Cruise Vacation Preperations, a final Checklist



The following is the sixth in a six part series “Cruise Mini Camp” of informational offerings

90-14 DAYS Prior to Sailing – Final Deposits all made? and your Travel Protection Plan (insurance) in place?, Ok ! Getting pretty excited now huh? I know, I know. But, allow me to help keep your keel even for now, as there are some pretty important details that you need to be sure are getting taken care of. Especially if you are not traveling as part of a group.

On line registrations, checking in, printing of boarding passes, and getting your luggage tags used to be an automatic service handled by the cruise lines. Now they do things a bit differently. Much of the new procedures have come about as a result of security precautions post 9/11. There have also been more recent changes implemented as cost cutting measures such as providing the luggage porters/personnel at the piers with bag tags that can be hand written and placed on the bag. Much less expensive for the cruise lines than printing and mailing them. But you can still order them and have them sent to you. It’s just a more formalized request process that requires being completed now days. Please continue reading……………..

Additionally, as an individual cruise passenger (meaning you are travelling in 7 staterooms or less together) it is your personal responsibility to provide the cruise line with your personal immigration (passport) information, as well as credit card information for your on-board cruise account. (As they do not keep your credit card information on file that you paid deposits with).

 Once your final deposit has been made, (and your cruise fare is paid in full) you can then access the automated on-line registration/check-in process generally as far out as 75 days or so from departure. Additionally, most cruise lines require some form of on-line check-in or pre-boarding information verification procedure (which must be completed at least) 48-72 hours prior to your boarding of the vessel.

Generally, most all of the cruise lines provide “on-line*” services that will enable you to:

  1. Pre Check-In
  2. Printing of Boarding Documentation/Passes
  3. Printing or Ordering of your Bag Tags (Must be at least 14 days prior to departure)
  4. Booking/Purchasing Shore Excursions
  5. Booking/Reservations for Specialty Dining, Spa Appointments,  and/or certain other On Board Events/Activities that require advanced reservations.

 *Usually, you must have already provided your required identification information, and credit card information before you will be able to complete the above process.

 Other helpful/useful information can also be obtained from these on-line service sites including:

  •  Obtaining ship/deck plans
  • Port Directions/Driving & Parking Information
  • Other timely Countdown to Cruise Information

The following is a listing of on-line sites for the various cruise lines which you may find helpful:

Princess – – (click on Cruise Personalizer)

RCCL –  – (click on Before You Board)

Azamara –  – (click on Before You Cruise)

Celebrity –  – (click on Before Your Cruise)

Holland America –  – (click on For Booked Guests)

Norwegian –  – (click on Already Booked)

Carnival Lines –  – (click on Manage My Cruises)

Before you depart, make sure that  you have copies of all contracts, tickets, boarding passes, passport information, birth certificates (for minor children under 16 years of age) written travel permissions if they are not your legal children. As well as copies of your travel insurance policies, transfers, shuttle/airline/hotel and other confirmations, etc. Also if traveling to destinations which require Visas, you need to be sure you have taken care of all of that. Your travel agent, professional cruise planner, and the cruise line itself can all be helpful to you in getting this accomplished. Having these documents available during your pier checking in process as well as during your vacation at any time, (are not only required in some cases) and will go along way in making sure things stay on track..Don’t forget to utilize a final checklist to be sure you take care of everything before you leave. If you do not have one, just contact me through the below info, and I will be happy to provide you with our checklist form.

Also (once you are on board the ship), be sure you can have quick access to your stateroom number and deck level location handy to be able to speed you onto your stateroom, so you can drop your hand carried items, and go explore the ship or maybe catch a leisurely bite to eat. It’s been a long morning,

 I’m sure by now that you’re exhausted, or you must be hungry, or maybe just thirsty (or both). Hey, relax!!!!!!!! Now you’re Cruising.!!!!

For those who have been reading through our series of Cruise Mini Camp, you have now completed the first series. While more is forthcoming in the future we sincerely hope you have been able to gain some valuable insight into the wonderful and exciting world of cruising. Now you are ready to Hit the High Seas, and put your new found knowledge to work, and turn it into excitement and fun filled experiences. – Bon Voyage!!

 So Go Have Lots of Fun and Enjoy Everything!

For more information on making final preperations for your Cruise Adventure, you can contact Mike via email  . You can tweet (or follow) Mike at  . You can “Join” our Travel Club at  Mikes web site can be found at .  Follow Mike’s blog (or subscribe to it) at  (or merely click on the subscribe button above to have daily delivery to your email). View all of Mikes uploaded Flickr Photo Galleries at . Mike also edits his own twice daily e-newspaper called “The Compass Headings” you can see (or subscribe to) it free! at

Please feel free to leave a comment below on this articles’ contents. We are always looking for ideas or suggestions to expand and improve on our content! If you found the information helpful why not include (a tweet to followers) or (share a like) with your facebook friends, that they might benefit from the information as well. Thanks For Visiting, and please come back often to this daily Blog. – Mike

-The End


About cruisewithmike

Mike is a Professional Cruise Wedding Planner, Wedding Officiant,and owner of CruisewithMike Wedding Planners. With over 20 years of experience in the Travel Industry, as an Independant Travel Consultant, Customer Service Agent, and a retired Va. Magistrate, and Clergy. Mike has a very unique perspective on Customer and Wedding Service Needs and strives to provide custom service that's "TOPS" Totally Outrageous Professional Service, with every customer he works with.
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5 Responses to Cruise Vacation Preperations, a final Checklist

  1. Pingback: Top Five Most Popular Blog Posts | Cruise with Mike

  2. Very good and helpful post. Many thanks for the information here

  3. Rose Strunk says:

    I am still digesting the great pointers found on your web site and wanted to express my appreciation to you for them. I also appreciate you for really being quite helpful and also for deciding upon this form of exceptional themes that I would think many people are really in desperate need to know.

    REPLY: THANK YOU Rose, for such kind words.Please visit back often.-CruisewithMike

  4. Scott Lara says:

    Great tips. Also, Remember you will go through a metal detector, as well as bag inspection process! Similar but not as harsh! as at the airport. So be sure to Act accordingly.

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