1. Arrive at your departure port the day BEFORE your cruise. So much can go wrong with airport delays, traffic, cancelled flights, etc. You certainly don't want to "miss the boat"! 2. Over drinking alcohol on your cruise. No one enjoys being around obnoxious people. All inclusive cruise ships and beverage packages make it even more tempting to over-drink. Do yourself a favour and pace yourself so that your body will be happier about it! 3. Purchase travel insurance for your cruise as cruising without travel insurance is very risky. There are a wide range of policies offered that include coverage for medical (your medical insurance most likely won’t cover you out of the country), travel delays and interruptions, and cancellations. 4. Cruising with a Passport is usually required except for some "closed-loop" cruises that enable Americans to travel without a passport. Even in these cases though, it's recommended that you travel with a passport, just in case... If you had to fly home from any of your ports-of-call because of a family emergency or an illness or injury, you could be totally out of luck! A Passport is a small investment to insure that you can return home hassle-free. 5. Don't forget to turn data roaming off on your cell phone Prior to leaving for your cruise vacation, you should go to the settings on your phone and make sure that data roaming is turned off (unless you have a fabulous package with your cell phone provider as we've been fortunate enough to have). This will keep your cell phone from racking up huge charges and using data even when it is in your pocket. Putting your phone in airplane mode will also keep you from racking up additional charges. 6. Don't get left behind in port cause when the captain says that the ship is leaving port at 5:00, he means it. He isn’t going to wait around for those who lost track of time. If you get left behind in port, you are responsible for your own transportation to the next port or back home. The costs can be several thousand dollars each. Plan on arriving back near the ship 1 to 1 1/2 hours before you are scheduled to leave. This not only gives you some time to shop in the port area, but also gives you plenty of leeway if you run into traffic or your taxi or bus has a breakdown on the way back. 7. Eating only at the buffet - good grief, why would you? The best food on a cruise is almost always in the main dining room or specialty restaurants. By eating only at the buffet, you miss out on the great food and service that you can experience if you slow down and enjoy it. 8. Not tipping the crew While some cruise lines are inclusive of this and most others automatically charge a daily gratuity or service surcharge to your stateroom, you can have the charges removed by going to guest services. However, just because you are allowed to have them taken off doesn’t mean that you should. You wouldn’t go to a restaurant without tipping and you shouldn’t go on a cruise without tipping the staff that works so hard to make your trip a pleasant one. 9. Treat the crew with respect as you expect them to do the same with you. We all have bad days, but remember that they work 7 days a week and are away from their family for 6-9 months at a time? Kind words go a long way. 10. Don't book flights too early on disembarkation day Cruise lines recommend not booking flights before noon on disembarkation day. Even though your arrival time says 7:00 a.m., there is almost no chance of catching an 8:30 flight. Why end your vacation with a stressful travel day?