This is a continuation from: First Time Cruiser? Finally On Board!

If you have a sea day, you won’t be in port anywhere. The ship will be “at sea” all day and night. Usually there are more activities available on sea days. It’s a great time to get up early and enjoy the morning on the pool deck or other places, before it gets busy – or if you prefer, to sleep in. You can relax or do as many activities as you wish.

When you arrive in port, there are two different types of ports. One you can just walk off the pier, the other you are anchored off shore and must get on a tender (a smaller boat that takes you to the shore).

Before anyone is allowed off the ship, it must be cleared with immigration and customs officials. Usually this doesn’t take much time, but sometimes it takes longer than expected, so be patient. Disembarking may be staggered. You may need to get an appointed time. If you have booked an excursion with the cruise line, you will get instructions from them.

You will need your ship id and sometimes your passport or id (not in all countries) to both leave or return the ship.

If you decide to go on your own, know that you are responsible for returning to the ship on time. The ship will NOT wait for you. The only time the ship may wait for you is if you are on an excursion you booked through them.

When you get back to the ship, you will again need to show your ship id (and possibly your passport or other government issued id). You will also need to go through the security scanning on board the ship. If you have any items that you are not allowed to have while on the ship, like alcohol, it will be taken from you and held until your final day on the cruise. Don’t worry, you’ll get it back. But be sure you do not try to bring anything on board that is illegal. It will not be returned to you.

Now you can enjoy the rest of your day and evening on the ship!

To be continued…