Cruise FAQ & Terms


Unsure about cruise lingo or have questions about taking a cruise?

Click on the letters below to look up definitions of various cruise terms.

Or, pick a topic from the FAQ below to find answers to common questions.


Choosing a Cruise
Is a cruise for me?
How old do I have to be to sail aboard a cruise ship?
Where can I go?
What types of cruises are there?
What kinds of boats can I cruise on?
How do I know the ship won't sink?
How long do cruises last?
Are cruises one-way or round-trip?
How do I decide which cruise line to choose?
How much do cruises cost and how do I get the best price?
How far in advance should I plan?

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Booking a Cruise
How do I book?
Can I book online?
How do I pick a cabin? What are my options?
If I'm single, do I have to share a cabin?
Can I get matched with a roommate?
Can I book for a group, wedding, or other special occasion?
What does my cruise fare include? What's not included?
Should I buy insurance?
Can I buy pre- or post-cruise packages?
How do I pay for my cruise?
Can I redeem or earn frequent flyer miles when purchasing a cruise?
Are there advantages to paying in full early?
If I cancel my cruise, will I receive a refund?

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Getting to the Cruise
What should I pack?
Will I need formalwear?
What travel documents do I need?
What currency should I bring, and how much of it?
How do I get to the departing port from my city?
What if I arrive at the departing port a day or so before my cruise?
How do I get to the ship?
What time do I board the ship?
What if I miss the ship?

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Onboard the Cruise
Are cruises safe onboard?
Where should I keep my valuables?
Will I become seasick on my cruise?
What if I get sick or need medical attention?
Can I get off the ship if I don't like the cruise?
What about passengers with special needs?
Are there children's programs? Is babysitting available?
Are there religious services onboard?
Can I bring my pet?
Is smoking allowed?
What is the legal drinking age?
What "extras" can I expect to pay for?
How much do I tip?
What can I purchase while onboard?
What services can I expect onboard?
Are there laundry services onboard?
What is the electrical current onboard?
Can others contact me, and can I contact others, while onboard?
Are visitors permitted onboard?
What will my cabin be like?
Is it worth the extra money for an oceanview cabin?
Can I switch cabins if I don't like the one I get?
When can I upgrade my cabin?
How much food is there?
What are different meal seatings?
Are special diets available?
Can I order room service?
What kind of activities can I participate in while onboard?
What is there to do at night?
Do I have to participate in the activities?
How do I find out about shore excursions?
Can I celebrate a special occasion onboard?

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At Port
How much time will I have at each port?
What activities or excursions can I expect? How much extra will they cost?
Is food provided while at port?
How much can I expect to spend while at each port?
Will there be buying pressure?
How do I exchange money at port?
Can I stay on the ship while it's at port?
What if I miss the ship while at port?
What if there is bad weather on port days?
Are ports safe?
What happens if an unsafe situation arises while I am at port?

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After the Cruise
Can I get a refund if I don't like some aspect of my cruise? If so, how?
Are there cruise loyalty programs?

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