Plan Your Cruise

Cruise and travel tips to help you plan your cruise vacation.  You’ll find cruise advice, packing tips, onboard experiences, how to choose a cruise ship shore excursion and much more.

If you are a solo female traveler like me, you’ll find a wide range of solo travel advice.  There are articles that cover everything from solo dining on a cruise ship to staying safe in a new cruise port.

I try to review as many cruise ship shore excursions as possible so you can decide what shore excursions to take before you cruise.

For actual cruise reviews, cruise ship profiles and daily cruise reports, head to
Ocean Cruise Reviews.

Marjerie Glacier Alaska Inside Passage Cruise

Do You Need a Passport for an Alaska Cruise?

You’re finally taking that long-awaited Alaska cruise.  If you’re like most people, you’ll hop on a plane and within hours be at an embarkation port.  One question I hear a lot is, “do I need a passport  for an Alaska cruise?”  The answer is easy: yes.  And no. On a “closed-loop cruise” – one that […] Read more…

Half Moon Cay Horses in the Ocean

Half Moon Cay Bahamas Horseback Riding Review

For many cruisers, a stop at this beautiful private island means a day to kick-back at the beach.  For me, Half Moon Cay means a cruise excursion to go horseback riding in the ocean. Half Moon Cay is Holland America’s private island in the Bahamas.  It’s located halfway between Cat Island and Eleuthra, about 100 […] Read more…

Royal Caribbean Beverage Packages Explained

Whether or not to purchase an all-inclusive beverage package can be a bit tricky.  All Royal Caribbean beverage packages have rules of course, especially about sharing.  Their rules require that if one person in a stateroom purchases a beverage package, then BOTH must purchase a beverage package. All-Inclusive Beverage Packages Considering that the prices are […] Read more…

Do You Need a Passport to Take a Cruise From the U.S.

It’s sort of complicated.  The answer is yes you need a passport…and no you don’t. Readers ask, “I’m a United States citizen taking a cruise from the U.S. to the Caribbean.  Do I need a U.S. passport”? After I received this same question again today, I decided to put together this passport advice article. Mostly, […] Read more…

Queen Mary 2 at Brooklyn Cruise Terminal

10 Best Tips For Your First Transatlantic Cruise

A transatlantic crossing is an entirely different cruise. “It’s not really the middle of nowhere.”  That’s what I find myself saying whenever someone declares, “I’d never go on a transatlantic cruise.” I have to admit, while not exactly in the middle of nowhere, there isn’t a whole lot of activity going on, except maybe for […] Read more…

Norwegian Cruise Line cruise.

How to Pack for a Norwegian Cruise Line Cruise

If you’ve cruised on other cruise lines, or if this is your first Norwegian Cruise Line cruise, you should know that a cruise with Norwegian will be a totally different cruise experience. Especially when it comes to how to pack. Norwegian (or NCL as it was once called) created their Freestyle Cruising concept way back in […] Read more…

Viking Cruises Viking Star off of Corfu Greece

What to Know if You are Planning a Cruise in 2019

A couple of months ago, I received an email request for a phone interview.  A freelance writer, Mark Cantrell, was putting together a cruise-related article for a magazine.  The topic was aimed at the benefits of a cruise vacation and then planning a cruise.  I happened to be out of the country so I asked […] Read more…

What to do in Seven Canada cruise ports

What to Do in Seven of My Favorite Canada Cruise Ports

Don’t miss these seven Canada cruise ports Cruises to Canada rank really high on my list of favorite cruise itineraries.  Almost all cruise ships for a cruise to Canada conveniently depart from the east coast of the U.S.  Maybe it’s the scenery or the ever-changing weather or just a particular port.  Canada cruise ports offer […] Read more…

Royal Caribbean Oasis of the Seas

Best Tips for Easy Debarkation on Oasis of the Seas

At 7am on debarkation morning, some 5,400 passengers are eager to go on their merry way after a week-long cruise.  Of those, probably a couple thousand arrived by car.  With all this activity – people rushing to their cars, busses and taxis – you’d think an Oasis of the Seas debarkation would be a chaotic […] Read more…

How to Bring Wine on Your Cruise

Guide to Bringing Wine on a Cruise 2019

What to know if you plan to bring wine on a cruise. I know a lot of cruisers who prefer to bring wine on a cruise that they’ve purchased at home. I even knew someone who packed inexpensive wine glasses to use in their stateroom with their smuggled French Bordeaux. Then again, years ago, people simply bubble-wrapped their […] Read more…

How to Choose a Panama Canal Cruise

It’s been on my bucket list for quite a while.  So when I had a chance to jump on Crystal Serenity for a Panama Canal cruise that included a full transit of this feat of engineering, the decision was easy.  But it wasn’t until I really started to look at several other cruise lines’ itineraries […] Read more…

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