Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Cruising Tips { Guest Post: Kate @ Green Fashionista }

Hey Girl Talk readers! My name is Kate and you can find me blogging over at my little corner of the internet Green Fashionista where I blog about everything from fashion and beauty reviews to fun recipes to travel recaps, and weekend shenanigans which are typically shenanigans. While Ashley is away cruising the Caribbean, I offered to come on over for the day and talk about how much I love cruising. Nope, I'm not jealous at all that she's sipping on umbrella drinks while looking out at the gorgeous blue water...

I love cruising because you're on a floating resort that takes you to several different countries/islands all in one trip without having to unpack more than once. All your meals and onboard entertainment are included, and you can't go wrong with dressing up and going to dinner and a show every night. 

I've been on six cruises now (my husband has been on ten!) which have included:

Two 7 night Western Caribbean cruises
One 7 night Southern Caribbean cruise (my favorite!)
One 3 night Bahamas cruise to celebrate a friend's 30th birthday
One 3 night Western Mediterranean cruise
One 7 night Eastern Caribbean cruise

I wanted to share with you my top tips for when you're booking a cruise and/or are about to set sail:

1. Don't forget your passport! Anything else you may forget at home can be re-purchased (bathing suits, toiletries, even formal wear) on board. But you'll need your passport to get on board (some cruises only require a birth certificate, but it's always best to bring your passport).

2. Spring for the balcony stateroom, it is worth every penny! Once you go balcony you can't go back, and it's so true. You get a lot more room in the stateroom, plus a sitting area, and your own private veranda which is great for enjoying room service breakfast in the mornings (always free) and a night cap in the evenings.

*Our stateroom on the Norwegian Epic*

3. Don't over pack, especially if you're on a Caribbean cruise or any cruise going somewhere warm and tropical. You'll live in bathing suits and cover-ups by day and sundresses (cocktail dresses on formal nights) by night. They also provide bath towels in your room (replenished daily) along with beach towels for the pool and on the islands which you can change out for fresh ones as much as you need.

4. Order as much food as you want! When at dinner, if you want 3 appetizers, 2 entrees, and 3 desserts... go for it! Sometimes it's hard to choose just one thing, and you're able to order as much as you want and the servers love it!

5. Cruise with friends! We've been on several cruises just the two of us, and we've also cruised on a 7 night cruise with another couple, and a 3 night cruise with a group of 10 of us which was so much fun!

6. If you're on a short cruise like a 3 night itinerary to the Bahamas, purchase the beverage package especially if you're traveling with a group. When 10 of us sailed to the Bahamas for a friend's birthday it was nice to just order drinks or a round of champagne for everyone at dinner without worrying about it all adding up. It also worked out great on the private island in the Bahamas that all of our food and drinks were included there as well since it was owned by the cruise line.

7. Practice safe sun! Don't forget to pack sunscreen, aloe (in case of sunburns), and a beach hat to further protect your face. Of course you're going to come back beautifully bronzed, but you don't need to burn or cause skin damage by not protecting yourself on the trip.

8. HAVE FUN! I have the best time, when I get up and dance with the entertainment crew during deck parties and at the night club. You'll hear the same line dance songs over and over, but you'll be a champ by the end of your cruise.

9. Enjoy all the fruity umbrella drinks, this is the time to indulge!

10. Enjoy the fun amenities on board like the Broadway style shows, ice bars, karaoke, jazz lounges, comedy clubs, themed deck parties, and specialty shows such as The Blue Man Group.

Can't wait to hear all about Ashley's cruise when she gets back!


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