When boarding the cruise ship you will be separated from your luggage. After boarding the ship it can take several hours before your luggage is delivered to your cabin. So rather then sitting around in your travel cloths, pack a bathing suit, flip flops or a pair of shorts in your carry on. This way you can enjoy the pool while you wait for the rest of your belongings.
The cruise line sends pre-printed luggage tags for your suit cases with you travel documents. You will get 2 tags per person. If you have extra tags rather then let them go to waste, put them on your carry on bag, camera case, backpack, computer case or any other valuable items you will be taking with you. If these items get lost or left behind you will have a better chance of getting them back.
One of the worse thing that could happen on your vacation is to loose your child. Chances are you won’t but be prepared if you do. Have each child a travel wallet that is worn around the neck. Put all your travel information in the wallet including flight numbers and times, your destination, your ship name, cabin number, your home and cell phone numbers, emergency contact numbers, any allergies or special needs your child has. Don’t forget to include your name and home address and your child’s name and age. Include as much information you can think of to help authorities locate you. Have your kids wear the wallets while you are in the airports, touring and sightseeing or even when they are not with you on the ship. Always carry with you an up dated picture of your kids with you, in your wallet or purse. If you get separated from your kids you will have a picture rather then just a description to show people. It will help tremendously in locating your child.
Don’t wait until the last minute to pack and don’t pack while in a hurry. Many seasoned cruisers use packing lists. They keep a copy on their computers so they can just print it out when they are ready to start packing. You can adjust the list depending on your destination, such as pack shorts rather then pants. Make sure your list is complete with any medications you might need, camera’s, tooth brushes, hair spray, etc… It’s so much easier to pack when you have a list, simply go down the list and check things off once you place the item in the suit case. Make your list well in advance and leave a copy of it out with a pen nearby so you can add items as you think of them. You will most likely not remember everything to add to the list the first time and if you have it handy you can easily add items before you forget.
Book your shore excursions before you go. All the cruise lines let you do this. Excursions sell out. There will not be room for every person. If you wait to book your excursions until you get on board you may find they have already sold out. I always book mine as soon as possible. You can book them easily online. You can also change them providing you do it a couple weeks prior to shipping.