You can use any of the below options if you are traveling on a closed loop cruise (one that departs and returns to the same port) that departs from the USA, with exception of Alaska cruises. If you are traveling on a cruise that departs from outside of the USA, you MUST HAVE A PASSPORT BOOK. If you have any questions on proper identification for your cruise, please be sure to contact us immediately, as we cannot be responsible if you miss your cruise due to not having the proper identification.
PASSPORT BOOK: Preferred identification for all cruises.
PASSPORT CARD: Valid for cruising, but not valid for flying out of or into the USA.
Birth Certificate and Photo Id: Please be sure you have a certified copy of your birth certificate. This is not the one your parents received as a souvenir when you were born. Be sure your Government issued photo ID (driver license) is current and will not expire during your trip. Valid for cruising, not for flying out of or back into the USA.
No matter what from of ID you use, please make two copies of it and leave one copy at home with a friend or family member, and carry the other set in a different location than the originals. This way, if something should happen and you lose your originals, it is easier to replace them if you have proof of the original documents.
CHECK IN TIME: Most cruise lines now have an assigned check-in time. This information should be located on your travel documents.
MONEY/CREDIT CARDS: It is highly recommend that you travel with a minimum amount of cash. Typically I recommend no more than $200 in cash in small bills. Anything you buy while on the ship, at off property stores, tours, etc you need to use your credit card (not a DEBIT card). You won’t need cash for anything but little souvenirs and tips. Be sure to alert your credit card company that you will be out of the country so they don’t shut your card off when they see charges outside of the US. We strongly recommend that you do not use a Debit Card while on vacation. Should an unscrupulous person get a hold of your card number they could wipe out your entire bank account while you are on vacation.
MEDICATION: If you are taking any prescription medications, it is imperative that you check with your pharmacy or physician to find out if there is any risk from sun exposure or excessive alcohol consumption. The sun and the alcohol you will enjoy at the resort can cause severe side effects when taking certain medications. It is also advisable to pack an extra 14 days worth of medicine, just in case there are any delays in returning home.
IMMUNE DEFENSE: We recommend taking an over the counter vitamin drink, such as "Immune Defense" twice a day starting about 2 weeks before your vacation and during your vacation, as this may help keep you from catching colds before and during your trip. Multi-vitamins and 50mg of Zinc each day is also a good idea as these can even help ward off flu virus's. We also recommend taking probiotics, before and during your vacation as that can help your body adjust to the rich/different foods you will be enjoying. PLEASE do not take any of the above before consulting with your doctor or your pharmacist. Some over the counter vitamins and supplements can cause issues with prescription medications.
HAND SANITIZER: Hand sanitizer stations are located all over the ship. Please be sure to use them to help decrease the likely hood of a virus outbreak.
SEA SICKNESS: If you are worried you might have some sea sickness, be sure to pack some Dramamine, or purchase "Sea Bands" these are bands worn around your wrist that can help with nausea.
DISEMBARKATION: Typically, the day before you arrive at your home port, you will be given a time and place to report too for directions on disembarkation.
CELL PHONES: Be sure that you keep your phone on "Airplane Mode" while in areas where you can't get WiFi so that you don't accidentally incur a large roaming charge on your phone. Most cruiselines now offer WiFi onboard. Some cruise ships even have access to messageing each other via their phone app, for a small fee. You might even check with your cell phone carrier to see if you can get international calling and texing during your vacation so you can use your phone while in port.
COMMUNICATION: Many cruiselines are now offering a way to text message fellow passengers via their cruise app, this does come with an additional charge. Another option, is to buy some inexpensive walkie talkies.
LIQUOR: Most cruise ships will not allow you to carry on any liquor at your home port or any other port. If you buy bottles while in port, they will tag them and store them for you until you disembark. Some ships will allow you to bring on 2 bottles of wine per person only at your home port. Please check with your agent for confirmation of your ships rules.
DRESS CODE FOR DINNER: Be sure you are aware of the specific dress code requirements for your cruise. Most cruises will have at least one restaurant that will require men to have on a collared shirt, pants and closed toe shoes. Please contact me if you have questions about the dress code at your specific resorts dress code.
IRONING: There are no irons in the stateroom, as they constitute a fire hazard. There is laundry service available for a nominal fee.
ELECTRONICS: TSA has a new rule for some international flights that require all electronics be fully charged and able to be turned on. If you cannot turn your electronic item on you may be forced to leave it behind or possibly miss your flight as TSA can deny you entry through security until you can power up your electronics. So plan ahead, and have all items fully charged!
CHECKED BAG FEES: Most airlines are now charging for checked bags. Check with your travel agent or your airline to find out the checked baggage fees.
TIPPING: Tipping was most likely included in your cruise cost for your dining staff and room attendant. If unsure, please contact us. If you purchased a beverage package, tipping is automatically included in the cost. If you don’t have a beverage package and you purchase drinks while on the ship, a tip is automatically added to the bill. You are welcome to add additional tips when you sign for your beverages, even if you have a drink package. If you are dissatisfied with any of your services you can go to the Pursers office and let them know you wish to lower your tips.
DRINKING ALCOHOLIC BEVERAGES: It is very easy to over drink while enjoy your cruise vacation. Please use caution when drinking alcoholic beverages and be sure to drink plenty of water during the day. Alcohol is absorbed quickly into the blood stream when you are dehydrated and warm. It is especially easy to over drink on the first day of your vacation. Most people get up early for their flights, drink very little water while traveling, eat less than normal and then when they arrive at the resort they are greeted with champagne or an alcoholic beverage and then everyone is excited to get to the pool and start having fun. Please remember that flying dehydrates the body, add on to that the lack of food, exhaustion and excitement can easily make you over drink. Please drink responsibly.
SLIPPERY FLOORS: Decks and stateroom floors can be come slippery from pool water, rain, or cleaning. It is advised that you wear rubber soled shoes when walking around the ship.
DECK RAILS: please do not sit on a deck rail, or stand on a chair near the deck rails. Do not put a child on the rails, no matter how well you think you are holding them.
SHORE EXCURSIONS: We recommend purchasing shore excursions only from approved companies, such as the cruiseline, Shore Trips (https://www.shoretrips.com?linkid=ST1694950) or companies that were suggested by our agents. Remember, unless you book with a trusted source, if you miss the cruise you are responsible for paying your own way to get to the next port. Another option is staying at a resort for the day: http://ResortforaDay.com?Click=89762
SAND: If you like to bring home sand from your vacation, you can if you only bring home a small amount. Put about ¼ - ½ cup in a small ziplock bag and put it in your checked bag. Do not carry it on the plane with you. Please be aware that your bag will likely be inspected by TSA as they will want to swab the sand to be sure it is safe to bring into the US. There is a chance they will confiscate it.
SEA SHELLS – it is illegal and unwise to bring home any type of seashells from destinations outside of the US. Even those that are being sold by vendors on the beach and in markets are illegal. Be safe, and wise…take a photo of the pretty shell, and leave it for the crabs and conchs to re-use. If they are discovered by customs they will be confiscated as seashells often contain tiny bugs that are not native to our country and could end up causing disease outbreaks, etc.
CAMOUFLAGE: wearing of camouflage clothing outside of the United States is not advisable, and in some countries illegal, so please do not wear them when you travel nor should you pack any to take with you.
If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to email us or call us!