Whether you'll be cruising for the first time or the fiftieth, you're guaranteed to find a nugget or two of wisdom in this section. Check out the top ten things you need to know about those moments just before and after you hop onboard.

1. For the first day of your cruise, pack a small carry-on bag with your travel documents, a change of clothes, bathing suit, workout clothes and any medications you may need. That way you don't have to wait for your checked-in bags to arrive in your stateroom.

2. If you've never been to the departure port before, you can find and print directions here.



3. Royal Caribbean International requires guests to be checked in no later than 60 minutes prior to the scheduled sailing time*. Guests arriving late will not be permitted to sail. This supports government regulations in some ports that require cruise lines to submit a departure manifest 60 minutes prior to sailing. Guests are requested to complete Online Check-In no later than 3 days prior to the cruise in order to expedite the pier check-in process.

*Some sailings may require an earlier check-in time. Please refer to your Guest Vacation Documents for specific information.


4. Friends and relatives are welcome to come to the pier to see you off. However, for security reasons, they will not be allowed to board the ship at any port.

5. We now use single-colour luggage tags for all ships in the fleet to help your bags get where they need to go. Luggage tags are now personalised with name and stateroom number. Tags for different ships are identified by bolded ship name for ease of identification.

6. If you're a Platinum, Diamond or Diamond Plus member of our Crown & Anchor Society, be sure to take advantage of priority check-in and the private departure lounge.

7. When you first come aboard, be sure to check out your stateroom. There you'll find our Cruise Compass with schedules for all the onboard activities. Crown & Anchor Society members will also find the Ultimate Value Booklet in their stateroom.

8. If you're travelling with your family, be sure to check the Cruise Compass for the "Family Welcome Aboard Show" times. This entertaining performance will tell you all about the activities available for families and includes registration for our Adventure Ocean Youth Program.

9. If the spa or fitness classes are your thing, try to make your appointments on the first day, as the most popular treatments and time slots fill up fast.

10. Hungry? Head up to the Windjammer Café - they'll be offering snacks, sandwiches, salads, and more throughout embarkation.