Last Updated on 3/27/2023
First-time cruiser? These top 7 cruise hacks will help you get the most out of your cruise vacation!
Don’t Like the Gym? Use the Stairs
You can burn a ton of calories that you most definitely will consume on the cruise just by taking the stairs. My wife and kids made this a game. We would race to see who gets to the pool the fastest, one group would take the stairs, while the other would take the elevator. Well, the stair steppers won on a consistent basis. This really is one of the best ways to keep the “cruise weight” off! We’ve all been there post-cruise, gaining 5, 10, 15, or even 20 pounds. Staying fit can be hard while traveling, but some game-changing practical tips can make it easier to incorporate.
Get Free Drinks
Did you say free drinks? Adult beverages on a cruise can add up quickly, especially because your sea pass card that makes you “think” you’re not spending money. I like to get the drink packages on the ship with my onboard credit, but you don’t have to do that. It’s entirely possible to get drinks for no extra charge during your cruise. How? If you like the bubbly stuff, then head on over to the art show. Most cruises offer complimentary champagne for you to savor while viewing the show.
Another tip is to bring your own alcohol. Most cruise lines will allow you to take a limited amount of alcohol on the ship and it’s best to check with your cruise line regarding the amount you can take on. I am an avid Royal Caribbean cruiser and I always pack a nice wine for my wife and me to savor at dinner. Just know you can’t take the whole liquor cabinet or wine fridge with you on your cruise.
Bring a Power Strip
As a first-time cruiser, you might be surprised to find that most cruise cabins aren’t equipped with a lot of power outlets. Some of them are even a mystery to find, usually hidden behind the bed or nightstand. I always take a couple of power strips on board to charge my family’s various electronic devices.
The power strips I use have two USB ports and four electrical outlets on them. This is the easy way to stay charged up on your cruise. If your devices run out of juice during the day, our tip is to pack a book to read on one of the decks instead. Check out this list of things you shouldn’t forget on your next trip!
Ice Cream, We All Scream Ice Cream
That yummy soft-served goodness can most likely be found by the kid’s pool. So enjoy the unlimited amounts you can consume, no need to pay for that named brand on the promenade. I love this cruise travel tip!
Avoid Sea Sickness
Many people are sensitive to motion and are more prone to sea sickness. Cruises are meant to entertain, relax, rest, and party all in a single vacation. One of the items that I found works best and is also a natural remedy is ginger, known for its anti-nausea properties. Take some of this spice powder with you or visit the juice bar and ask for them to make a ginger and green apple juice for you. This usually helps my family –give it a try!
If that doesn’t work, cruise ships usually sell motion sickness patches that you can stick behind your ear. If you do need to see a doctor on board and have a travel insurance policy that includes Medical Expense benefits, you could be reimbursed for unexpected medical costs.
Cash Me Out
ATMs on cruise ships should be charged with highway robbery! I’ve seen fees as high as $6 per withdrawal. Crazy! That’s twice as much as land withdrawals. Nonetheless, you can avoid these fees if you need some cash. Since your sea pass card is connected to your credit card or your checking account, just go down to the casino, load your sea pass card with the amount you need to withdraw, then get your cash-out voucher, and take it to the cashier in exchange for the cash. You have just saved the $6 ATM fee that you’d be charged on the ship.
Always Get Travel Insurance
Travel insurance booked through cruise companies often lacks essential coverage such as medical, emergency medical evacuation, bad weather, or hurricane evacuation. It’s nice that cruises attempt to be “all-inclusive”, but don’t bet your finances against their limited insurance coverage if your cruise gets cancelled or you miss your connection.
If you are cruising with the whole clan or just solo, it is a smart thing to always make sure you are properly covered. One thing that most people don’t know, is that your health plan or your credit card might not cover you should something happen outside the country. At Yonder, we sell comprehensive travel insurance policies that help your travels go as planned –and if your plans get derailed, we’re here to help sort them out! Easily quote, compare, and purchase your cruise travel insurance with insureyonder.com.