Xperience Team

02 Apr 2024 - 9 min read

Smart Cruising: 21 Top Tips on Things Not To Do on A Cruise

Heading on a Cruise? It's wise to brush up on the 'what not to do' list while onboard! Whether you're a first-time cruiser or a seasoned sea traveler, this guide shares essential tips to help you avoid common pitfalls, save money, and ensure you make the most of your journey. Cruising offers a delightful blend of experiences, from the breathtaking sights and sounds of new ports to the thrill of onshore excursions and the delectable onboard and onshore cuisine. Just like any vacation, knowing the don'ts of cruising is just as crucial as knowing the dos.

Cruise travel brings a unique way to explore the world. With your accommodations traveling alongside you, there's no need to juggle multiple hotel bookings, rush for trains, or hunt for tour providers. It's all about simplifying decisions and maximizing relaxation as you sail the seas. Discover these tips to learn what not to do on your cruise, ensuring a smooth and enjoyable voyage for all!

Things to Keep in Mind Before Your Cruise Adventure

1. Don't Skip Online Check-In

Before your cruise, make sure to complete the online check-in process if it's available. This simple step can save you precious time at the embarkation port, especially when facing long queues. By printing out your ID cards, barcoded tickets, and baggage tags at home, you'll breeze through check-in like a pro. Some cruise lines even offer a separate line for those who have completed online check-in. Be the savvy traveler who avoids unnecessary waiting!

2. Don't Leave Without Your IDs and Passports!

Before going on your cruise adventure, double-check that you have all your essential identification documents, especially your passport. It's not just a piece of paper—it's your ticket to international waters! Always be aware of where your passport is located, whether at home or onboard. Utilize the safe provided in your stateroom to securely store your valuables throughout the voyage. By ensuring you have your IDs and passports, you'll breeze through the embarkation process with peace of mind and excitement for the journey ahead.

3. Don't Forget to Set an Onboard Spending Budget

To avoid any surprises when it's time to settle your final bill, it's essential to establish a clear budget for your onboard expenses. Many seasoned cruisers find it beneficial to request a daily summary of their spending from the reception desk. This way, you can easily keep track of your expenditures and ensure they align with your planned budget. From delightful drinks to tempting onboard shops, having a spending plan allows you to enjoy your cruise worry-free.

4. Don't Skip Researching Your Port Destinations

The ports of call on your cruise itinerary hold the promise of exciting adventures and cultural discoveries. While the convenience of ship-organized shore excursions is tempting, they might come at a premium cost. Take some time before your voyage to research each port's attractions and activities. Whether it's historical landmarks, breathtaking views, or local cuisine, knowing what to expect helps you tailor your shore experiences to your interests.

5. Don't Rush into Choosing a Cruise Line

With countless cruise lines vying for your attention, it's crucial to select one that aligns with your vacation vision. Whether you crave luxury accommodations, impeccable service, or gastronomic delights, each cruise line offers a unique experience. Consider what matters most to you—be it onboard entertainment, diverse itineraries, or themed cruises. With Celebrity Cruises, expect nothing less than exceptional destinations, world-class service, and culinary delights to tantalize your taste buds.

6. Don't Settle for Just Any Itinerary

Your cruise itinerary sets the stage for your vacation adventure, so choose wisely. Are you dreaming of sun-kissed beaches, historical marvels, or thrilling escapades? Tailor your cruise itinerary to match your travel aspirations. Dive into the turquoise waters of exotic locales, immerse yourself in vibrant cultures, or embark on adrenaline-pumping excursions. Selecting the perfect itinerary ensures that every moment of your cruise is filled with excitement and exploration.

7. Don't Forget to Exchange Currency Ahead of Time

If your cruise takes you to international ports, it's prudent to have local currency on hand. While major establishments often accept credit cards, smaller shops and vendors may prefer cash. Save time and avoid unnecessary fees by exchanging currency before you set sail. Having the local currency at your fingertips allows you to indulge in authentic experiences, from sampling street food to bargaining at local markets.

8. Don't Overpack—Travel Light!


When it comes to packing for your cruise, less is often more. The limited storage space in your cabin calls for smart packing decisions. Stick to essentials such as versatile outfits, comfortable shoes, and travel-sized toiletries. Leave room in your suitcase for souvenirs and mementos you'll collect along the way. Traveling light not only makes navigating the ship easier but also leaves you room to bring back cherished memories.

9. Don't Leave Without Your Cruise Essentials

As you prepare for your cruise getaway, ensure your carry-on bag is packed with essential items. Sunscreen to protect your skin from tropical rays, sunglasses for bright days at sea, medications for any unexpected ailments, and a refillable water bottle to stay hydrated. If your cruise includes sunny destinations, a stylish hat adds both flair and sun protection. These cruise essentials ensure you're prepared for whatever adventures await on land and sea.

10. Don't Pack The Wrong Outfits

Deciding what to pack for your cruise involves considering your planned activities and destinations. Whether you're exploring ancient ruins, lounging on pristine beaches, or enjoying elegant dinners, pack clothing suitable for each occasion. Check the weather forecast for your cruise destinations to ensure you're prepared for varying climates. From casual daywear to formal evening attire, having the right outfits on hand ensures you're ready for any onboard or onshore adventure that comes your way.

11. Don't Risk Being Late—Arrive On Time!

One of the worst fears of any cruiser is missing the ship's departure. To avoid this stressful scenario, make it a priority to be punctual for all onboard activities and port excursions. Keep track of the ship's local time and set reminders to return before the scheduled departure. Being on time not only ensures you don't miss out on the exciting adventures planned but also allows you to enjoy a stress-free cruise experience. Whether it's a thrilling shore excursion or a relaxing day onboard, arriving promptly ensures you make the most of every moment of your cruise vacation.

12. Don't Miss Out on Shore Excursions

Make the most of your port visits by booking engaging shore excursions offered by the cruise line. These organized tours provide in-depth experiences, from cultural immersions to adventurous explorations of local landmarks. By booking through the ship, you not only ensure a seamless excursion but also guarantee a timely return before the ship sets sail. Take the opportunity to discover hidden gems, historical treasures, and breathtaking sights unique to each destination. With expert guides and curated experiences, shore excursions are a gateway to unforgettable memories during your cruise journey.

13. Don't Forget Cabin Etiquette—Respect Your Neighbors


A considerate demeanor in your cabin goes a long way in creating a harmonious environment for all guests onboard. Sound travels easily in cruise ship cabins, so keep noise levels at a considerable volume. Whether it's conversations, TV volumes, or music, be mindful of your neighbors' comfort. By respecting quiet hours and maintaining a peaceful ambiance, you ensure that everyone enjoys a restful retreat in their cabins. Additionally, practicing good cabin etiquette includes keeping shared spaces tidy and refraining from any disruptive behavior. A harmonious atmosphere enhances the overall cruise experience for all guests aboard.

14. Don't Risk Extra Charges—Leave Ship Items Behind

While the allure of souvenir bathrobes and plush towels may be tempting, it's best to resist the urge to take them home. Cruise lines impose substantial fees for missing items, including those from cabins. Enjoy the comfort and luxury of onboard amenities during your cruise, and leave the items behind for the next guest to enjoy. By avoiding the temptation to pack these items in your suitcase, you save yourself from unexpected charges and ensure a hassle-free disembarkation process at the end of your cruise vacation.

15. Don't Hang Clothes on Your Balcony

Maintaining the cleanliness and safety of your balcony is essential during your cruise vacation. Avoid hanging wet clothes or towels on the balcony railing, as this not only detracts from the ship's aesthetics but also poses safety risks. Cruise lines discourage this practice to maintain a neat and presentable appearance of the ship. Instead, utilize the retractable clothesline provided in your cabin for drying purposes. This ensures that your balcony remains a serene retreat with unobstructed views, allowing you to fully enjoy the scenic vistas and ocean breeze during your cruise.

16. Don't Forget Your Valuables in the Cabin Safe

Utilizing the cabin safe for storing valuables is a prudent practice during your cruise. However, it's equally important to remember to retrieve these items before disembarking at ports of call. Set a reminder on your phone or leave a visible note to check the safe before leaving the ship. This simple precaution ensures that you don't accidentally leave behind important documents, jewelry, or other valuables. By being proactive in safeguarding your belongings, you can relax and enjoy your onshore excursions with peace of mind, knowing that your valuables are secure in the cabin.

17. Don't Light Open Flames—Use Battery-Powered Alternatives

Create a cozy and inviting ambiance in your cabin without the risk of fire hazards by opting for battery-powered candles. Cruise lines prioritize safety onboard, which includes restrictions on open flames in cabins. Battery-powered alternatives provide the same warm glow and ambiance without the associated risks. Whether it's for a romantic evening in or to add a touch of relaxation to your cabin retreat, these safe alternatives ensure a worry-free cruise experience. Enjoy the soothing ambiance and peace of mind knowing that you're adhering to the ship's safety guidelines.

18. Don't Miss the Onboard Entertainment

Cruise ships are renowned for their diverse and captivating onboard entertainment options, catering to every taste and preference. From Broadway-style shows to live music performances, there's something for everyone to enjoy during your cruise vacation. Take advantage of these world-class entertainment offerings to add an extra layer of excitement and enjoyment to your journey. Whether you're a fan of dazzling productions or intimate performances, the onboard entertainment scene promises unforgettable moments and memories. Be sure to check the daily schedule and plan your evenings to experience the best of onboard entertainment.

19. Don't Smoke in Unauthorized Areas

Respecting the designated smoking areas onboard is essential to ensure the comfort and safety of all guests. Cruise lines have strict policies regarding smoking, including designated areas on open decks and specific lounges. Avoid smoking in prohibited zones such as cabins, balconies, and dining venues, as this can pose safety hazards and inconvenience to fellow guests. By adhering to the designated smoking areas, you contribute to a pleasant cruise experience for everyone onboard. Whether you're a smoker or non-smoker, respecting these guidelines ensures a harmonious atmosphere throughout the ship.

20. Don't Lose Track of Time—Stay Mindful of Excursion Schedules

Whether you're going on a ship-organized excursion or exploring independently, time management is crucial during your port visits. Stay informed about the excursion schedules, including departure and return times, to ensure a seamless experience. Plan your activities accordingly, allowing ample time to explore, discover, and immerse yourself in the local culture. Be mindful of time zone differences, especially if the port is in a different time zone than the ship. By staying organized and aware of the schedule, you can make the most of your port adventures and return to the ship with ease before departure.

21. Don't Hesitate to Explore Solo

Embrace the spirit of adventure and independence by venturing out on solo explorations during your cruise vacation. Whether it's joining a shore excursion alone or attending onboard activities solo, solo adventures offer unique opportunities for discovery and self-discovery. Cruise ships provide a safe and welcoming environment for solo travelers, with plenty of opportunities to meet like-minded individuals along the way. From quiet moments of reflection to exciting new experiences, solo exploration allows you to tailor your cruise experience to your preferences. Step out of your comfort zone, embrace the freedom to roam, and create unforgettable memories on your solo adventures during the cruise.

These simple guidelines will help you navigate your cruise adventure smoothly, ensuring a memorable and enjoyable voyage for all!

Plan Your Cruise with Traveloka for Hassle-Free Booking!

These essential tips will guide you towards a smooth and enjoyable cruise experience, ensuring you make the most of every moment onboard and at port destinations. Whether you're a seasoned cruiser or embarking on your first voyage, these guidelines serve as a blueprint for a memorable and stress-free cruise vacation. Now that you're equipped with these insights, it's time to go on your cruise adventure! Plan and book your dream cruise with Traveloka for hassle-free reservations and exciting deals. Bon voyage!

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