things to know about planning a cruise vacation

20 Factors to Consider Before Planning a Cruise Vacation

April 22, 2024 • 430 views

Cruises can be a great option to have a fun and relaxing vacation. If you are planning a cruise vacation, some of the most critical questions that come to mind are what to do while on-board a cruise? What are the things you should bring? How to plan onshore activities? How to book a cruise? In this comprehensive blog, we have answered all your questions along with tips to make your cruise trip worthwhile. Read on!

Top 20 Factors to Consider When Planning a Cruise Vacation

Here is a list of the top 20 factors you need to keep in mind to make the most out of your next cruise vacation:

1. Vacation Budget

The first step in planning for cruise is setting a vacation budget. This will help you filter your options and simplify the process. Cruise cost covers the accommodations, entertainment, food and beverages, but you must also consider other costs such as flight booking, transportation to the port, excursions, etc.  

2. Choosing a Destination

One of the most obvious factors to consider when booking a cruise trip is knowing the right destination. Popular cruise lines offer trips to destinations all around the world. Choosing the optimal destination might seem overwhelming, but keep in mind the budget and timing of your trip to make a good decision.

3. Cruise Line and Ship

To make the most of your cruising experience, do extensive research and consult various reputed travel agencies. Different cruise lines specialise in offering their services to different demographics. Some of these cruise ships can be a great option for those who travel in comfort and luxury, whereas others are designed for adventure seekers.

4. Food and Drink Packages

Food and drink packages on a cruise can offer great value to those who are willing to utilise them properly. If you do not select the right package, your plan could backfire, and you could end up paying more than what you had for drinks and food. Select a package depending on how much you wish to drink and eat during the whole day. The drinks package will have a significant effect on your budget.

5. When to Book the Trip

If you want to get the best deals and cabins, it is advised to book a cruise trip a few months in advance. Most cruise operators offer special deals and cabins to those visitors who book ahead of schedule. There are multiple ways to book a cruise. These include directly booking a seat from the cruise line website, through a travel agent, or an online travel agency.

6. Email Lists for Cruise Lines

Sign up for the cruise email lists to stay updated with the latest cruise line offers, new itineraries, and flash sales. You never know when you might come across the perfect last-minute deal or get notified about your dream destination becoming available. It is an easy and convenient way to make sure you don't miss out on any exciting opportunities to explore the world by sea.

7. Flight Booking

If you are planning to set sail after landing at an airport, it is important to ensure you have enough time between your arrival and the sailing time. To avoid any last-minute rush or unforeseen delays, it is always better to reach the port city at least a day before your scheduled sailing date.

8. Arrive at Your Departure Port a Day Ahead

Avoid the stress of last-minute dashes by arriving at the departure port a day before your cruise. This allows you to relax and explore the city at your own pace. To make the most of your time during a cruise, it is helpful to gather some information about the ports you will be visiting.

9. Make Sure to Get a Carry-on Bag

When embarking on a cruise, you will usually be greeted by porters at the ship's terminal who will take care of your luggage. You may not have access to your belongings for several hours on your first day aboard. To avoid any inconvenience, be sure to pack a carry-on bag with all the essentials you'll need for the first few hours of your voyage.

10. Avoid Overpacking

When it comes to packing for a cruise, it's important to keep in mind that most of the activities on board are usually casual and laid-back. Therefore, resist the urge to overpack and only bring the essentials. Most cruise ships offer laundry services onboard, which means that you can pack light and freshen up your clothes during the trip.

11. Do Not Miss the Essentials

When you are on a cruise, you will find that essentials like sunscreen, aspirin, and Band-Aids are available onboard, but they often come with a hefty price tag. To avoid the exorbitant charges, pack a small go bag of medicines and other essentials that you might need during your trip.

12. Research the Ports in Advance

It is important to plan ahead to make the most of your time in port. Research your ports in advance, organize your priorities and make a schedule that includes everything you can do within a short window.

13. Join the Cruise Facebook Group  

Joining Facebook groups for your specific cruise line or sailing can connect you with other passengers. This is a great way to exchange tips on excursions, onboard activities, or recommendations for the ports. These groups often have many active users willing to provide help with plans and necessary information.

14. Itinerary and Activities

The itinerary of a cruise vacation is one of the most important aspects of the trip planning. You can get an idea of what to expect when selecting a cruise based on the itinerary. On-shore activities can be one of the most essential parts of the cruise itinerary. By adding these activities, you can personalise your cruise vacation.

15. Always Carry the Ship's Contact Information

It is always a good idea to keep the ship's contact information with you whenever you go ashore. Having this information handy can prove extremely helpful in case of an emergency or any unforeseen circumstances when you're away from the ship.

16. Keep Your Phone on Airplane Mode

One way to avoid costly roaming charges during a cruise is to switch your phone to aeroplane mode. In case you opt to purchase Wi-Fi packages offered by the cruise line, you can use them to stay connected.

17. Download the Cruise App

Cruise apps offer a variety of features to enhance your experience onboard, such as providing a daily list of activities and all your reservations. Some even allow you to make restaurant reservations, book shore excursions, and order drinks and other items directly to your location onboard. You can use these apps even without paying for a Wi-Fi package.

18. Consider Travel Insurance

It is always a good idea to consider travel insurance especially if you are planning on booking a long and expensive cruise trip. While some cruise lines offer complimentary insurance, it is often more cost-effective to purchase separate insurance coverage. By being proactive and investing in travel insurance, you can enjoy your cruise worry-free.

19. Plan Excursions Separately

When cruising, planning your shore excursion is often recommended as an advance booking through the cruise line, as opposed to as excursion sell out faster. You can book onshore excursions with your cruise line's package. Alternatively, you can book excursions via travel agents at the respective ports. These trips can range from simple and affordable activities like boating or snorkelling to city tours and helicopter rides.

20. Pick Your Room Based on the Deck Plan

Before finalising your stateroom selection for your upcoming cruise, take the time to carefully review the ship's deck plan. To maximise your relaxation and enjoyment onboard, it is wise to opt for a room situated away from the ship's main entertainment areas, both above and below.

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Also Read - Facts You Should Know About Travel Loan in India

To Conclude

Taking a cruise vacation can be a once-in-a-lifetime experience for any individual. It is one of the best ways to visit numerous destinations on a single exciting and magnificent journey. Thus, if you book the correct cruise according to your needs, it can be a great value for money. Ensure to keep all the factors mentioned above in mind before booking a cruise trip for yourself and your family. To make your dream cruise vacation come true, avail a Personal Loan for travel from Poonawalla Fincorp with affordable interest rates and quick disbursal. 


We take utmost care to provide information based on internal data and reliable sources. However, this article and associated web pages provide generic information for reference purposes only. Readers must make an informed decision by reviewing the products offered and the terms and conditions. Personal Loan disbursal is at the sole discretion of Poonawalla Fincorp.
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poonawalla fincorp team

Poonawalla Fincorp Team

Our team of expert writers and editors are passionate about providing authentic and valuable information on finance. Our aim is to simplify financial and finance-related concepts. We strive to help our readers become more aware and empowered to make informed financial decisions.

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