Before You Finally Board a Cruise Ship

If you haven’t cruised before, then you are about to enter a wonder world of cruising across the ocean while you chill out to an extent you never imagined possible. One of the greatest ‘narcotics’ is being set free from shore communications (although you can check your emails for a stiff fee if you insist). You are also isolated from the opportunity to shop for bargains. If you are a shopaholic remember to ‘get your fix’ before you board.

Board a Cruise Ship: Preparing to go on Board
Preparing to Board a Cruise Ship (Speacock)

Board a Cruise Ship:

Arrive a Few Hours before Departure

Once your ship casts off your umbilical cord to land is broken, and there is literally no way of going back if you forgot your suitcase in the taxi. Board a cruise ship early, inspect your cabin, take a look around for what you might have overlooked, and visit the shop (for what it’s worth) to see what this might cost. When you recover from the shock, check out from the boat and visit the local onshore shopping centre to buy the things you cannot do without.

Board a Cruise Ship: Cruise Ship Passengers
Cruise Ship Passengers (Mikely Naugh)

More Fun with Less Clothing

Unless you are cruising somewhere really cold – or like dressing posh for dinner with the captain – chances are you are going to dress as if you were in your own back garden or on the beach. With the exception of the evening meal – when you should probably dress semi-formal – the only things you are going to wear on board are a hat, a top, a pair of shorts, comfortable footwear and sun factor. Choose clothes that dry easily as you may need to recycle them through the ship’s laundromat. If you are going on shore expeditions ask the purser’s office for advice.

Spare a Moment for Your Health

There’s no way the cruise ship is going to have a drugstore or a chemist shop. What it will have on board is a five-star emergency facility where they charge handsomely for every aspirin and plaster. Before you go on board a cruise ship, if you are on prescription drugs take more than you are going to need on the voyage in case you are delayed getting back. If you are prone to tummy problems, headaches, back pain and so on carry your normal medication on board with you, because your body is not about to change.

Board a Cruise Ship: Deck Steward handing out drinks
Deck Steward (Sunday Times)

Amuse Your Busy Mind

When I use words like ‘chill out’ and ‘relax’, I am talking about your body and your restless spirit. I find my brain is still hunting for things to keep it busy and I go dilly if I don’t feed the monster. I take a book of sudoko puzzles with me, and a laptop so I can finally get round to winning the Pulitzer Prize for best novel. Fat chance of that! Next time I am thinking of taking my Kindle because in my experience most ship’s libraries are there for show.

Don’t be Late Getting Back

Cruise ships follow tight schedules and do not wait around for late arrivals. Get back on board at least an hour before sailing, and forget about what you couldn’t buy in time. Change into comfortable clothes and get back out on deck to bid the land farewell on your cruise holiday. Your journey of a lifetime just began. You are on board and you literally have to go with the flow.

Board a Cruise Ship: Leaving Miami
Leaving Miami (Farm 4 Flickr)

About Richard Farrell

Richard FarrellI tripped over a shrinking bank balance and fell into the writing gig unintentionally. This was after I escaped the corporate world and searched in vain for ways to become rich on the internet by doing nothing. Despite the fact that writing is no recipe for wealth, I rather enjoy it. I will deny I am obsessed with it when I have the time.My base is Umtentweni in South Africa on the Kwazulu-Natal South Coast (30.7167° S, 30.4667° E). I work from home where I ponder on the future of the planet, and what lies beyond in the great hereafter. Sometimes I step out of my computer into the silent riverine forests, and empty golden beaches for which the area is renowned.

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