The bad behaviour of more than 1,000 businessmen aboard Royal Caribbean’s Voyager of the Seas is a reminder to the rest of us to respect our fellow cruisers.
Around 1,300 employees from the Indian company Kamla Pasand took over the ship’s pool decks and bars, disrupting the rest of the passengers onboard, looking for a relaxing holiday.
But Royal Caribbean, took swift action and apologised to distraught passengers and issued refunds to guests.
And while many might point their fingers at the cruise lines, it’s up to guests to ensure that we all have a good time.
Here are some tips to ensure that you be the best cruise guest you can be.
Don’t be late
Being punctual is extremely important when you’re cruising. Your cruise ship will only wait for a certain amount of time when you’re embarking on returning from a shore excursion. Cruise ships run on very tight schedules, so not only will you anger your fellow cruise guests, but the ship’s captain and staff also won’t be happy that you’ve delayed time in port.
Share the sun loungers
Nothing is more infuriating than walking out to the pool deck or to the cabanas and find other cruisers’ towels that have been left on sun loungers to ‘reserve’ them. There is no such thing – sharing is caring. Lines like P&O say that pool chairs left unattended for more than 30 minutes will be freed up so don’t be a hog and share the space with your fellow cruisers.
Smoke in the designated areas
Cruise ships have designated smoking areas and it’s important that you don’t light up anywhere else. Not only is it a safety hazard but it’s not pleasant for other cruisers, especially children. So if you’re a smoker, check in advance where you can have a cigarette break.
Return to your cabins quietly
Yes, we’re all on holidays and we might want a drink and a boogie into the wee hours of the morning. While there is no specific noise rules, be mindful when you’re returning to your cabins after a night of shimmying at the bar. Some passengers are early risers or have to get up early for their shore excursion so don’t slam your doors and talk loudly in the hallways.
While many cruise lines have omitted dress codes, there are some lines like Cunard, which have formal evenings so make sure you pack appropriately. But as a general rule, it’s frowned upon if you’re walking along the main deck in your slippers and bathrobe. Also, swim wear is acceptable around the pool areas, but be mindful to cover up if you’re walking from the pool back to your cabin.
Keep the kids under control
The children are always going to be excited – the prospect of all those fun activities like water slides and arcade games, surf simulators, laser tag courses – but make sure that they be mindful that there are other guests too. The pool deck, which has to be shared, is a space for both the kids and adults so make sure the running and screaming is kept to a minimum.
Be conscious about health and safety
Be mindful that you’re onboard a cruise ship with thousands of other passengers and crew. So if you’re sick, be transparent on your health forms before you board as you don’t want to infect everyone on your cruise. But when you’re cruising, be aware to use the hand sanitisers provided by the cruise lines and make sure that if you sneeze into your hands, wash, wash, wash.