insights from the ultimate cruising team

10 Hot Tips To Remember When Booking Your Cruise – How Does a Free Upgrade Sound?

10 Hot Tips To Remember When Booking Your Cruise – How Does a Free Upgrade Sound?

There’s a lot to remember when booking your cruise holiday. Flights, transfers, hotels before and after your cruise, arrangements for pets while you’re away, and the list goes on… However, there are a few things to keep in mind that people often forget. And it’s often these small details that can make the difference between a good holiday and a great holiday!

We’ve put together 10 things to remember when you’re booking your cruise:

Request a favourite deck – If you want to be on a particular deck, in the middle, or down one end, put your request in as soon as you make your booking. Requests will never be guaranteed but the earlier you put your request in (and the earlier you book), the more chance you have of getting your cabin allocated early.

Arrive a day or two early – We recommend arriving at least one day before your cruise for two reasons: First, in the event of a delay, you’ve got some time up your sleeve before your cruise departs. Your ship won’t wait - if your flight is delayed and you’ve booked to fly in and leave on your cruise the same day… well, you’re in a spot of bother. Second, it’s a good opportunity to see the city you’re departing from. What are the chances you will ever be there again? If you’re traveling to the Galapagos Islands, take an extra couple of days to explore Ecuador. If you’re going to Antarctica, spend a couple of days discovering Buenos Aires!

Travel insurance – don’t leave home without it! You may wonder if travel insurance is really worth the money, but let us tell you, it’s when you don’t have it and need it, that you really appreciate its worth! In isolated areas such as The Marquesas, travel insurance is a mandatory requirement – simply because if you have a medical incident or have an accident, you’ll need a medi-vac out, and those sure don’t come cheap! See our article here for more reasons why travel insurance is important.

Transfers – Check if your transfers from airport to hotel to ship are included. If not, book them in so you don’t have to worry about trying to find taxis or shuttles once you’re over there. If it’s done beforehand, it’s one less thing to worry about.

Shore Excursions - Check if you can book your shore excursions ahead of time.  Do some homework before your cruise and decide (if you can) which shore excursions you would like to do. Some cruise lines have the facility to pre-book these before you leave so you won’t miss out on those you particularly want to do.

Ditto dining – Some cruise lines will allow you to pre-book dining times or specialty restaurants, so it’s a good idea to book these before you go, especially if you have a special event like an anniversary. You’d be amazed how quickly they book out.

Join any social media groups for your cruise – Some cruise lines set up Facebook pages for each oyage that allow you to ‘meet’ and chat with other guests online before you cruise. This can be especially good for solo travellers who would like to know someone before you get on board.

Special meal requests – If you have special dietary requirements, be sure to let the cruise line know in advance. Whilst most cruise lines will be able to cater for most diets, it certainly makes it easier if they are advised beforehand. Ships travelling to more remote areas and who do not have as much focus on dining variety, may find it difficult (or may be unable) to cater for special diets unless previously advised.

Upgrades and Discounts - If you’ve cruised with the same cruise line before, be sure to let them know. Some cruise lines will offer cabin upgrades or extra inclusions/discounts for past passengers.

Double Up - Find out if there are any back-to-back offers that might appeal to you. You might be able to join two 7 day cruises together to make a 14 day voyage, with the second one being at a considerable discount.

There you have it! 10 things that you can do to make your trip smooth sailing.