First-Time Cruisers: What Not to Do on Your First Cruise

October 05, 2022

You’ve done the research, printed out the checklists, and carefully selected your trip. But have you thought of everything? Maybe you’re wondering, “Do I even know what questions to ask?”

We turned to our in-house cruise experts here at Go Next for their best advice for first-timers and we mixed it up a little. We asked, “What would you tell first-time cruisers NOT to do?”

Here are their answers:

  • Don’t overpack. Suites and staterooms have come a long way in providing luggage storage, but you still need to be smart about your choices. You want room to bring home a souvenir from that amazing market you visited without going over the weight restrictions on your flight home. Many cruise ships even have laundry access (our cruise partner, Oceania Cruises, has free self-service use of the launderette for guests).

  • Don’t only go to one restaurant. Sure you love that restaurant—on the ship, or in the city—but consider that it may be a while before you go on another cruise. Try as many new things in as many new places as you can. 

  • Don’t be afraid to try new and exciting dishes. Aside from trying your cruise ship’s regionally influenced menus (and let me tell you, our cruise partners have some amazing dishes), food is, of course, at the heart of a culture, no matter where you are. There is no easier way to take in a new part of the world than to try its authentic dishes. 

  • Don’t stay behind the camera too much—experience your trip with all your senses. Enough said, shutterbugs. Live a little!

  • Don’t forget your medicine, especially if you are prone to motion sickness. We addressed this in our Travel Essentials blog. It’s a biggie. Make your medicine the first thing you pack.

  • Don’t forget your sunscreen and a nice hat. Even if you’re a sun-loving world traveler, and even if you think you don’t look good in hats, discomfort or illness from too much sun can put a damper on this cruise you’ve planned so carefully—for you and for the people you travel with. Trust us, you look amazing in hats.

  • Don’t be afraid to get to know your cabin steward. Use their services to make your stay comfortable. Shampoo, an extra pillow, or more towels—just ask! If you don’t always feel comfortable asking for help, here is a tip from one of our travel planners: “I’ll write a note thanking [the staff] for their service and then ask for whatever it is I need. It doesn’t hurt to leave a little tip as well!”

  • Don’t miss out on the embarkation city or disembarkation city—take a Go Beyond  with Go Next pre-cruise or post-cruise trip. Our travel experts have spent thousands of hours researching and traveling to set up amazing experiences in your embarkation and disembarkation cities. See more than just the airports! Bonus benefit: getting there early and leaving later helps alleviate worries about lost luggage and missing flights on either end of your cruise.

  • Don’t be afraid to rely–heavily!–on your travel experts. Here is a quote from one of our most experienced customer service professionals here at Go Next: “Some people feel they don’t want to bother us, but we are the experts! Reach out and ask all the questions you need to feel comfortable!” We really want to help you with whatever you need, before, during, and after your trip. Please do not be shy.

And that’s just a sampling of the amazing wealth of knowledge from our travel experts—the on-call support assistance before/after the cruise, travel planners, and onboard Go Next Program Managers—that help you plan where you will Go Next.

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