Etiquette For Cruise Ships

Although there is no handbook written describing basic cruising etiquette, there are some simple common sense rules you should follow while you are cruising.

A cruise ship is like a large floating city. Remember that you will be dealing with people from all walks of life, different cultures and religions. Smile. Realize they will do things differently than you.

Get to know the ship. Take the time to find out where the restaurants, shops, gym, etc., are beforehand. Most cruise lines supply layouts of the boat before your cruise starts.

Keep up with the ship's activities. They'll be offering lots of different activities both shipboard and at port. This is a way to get information about the ports of call you will be visiting. The cruise personnel is there to answer any questions you might have. You might want to take an excursion with the cruise line instead of visiting the port of call by yourself. This way you'll be sure to see all the interesting sites.

The first thing you should do is relax. You're on vacation. Don't worry, you don't have any deadlines, and nowhere to go, so chill. You may have to wait in lines, don't whine. Say hello to people next to you in line. Invite a stranger to join you in a game of cards, or a board game to help break up the monotony.

Cruise ships will often post some clothing guidelines for dinner or live entertainment for that evening. These are just guidelines, and you won't have to walk the gang plank if you don't follow them, but you may feel very uncomfortable wearing bermuda shorts and flip flops to a semi-formal dinner or dance.

Be respectful of others and don't hog gym equipment, hot tubs, lounge chairs, computers, etc. There are thousands of others on board who want to use them too!

Only smoke in designated areas. These designated areas are well marked. Do not smoke at your dinner table until all have finished eating.

Don't invite a crowd of people to cut in a line in front of you. There is nothing more exasperating for those waiting behind you. Letting your spouse in is one thing, but not a group you just met on deck.

Remember a smile will go a long way towards easing any tensions you might find. Each and every person on the cruise is there to enjoy his or herself. The above are just common sense rules of etiquette that you could use every day too.
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Ryan Larson