15 Tips for First-Time Cruiser For Your Next Trip

1. Book through a specialist

A list of agents affiliated to the Cruise Lines Industry Association (CLIA) is available online. 

2. Know your fellow passenger

To a first-time cruiser, all cruise lines can look the same.  

3. Try a mini-cruise

Some of these cruises are themed around topics such as food and wine, comedy and sports.  

4. Get organised

If it's a port-intensive week in the South Pacific, don't exhaust yourself by booking onto one tour after another. 

5. Play the currency game

On any cruise that isn't all-inclusive (and some that are), you're likely to spend a fair bit of money during your holiday.

6. Drinks package

Some cruise lines offer drinks packages. These may seem attractive but think before you buy.

7. Stormy weather

If you've never sailed before, you may have concerns about seasickness.

8. Don't be afraid to complain

For dining room problems, have a quiet word with the head waiter. 

9. Take your own tea bag

Cruise lines have a tendency to stock Lipton's Yellow Label tea bags, brands you've never heard of. 

10. The tipping minefield

P&O Australia eliminated all gratuities, leaving the choice to tip completely to each individual cruiser.  

11. Join a Roll Call on Cruise Critic

Cruise Critic's forums are the perfect place for cruisers to meet ahead of their cruise.

12. Purchase a Drink Package Before You Set Sail

You’ll likely save money, as cruise lines often discount those packages ahead of time. 

13. Don't Be the First To Rush Off the Ship in Port

It can feel like half of the vessel is already waiting at the ship’s gangway, backpacks and cameras in hand. 

14. Save Money on Your Shore Excursion

Cruise ships offer shore excursions, essentially tours that take place in each port. 

15. Cruise Internet Can Be Slow and Expensive

If you’ve purchased internet to use on your cruise, don’t be surprised if your surfing is slow, especially on older ships.  

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