19 Issues You Ought to Do on Cruise Embarkation Day in 2023


Crucial day of your cruise is about to start: Embarkation day!  Listed below are some issues that you need to do to take advantage of out of your cruise.

The embarkation day expertise on a cruise has modified over the past a number of years. Numerous necessities and coverage modifications have made boarding day barely totally different than what you is perhaps anticipating.

With all the joy and anticipation that leads as much as this very first day of your cruise trip it’s vital to ensure you’re prepared for the all-important embarkation course of.

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If you happen to’ve ever had a nasty embarkation day expertise you understand how vital the knowledge beneath goes to be to new cruisers. That is basically the very starting of your cruise, so ensuring it’s as easy as attainable is vital.

On this article we’re going to cowl the 19 issues good vacationers all the time do on the embarkation day of their cruise.

Whether or not it’s a brief 3-nighter or an extended 14-day cruise, the belongings you do on day one can both improve or diminish your cruise trip. Right here at Cruise Fever we’re all about serving to vacationers make the MOST out of their cruise. So, let’s dig into some tricks to maintain your boarding day painless and stress-free.

The primary a part of this text will cowl issues you need to do earlier than you arrive on the port.

Really, the primary two gadgets on our listing contain issues that you must do even earlier than embarkation day.  However this needed to be talked about as it is going to make your boarding day rather a lot simpler.


Full on-line check-in as early as attainable

You don’t get on the ship early by exhibiting up on the port early.  In truth, should you present up effectively earlier than your check-in time you’ll most likely be advised to return again later.

Get an early check-in time by doing the on-line check-in as quickly as attainable at residence. Some cruise traces (like Royal Caribbean) can help you do that 45 days earlier than your cruise and for others it’s 14 days earlier than, so test along with your cruise line so you understand how quickly you are able to do this.

Extra check-in time slots shall be out there when check-in opens, and people early time slots replenish very quick. The best manner to do that is thru the app, and even should you don’t full all the check-in course of you’ll be able to not less than lock within the check-in time immediately. Usually the earliest instances are round 10:30am or 11:00am.

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Arrive the day earlier than

Right here’s one other vital tip that includes planning earlier than boarding day, but it surely’s certainly one of my most important suggestions when cruising from a port removed from residence.

Reserving a pre-cruise resort close to your cruise port takes all of the stress and trouble out of a day that shall be slightly busy.

I all the time advocate flying into the town you’ll be crusing out of 1 or 2 days forward of time.  This manner even when there may be unhealthy climate and your flight must be delayed you gained’t need to sweat lacking your ship.

Moreover, should you guide a resort that’s close to the cruise port you’ll be able to usually get free or very cheap transportation to the port as a part of your keep.  Even should you drive to the port some lodges will can help you maintain your automobile there throughout your trip.

Simply make this further day or two one other a part of your trip.

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Obtain the cruise line’s app

You may and will do that step early on as effectively.  The app makes the check-in course of quite simple and fast, and it means that you can guide all types of different facilities it’s your decision in your cruise.

It’s best to pre-book every little thing it would be best to do or have in your cruise. Issues like drink packages, Wi-Fi, spa providers, specialty eating, shore excursions and so forth. are all issues you’ll be able to guide by way of the app or web site.  Moreover, you’ll be able to usually lower your expenses by reserving in superior.

One other perk of reserving providers forward of time is having extra time-slots to select from, since sure common eating places or excursions may replenish shortly.

The extra data you fill out within the app the extra time you’ll save within the terminal.  I’ll point out that just a few instances on this article, since in any case that is all about making that embarkation day as simple as attainable

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Fill out the well being questionnaire

This must get completed anyway, so that you would possibly as effectively get it completed early.  You may normally do that by way of the cruise line’s app, however fill out that questionnaire and save time on the terminal.

Most all U.S. cruise ports have completed away with COVID testing protocols and additional necessities, so the questionnaire is just about prefer it was earlier than the shutdowns.  If that you must fill out the paper model of the well being questionnaire along with your cruise line simply fill it out as quickly as you’ll be able to.

embarkation day on symphony of the seas


Have documentation prepared in digital and bodily format

Double-check all paperwork and have each digital and bodily copies of every.  Even should you don’t have a bodily printout of your documentation not less than save the recordsdata in your telephone offline.  You don’t need to need to depend on your sign energy and delay the method.

Cellphone sign or Wi-Fi sign in terminal might not be sturdy, though many more recent terminals have Wi-Fi all through. You need to use the folder in your telephone or different apps to have copies of your paperwork which are accessible off-line even should you don’t have a sign.

I all the time wish to make a duplicate of my passport as effectively, and I’ll maintain it in my stateroom secure.  So if one thing occurs to my precise passport I not less than have a fallback plan to make the following steps slightly simpler.

After which have all these paperwork able to go.  You may maintain them in a particular case or folder, however you don’t need to be shuffling by way of your baggage whenever you’re being known as up.


Reinforce your baggage tag with a plastic holder

The one factor telling the crew the place your suitcase belongs is that baggage tag.  You already know, the one you printed off at residence and is made out of paper.  And regardless of what number of instances you staple it and attempt to wrap it in tape, it could possibly nonetheless simply fall off.

Save your self a visit to visitor providers by selecting up a baggage tag holder so you’ll be able to safe your tag to your bag.  You may choose them up on Amazon fairly cheaply (Affiliate Hyperlink).


Put the necessities in your carry-on

Since you’ll most likely and ought to most likely have a porter take your massive items of baggage for you (extra on this later), ensure you all the time maintain the necessities on-hand.

On the uncommon incidence that your baggage will get misplaced or doesn’t present up in your stateroom immediately you want to have the ability to have entry to any drugs, paperwork, and gadgets you will have within the meantime.  I all the time wish to have an additional change of clothes in my carry-on as effectively within the occasion this occurs.

Having a washing go well with in your carry-on is all the time an excellent concepts as effectively.  The swimming pools, watersides and scorching tubs shall be open whenever you board the ship, and plenty of wish to get pleasure from these areas whereas their staterooms are being ready.  One other perk of leaping within the pool immediately on embarkation day is that they aren’t normally that busy.

port canaveral terminal for royal caribbean

Know what gadgets aren’t allowed

Packing an merchandise that isn’t allowed in your cruise ship will simply bathroom down your embarkation course of.  Know what you need to depart at residence.  Objects like irons and steamers, knives, candles, and even sure forms of decorations aren’t allowed on board.

A few of the commonest gadgets individuals put of their baggage are extension cords (together with surge-protector energy strips) and an excessive amount of alcohol, as cruise traces solely permit for a certain quantity to be introduced on board.

Additionally know that weapons and any unlawful substances in your baggage will simply decelerate your boarding day course of (which may very well be the least of your worries), so know what’s allowed and what isn’t.


Arrive on the check-time time

You may arrive a couple of minutes earlier than your check-in time as you permit for the time it takes to park and seize your baggage, however don’t get there too early.  As talked about earlier, you’ll greater than possible be turned away and advised to return again later should you arrive effectively forward of your check-in time.  This could rely on the port or terminal on how they implement this.


Let the porter take your baggage

You would possibly need to save just a few {dollars} by carrying all of your baggage onto the ship your self, however don’t.   Not solely will it’s a significant ache to stroll by way of the ship with all these baggage, it is going to solely make elevators extra cramped and be a nuisance to different vacationers.  You solely have to tip just a few {dollars} to the porter and the baggage will magically seem in your stateroom.  Once more, it would be best to maintain your important gadgets with you, so maintain that carry-on and let the remaining go.


As soon as on board you need to do the next issues on embarkation day

Observe: When you’re on the ship you might discover how crowded the atrium space may be.  The mid-ship elevators can get fairly crowded as effectively, so I’ll normally stroll ahead or aft to seek out a better approach to navigate the ship.  You can see elevators and stairwells rather more accessible away from the bottleneck of the ship’s entry level.

restaurant on harmony of the seas cruise ship


Make your specialty restaurant reservations

Whereas typically you may make these reservations forward of time by way of the app, more often than not it’s a must to go to a restaurant on board the ship and make them in particular person.  If there’s a explicit restaurant you actually need to strive and you’ve got a sure time in thoughts you need to do that proper after you get on the ship.  Normally you may make reservations at some other eating places from any single eating venue, so go forward and get all of it completed then.

You probably have a eating bundle you need to undoubtedly do that immediately.  Come ready with the listing of eating places at which you need to eat, together with most well-liked days and instances to get pleasure from your specialty eating expertise.

A few of the finest instances replenish quick, and there’s a higher curiosity in specialty eating on a number of the main traces today.

One fast tip to notice is that usually specialty eating eating places aren’t as busy on embarkation day so you’ll be able to strive a type of venues on the primary night time to see the way you prefer it.

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Full the digital e-muster drill

The times of standing in a really crowded line on the lifeboat deck for half-hour whereas an inventory of names is learn aloud are over, for probably the most half.

Within the post-shutdown period some cruise traces are nonetheless fine-tuning how they perform these “digital muster drills”.  But it surely’s simpler now than ever to adjust to the necessities of the “lifeboat drill” utilizing an app in your telephone or your stateroom’s TV.

With many traces like Royal Caribbean and Carnival, friends merely want to observe a presentation on their telephones and discover their approach to their muster station the place a crew member will document their attendance.  This may be completed at totally different instances so long as it’s accomplished in a well timed method earlier than the ship must set sail.

An issue some traces have run into although is that some passengers nonetheless fail to report back to their muster stations.  And based on Worldwide Maritime Legislation passengers wants to finish the security briefing earlier than the ship leaves port.   This has result in the frustration of captain and crew as ships have tight schedules to maintain.

So don’t be “that man” that holds up everybody else’s trip.  Get the muster drill accomplished and revel in that cruise.


Make reservations for exhibits and actions on the app

Even for a number of the free exhibits on cruise ships it’s really useful that you just make a reservation to ensure you have a seat.   This can differ by cruise line, however I like to recommend you get on the app and see what actions or exhibits you need to check out that require a reservation.  A few of these can solely be booked when you’re on the ship’s Wi-Fi and might’t be completed forward of time.


Examine your desk task in the primary eating room

You probably have a hard and fast eating time to your cruise you’ll be able to head over to the primary eating room and see the place your desk is.  This can assist its precise location and in addition if the situation must be modified for one motive or one other.  That is particularly vital should you’re touring in a gaggle and would love a desk to seat everybody, and even should you’re touring as a pair and would love a desk for 2.


Take a look at the child’s space

If you happen to’re touring with out youngsters you’ll be able to skip this one, however should you did occur to carry these treasured little angels with you, you need to undoubtedly try the child’s membership.

These areas are like an open-house on embarkation day so you may get a tour of the services, meet the workers that shall be working with the youngsters, and take a look at the hours of operation.

That is additionally when you’re going to get your youngsters signed-up and, you’ll be able to go over any allergic reactions or limitations with the crew.  It should take a couple of minutes to fill out just a few types, however doing this on day one makes it simpler afterward when it’s time to drop your youngsters off and scurry away to observe a present.

Your youngsters will get a wristband and be all set for drop-off afterward that night time.  I additionally discover that it’s good for the children to get to fulfill the workers and see all of the cool toys and video games so they’re extra acquainted with the realm and can even be enthusiastic about it (hopefully).


Take pleasure in some lunch

Most passengers head straight for the buffet space, in order that would be the most crowded place to eat.  However many ships produce other locations you’ll be able to seize a chew to eat on embarkation day as effectively.

Many don’t notice that even most important eating rooms are sometimes open for lunch and it’s a a lot quieter approach to get some sustenance after an extended day of dealing with logistics.  Wherever you resolve to eat ensure you do take the time to start out having fun with a number of the hard-earned cash you spent on the cruise.


Discover the ship

That is my favourite half.  It’s one thing I do in any case the opposite “enterprise” areas are taken care of.  I would try just a few deck plans forward of time, however principally I simply peruse the ship and get acquainted with my home-away-from-home for the week.

It’s vital to do that on day one so what the cruise ship really gives.  I’ve come throughout many cruisers who discovered their favourite venue on day 4 or 5 of a cruise and need they knew about it sooner.

Certain, you are able to do a few of this forward of time by watching Youtube movies in your cruise ship, however by strolling round and exploring in particular person you’re going to get a greater really feel for the format of the ship and spend much less time backtracking afterward.

Make psychological notes alongside the way in which of locations you need to try later and simply soak all of it in.  There’s nothing like that pleasure of being on a cruise ship for the primary time.


Meet your stateroom attendant

In all of the hustle and bustle it’s vital to not overlook the one who shall be cleansing up after you all week.  Assembly your stateroom attendant isn’t solely a pleasant gesture for the crew, but it surely additionally helps to iron out any points you might need.  If you happen to want the room setup a sure manner, want further pillows, or have some other sorts of wants you’ll be able to allow them to know on day one.

And it’s all the time good to place a face with a reputation for a extra private expertise.  I all the time strive to verify my first encounter with my cabin steward is a constructive one, not one the place I’ve this big drawback and want it mounted immediately.

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Take a look at some embarkation day offers

The cruise ship is all the time abuzz on embarkation day, and it gained’t take lengthy to return throughout some day 1 offers.  That is very true within the spa space.  On most cruise ships there may be some sort of raffle within the spa on boarding day, and also you merely have to enter your title and present up for the drawing.

There are additionally gross sales on retail gadgets all through the ship and plenty of restricted time choices.  So, you would possibly as effectively make the most of them.


Put your telephone in airplane mode

You don’t have to do that one immediately, however someday earlier than the ship leaves port it would be best to enter airplane mode in your gadgets.  I’ve recognized many to rack up big telephone payments as a result of their telephone linked to the cruise ship’s towers and ran up some critical expenses.

And even when your telephone doesn’t hook up with the ship routinely it is going to simply drain the battery by on the lookout for a sign.  Simply go into airplane mode, activate Wi-Fi to hook up with the ship, and revel in your trip.  Keep in mind, you don’t really want to join a Wi-Fi plan to hook up with the ship’s Wi-Fi.  It’s simply a good way to see what’s happening across the ship and keep on high of your account.

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Embarkation day is an thrilling a part of the cruise expertise. It’s vital to take the time to benefit from the course of and benefit from the day. Ensure you are ready with all mandatory paperwork, have a plan for attending to your departure port on time, and include a constructive perspective.

Whereas embarkation day may be irritating, additionally it is an important alternative to get acquainted with fellow passengers and discover the ship earlier than setting off in your journey.

And sure, there are literally 20 gadgets on our listing.  Take into account it a bonus ;).


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