Cruising: All You Need To Know

Posted May 8th, 2013

Whether you’re looking to go on your first cruise holiday or have been on a couple before, there are always a few questions that you think of, but forget to ask at the time.

To help you on your way, the experts at Cruiseabout have your need-to-know questions covered.

How much luggage can I take onboard?

Struggling to decide if you should pack that spare kaftan or if you really need that extra pair of heels?

Before you pack your bags, check with your Cruiseabout expert because there is no set policy between cruise lines, when it comes to luggage. Also keep in mind that if you have to fly for your cruise holiday, you will also have to stick to the baggage allowance of your airline.

What’s included in the cruise price and what extras will I have to pay for?  

It’s no myth that cruising is fantastic value for money - with your onboard accommodation, three main meals a day and most of your onboard entertainment taken care of, most of your costs are paid for before you set sail.

Port charges and taxes are often included but it does pay to check this with your Cruiseabout expert because it varies between cruise lines.

As a general rule, the only extras that you need to budget for are beverages, shore excursions, purchases at the boutiques and spa and any shopping that you might want to do.

We want to travel with our whole family – is there enough to keep us entertained? 

We are spoilt for choice when it comes to finding our ‘perfect’ cruise so it’s really about finding the best cruise ship for you. From Broadway shows to lectures, libraries and a huge range of facilities such as gyms and sport courts, there is something for everyone onboard.

Many cruise lines also offer free kids clubs that are divided into different age groups - a guaranteed way to keep your kids entertained day after day.

Do I need a passport for a cruise that is leaving from Auckland but isn’t actually leaving the country?

Even though you’re not flying overseas, you could still be entering international waters so make sure you enquire when you book your cruise.

When you’re cruising in New Zealand and not actually leaving the country, New Zealand nationals will not require a passport but you will need a government issued photo ID with at least six months validity from your return date to Auckland.

If I wait until the last minute will the price be cheaper?

Sometimes it is possible to grab some amazing last minute specials if you are really flexible with travel dates and are able to get up and go at the drop of a hat!

However, if you’re like most of us and you have to fit your holidays in around work and school holidays or you have a strict budget, it pays to book in advance so you can guarantee that you get the travel dates that you want and the cabin that you’re looking for.

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How do we get from the port to our hotel?

It can be stressful being in a foreign country and not knowing how the transport system works so the best course of action is to have your transfers pre-booked before you head off on holiday, saving you stress in the long run.

Your Cruiseabout expert can arrange your transfers before you depart, providing you with a seamless experience without the worry of where to go or how to get there.

Can we celebrate a ‘special’ day on board?

Absolutely – some cruise lines will even treat you to a complimentary cake to honour the occasion! If you’re celebrating a birthday, anniversary or any other special occasion, it can be as festive as you wish with champagne, flowers, canapes, wine or cheese. These added extras will need to be advised in advance and will be at an additional cost.

What currency do we have to use and how do we pay?

Depending on where they are based, most cruise ships operate in US Dollars, the Euro or Australian dollars.

Cruise ships are ‘cashless societies’ so when you order something onboard it is charged to your room and put on account, making it very easy and stress free. When your cruise comes to end, you can either settle your account with your pre-arranged credit card or you can pay with foreign exchange in the form of cash – as simple as that!

Looking for more information on cruise holidays? Call a cruise holiday expert at a Cruiseabout store nationwide on 0800 22 11 14.

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