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NewbieCruzer

First cruise, LOS March 31st!

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I have gained so much information from stumbling across the podcast and then reviewing the message boards here, almost on a daily basis! 

We are taking our first cruise on March 31st on Liberty of the Seas.  To say I'm a little nervous is an understatement; not because of being on a boat in the middle of the Gulf but more because I've never been on a boat in the middle of the Gulf....if that makes sense.  If I forget something there's no WalMart to run to.  I'm also nervous about packing.  I'm planning on my dress clothes, and even bought a new suit for the cruise, I'm just worried about getting the wrinkles out without having to pay for laundering.  So, here I am to ask you veterans for some tips!

1.  Best way to get wrinkles out of dress clothes?

2.  Must-haves to pack?

3.  Water shoes, tennis shoes or both (for walking around the ship and excursions)?

4.  Power strips without surge protector?

5.  Best time to arrive at the port?

6.  Best way to carry essentials on excursions?

 

I'm sure that's not all the questions I have or will have in the days leading up to embarkation.  Also, the excursions we are doing is Discover SCUBA, A zipline cave tubing thing, And a beach excursion!

 

Thanks in advance for any help for a Newbie!!

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Welcome aboard !

The only REAL mistake you can make is to not have the proper travel documents (I recommend always having a current passport).  That is really the only thing that could keep you from boarding the ship.  The rest of the details are far less important than you think they will be.  Trust me, I've made plenty of packing omissions and somehow I have managed to have a great cruise every single time !  Probably the worst packing mistake is not having comfortable shoes.  It's easy for me to say as I'm an old, fat woman BUT trying to be too cutesy can really cause great anxiety.  FORGET about what looks good and bring what FEELS good.  You will never see any of those people on the ship again...dress comfortably ! - especially the shoes !

You'll be fine !!!  Enjoy your first cruise.  You only get one <first>.

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Welcome! We'll be on Liberty in September, and I'm excited for your first cruise experience!

1. Wrinkles - Downy Wrinkle Release. Spray the clothes and then hang them in the bathroom when someone is taking a shower so the steam can help too.

2. Packing must haves - Over the door shoe hangar. We put this over the bathroom door so it was right at the door to the cabin - easy to drop in stuff we frequently took with us (sunglasses, sunscreen, etc.) Don't forget extra sunscreen and your sunglasses. The most important thing to pack is patience - you'll be with 4000 other people trying to get to the same place at the same time. When everyone else starts acting crazy, just take a breath and remember you're on vacation.

3. Shoes - we take both. Tennis shoes for the ship and if we are only shopping in port. Water shoes for beach days because I don't like sand in my tennis shoes.

4. We have brought one of those 3 plug extender things, but our last cruise was years ago, and we didn't rely on so many electronics. I'm looking at something like this now. image.png.d550c5d88cf152667d781a809a283ecd.png

5. Arrival at port - I'm an early to port kind of girl so my vacation starts as soon as possible. We usually get there between 10 and 10:30. If we have to wait I'd rather hang out at the port terminal than the hotel room anyway. 

6. Carrying essentials in port - we just use a backpack that we had laying around. DH has a waterproof pouch that is worn around the neck for cash, passports, etc.

 

Have a great time!

 

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You are going to have a great time! 

 

I bought a bunch of crap for my cruise on Freedom in 2015 that I never ended up using. So of course, I totally learned my lesson and bought $100 worth of more crap for my cruise next month! 😂 I think the essentials are what you’d take on any beach vacation plus some motion sickness medication and anything you can’t live without at home - for me, that’s a small fan since I have to have the white noise to sleep. This time I also sprung for the plastic luggage tag holders, a multi USB charging hub (no surge protection - search Anker on amazon), and antibacterial wipes that my husband will actually use. He detests alcohol based “goo” that is all around the ship. I also pack clips no matter where I’m going - they’re great for holding your drapes closed for a sleep in morning, holding your towel onto your chair during a windy sea day, and keeping chip bags closed on land vacations 😁

 

As for me, I’m not packing water shoes this time. I’ll bring my Chaco sandals to wear to the beach - in a pinch, they can stay on in unexpectedly rocky waters, but I didn’t need water shoes and regretted bringing them last time. We swear by our Deuter city light backpack - it’s great for everything from hiking to theme parks, cruising and more. Towels and water bottles fit great in a small backback.   As a “must have” this time, I’m bringing the ultimate dining package. I very much doubt that @WAAAYTOOO is an “old, fat woman” but if I have learned anything from her expertise it’s that cruising is for enjoyment and happiness - for me that means eating great food, so I’ll spend all my dinners in specialty restaurants. Your mileage might vary! 

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I second everything already said and add any medications you MIGHT use because when you are out in the middle of the Gulf you WILL need it. The drug store items are sorely limited on ship-usually a few shelves in the liquor store or gift shop. Also the shops are not open on port days and at night or early in the morning. One cruise I injured my back and needed pain medicine and ICY-HOT patches. Now I pack that just in case.

Also don't forget the sunscreen. Even if you are from TEXAS (guess going on Liberty), the sun is hotter than a Texas day in August. I forgot sunscreen, had an 8:00 am excursion on a catamaran and came back a lovely shade of maroon for the rest of the cruise. OUCH! 

Finally take your sense of fun and adventure! Try something new in port, drink a new drink, eat escargot if you have never tried them. (My grandchildren turned their noses up until they tried them and then ordered them every night!) As one comedian said on a ship, "You'll never see these people again, so have fun!"

 

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