Guide to Cruising Basics in A-Z order

 

Travelling by cruise is different from camping on hills or checking into a villa, but it has the benefit of getting you into vacation mode much more quickly. I bet most of us want to spend at least one of their holidays on a cruise. But first-time cruisers may not know some basics of cruising and might want some tips on what to expect on day one, i.e. when you arrive at the terminal, board the ship and settle in. This guide to cruising basics in A-Z order will be a useful tool for new (and existing) cruise-goers. Here you go!

 

  • A- ALL ON BOARD TIMES

Whichever ship you cruise on, there will be an ‘all on board time’ to adhere to when going ashore. This is the time you have to be ‘back on the ship’, before it departs for its next port of call. Make sure you check your specified arrival time in your Guest Vacation Documents so you can arrive at the time best for an easy check-in. Arrive no later than 90 minutes before the ship sails.

 

  • B- BALCONIES AND BUFFETS

Often the most popular type of cabins has balconies. These are just cherry on the cake! They offer outdoor space and privacy, perfect for sailing out of port or simply relaxing with a good book and a glass of wine to go by. Also there is always a buffet breakfast option with various choices. You can pile it high but be warned it can be busy at peak times.

 

  • C- CABIN

Cabin is your nest on the cruise. Inside Cabin– these are the most reasonably priced accommodation on board and are situated in the interior of the ship. They come with no windows and you can enjoy great night’s sleep with no daylight! Outside Cabin– this is similar to the inside but with a window or porthole. You can have a view of the ocean.

 

  • D- DINING AND DRINKS

The food choices on board are endless. There’ll probably be a choice of set dining around 6 pm or 8 pm and you can request a table just for your party or opt to share with fellow cruisers. Drinks can be expensive at sea especially when they have a captive audience. Consider an all-inclusive package or a wine package that offers multiple discounted bottles that are available to you in the restaurants. Have a look on cruise packages like of Champions Yacht Club.

 

  • E- EMERGENCY DRILLS

All passengers have to attend emergency drills in a muster station upon arrival. These are an important part of cruising although some might differ from cruise to cruise. Drills normally include a briefing from the Captain, followed by a life jacket demonstration by crew. This is to make sure passengers know what to do, when there is an emergency on board.

 

  • F- FOOD

Food is central to the cruise experience. You’ll more likely get hungry on cruise then at a land-based holiday. Different ships offer different dining options but you should have inclusive-dining included in your package. Most ships will also have restaurants with additional cover charges and they are often named after celebrity chef restaurants with fine dining options.

 

  • G- GRATUITIES

Expect to pay gratuities or ‘tips’ on most cruise lines. These are covered only on genuinely all-inclusive ships. On most ships, gratuities are shared between all the service staff. This is often a daily rate, which is split between the crew who look after you (i.e. cabin steward, waiters). Some cruise lines allow you to opt out and tip with cash and some other cruise lines either add them to your bill or suggest appropriate amounts.

 

  • H- HOLIDAY

Going on a cruise is all about relaxing and switching off from the monotonous work life. So don’t panic about being a newbie. As soon as you board your every whim will be taken care of. From relaxing in a bar to browsing the shops, from culinary services to an exotic spa, there’s plenty to keep you entertained, even on a rainy day!

 

  • I- INTERNET

Every cruise offers internet access of some sort, whether it’s Wi-Fi or through an internet café on-board. Connections are still patchier and slower afloat than ashore, but improving. Check the price as it can cost a lot on a per-minute tariff.  Many ships offer free Wi-Fi on Viking river cruises in Europe, Russia and Ukraine.

 

  • J- JOINING

This is the process of embarking the ship on the first day. You will be sent the embarkation details beforehand. Before boarding, you’ll check-in at the terminal building beforehand, a bit like at an airport. Disembarkation refers to getting off of the ship at the end of the cruise.

 

  • K- KEEP FIT AND ENTERTAINMENT

Try and keep fit on a cruise ship. They usually have a well-equipped gym and promenade deck where you can walk around. Some river ships also carry bicycles. Also you’ll never be short of entertainment on a cruise. From theater shows and movies, to quizzes, sail-away parties and nightclubs, there’s plenty to keep you busy. Most ships have a daily newspaper where you will find a list of the entertainment for that day.

 

  • L- LAUNDRY

Many of the larger ships have laundry service available which costs a modest fee. You fill a bag and leave with your room attendant and your clothes will be returned the following day, washed and ironed. Most ships have free timing to use launderettes on passenger decks. Plan your washing carefully as the launderettes can get very busy.

 

  • M-MEDICAL CENTER

Whether you are a first time cruiser or a cruise veteran, you can never predict the weather. Make sure you remember seasickness tablets (or bands) before boarding. All ships have modern, fully equipped medical centers with nurses and doctors on board. Keep up travel insurance as medical care is not included in the cost of a cruise and medical bills can soon rack up.

 

  • N- NOISE

Cruise ships can be noisy day and night. Whether it’s the ship’s stabilizers, your fellow passengers talking or announcements over the PA system, noise is unavoidable unless you rent a cruise ship of your own! But most ships will have somewhere fairly quiet place where you can escape to. A ship is normally quietest when it is in port and most passengers have gone ashore.

 

  • O- ON-BOARD ACCOUNT

When you purchase items on board, you do this using your cruise card, not cash. Your on-board account is linked to your credit/debit card and you get a final statement at the end of the cruise. Some people will also have On Board Credit (OBC) which is free spending money that is allocated to your cruise account as an incentive, and will be taken off in your final bill before you disembark.

 

  • P- PORTS OF CALL

Ports of Call are the stops that your ship makes along the route. You can research all the ports online ahead of your cruise which will help you decide whether to take an organized excursion or DIY. These ports can be explored independently or passengers can take a shore excursion organized by the ship. Cruise lines often provide passengers with detailed information about the destinations. Many cruise lines will also organize shuttle buses for passengers.

 

  • Q- QUEUING

Expect queues both on the ship and ashore. Like if everyone decides that 8 pm is a good time to dine then there could be a lengthy wait for a table at dinner. Common things you queue for include: getting on and off the ship, having photographs taken, food, shuttle buses and shows.

 

  • R- RIVER CRUISES

River Cruises feature much smaller ships than ocean cruises and the itineraries take in the sights, sounds and destinations of many of the greatest rivers. Some of the ships look stunning and many are luxuriously appointed. These also have a spa for those who want to relax and indulge.

 

  • S- SAIL-AWAY PARTIES

Sail-away parties are a highlight of any cruise and usually happen 3 or 4 times during a 14 night break. The entertainment team takes to the top deck and whips the crowd into frenzy. The waiters ensure the drinks are flowing and the ship heads out of port. Enjoy this fun!

 

  • T- TENDER BOAT

During your cruise you may visit some smaller ports that don’t have the facilities for a large ship to dock. If this happens you will visit the port by tender, a smaller boat used to shuttle passengers between the ship and the port. Typical tender journeys could take between five to twenty minutes from ship to shore. Most ships will have their own way of organizing passengers on to tender boats, which can include a ticketing system.

 

  • U- UNIFORM

Expect to see officers and crew walking around in uniform. There are various reasons for wearing uniform, including differentiating staff from passengers. Officers are distinguished by:

  1. Deck officers– Black infill between each gold stripe
  2. Engineering officers– Purple infill between each gold stripe
  3. Electro-technical officers– Green infill between each gold stripe
  4. Medical officers– Red infill between each gold stripe
  5. Hotel officers– White infill between each gold stripe

 

  • V- VISAS AND VACCINATIONS

Some ports will require visas and vaccinations and may have strict laws on immigration. Be sure to check for any visa or vaccinations you need before travelling. You can usually find details of this in your online check in information. Always plan ahead and read your paperwork before you board.

 

  • W- WRISTBAND

 

If you are travelling with small children you’ll be given a wristband on boarding. This is compulsory and shows the cruise’s muster station. If your child is in kids club and there’s an emergency that requires you to go to the muster point, the staff will cater to and you should meet them there.

 

  • X- X-RAY MACHINES (SECURITY)

Getting back on a ship requires you to go through scanners (like at an airport) for security reasons. These will either be in a terminal building or on the ship. Some countries (e.g. Australia) do not allow you to take certain items on and off the ship. If this is the case, the company will normally inform you in advance.

 

  • Y- YOUTH CENTER

For parents travelling with children, family-friendly ships normally have a youth center where you can drop your children off for the day. Different ships have differing age restrictions, but most youth centers have all the facilities kids need to be entertained and are fully staffed.

 

  • Z- ZIP-LINE

One of the more unique features on-board is a cruise ship’s zip-line. The zip-line is an indicator of how cruise lines are trying to come up with unique attractions to move the whole cruising industry forward.

 

 

 

What’s so cool about Goa for a good summer break!!

Though you can visit Goa anytime of the year, but during scorching summers, all you experience is long, warm bright sunny evenings –as Goa is positioned along the tropical zone. Empty beaches, less crowded shacks, plenty of shopping options, less crowd- this hotspot offers a handful of choices for visitors to indulge within solitude!

 

But did you know that it’s also a tempting advantage to get rid of throngs of tourists and relish under the sun and the sand, all by you? Well, it’s a different experience altogether. Out of the 55 delightful beaches that this rave party capital boasts about, certain beaches have a lot to offer especially during the summers. With an average of 9-10 hours of sunlight, Goa beaches will offer you ample scopes and many interesting things to explore. Below are the reasons why would you love spending your vacation in Goa especially during the summers.

 

  1. Hop along sunny sandy beaches

Nothing beats Goa when it comes to swaying palm-fringed besides lovely sun kissed beaches across bright picturesque settings! Boasting of paradise of beaches with intoxicating vibe of fun and relaxation, Goa treasures the most happening beaches all-together. North Goa features a number of popular beaches such as Baga, Calangute & Anjuna; while in South Goa, Palolem is one unexplored or isolated beach that idealizes for romance. Relax on beach bed or on a shady spot beside the shacks, get tanned in the sun or simply frolic at the beach water – it’s an absolute fun! No wonder the reason why this place has topped up as a favourite haunt over foreign destinations for everyone.

 

  1. Cruise for leisure

If you come to Goa, leisure cruising is a must-try! Leisure cruising in Goa offers a bundle of choices of revelry to the visitors. Goa ranks higher when it comes to cruising across the waters on the high seas of the Mandovi River waters. Take a one/two hour(s) cruise ride on single or multi deck space. The non-stop fun continues with everything – from discos to games, to lively Karaoke on-board. There are also numerous interactive activities to keep you engaged on-the-go!

 

  1. Party hard aboard the floating cruise Floating Yacht for Party in Goa

For party lovers, the night is always young. What could be the best way then partying the night away with DJ beats on the intoxicant sparkling waters? Surrounding a magnificent view, amidst the sea breeze at the top deck of a luxury cruise with drinks & thumping DJ music beats to cater all your favourite melodies – this is something electrifying that is sure to take you high!

 

  1. Explore the dolphin world

Have you ever experienced the thrills of spotting dolphins on a dolphin explorer? Well, this is a perfect time to venture out in search of marine life and enjoy the panoramic views aboard the yacht. And if you are lucky enough, you can even encounter some of the diverse marine as well as bird species as you cruise past the waters. Wanna try on?

 

  1. Splash in with adventure water sports

Swimming during summers are yesterdays. Today, summers are more inviting when it comes to water sports fun with no limit of exploration. What’s more? Get-set-on an array of amazing water sports full of adventures and thrills.  Start off your water-borne thrills with adrenaline pumping water sports such as Jet ski, Kayaking, Rafting, Paragliding, zorbing, wake boarding, stand up paddling, wind surfing, motor boats, pedal boat, speed boat and much more –  whichever is your choice, it’s 100% non-stop fun on-board!

 

  1. Overnight stay on yacht In Goa

    Sea Breeze Overnight stay on Yacht and party Boat in Goa
    Overnight stay on Yacht and party Boat in Goa

Longing for an escape, away from the mundane city life during summers? Well, you got them all with plush accommodations on a super yacht night stay. Avoid the heat; cruise aboard and retire to luxurious master suite at night. Stay overnight on yacht for few days and enjoy the thrills & spills of the best of both worlds – Cruise + luxurious stay on waters! Revel in breath-taking landscapes; try finger licking treats, appetizers  and drinks on the waves – all best customized for you.

 

  1. An evening entertainment on Catamaran

Sit back and experience the evening floating lounge upon a sunset cruise In Goa . Complemented by light music and great combos of drinks and snacks, it’s a romantic sunset moment at an extraordinary place. Starting off with a cheerful friendly welcome aboard the catamaran, Live music show followed by delicious buffet dinner and finally dancing the night away with disco music – it’s a real fun to treasure!

 

  1. Island picnic cruise

The summer fun has just begun. A picnic island is a pilgrim of nature enthusiasts to spend some time in leisure with family and friends. Why not embark on an island eco-tour on sparkling aqua-marine waters on-board? Let the cruise take you to a brimming island atmosphere away from the hustle and bustle of life. With bounty of water around, bird watching, kite flying amidst a picturesque setting, splashing the river waters while engaging in some exciting fishing rounds across fast moving ripples – It’s damn exciting.  Enjoy summer camping, savour lip-smacking BBQ grills, drinks and sea food tastes on the sea shore side of island or explore surreal nature walkthrough- it’s all packed with great entertainment till the cruise return trip gets you back on the land!

 

What’s more? Get the most out of this summer. Plan your itineraries well ahead as summers are nowadays a peak demand period for cruising. But, it is also the best time as your kids can get school breaks to plan out for a holiday escape. You can also enjoy a good summertime discount as there will be not too many customers opting for it. So, catch the early summertime waves before they are gone. Happy travels!