The dos and don’ts of cruise holidays

Date: 30th June 2018
Author: Helen Cator

There are many myths and ideas about going on your first cruise – some of which are right and good advice, others which have just developed over time and couldn’t be further from the truth. Here we take a look at some of the dos and don’ts of cruise holidays.


  • Do book ahead for your shows, dining and shore excursions
  • Do make sure you have all your documents before heading for the port
  • Do budget in advance for any on board extras you might need to pay for
  • Do think about the location and season you’ll be cruising in and pack appropriate clothing
  • Do book your cruise through a specialist travel agency and go for cruise insurance to be on the safe side
  • Do understand that European cruise lines will offer European food and entertainment
  • Do choose a cabin in the centre of the ship to avoid seasickness
  • Do check any passport or visa requirements for the countries you are visiting
  • Do get involved in all the activities offered – most of them are free
  • Do listen carefully during the safety drills
  • Do try out all the different food and drinks
  • Do bring medications on board, particularly if travelling with children
  • Do be respectful to all the crew and other passengers
  • Do research the ports of call before you travel to make the most of your trip
  • Do use the kids clubs to keep your children entertained
  • Do pack your carry-on to include anything you might need on the first day, and all your personal items in case of a delay in your luggage arriving in the cabin
  • Do be aware of the gratuities policy for your particular cruise line
  • Do bring a torch or nightlight as cabins can get very dark at night for children


  • Don’t pack electrical items like hair dryers or travel kettles – you won’t need them and they are likely to be confiscated as a fire risk
  • Don’t forget to pack your sunscreen – it can be intensely sunny on deck while out at sea
  • Don’t be scared to ask for something that you can’t see on the menu, or to have it adapted to your taste
  • Don’t feel you have to go on the cruise-organised trips – you can often arrange your own independent port excursions.
  • Don’t avoid using room service – it’s often free so why not indulge in an evening meal on your own balcony?
  • Don’t forget to check prices with your mobile phone company before you leave – you don’t want to come home to a huge bill
  • Don’t hog the loungers around the poolside
  • Don’t miss the shows and entertainment – it’s generally included in the price
  • Don’t let your kids run wild around the ship
  • Don’t be afraid to chat to fellow passengers and make new friends

These are just a few of the dos and don’ts of a cruise holiday but the best way to know what you should and shouldn’t be doing is to go on a cruise and see yourself. One thing you do want to do is sort out your car parking for the duration of your holiday so get in touch with us at Penguin Parking today.

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