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Plan a Cruise

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All you need to know about planning your first or next cruise. Information on selecting the right cruise for you, useful tips for first-time cruisers, government and official information, travel insurance, cruising weather, and health concerns.
  1. Before You Cruise
  2. General Cruise Information
  3. Government and Official Information
  1. Cruise Travel Health and Safety
  2. Cruise Weather
  3. Family Cruises

Before You Cruise

World Map

Planning a cruise can be a daunting challenge, but if you have made all the required pre-cruise decisions, the rest of the trip will be easy. Once you are on the ship, your room, meals, itinerary, and entertainment are mostly decided, so you can focus on enjoying your cruise vacation!

General Cruise Information

St. Barts in the Caribbean

Once you have booked your cruise, you will need some general information to help make your vacation more enjoyable

Government and Official Information

Passport Cover Photo Courtesy of the U.S. State Department

Travel can be a mind-expanding and life-changing experience. Although sometimes government travel regulations can make travel more complicated, the lasting memories you will bring home from your cruise vacation will often make you forget (or at least lessen) the inconveniences and frustrations of your air connections or lost luggage. This list of government and official information on passports, visas, inspections, travel alerts and more will be useful in planning your first or next cruise vacation.

Cruise Travel Health and Safety

Don't let a fear of illness or poor security keep you from taking a cruise. Use common sense and get informed about cruise health and safety concerns. This section includes health issues including seasickness, Norwalk virus, and food quality and safety issues such as fire and cruise crime.

Cruise Weather

Hurricane Picture Courtesy of NOAA

Weather is something we all worry about and talk about when traveling. We can't control the weather, but informed travelers can use the cruise destination weather forecasts for timing their cruise or for planning their cruise clothing.

Family Cruises

Freedom of the Seas Photo Courtesy of Royal Caribbean International

Cruises make wonderful family vacations. Large cruise ships cater to all ages and many offer interesting and/or educational age-specific children's programs. With over 60 cruise lines and almost 300 cruise ships to choose from, selecting the right cruise line for your family is often difficult. For most families, a large ship offers the greatest variety of activities, but small ships often provide better opportunities for viewing nature and wildlife.

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