That’s it, you made it - you’re onboard the ship! Now all you need to do is relax… Well after you’ve made a couple of last minute arrangements. You don’t want to have to worry about anything later on, right? So here is a list of suggestions to make your first day onboard productive and relaxing!
1. Unpack your suitcase
If you want to have the best of your time while cruising, you need to feel comfortable. As soon as you enter your stateroom, have a quick look around to ensure all looks the way it should and that everything works properly - lamp bulbs, switches, toilets, etc. Should you notice any technical issues, do not hesitate to report it to your Group Escort or reception desk, should you be on a non-escorted cruise. Once all issues have been fixed, feel free to unpack your suitcase - it will help you feel like you’re home.
2. Go explore the ship
In addition to your stateroom, the ship in its entirety will also be your home for the length of your voyage. Don’t be shy and go explore. Familiarize yourself with the different amenities offered on board and make notes of the different restaurants, bars and other venues you would like to visit during the cruise. Our tip? Start your exploration from the upper deck and make your way down not to unnecessarily tire yourself out. You may also want to consider using the stairs as much you are physically capable. Elevators tend to be jam-packed on embarkation day.
3. Book your spa treatment
All you want to do on your cruise vacation is most likely relax and treat yourself. But one thing to remember is that you are on a ship - you are most likely not the only one who wants to do so. Should you desire to indulge in a massage at some point during your voyage, embarkation day is the best day to make an appointment at the spa centre or at the salon. The centre will have more availability for you to choose from which may means that you could book your treatment for a sea day if so desired.
4. Make a reservation at a specialty restaurant
It would be a shame not to take advantage of the exceptional array of culinary experiences that cruising offers. During your tour of the ship, do not hesitate to go to each of the specialty restaurants (extra fee) and have a peek at their menu. Make a reservation at one of them as early as possible - or better yet… Make a reservation at each of them!
5. Book your shore excursions
If you have not already planned or booked your shore excursions online, it is highly recommended you do so upon embarkation. Depending on the destination and the excursion you are interested in, spots do fill quickly. The last thing you want is not being able to confirm space on an excursion you’ve been eyeing for a while. As always, the sooner, the better!
6. Purchase a beverage package
If you do enjoy a glass of wine at each meal, purchasing a beverage package may be a good option for you as it may enable you to save money. Non-alcoholic drinks packages are also available with most cruise lines. You may want to do a quick calculation before making a decision though as depending on your beverage consumption, it may be more advantageous for you to pay as you drink.
7. Meet with your cabin stewards and maître d’
Should you have any special requests, do not hesitate to meet with your cabin stewards and maître d’ and discuss with them on how to make your stay more enjoyable. The maître d’ will be happy to assist you with any dietary requests or questions/concerns in regards to seating options.
8. Send your last text message/phone call
If you have not opted for a roaming plan, you will most likely not be able to use your phone for outcoming calls or text messages. A few minutes before the ship leaves the dock, you may want to send your last text messages or update your Facebook profile kindly reminding your relatives and friends you will not be reachable for the next few days.
9. Go for a swim or take a nap
Once you are all settled and all your reservations have been made, it is about time you enjoy the amenities of your floating home! Is there a better way to do so than by going for a swim? Because every passenger tends to be in that embarkation excitement and rush, the swimming pool is usually not too busy. Say good-bye to your daily mind-boggling thoughts as you relax by the perfectly warm swimming pool or enjoy a sweet short nap on your private balcony.
10. Enjoy the views from the sun deck
It is almost time for the ship to leave the dock, don’t miss the chance to enjoy the views of the harbour one last time. Head to the upper deck and take it all in before you head towards the horizon.
11. Watch the sunset
With some luck, you will be sailing away under a radiant blue sky that will leave room for an ablaze sunset. Why not stay on the sun deck a little longer and enjoy the colourful first sight of your cruise vacation before heading out to dinner?
Wherever you may be heading next, we wish you Bon Voyage!