~I will update this section often so always check back to see more tips and tricks, if I have anything has changed or not correct pertaining to anything I have posted here, please email me and I will make changes~Michelle
DISNEY CRUISE LINE does not allow Power strips or extension cords on board. I had to leave mine at Port until I returned. To my surprise our stateroom on board the Disney Wonder had multiple outlets so we did not need them anyway.
Did you know that you can take a small personal size fan on most cruise ships to use in your stateroom? When I say small I mean personal small, one you can fit in your suitcase. Every cruise I have taken allowed me to have mine. My personal fan is a Mainstays brand, approximate size is 10″ x 10″ and is 120V. I purchased it at Walmart for $10. I will say that it might be an inconvenience if the luggage gets flagged due to having it in your suitcase, I have had that happen, but they just checked the volts for fire reasons and returned it back to me for use. *If you do not want to be inconvenienced of your luggage possibly being flagged and checked then scratch the idea of bringing one with you.https://www.walmart.com/ip/Mainstays-9-Personal-3-Speed-Fan-Model-MBF-918-Black/48947418?wmlspartner=wmtlabs&adid=22222222222037391316&wmlspartner=wmtlabs&wl0=e&wl1=o&wl2=c&wl3=10357552527&wl4=pla-1103085412074&wl12=48947418_0&wl14=walmart%20mainstays%20personal%20fan&veh=sem&msclkid=0bb242a26c39182d843b1e259671dfa2
I would certainly suggest bringing along some Clorox wipes. They come available in travel sizes. When I arrive in my stateroom I am always sure to wipe down everything including door knobs, remote and phone. Even though your room steward may tidy up the room, a lot of germs get missed. It is a nice way to stay well while on vacation. I also bring them to the Lido to wipe my table.
Expandable laundry baskets are a great item to bring along. You can keep dirty clothes in them and store it in the closet. You can purchase them for a dollar at the Dollar Tree store or of coarse Walmart or Target for a little higher cost. If you do not want to bring an expandable folding laundry basket then pack a couple of garbage bags. I also bring some one gallon zip lock bags to separate wet clothes if need be.
Did you know that most cruise ship cabin’s come with a retractable clothes line? Yep, they sure do! Since we know that it is unsafe and prohibited to leave clothing on our balconies, most cruise ship cabin’s have these clothes lines available in the shower. It is handy to pull it open and hang up wet swim suits or perhaps wet towels.
Did you know that you can actually cruise without a passport? Yes, you may, cruise lines do permit you to cruise with just a birth certificate, however, if for some reason you needed to fly back home to the United States, you would not be able to fly without a passport. So, it is always in the best interest to apply, receive and cruise with a passport over a birth certificate. You never know if and when an emergency could happen.
Alcoholic Drink Packages purchased with CARNIVAL CRUISE LINE requires every person who is 21 years and older in the same state room to purchase same package even if that person does not drink alcohol. The cruise line will revoke packages if you are caught sharing. There is a limit of 15 drinks per package per day. Visit the website for more information at: http://www.carnival.com Go to the Plan tab then click on FAQ’s. The Cheers Program is listed. This policy also includes Royal Caribbean Cruises as well! Be sure to purchase your packages early online in your reservation section, it is cheaper, closer to the cruise day it can get 15-30% more!
CARNIVAL CRUISE LINE has tightened up on the smoking policy. For the safety of passengers and crew you are ONLY allowed to smoke in smoking designated areas. It used to be that you would just get fined but now If you are caught smoking in areas that are not allowed, you will not only be charged a hefty fine but you risk being dropped off at the next port to figure your way home! Yikes! I would think it would not be worth risking, so if you are a smoker, be sure to follow the rules and smoke in designated areas only! Remember that your stateroom balcony is NOT a designated area!
Did you know that if you pre-book your excursions, internet, drink packages, specialty dining etc online prior to sailing you will save money? It also saves you from wasting vacation time having to stand in line and purchasing what you want. Booking before your cruise online allows your vacation to start the moment you step on board. So if you are able, go to your cruise planner online and pre book all your cruise needs. You will be glad you did!
A tip for DISNEY CRUISELINE, the Wifi is only available for devices on those individuals over the age of 18. You will have to share with your younger passengers. To use the wifi you will have to sign up then sign in and out when you are finished. If you do not sign out each time you use it, you will use up your access and will have to purchase another package. So be sure to log out after each use and remind your younger passenger to sign out, to avoid wasting your internet. If you sign up the first day of your cruise you get 50mb free. The largest package was $89.00. *Keep in mind that Disney Cruise Line does offer wave phones in your stateroom which are free of charge, just do not loose one, a hefty bill will be charged for the cost of the phone if it is lost. * Speaking of wave phones, did you know that if you put your laundry in the launderette washer or dryer the wave phone will alert you when it is ready? Yep, sure will! :o)
Do NOT over pack for a cruise! A cruise ship has rooms that are very limited of space depending on your stateroom category. You do not want to over pack! You can store your empty suitcases under the beds of most staterooms to save closet space. Most cruise ships have launderettes on board so you can always wash if need be. Certainly get a packing list and only take what you need to avoid over packing. If you have a pack list you will more than likely not need to buy anything on board that you forget at home. Items are going to be a lot more expensive on board then getting them at home!
So you go on a cruise and you have one suitcase and it is packed to the limit. If you plan to shop or buy souvenirs while on your trip you will need a way to carry them home. You may want to take an extra folded cloth style bag ( I take Vera Bradley duffle) and fold it in to your suitcase with your clothes or put it in a pocket. That bag will come in handy if you need something to hold all your purchases in.
Prebook your specialty dining prior to your sailing. No matter the cruise line, due to high demand and limited space it is always best to pre book your specialty dining to be sure you get a reservation. You will also get a cheaper rate usually by reserving online prior to sailing. If your restaurant is already sold out, visit the restaurant once you get on board and check with the hostess, perhaps there was a cancellation.
Tip for Disney Cruise Line Usually the last night of the sailing, could be a different night so inquire of what evening and time, but the Captain will have a Captain’s signing in the gift shop. Usually it is between 7-8pm and will fit in with your dining time. He will sign what ever you would like him to sign if anything and will allow for a picture with him.
Bring a lanyard from home so you do not have to buy one, unless you want to buy one. A lanyard is a nice way to hold your stateroom key and never loose it. It is easy access. If you have one with a pocket, you can put your ID and cash inside too. It makes it easier then carrying around your sail and sign card in your pocket and risk loosing it. Remember on a cruise your sail and sign card is your $$, so keep it safe in a lanyard. *** Disney Cruise Line only gives you a lanyard when you check in when Embarking. ***
Always download your Cruise Line App before sailing. Once you embark you can use that App on board to find information on Dining times and menu’s, Shopping, Activities and times, theater shows, and some lines will have access to your on board account so you can keep track of daily charges. Some Apps will allow you to text to other members of your party while on board. I do not believe the chat will work on port but they do on ship.
Perfect Cruise App ever for while you are at home or you are cruising is Ship Mate by Cruiseline! Check it out and if you do not have it, get it! I love it. It will store your upcoming cruises and will keep a timer of your sail date along with reviews, information and photos of the ship and ports. You will also have the option to place a review on your trip to let everyone know what you thought! You will also be able to chat with other cruisers that will be on your sailing too!
Royal Caribbean Harmony of the Seas is a huge ship! Make sure to book your shows in advance! Once you have your shows scheduled, be sure to still arrive early with your entire party! They will only have a small amount of time that they allow those scheduled to get in before they open the doors to everyone. People frown on the saving seat deal even though several were doing it. So arrive early with everyone in your party to be sure of a guaranteed seat!
Royal Caribbean Harmony of the Seas I suggest that if you have a large party or multiple state rooms, go to the Maitre D as soon as you board and be sure your party is dining together. Our party of 5 showed up to dining to realize that our party was broken up when they tried to seat us. I had asked the RC agent who booked my second stateroom for my son to link the reservation and put our dining together, we were assured we would eat together, got to dining and that was not the case! I quickly realized that we could have saved time by verifying with the Maitre D prior to dinner. I also noticed we were not the only ones this happened to.
Royal Caribbean Mariner of the Seas There is a full service Starbucks, behind the Starbucks is a nice small quiet sitting area with tables and port holes to look through. You will not know it is there, so be sure to look for it. (Thanks Cruising with Christine for the recommendation, now I can share the secret!)
Royal Caribbean Mariner of the Seas The Ice show “Under the Big Top” was honestly amazing! However, get there at least 15 min early to get a seat, it filled up very quickly! There are no reservations you just have to get there early!
Royal Caribbean Mariner of the Seas On boarding day, the Windjammer buffet can be pretty crowded, if there are no seats available like there were none for us, you can go to Jamies Italian Kitchen which sits in the Windjammer area. There were several tables open and Jamie’s is not open on opening day so it was perfect!
Royal Caribbean Mariner of the Seas This was my first time doing the “Ship Tour” with Royal Caribbean, I am assuming this is fleet wide however I do not know so I will speak for this ship since I experienced it, the tour was really good, showed us a bunch of different areas including the bridge, but it lacked the meeting of the captain which is one reason why I do the tours. We were not introduced to any superior officers or captain like we were on Carnival. We also did not get a photo. Just to let you know if you want a meet and greet with the Captain, it wasn’t in the Ship Tour BUT I DO recommend the ship tour, it shows a lot of areas!!!