Planning your luxury cruise ahead of time is essential if you are going to be able to fully enjoy the time.
Remember that planning your cruise doesn’t mean that you have no room for mistakes or for genius moments. It just means that you are not going to have to worry about all those things you wanted to be sure that you did in order to make your cruise enjoyable.
The sorts of things you are going to want to plan are these:
Where the cruise is going to be.
What time of year for the cruise.
Whether you are going to go to the cruise the night before or return the day after.
Obtaining the necessary documents.
Boarding pass for the ship
Where to carry those documents.
Somewhere on your person.
Look at possible shore cruise excursions on the cruise web site.
Determine if they are going and doing what you want to do.
Determine whether they fit in your budget.
Purchase the excursion. (Then you don’t have to remember on the cruise to do it.) They will give you plenty of warning to remind you that the excursion is coming up.
Those are for the trip itself, but we also write up a list that we use on every trip, whether it is cruise related or not. We have a list of things that we keep packed in very small pieces of luggage all the time. These automatically get loaded into our luggage when we are going anywhere over night.
Travel toothbrushes and toothpaste.
Travel hair products.
Travel sundry items such as fingernail clippers, q-tips, tweezers and so on.
We call it our travel bag and we expect all the things to be in there that we would normally have in our drawers in our house. This way, we don’t have to remember to pack from our drawers into our luggage the morning we are going to leave. Normally, you need those things and can’t pack them ahead of time.
Then we have a list of items to pack. Some of the items in the list are:
Extra batteries or rechargeable batteries (with charger).
The camera you are comfortable carrying around in a foreign place. It may not be a foreign country, but it could be foreign to you.
Something to wear for the formal dinner.
You can find out how many formal dinners are on the cruise you have chosen from the cruise line web page.
You don’t have to dress differently for each one, but some people like to, so you should be prepared if that’s the case. There are pictures taken by the cruise line you can purchase during the cruise. Those pictures are taken prior to the dinner, so you may consider that. Also, the formals don’t require a tux or a formal dress. But, if you want to dress like that, you will need to plan to purchase/rent those things prior to leaving so you can pack them.
Comfortable walking shoes.
Pain relievers (so you don’t have to purchase them on the ship).
Sunscreen (depends on where you are going of course).
Extra cash to carry on shore in case you want to purchase something where a card isn’t accepted. Cards are accepted nearly everywhere you will be since it is set up for tourism.
Light jacket or sweater for those evening walks on the deck.
LaFonda and I have loved our cruises and hope you can enjoy yours as well. One of the wonderful things about cruises is that they are always special. So, if you are going to cruise at Christmas time, or New Years, Valentine’s day, or just because you like to cruise, it will be exceptional. I don’t even know if I would look for a theme cruise for occasions like those. I would just book a cruise and go for those reasons.