Preparation For Traveling By Sea

By: Peter Wilson

When you think of purchasing cruise package holidays, you may think of rest and relaxation and seeing new destinations. But if you don't do your homework, and prepare far in advance, you could find yourself dealing with a lot of last minute problems.

The first thing you need to think of when looking for a cruise deal is when you want to travel and where you want to go. Part of this will have to do with your own schedule and desires. If you're not sure what destination would be best for you, try looking at some of the traveling periodicals that will discuss various vacation destinations and their benefits. Chances are you will find a location that calls to you.

If you are traveling out of your country, you will need a passport. Get this early. It could take a while for the passport to be processed so make sure you get it well in advance so you don't see your cruise deal turn into a cruise dud when you have to cancel the trip. If you already have a passport make sure to check it for its expiration date, and that it does not expire before or during your trip.

Next, some locations will require you to have certain shots to visit because of the threats of diseases common to that area. While these cases are fewer and farther between than they used to be, it's best to check, just in case.

Know what you can spend. A lot of people look for trips they like, and picture themselves traveling the seven seas before they find out if they can afford the trip. Many cruise lines will also insist on a large deposit to hold your space onboard. Learn what the pay schedules are for the cruise package and make sure you will also be able to save us some extra spending money for excursions, souveiners and extraneous expenses. Many places will take your credit cards, but when you are visiting individual countries, many of those are cash-only. So, make sure you have the dough on hand when you take your cruise. If you are planning on spending a lot while you are traveling, you may want to change a lot of those dollar bills into travelers cheques. If you wait until you are onboard or look for a larger institution at one of your destinations to get a cash withdrawal off your card, you may get lower exchange rates.

A month or so out from your cruise, it's time for you to make sure you are getting all your paperwork in order. The cruise ship should have sent your documents by that time. Make sure all the information is correct and read through all the legal details to make sure there is nothing you are missing in your responsibilities.

If you have pets at home, this is the time to make sure you have kennel reservations set up for them, or other plans to make sure they are cared for while you are gone. Don't forget having your mail held, or picked up for you.

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