Booking a cruise is a really magical experience. You may feel that the amusement park vacations are just too boring. Or, you may be tired of exploring the same old cities and locations. Instead, why not take a cruise? There are plenty of things to do and to see on these cruises. Most of the time, you will be unlimited in where you want to go and the things that you would like to enjoy. But, one thing that you will need to decide about the cruise is the right time for you to go on it.
Let’s face it, not everyone gets a choice as to when they can take their vacations. Many have to worry about school schedules and work ones as well. But, the more options that you have in the times that you can travel, the better your options are going to be. There are plenty of them too. But, to break it down, we’ll put it quite simply as traveling in the off season, which is generally the winter months, or traveling in the travel season which includes summer and holidays from school.
Off Season Travel Versus In Season
There are many benefits to each of these choices. Really, it is up to you to decide which the right choice for our needs is. But, if you do have the options to consider, then look at what is available. First in the season of travel, you usually can find more people to travel with. You can get your group together and go as a family which can help you to get lower rates. You can also find a wide range of options in where to travel as most cruises run during this time period.
But, if you travel in the off season, you may be able to save quite a bit of money. Many cruise lines will offer outstanding packages for this time period. You usually do not need as much time to book these trips either. You can usually find the right location to go to within a small amount of time. And, there are fewer crowds as well. Of course, there may be a limit to the locations that you travel to due to winter weather, but you may find that some areas, like the tropics are more enjoyable in slightly cooler weather.
With all of that said, you need to carefully consider the options that you have. Finding the right deal and the right cruise are also important to you. Yet, with the world as your destination, you may be able to find just what you would like to have.
A Simple Plan
Knowing what type of information you’ll need to have before you board and what to pack isn’t an exact science. However, it does help to know in advance what to expect and how to plan your cruise.
Your ticket packet information will give you specific instructions, but most cruise lines will require at least a state issued picture I.D., even if your cruise will stay in U.S. territorial waters. If your ship is going to another country, you’ll probably need to bring a passport or a birth certificate with a raised seal and a governmentally issued I.D. such as a driver’s license.
Whether you need a passport or not depends on where you are going. Foreign travel often requires a passport. However, you may be able to enter some countries with just a notarized birth certificate with a raised seal and your driver’s license. Although, some countries may not require much to enter, you’ll still need proof of citizenship when you re-enter the United States. You’ll need to find out if any of the foreign travel you are planning will require a passport or visa.
If you don’t have a passport, apply for one at least 3 months before travel. If you already have a passport, make sure it will still be valid for your entire trip. If your passport will be within six months of expiration while you’re traveling, you may want to get a new passport since some countries now require that your passport must be valid six months after your return to the U.S.
You can get a passport at a State Department Passport Agency, a clerk of any Federal or State Court of record, designated municipal or county official or a designated U.S. Post Office. They usually run around $100 for an adult, so be sure and figure this expense into your cruise budget.
To get your passport, you will, most likely, need to appear in person at the issuing facility. If you are a first time applicant, you’ll need to appear in person at one of the official locations listed above. You will also need to appear in person if it has been more than 12 years since your last passport was issued or you were under 16 years of age when your last passport was issued. Applicants under 13 are not always required to appear in person since a parent or guardian may execute the application on the child’s behalf.