Discover tips on how to have the best first cruise ever!


So, you’ve decided to try something new and embark on a cruise trip for the first time.  While that’s one big decision made, there are still plenty of others to make.  How much you would like to spend on your cruise? Where would you like to go? How long for? What would you like included in your fare?  And most importantly which cruise line should you choose for your first voyage?  To ensure you get the most out of your first cruise, here are some first time cruise tips and tricks from the experts at Mary Rossi Travel.

Booking your cruise

Before you can begin packing, you’ll need to find the most suitable cruise.  This is where chatting to a travel agent comes in handy. With a wealth of expertise including extensive first-hand travel experience, the specialists at Mary Rossi Travel can guide you through the many options available to you.  For example, some of first time cruise tips you’ll want to consider:

  • Budget: How much are you looking to spend on your cruise holiday?
  • Size: Would you prefer to sail on a small, intimate vessel, or a mega ship with thousands of fellow passengers – or something in between?
  • Destination: Are there any particular destinations you would like to visit? Are you looking to escape our winter to a warmer destination?  A popular cruise destination or somewhere less travelled? Somewhere not too far from home or one more further afield?
  • Activities onboard: Are you keen to participate in adventurous activities such as sea kayaking?  Are you keen to gain in-depth knowledge about your destination with access to specialists on board?  Do you enjoy adrenalin-packed activities like indoor rock climbing or perhaps zip lining?  Or do you simply want to relax, and enjoy life on board?
  • Style of ship: Would you prefer a casual, relaxed vibe or something more sophisticated?  There are different cruise lines to suit every travel style.

Working with a specialist can narrow down your options to help select the most appropriate cruise line and a cruise itinerary designed with you and your preferences in mind.

Discover top tips for your first cruise.Whether you’re looking for adventure or relaxation, or a mix of both, our cruise specialists can help.

Before departing on your cruise

Getting ready to embark on your first cruise is incredibly exciting and therefore it’s important you’re prepared. Here are some first time cruise tips to make sure you’re ready for departure:

Check your passport expiry date: Depending on where you are travelling, you may be required to have at least six months remaining on your passport. Check if you require a visa(s) for your destinations.

Check for dress codes: No matter where you’re going or what size cruise you’re taking, check the dress code. Ask if there are any particular events that require formal attire. Packing something suitable for the occasion will prevent any red faces.

Book activities and shore excursions well in advance: From spa treatments to shore excursions, there are many opportunities to get involved in a great range of activities and extras. However, these can get booked up fairly quickly, so don’t leave your planning to the last minute. When you book onto your cruise, take a look at what is available and secure your place for what you definitely don’t want to miss. Make a note in your calendar of the date and time to keep track of your extras.

Pack a practical suitcase: When it comes to packing your case, consider the climate that you’ll be spending a lot of time in, the culture of the area and the activities you’ll be doing. It also pays to factor in the capsule wardrobe mentality. This simply refers to a collection of versatile pieces that can come together in various ways to create different looks. By taking the time to be selective you’ll pack sensibly and avoid excess unnecessary items.

Travel to your port at least one day before embarkation: If you need to fly or travel by train to the ship’s sailing destination, don’t do so on the same day. You don’t want to run the risk of missing your cruise due to a delayed flight or missed train. Instead, stay in the area the night before embarkation to ensure you’re there on time.

Discover top tips for your first cruise.Don’t miss out on authentic activities by forgetting to book.


Understand the cruise currency: Many cruise companies rely on a cashless system. A cruise card is often given to passengers which acts like a credit card when paying for food, drinks and certain activities.

Bring petty cash for tipping: Your cabin stewards and ship staff work tirelessly to ensure you feel comfortable at all times on the cruise. Show your appreciation by tipping now and again – unless tipping is included in your cruise fare.

Get to know fellow passengers: If you’re boarding a smaller cruise vessel, such as an expedition to the Galapagos, chances are your fellow passengers share similar interests to you. Spending time on excursions, on board or at dinner is a great way to feel more comfortable on board and make your journey even more enjoyable.

If you’d like to find out how the team at Mary Rossi Travel can make your first cruise experience one to remember, get in touch with a specialist today.  We’re dedicated to ensuring you find the perfect match for your needs.