroom will be stocked with basics like soap, shampoo, and conditioner, but if you have particular brands or products that you prefer, plan to bring them along. And if you’re sailing to a warm destination, don’t forget to pack sunscreen. SPF lip balm is also handy for sunny vacations!
7. Gather Those Electronic Devices and Chargers
Whether it’s your phone, a tablet, your camera, or an eReader (or all of the above!), you’re going to need to keep your devices charged, so make sure to pack your chargers. Also, depending on your destinations (and power needs), you may want to bring along an adapter that will allow you to charge up when you go ashore in ports with different plug styles or electrical output current or voltage than what you have at home.
While you’re packing, throw in a day pack or small bag for toting items like your camera and a water bottle and sunscreen around the ship or when you go ashore. Don’t forget to fill up your eReader with a few good books, or pick up some paperbacks.
8. What Not to Bring
It goes without saying that weapons, illegal drugs, and anything else that could interfere with the safe operation of the ship or other passengers’ safety are prohibited. And while Celebrity allows two bottles of wine per stateroom (a corkage fee will be assessed if you drink it in one of the restaurants), bringing any other alcohol onboard is prohibited.
Now, Go Enjoy Your Cruise!
That’s it! You’re all set to have an amazing time on your cruise vacation.