Frequently Asked Questions
We try to anticipate questions you might have about Cruising and provide the answers here. If you need additional information, send email to firstname.lastname@example.org and i will be happy to answer your questions.
I have never cruised before, will I get sea sick?
Not really. The most popular cruise areas boast some of the calmest waters in the world. In addition, stabilizers on modern ships, advance availability of accurate weather information, and development of effective preventative medications have, for the most part, eliminated the incidence of motion discomfort.
Is cruising affordable? What does it include?
Yes! There are cruise vacations to suit every budget, from the cost-conscious to the most luxurious. Even more important, a cruise offers the best travel value for your money. Your fare includes all meals, your cabin, onboard daytime activities, nighttime parties and entertainment. So for once, you'll know what your vacation will end up costing you before you go. (Your only extra expenses will be drinks, optional shore excursions, and personal services such as massage or hairstyling.)
Is it hard to make friends on a cruise?
A cruise ship is a great place to make new friends, because everyone's so friendly. The atmosphere is cordial, relaxed. And you'll have all kinds of things in common to talk about. At dinner. At cocktails. Around the pool. Or along the promenade rail. And don't be surprised if you find yourself making arrangements to meet them aboard ship again next year. GirlsonaCruise.com was started as a way for women to vacation and make new friends!
Do I need to buy a whole new wardrobe to cruise?
Absolutely NOT! Although women always seem to be fashion conscious, packing for a tropical cruise is easy! Bathing suits, shorts and t shirts for the day (okay, maybe a sundress!) and skirts, capris, sundress are all fine for night time. YES, there usually is 1 formal night, which I prefer to call the "Little Black Dress" night. Just throw on something black with sparkles and you will be fine!
What type of identification do I need? Do I need a passport?
Cruising is the one way you can leave the country and a passport is NOT required, but IS recommended. Yes, you can cruise with a Birth Certificate with a "raised seal" along with a driver's license. But please remember that if you should for any reason miss the boat, you will not be able to fly back into the USA without a valid passport. People have been in that scenario and had to spend a week or two waiting on an island to have a passport processed at their own expense. My advice, a passport is a good idea!
Is there laundry facilities? Can I bring an iron?
Laundry facilities vary from ship to ship and cruise line to cruise line. Some have a mini "Wash, Fold & Iron" room on each deck. But most cruise lines offer Laundry and Dry Cleaning services at an extra charge. This really comes in handy for pressing clothes also because it is important to note that you CANNOT BRING AN IRON on-board the ship! It will be confiscated from your luggage due to fire preventions. That includes travel irons.
I have special dietary needs, can the cruise line handle this?
Yes. Cruise lines cater to thousands of guests on each sailing and are very aware that some have special dietary concerns. Mention these to your travel agent and they will alert the ship prior to sailing. Once on-board, always speak to the Maitre'd and remind him of your concerns.
Does it cost more for a "solo" (single) cabin?
The answer is that it does cost more than the per person rate of a double occupancy cabin. You typically pay double the cruise fare, but you only pay tax and port charges one time. Many people don't understand why they would have to pay double, but the best way to explain it is that they are really paying for the "room", just like a hotel room. Whether you have 1 or 2 guests staying in a hotel, you still pay the "room" rate. Here is further explanation on this issue - See My Blog
Can I smoke on a cruise?
Yes (unless Bloomberg decides to buy cruise ships and make it illegal! LOL) . But seriously, Cruise ships allow smokers to smoke in designated areas, but NEVER in your cabin due to fire precautions. It is also not allowed while on your balcony due to ashes or cigarette butts flying into another open balcony door and becoming a fire hazard. But there are plenty of spots that are safe.
Is there access to the internet while cruising?
Most Cruise ships have "WiFi" hot spots where you are able to connect with your personal laptop. The Newer ships are even capable of Internet access in the cabins. Just like in most hotels, there is a fee/package for usage.
What ISN'T included on a cruise?
Most meals are included on a cruise, with the exception of a couple "alternative dining" venues which could charge a fee of anywhere between $2 and $ 60 per person. BUT you do not need to eat at those venues as there are PLENTY of included options. Spa/ salon treatments are additional. Certain fitness classes are at a fee (minor). Casino gambling and Bingo is not included. Bottled water, soda, alcoholic beverages are not included.
Are beverage packages available?
Every cruise line offers packages for wine - (example: Buy 5 bottles and get one free), soda and bottled water. But most cruise lines do not offer all inclusive liquor packages. However, Celebrity Cruises, Carnival and NCL do offer individual beverage packages purchased on an individual basis. This is a great option for those that like to enjoy cocktails on vacation! At a cost of approx $40 per day per person all of your beverages would be included! Each cruise line has different packages, so please call and ask me (732) 577-9150.
Do I have to buy insurance?
Insurance is optional. It is purchased on an individual basis. Personally, I do recommend insurance. Typical insurance covers cancellation for medical reasons, trip interruption, health costs during the cruise and the cost of emergency evacuation (coast guard helicopter) should you need to be taken to a hospital (which costs upwards of $ 25,000! YES! $25,000!!). This coverage includes medical reasons of family members should you need to cancel because a family member at home gets ill. Please call me for more details (732) 577-9150.
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