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Lynette - Travel Advisor

Top 30 Virgin Voyages Advisor | Royal Caribbean l Top 150 Carnival Cruise Advisor

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Top Embarkation Day Mistakes To Avoid!

Updated: Jun 6, 2023

Are you a first-time cruiser with Carnival, feeling unsure about what to expect? It's normal to feel overwhelmed when preparing for your first sailing, but don't worry - we're here to help! Here are the top 11 mistakes that first-time Carnival cruisers make, and how to avoid them.




  1. Arriving too early or too late: Arriving too early might lead to a long waiting time before boarding, while arriving late could cause stress and even risk missing the ship. It's essential to follow the scheduled check-in time provided by Carnival.

  2. Not having proper travel documents: Forgetting passports, drivers license, luggage tags, boarding pass, visas, or other necessary identification documents can result in denied boarding. Always double-check that you have all the required paperwork before leaving for the port.

  3. Overpacking or underpacking: First-time cruisers might not know what to pack and may end up with too much or too little. It's essential to pack according to the cruise duration, planned activities, and dress codes. Check out our packing tips for first-time cruise video on YouTube: https://youtu.be/b3a9j3usCEk

  4. Not packing a carry-on bag: Having a carry-on bag with essentials like medication, swimsuits, and a change of clothes is crucial, as checked luggage may take some time to be delivered to your cabin.

  5. Ignoring cruise line communications: Failing to read pre-cruise emails or notifications from Carnival can result in missing crucial information about embarkation procedures, health and safety protocols, or updates on your sailing.

  6. Not completing online check-in: Completing the online check-in process before arriving at the port can save time and make the embarkation process smoother.

  7. Failing to download the Carnival app: The Carnival Hub app is essential for managing your cruise experience, including bookings, daily schedules, and ship maps. Download and familiarize yourself with the app before boarding.

  8. Not taking advantage of early check-in options: Some Carnival ships offer early check-in or priority boarding for a fee, which can save time and provide a more relaxed embarkation experience.

  9. Not preparing for possible seasickness: If you are prone to motion sickness or unsure how you'll react to being on a ship, pack seasickness remedies, such as medication or wristbands, to ensure you're prepared for the first day at sea.

  10. If your driving research beforehand was to park and cost. Parking link: https://www.carnival.com/help?topicid=4834

  11. Research lodging if you plan on coming in the day before.

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Can you have two pieces of luggage each, for a five day cruise on Carnival?

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Hey Fam! Yes you can

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