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Stuff You Wish You Knew Before Your 1st Cruise
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    Krys
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    Stuff You Wish You Knew Before Your 1st Cruise

    by Krys » Tue Jul 23, 2013 3:35 am

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    That's cause I am... :mrgreen: anyway, I like to research and have half a clue before I go so this thread idea came to me. I know there are many, many veterans cruising who've gone multiple times and know the drill, but there are also first timers like me. While announcements are at a standstill, I was wondering if you have any advice? Is there anything you wish you had known about before your first cruise? Is the Crayola room still there? Are there any other helpful cruise secrets you can dish out ?

    70000 TONS OF METAL TIPS LIST:

    1. Get to port early. The line gets longer in the afternoon, so arrival @ 11:45am will help you beat the line.

    2. The hotel concierge/front desk can help you arrange a shuttle to the port. I've stayed at airport properties a few times and it costs @ $11 per person.

    3. Get some breakfast before arrival and departure, and don't forget to poop. The wait times getting on and off the ship and going through customs can be over an hour. Shitting your pants takes roughly the same amount of time. :P

    4. Security/Police don't mess around at the Port of Miami. Mind your P's & Q's and don't take pictures.

    5. Explore the ship. I didn't know about the Viking Crown Lounge until after the first cruise, and I found out later that Amon Amarth was up there for a while.

    6. Get your merch during the headlining acts. Fuck waiting in line.

    7. The food in the fine dining restaurant is not that great, and it takes a long time to get on your table. (Just my opinion)

    8. Smoking is permissible only in designated areas, and those who smoke should be respectful of The Majesty of The Seas and other cruisers. Use the ashtrays. When hard wind blows on open decks, don’t smoke cigarettes there.

    9. Don't mob the musicians. Be respectful. They're on vacation too. Buying them a drink and saying hi is cool, but don't ask for autographs unless it's an appropriate time and place. I've never had a problem asking for a picture though.

    10. Use the outlets for ordering drinks. The servers that walk around charge an additional service fee, so to avoid that, just go to a bar. They're everywhere.

    11. Be respectful of your cabinmates. No one likes puke in the shower or a mess in the room, so clean up after yourself and flush when you're done. :P

    12. Beware of flooded bathrooms. (Does anyone have advice for if this should occur?)

    13. Don't book shore excursions on the boat. Figure it out for yourself and save some money

    14. Don't worry about getting off the boat immediately if you don’t have a flight to catch. Breakfast is available for departing passengers, so take advantage of it before you leave. Enjoy some last drinks with your new friends. The disembarking line is huge anyway. Better to relax than to sit in the hall waiting.

    15. The housekeeping staff is phenomenal. Tip them accordingly if you prefer, but gratuities are included with the price. Same with the bartenders.

    16. Avoid the casino unless you have the extra cash. If you're on a budget, don't do it. They will take your money, but have fun while it's happening. And they are only open while at sea.

    17. Pay attention to your muster station number. You'll need to go there when the signal is given.

    18. Don't lose your Sea Pass Card. Store it safely at all times. If you do misplace it, report it to Guest Services on Deck 4 immediately.

    19. Don't take pictures of the pictures on Deck 3. They don't like that very much.

    20. Go to as many shows as possible! Listen to metal all day, thrash 'til death, and fuckin' party your ass off!!!!

    21. Take a bottle of water before heading to the port to board the ship. Waiting in line and thirst don’t match ;-) later on I used the same bottle to get some water to my cabin before my nap.

    22. Attend all pre-cruise activities. You will meet fellow cruisers – the friendship starts before boarding.

    23. Attend the forum party on the boat after the drill.

    24. Alcoholic cocktails or wine cost the same (or almost same) as beer and are great. I wish I knew about cheap Mojitos on my first cruise.

    25. When leaving the boat take your luggage with you. It will speed up the time going on shore and you will have your stuff with you at all times. This is instead of placing your bag outside of the cabin at midnight before departure. A night before disembarkment you will receive tags and a message to place your lugage in front of your cabin before (I am not sure about time) let's say 1:00 am. During the night the stewards will move bags to cargo area to unload them from the boat. You can disembark the boat according to the color of your bag tag, times will be given in info bulletin. You can then pick up your bag on land, before going thru the pass control (immigration). I prefer NOT to give my bag away a night before so I carry it myself from the boat at the time I chose to get off the boat. This means I pack my bag last minute before leaving the cabin.

    26. Prepare to stay awake for the last night on the boat. This is when the biggest party happens. SLEEP IS THE ENEMY. If you are sleeping you are missing out on fun. It doesn't hurt to plan naps around a few bands that you don't care to catch and on the first couple nights there isn't that much of a party in the karaoke lounge after 5 or 6 am. But, on the last night the party is one of the best parts of the cruise and you do not want to be asleep.

    27. Use a “do not disturb” key in the outside lock or a sock on the door if you are “busy” in your cabin with another cruiser J This will help you avoid stress and embarrassment if your cabin mates try to enter.

    28. USE SUNSCREEN. No buts... just remember to wear some.

    29. It may get windy & chilly at night on sun deck (one above the pool deck).

    30. In Bolero Lounge you can chill during the day but it’s very hot during the karaoke nights.

    31. Meet everyone, talk to anyone, drink with someone. Have fun, thrash, scream and sing along.

    32. Pre-broading at the port can be hectic if you're carrying luggage with you through security. Tip the porter curbside, and get your bag from the hallway outside your cabin roughly an hour after broading the ship.

    33. Eat at the Compass Deli. The hours will be listed on the ship program you get in your room every morning. It's tucked away in a corner next to the (bad) pizza place. Some very good soups, sandwiches and quesadillas are available.

    34. If you want to talk to Andy undisturbed the best way is to have a cigarette with him in a Bolero during the day :) He's a busy guy apparently!

    35. If you buy duty free alcohol it gets delivered to your room at 5PM on the last night...meaning if you want you have 12 hours to drink it rather than taking it with you. If you open it you aren't getting off the boat with it though so make sure you drink it.

    36. Buy rum runners and put it in your bag. MAKE SURE YOUR BAG IS SMALL ENOUGH TO CARRY ON WITH YOU, if it is too big to go through the scanners they will check your bag for you and you will lose your alcohol.

    37. Check the running order and plan out your whole week to make sure that you can catch as many bands as possible. I messed up on my planning the first 2 years and wound up missing 3 bands each time that I really wanted to see. UMC are getting better every year at running it and the 2 most recent ones happened almost perfectly on time (first night on barge got a little messed, that's all I can remember).

    38. Get off the boat on excursion day. If you are on a budget, you don't have to really do anything. Just walk around for a bit, take some photgraphs, soak in the tropical sunshine etc. It's good to get off the boat as you only get the opportunity once.

    39. Don't worry about getting to shows too far ahead of time. If you want to be on the rail of a show, just show up 10-15 minutes early. You'd be VERY surprised at how most shows are not even close to full capacity. More cruisers see less shows than you think.

    40. The rooms are much smaller and shittier than you think. Be prepared for this. You won't be spending that much time inside anyway so go with it.

    41. Don't be a cheap bastard. Tip for excellent service.

    42. Catch at least part of one set from behind the stage at the pool deck. VERY cool.

    43. The medical staff is terrifying. Try and avoid getting sick or injured in general :).

    44. Plan each day out: Plan what sets you'll see. Plan for dinner/food. Be organized. See partial sets. These bands mostly don't hit the U.S. often (if ever). The variety of metal on the cruise is one of it's true highlights.

    45. Remember to sleep just enough. Your core bands that you have heard of generally play from 4:00 pm to 2:00 am. I generally stayed up to 4am each night and got up at 10-11. Some people here do crazy shit with no sleeping. The shows are sparsely populated after 1:00 am IMO.

    46. Don't worry about excessive moshing, crowd surfing, and or fighting. Doesn't happen. Pure euro crowd. Girls can get close to stage and not have to worry about shit.

    47. While in Miami, Little Havana is your friend when you're hungry. Amazing Cuban food (better than Cuba according to my friends who are actually Cuban):
    a. El Palacio De Los Jugos - "Fruit Palace" is an outdoor market, go inside and try their fruit juices. Amazing things to put in your mouth.
    b. La Camaronera Seafood Joint and Fish Market - Sooooo good. Fish sandwiches. Fresh. Amazing.
    c. Versailles - pretty well known place to grab some Cuban food; if it's busy the place across the street is supposedly equally as good.

    48. In South Beach party the night before the cruise on the beach. there will be lots of people in Black its hard to miss.

    49. Transportation tips:

    a. It's pretty standard in Miami to get a baller rental car. If they offer you a cheap upgrade, it's probably because they have too many luxury cars around and are trying to rent them. Only in Miami!
    b. Airport Shuttle - if you fly into Ft. Lauderdale (this is a common airport for US citizens to fly into via Southwest Airlines), there's a shuttle that will take you to the port from the airport that's much cheaper than a taxi. It will also bring you back to the airport.
    c. Taxis in Ft. Lauderdale/Miami are freaking slow. Almost missed my flight waiting an hour for a taxi to show up after I left the airport for lunch to kill time.

    50. Know what areas you're staying in and be safe. Coral Gables is nice, South Beach is nice, a lot of other places are sketchy.

    51. If you're feeling really dangerous, you can book your hotel on short notice with Priceline and get really nice hotels for pretty cheap. Not advisable for non-US citizens.

    52. Your 8's and 9's where you live are Miami's 5's or 6's. It's a land of very beautiful people :D.

    53. Relax, you don't need too plan that much, I had a lot of plans and then, when I was in Miami, didn't do even half of the things I "planned", just met people to drink and "went with the flow". You'll have lots of metal tourist guides. I only made plans for the running order, if you want to see all the bands you like, a minimum plan must be made.

    54. Even with bands playing twice each, you will likely not get to see all the performances you would like to. Between bands playing at the same time, unanticipated delays, clinics/other activities, and eats/drinks, you're bound to miss something. I think if you come to terms with that fact, you'll probably relax just a bit more.

    55. Stairs are good exercise and quicker, but lifts are awesome because so much random stuff happens in them :)

    56. Visit the 'fine dining' restaurant at least once. The staff like to sit people at the same table so you will often end up sitting with band members or roadies (I had an excellent conversation this year with a couple of the guys from In Flames).

    57. if you are old like me, stock up on those little 'energy shots' they sell everywhere in Miami. A hit from one of those at midnight really helped get me through to dawn on several occasions. Red Bull is available onbroad, but just be careful not to overdo it with caffeine.

    58. Be nice to the security guys. They are only doing their job. And they are nice people. I've became quite good friends with some of them (grandpa, JD, Jason) over the past three cruises.

    59. If it becomes a chore to see every single band you want to then you definitely should chill a little. I had my week planned out with the running order but on day 4 there was a few hours where that plan went to the wind and I just partied. At least they are keeping the buffet open later for us, so at 2 in the morning when you are scrambling to catch a bite between bands you have more choices than shitty pizza!

    60. Bring something from your country/state (alcohol, candies...) to the beach party. I made a lot of friends just giving away shots of mezcal to random people there. I also got offered A LOT of foreign alcohol and beers (Belgium beer, some weird candy, Finnish alcohol, Puerto Rican rum, Brazilian cachasa, a delicious German beverage that tasted like nutella, Spanish sangria... And some others that I can't remember).

    61. Don’t be shy. Everyone in the cruise is incredibly friendly and very cool, so you'll make friends immediately. On that note, make sure to be at the forum meet-up at the basketball court (will it be there again?) after the muster drill. Great opportunity to finally put a face and a voice to everyone here.

    62. Alternatively, DON'T get to the port early because you WILL be standing in line forever. We usually leave the hotel around noon and the lines to get onto the ship are not that massive any more.

    63. Take your own luggage. The security is NOT like at the airport where you have to take stuff out and as some might remember, Troy or Elizabeth had some money stolen out of their luggage. The rooms are usually ready by 1 or 2pm so you won't have to slep your shit around for long anyways.

    64. DO eat in the sit-down restaurant. Last cruise I ate more at the buffet (schedule wise had too) and by Thursday morning my feet and ankles were swollen. I assume the buffet food is loaded with MSG and that's why. Just my opinion.

    65. If you order from the same walk around waiter, they WILL remember you (especially if you tip or round up your bill) and DO take care of you faster.

    66. You can sleep once back at home or take a power nap in the theaters or on the pool deck. NO reason to go to your cabin during the day to get some zzzz's. No one will paint on your face with a sharpie or disturb you in anyway. People might take pictures with you sleeping but that's about it. (hint - Daniel)

    67. - MINGLE - strike conversation with the random dude or dudette next to you. We are all there for the same purpose, no egos.

    68. I never got sea-sick, but maybe bring something for that if you think you will. There are patches for behind the ears and pills I think.

    69. For the meet -n greet with the bands - the lines are IN-fucking-SANE. Don't expect to have the bands sign all of your stuff. Bring one or maybe two items, take a pic with them and move along so the 100 people behind you will have a chance to do the same. The artists do mingle with the crowd as it is, so no need to hold up the process.

    70. DO attend karaoke - it will start off slow on Monday, but by Wednesday at the latest the place is hopping.
    Last edited by Krys on Fri Dec 05, 2014 8:09 am, edited 7 times in total.
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    2015 - Cabin 6471!
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    dinki
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    Re: Stuff You Wish You Knew Before Your 1st Cruise

    by dinki » Tue Jul 23, 2013 3:42 am

    nice idea. maybe you can do a list of advices from the vets for the FirstTimers in your first post? maybe just complete it after each advices? ;)

    I had also the idea to start such a thread but not so far away from the cruise just 3-4 weeks before just to make sure that everything is clear for me as a firsttimer
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    Krys
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    Re: Stuff You Wish You Knew Before Your 1st Cruise

    by Krys » Tue Jul 23, 2013 4:38 am

    dinki wrote:nice idea. maybe you can do a list of advices from the vets for the FirstTimers in your first post? maybe just complete it after each advices? ;)

    I had also the idea to start such a thread but not so far away from the cruise just 3-4 weeks before just to make sure that everything is clear for me as a firsttimer


    Sure, I'll add gladly add suggestions to a list on the first post. And... yes, this is kind of early :oops: but there's not much else going on here right now either.
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    2015 - Cabin 6471!
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    Malaka
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    Re: Stuff You Wish You Knew Before Your 1st Cruise

    by Malaka » Tue Jul 23, 2013 5:03 am

    1. Get there early. The line gets longer in the afternoon, so arrival @ 11:45am will help you beat the line.
    2. The hotel concierge/front desk can help you arrange a shuttle to the port. I've stayed at airport properties a few times and it costs @ $11 per person.
    3. Get some breakfast before arrival and departure, and don't forget to poop. The wait times getting on and off the ship and going through customs can be over an hour. Shitting your pants takes roughly the same amount of time. :P
    4. Security/Police don't mess around at the Port of Miami. Mind your P's & Q's and don't take pictures.
    5. Explore the ship. I didn't know about the Viking Crown Lounge until after the first cruise, and I found out later that Amon Amarth was up there for a while.
    6. Get your merch during the headlining acts. Fuck waiting in line.
    7. The food in the fine dining restaurant is not that great, and it takes a long time to get on your table. (Just my opinion)
    8. Smoking is permissible only in designated areas, and those who smoke (like myself) should be respectful of The Majesty of The Seas and other cruisers. Use the ashtrays.
    9. Don't mob the musicians. They're on vacation too. Buying them a drink and saying hi is cool, but don't ask for autographs unless it's an appropriate time and place. I've never had a problem asking for a picture though.
    10. Use the outlets for ordering drinks. The servers that walk around charge an additional service fee, so to avoid that, just go to a bar. They're everywhere.
    11. Be respectful of your cabinmates. No one likes puke in the shower or a mess in the room, so clean up after yourself and flush when you're done. :P
    12. Beware of flooded bathrooms.
    13. Don't book shore excursions on the boat. Figure it out for yourself and save some money.
    14. Don't worry about getting off the boat immediately. Breakfast is available for departing passengers, so take advantage of it before you leave.
    15. The housekeeping staff is phenomenal. Tip them accordingly if you prefer, but gratuities are included with the price. Same with the bartenders.
    16. Avoid the casino unless you have the extra cash. If you're on a budget, don't do it. They will take your money, but have fun while it's happening. And they are only open while at sea.
    17. Pay attention to your muster station number. You'll need to go there when the signal is given.
    18. Don't lose your Sea Pass Card. If you do, report it to Guest Services on Deck 4 immediately.
    19. Don't take pictures of the pictures on Deck 3. They don't like that very much.
    20. Last but not least, go to as many shows as possible! Listen to metal all day, thrash 'til death, and fuckin' party your ass off!!!!
    :shred: :viking: :metalguy: :bmhorns: :deathhorns: :bangers: :party: :boobs: :heavydrink: :stagger:
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    Mal2000
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    Re: Stuff You Wish You Knew Before Your 1st Cruise

    by Mal2000 » Tue Jul 23, 2013 5:56 am

    Malaka - you did a great job with your list. I agree with all you wrote.

    Some additions form my experience:

    1. Take a bottle of water before heading to the port to board the ship. Waiting in line and thirst don’t match ;-) later on I used the same bottle to get some water to my cabin before nap (sleep)
    2. Attend all pre-cruise activities. You will meet fellow cruises – the friendship starts before boarding
    3. Attend forum party on the boat after the drill – I found out about it after the fact 
    4. Alcohol cocktails or wine cost the same (or almost same) as beer and are great. I wish I knew about cheap Mojito on my first cruise 
    5. When leaving the boat take your own luggage with you. It will speed up the time going on shore and you will have your stuff with you all the time instead of placing your bag outside of the cabin midnight before departure.
    6. If you don’t have immediate flights, no need to hurry off the boat. Get you time, get breakfast, last drinks with your new friends. The disembarking line is huge anyway. Better to have a drink than to sit in the hall waiting.
    7. Prepare to stay awake the last night on the boat 
    8. Insert a “do not disturb” key into outside locker if you are “busy” in your cabin with another cruiser  This will avoid stressful embarrassment when your cabin mates enter.
    9. Use sunscreen lotion when on pool deck during the day. Protect your head from burning sun.
    10. It may get windy & chilly in the night on sun deck (one above the pool deck).
    11. When hard wind blows on open decks, don’t smoke cigarettes there.
    12. In Bolero Lounge you can chill during the day but it’ll be very hot during the karaoke nights

    13. Meet everyone, talk to anyone, drink with someone. Have fun, trash, screem and sing along.
    :wank: :wank: :wank:
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    Malaka
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    Re: Stuff You Wish You Knew Before Your 1st Cruise

    by Malaka » Tue Jul 23, 2013 6:07 am

    Thanks Mal!

    Oh yeah, and pre-broading at the port can be hectic if you're carrying luggage with you through security. Tip the porter curbside, and get your bag from the hallway outside your cabin roughly an hour after broading the ship.
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    Re: Stuff You Wish You Knew Before Your 1st Cruise

    by mooyagi » Tue Jul 23, 2013 6:11 am

    Malaka wrote:Thanks Mal!

    Oh yeah, and pre-broading at the port can be hectic if you're carrying luggage with you through security. Tip the porter curbside, and get your bag from the hallway outside your cabin roughly an hour after broading the ship.


    Fuck those guys. They are way too pushy about tips.

    Good lists so far. I'll add some more when I have more time to think about what was missed but do add a line to eat at the Compass Deli. The hours will be listed on the ship program you get in your room every morning. It's tucked away in a corner next to the (bad) pizza place. Some very good soups, sandwiches and quesadillas.

    Also, if you see Andy running around on the ship looking rushed be sure to stop him and take up lots of his time. :P
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    Re: Stuff You Wish You Knew Before Your 1st Cruise

    by Malaka » Tue Jul 23, 2013 6:21 am

    mooyagi wrote:Also, if you see Andy running around on the ship looking rushed be sure to stop him and take up lots of his time. :P


    :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:
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    Re: Stuff You Wish You Knew Before Your 1st Cruise

    by Mal2000 » Tue Jul 23, 2013 6:25 am

    mooyagi wrote:
    Also, if you see Andy running around on the ship looking rushed be sure to stop him and take up lots of his time. :P


    The BEST tip so far :cheers:

    If you want to talk to Andy undisturbed the best is to have a cigarette with him in a Bolero during the day :)
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    Re: Stuff You Wish You Knew Before Your 1st Cruise

    by dinki » Tue Jul 23, 2013 6:29 am

    Mal2000 wrote:Malaka - you did a great job with your list. I agree with all you wrote.

    5. When leaving the boat take your own luggage with you. It will speed up the time going on shore and you will have your stuff with you all the time instead of placing your bag outside of the cabin midnight before departure.


    whats about this point? can you explain it a bit? maybe my english is too bad. thx
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    Re: Stuff You Wish You Knew Before Your 1st Cruise

    by Krys » Tue Jul 23, 2013 6:36 am

    4. Security/Police don't mess around at the Port of Miami. Mind your P's & Q's and don't take pictures.


    This is something you never know about until you take a photo... I'd hate to rub security the wrong way over something dumb like this. Perfect tip!

    6. Get your merch during the headlining acts. Fuck waiting in line.


    Makes sense. Every band plays 2x anyway....

    8. Smoking is permissible only in designated areas, and those who smoke (like myself) should be respectful of The Majesty of The Seas and other cruisers. Use the ashtrays.


    I read a thread re: the smoking issues and I couldn't agree more. I'm not a cig smoker, if the air is blue and hazy no one really enjoys it.

    9. Don't mob the musicians. They're on vacation too. Buying them a drink and saying hi is cool, but don't ask for autographs unless it's an appropriate time and place. I've never had a problem asking for a picture though.


    Never hurts to reiterate this. Absolutely meet the musicians you wish to meet, but realize that they enjoy being left alone to sunbathe or relax with a drink and unwind.

    10. Use the outlets for ordering drinks. The servers that walk around charge an additional service fee, so to avoid that, just go to a bar. They're everywhere.


I would not have even thought about that!!! Good tip.

11. Be respectful of your cabinmates. No one likes puke in the shower or a mess in the room, so clean up after yourself and flush when you're done. :P
12. Beware of flooded bathrooms.


That sounds like a brutal scene to wake up to when you just want to brush your teeth.... eew. I booked single and found one cabinmate so far, but the other person is still a mystery. All I can do is hope we don't end up with someone that messy :lol:.

18. Don't lose your Sea Pass Card. If you do, report it to Guest Services on Deck 4 immediately.


I'm on deck 4, but will be trying hard not to lose it at all.

19. Don't take pictures of the pictures on Deck 3. They don't like that very much.


Ok. I definitely wouldn't have known this.

1. Take a bottle of water before heading to the port to board the ship. Waiting in line and thirst don’t match ;-) later on I used the same bottle to get some water to my cabin before nap (sleep)


Good call, Miami will be too hot to go without water.

4. Alcohol cocktails or wine cost the same (or almost same) as beer and are great. I wish I knew about cheap Mojito on my first cruise 


Good to hear this!

7. Prepare to stay awake the last night on the boat 

:shots:

8. Insert a “do not disturb” key into outside locker if you are “busy” in your cabin with another cruiser  This will avoid stressful embarrassment when your cabin mates enter.

Hahahaha... agreed. Plan to leave a sign out or a sock on the door so you don't surprise anyone.

9. Use sunscreen lotion when on pool deck during the day. Protect your head from burning sun.

You can get burned horribly if you don't, yet so many people don't take it seriously.
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    Mal2000
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    Re: Stuff You Wish You Knew Before Your 1st Cruise

    by Mal2000 » Tue Jul 23, 2013 6:52 am

    dinki wrote:
    Mal2000 wrote:Malaka - you did a great job with your list. I agree with all you wrote.

    5. When leaving the boat take your own luggage with you. It will speed up the time going on shore and you will have your stuff with you all the time instead of placing your bag outside of the cabin midnight before departure.


    whats about this point? can you explain it a bit? maybe my english is too bad. thx


    Dinki,

    A night before disembarkment you will receive tags and a message to place your lugage in front of your cabin before (I am not sure about time) let's say 1:00 am. During the night the stewards will move bags to cargo area to unload them from the boat. You can disembark the boat according to the color of your bag tag, times will be given in info bulletin. You can then pick up your bag on land, before going thru the pass control (immigration).
    I prefer NOT to give my bag away a night before but carry it myself from the boat at the time I chose to get off the boat. Means I pack my bag last minute before leaving the cabin.
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    Re: Stuff You Wish You Knew Before Your 1st Cruise

    by Stained Class » Tue Jul 23, 2013 7:12 am

    If you buy duty free alcohol it gets delivered to your room at 5PM on the last night...meaning if you want you have 12 hours to drink it rather than taking it with you. If you open it you aren't getting off the boat with it though so make sure you drink it.

    Buy rum runners and put it in your bag. MAKE SURE YOUR BAG IS SMALL ENOUGH TO CARRY ON WITH YOU, if it is too big to go through the scanners they will check your bag for you and you will lose your alcohol.

    Check the running order and plan out your whole week to make sure that you can catch as many bands as possible. I messed up on my planning the first 2 years and wound up missing 3 bands each time that I really wanted to see. UMC are getting better every year at running it and the 2 most recent ones happened almost perfectly on time (first night on barge got a little messed, that's all I can remember).

    Most importantly, SLEEP IS THE ENEMY. If you are sleeping you are missing out on fun. It doesn't hurt to plan naps around a few bands that you don't care to catch and on the first couple nights there isn't that much of a party in the karaoke lounge after 5 or 6 am. But, on the last night the party is one of the best parts of the cruise and you do not want to be asleep.
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    Re: Stuff You Wish You Knew Before Your 1st Cruise

    by dinki » Tue Jul 23, 2013 7:46 am

    thx for explaing

    krys. Go for listing the Advices. I would love to print a list it before take-off in germany and go through the list at the flight.

    Maybe its possible for someone to write a list which includes "MUST-HAVE-THINGS" for the Cruise for example: suncream ?!
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    Re: Stuff You Wish You Knew Before Your 1st Cruise

    by Krys » Tue Jul 23, 2013 8:00 am

    dinki wrote:thx for explaing

    krys. Go for listing the Advices. I would love to print a list it before take-off in germany and go through the list at the flight.

    Maybe its possible for someone to write a list which includes "MUST-HAVE-THINGS" for the Cruise for example: suncream ?!


    I had a list of commonly forgotten items... let me see if I can dig that up. Found it:

    May 10th, 2013, 6:59 am

    Well, I'm a bit of an organizational nerd for planning things well in advance, so I came up with a list of things that could be great to have/shitty to forget:

    1) A watch - Cell phones won't always display the correct time on the sea (some will though!!!).
    2) Earplugs - Even if you don't generally use them they are good to have.
    3) Sunscreen w/ a high SPF - Sunburns are terrible. Amen.
    4) Hair Elastics - Obvious reasons.
    5) A Binder Clip - So useful, particularly for shower curtains with minds of their own...
    6) A Powerstrip - Good to have in case there's one socket: four people.
    7) Photocopies of your ID - Self explanatory, I hope.
    8) Some spare Ziploc/plastic bags - Handy in many ways, can keep documents and items dry! If you befoul a set of clothing you can just bag it too.
    9) Sunglasses - Obvious reasons.
    10) An alarm clock - What if you pass out for a 45 minute nap before Carcass and your cell phone alarm fails :cry:?!

    And, I personally will probably also bring.

    11) One of those tiny air freshener sprays - Not sure what the 'funk' factor is onbroad lol...
    12) A Snuggie - Go ahead and laugh. I can crash anywhere with this thing :roll:
    13) Some sort of bleach wipes - Hand sanitizer doesn't kill Norwalk Virus. Nuff said. (Not a germaphobe, but I appreciate clean.)
    14) Working sharpie pens for autographs.


    None of that takes up that much space. All that being said. I'm a first timer too... I'll be wearing things more than once and buying new merch onbroad to wear, so I'm not worried about having a ton of clothing.


    Add to this???

    I'll paraphrase these tips into one BIG list for printing :D. Keep suggestions coming.
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    Re: Stuff You Wish You Knew Before Your 1st Cruise

    by rwalters » Tue Jul 23, 2013 8:18 am

    1. Eat at the sit in restaurant every day. Just do it. It's good for you. I'd do it for lunch and dinner. Great way to meet people from other countries as well (mostly Germany).
    2. Get off the boat on excursion day. If you are on a budget, you don't have to really do anything. Just walk around for a bit. It's good to get off the boat as you only get the opportunity once.
    3. Don't worry about getting to shows ahead of time. If you want to be on the rail of a show, just show up 10-15 minutes early. You'd be VERY surprised at how most shows are not even close to full capacity. More cruisers see less shows than you think.
    4. The rooms are much smaller and shittier than you think. Just prep yourself for it.
    5. Tip everyone you cheap bastards
    6. Catch at least part of one set from behind the stage at the pool deck. VERY cool.
    7. The medical staff is terrifying overall. If you have to use them like I did...... good luck.
    8. Plan each day with sets. Plan for dinner/food. Be organized. See partial sets. These bands mostly don't hit the U.S. often (if ever). The variety of metal on the cruise is one of it's true highlights.
    9. Remember to sleep. Your core bands that you have heard of generally play from 4:00 pm to 2:00 am. I generally stayed up to 4am each night and got up at 10-11. Some people here do crazy shit with no sleeping. The shows are sparsely populated after 1:00 am IMO.
    10. Don't worry about excessive moshing, crowd surfing, and or fighting. Doesn't happen. Pure euro crowd. Girls can get close to stage and not have to worry about shit.
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    Re: Stuff You Wish You Knew Before Your 1st Cruise

    by Pyramus » Tue Jul 23, 2013 8:53 am

    Everyone answered the cruise part, I'll talk about Miami. These are some of the things I found out:

    1. Little Havana is your friend when you're hungry. Amazing Cuban food (better than Cuba according to my friends who are actually Cuban):
    a. El Palacio De Los Jugos - "Fruit Palace" is an outdoor market, go inside and try their fruit juices. Amazing things to put in your mouth.
    b. La Camaronera Seafood Joint and Fish Market - Sooooo good. Fish sandwiches. Fresh. Amazing.
    c. Versailles - pretty well known place to grab some Cuban food; if it's busy the place across the street is supposedly equally as good.
    d. Many other places
    2. South Beach
    a. Party the night before the cruise on the beach. Lots of people in Black is hard to miss.
    3. Transportation
    a. It's pretty standard in Miami to get a baller rental car. If they offer you a cheap upgrade, it's probably because they have too many luxury cars around and are trying to rent them. Only in Miami!
    b. Airport Shuttle - if you fly into Ft. Lauderdale (this is a common airport for US citizens to fly into via Southwest Airlines), there's a shuttle that will take you to the port from the airport that's pretty cheap and much cheaper than a taxi. It will also bring you back to the airport.
    c. Taxis in Ft. Lauderdale/Miami are freaking slow. Almost missed my flight waiting an hour for a taxi to show up after I left the airport for lunch to kill time.
    4. Know what areas you're staying in. Coral Gables is nice, South Beach is nice, alot of other places are sketchy.
    5. If you're feeling really risky, you can book your hotel on short notice with Priceline and get really nice hotels for pretty cheap. Not advisable for non-US citizens.
    6. Your 8's and 9's where you live are Miami's 5's or 6's. It's a land of very beautiful people.
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    Re: Stuff You Wish You Knew Before Your 1st Cruise

    by Krys » Tue Jul 23, 2013 9:05 am

    There. We have 52 tips so far.
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    Re: Stuff You Wish You Knew Before Your 1st Cruise

    by pablov8 » Tue Jul 23, 2013 11:08 am

    After my first experience I think the most accurate advice I could give is, relax, you don't need too plan that much, I did lot of plans and then, when I was at Miami, didn't do even half of the things I "planned", just met people, drink and "went with the flow". You'll have lots of metal tourist guides :beerhorns: :party:
    I only made plans for the running order, If you want to see all the bands you like, a minimum plan must be made.
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    nekrobarr
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    Re: Stuff You Wish You Knew Before Your 1st Cruise

    by nekrobarr » Tue Jul 23, 2013 11:53 am

    With a list that long, one might as well start writing a manual!

    pablov8 wrote:After my first experience I think the most accurate advice I could give is, relax, you don't need too plan that much, I did lot of plans and then, when I was at Miami, didn't do even half of the things I "planned", just met people, drink and "went with the flow". You'll have lots of metal tourist guides :beerhorns: :party:
    I only made plans for the running order, If you want to see all the bands you like, a minimum plan must be made.


    Seems like that's a pretty damn good tip. For the first two cruises, I definitely did a lot of planning overall - which bands/sets I was going to attend, when I was going to eat, where I was going to go (Pre-cruise, excursion, post-cruise). It got pretty hectic and overwhelming, not to mention I was upset that things didn't work out as I had planned. For the last 2 cruises, I had an overall "fuck it" attitude. Sure, I looked at the running order and made some decisions about which shows to see, but it was a lot easier to go grab a bite to once I realized that I wasn't going to see everything I wanted to.

    Perhaps that's an additional piece of advice - Even with bands playing twice each, you will likely not get to see all the performances you would like to. Between bands playing at the same time, unanticipated delays, clinics/other activities, and eats/drinks, you're bound to miss something. I think if you come to terms with that fact, you'll probably relax just a bit more.
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    Re: Stuff You Wish You Knew Before Your 1st Cruise

    by Pyramus » Tue Jul 23, 2013 2:49 pm

    pablov8 wrote:After my first experience I think the most accurate advice I could give is, relax, you don't need too plan that much, I did lot of plans and then, when I was at Miami, didn't do even half of the things I "planned", just met people, drink and "went with the flow". You'll have lots of metal tourist guides :beerhorns: :party:
    I only made plans for the running order, If you want to see all the bands you like, a minimum plan must be made.


    This is probably really good advice, but I liked reading the 52 tips since there are no announcements and work was boring today. At least it's something to talk about :)
    2013 Survivor, 2014 booked.
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    Re: Stuff You Wish You Knew Before Your 1st Cruise

    by cowboy71 » Tue Jul 23, 2013 3:57 pm

    Advice I could offer:

    - stairs are good exercise and quicker, but lifts are awesome because so much random stuff happens in them :)
    - visit the 'fine dining' restaurant at least once. The staff like to sit people at the same table so you will often end up sitting with band members or roadies (I had an excellent conversation this year with a couple of the guys from In Flames)
    - if you are old like me, stock up on those little 'energy shots' they sell everywhere in Miami. A hit from one of those at midnight really helped get me through to dawn on several occasions.
    - be nice to the security guys. They are only doing their job. And they are nice people. I've became quite good friends with some of them (grandpa, JD, Jason) over the past three cruises.
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    Re: Stuff You Wish You Knew Before Your 1st Cruise

    by Stained Class » Tue Jul 23, 2013 4:16 pm

    Yeah, if it becomes a chore to see every single band you want to then you definitely should chill a little. I had my week planned out with the running order but on day 4 there was a few hours where that plan went to the wind and I just partied. At least they are keeping the buffet open later for us, so at 2 in the morning when you are scrambling to catch a bite between bands you have more choices than shitty pizza!
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    Re: Stuff You Wish You Knew Before Your 1st Cruise

    by Azazel101 » Tue Jul 23, 2013 4:39 pm

    The only real plan I make is to get to the boat before departure.
    The rest I really just see how I feel.

    I do say hit up one of the pre-events. Be it the preparty, beach party or just the forum meet and great just after/before the muster drill
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    Re: Stuff You Wish You Knew Before Your 1st Cruise

    by X-Thor » Tue Jul 23, 2013 4:48 pm

    2013 was my first cruise, and I had an amazing time and met lots of very cool people.

    Bring something from your country/state (alcohol, candies...) to the beach party. I made a lot of friends just giving away shots of mezcal to random people there. I also got offered A LOT of foreign alcohol and beers (belgium beer, some weird candy finnish alcohol, puerto rican rum, brazilian cachasa, a delicious german beverage that tasted like nutella, spanish sangría... And some others that I can't remember). :mrgreen:

    In general, I'd say the best thing to do is to not be shy. Everyone in the cruise is incredibly friendly and very cool, so you'll make friends immediately. On that note, make sure to be at the forum meet-up at the basketball court (will it be there again?) after the muster drill. Great opportunity to finally put a face and a voice to everyone here.

    Also, go to karaoke.

    :bangers: :bangers:

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    Re: Stuff You Wish You Knew Before Your 1st Cruise

    by DJ Old Man Stares » Tue Jul 23, 2013 11:05 pm

    X-Thor wrote:2013 was my first cruise, and I had an amazing time and met lots of very cool people.

    Bring something from your country/state (alcohol, candies...) to the beach party. I made a lot of friends just giving away shots of mezcal to random people there. I also got offered A LOT of foreign alcohol and beers (belgium beer, some weird candy finnish alcohol, puerto rican rum, brazilian cachasa, a delicious german beverage that tasted like nutella, spanish sangría... And some others that I can't remember). :mrgreen:

    In general, I'd say the best thing to do is to not be shy. Everyone in the cruise is incredibly friendly and very cool, so you'll make friends immediately. On that note, make sure to be at the forum meet-up at the basketball court (will it be there again?) after the muster drill. Great opportunity to finally put a face and a voice to everyone here.

    Also, go to karaoke.

    :bangers: :bangers:

    187 days, people!!


    YES, YES, and FUCKING YES!!! I agree with everything except for the posting of the wait time for sailing. Why make it longer than it already is? :shock:
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    Re: Stuff You Wish You Knew Before Your 1st Cruise

    by carlynjason » Wed Jul 24, 2013 1:50 am

    Hi all, Just a question, I'm sure I'm not the only 1 but I'm disabled (have MS) and cant stand for too long (talking about the boarding) is there seats there or a special entrance for us disabled? Thanks in advance :metalguy:
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    Re: Stuff You Wish You Knew Before Your 1st Cruise

    by Krys » Wed Jul 24, 2013 3:39 am

    Pyramus wrote:
    pablov8 wrote:After my first experience I think the most accurate advice I could give is, relax, you don't need too plan that much, I did lot of plans and then, when I was at Miami, didn't do even half of the things I "planned", just met people, drink and "went with the flow". You'll have lots of metal tourist guides :beerhorns: :party:
    I only made plans for the running order, If you want to see all the bands you like, a minimum plan must be made.


    This is probably really good advice, but I liked reading the 52 tips since there are no announcements and work was boring today. At least it's something to talk about :)


    I'm an anxious person who loves to fuss over the details, what can I say :D?

    I'm sure nobody in their right mind is going to try and follow this entire list of tips to the letter but it still might make for a fun read on the plane ride to Miami in a "THE MORE YOU KNOW!" sort of way :lol:. I learned a bunch of things I didn't have a clue about before... so, take what you like out of it and leave the rest, I guess. Good suggestions - I'll add something about knowing when to just RELAX & go with the flow too!
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    2015 - Cabin 6471!
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    Re: Stuff You Wish You Knew Before Your 1st Cruise

    by cowboy71 » Wed Jul 24, 2013 4:03 am

    carlynjason wrote:Hi all, Just a question, I'm sure I'm not the only 1 but I'm disabled (have MS) and cant stand for too long (talking about the boarding) is there seats there or a special entrance for us disabled? Thanks in advance :metalguy:

    Not sure to be honest. I would assume (but you know what they say about assume) there would be facilities to accommodate you - best to just send someone at UMC an email. They will have a definitive answer for you :)
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    Re: Stuff You Wish You Knew Before Your 1st Cruise

    by mooyagi » Wed Jul 24, 2013 5:33 am

    cowboy71 wrote:
    carlynjason wrote:Hi all, Just a question, I'm sure I'm not the only 1 but I'm disabled (have MS) and cant stand for too long (talking about the boarding) is there seats there or a special entrance for us disabled? Thanks in advance :metalguy:

    Not sure to be honest. I would assume (but you know what they say about assume) there would be facilities to accommodate you - best to just send someone at UMC an email. They will have a definitive answer for you :)


    Might be best to ask Royal Caribbean directly for that question. If anything I'm sure they can at least provide you with a wheelchair should you need to sit for a bit.
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    Re: Stuff You Wish You Knew Before Your 1st Cruise

    by Mal2000 » Wed Jul 24, 2013 6:25 am

    carlynjason wrote:Hi all, Just a question, I'm sure I'm not the only 1 but I'm disabled (have MS) and cant stand for too long (talking about the boarding) is there seats there or a special entrance for us disabled? Thanks in advance :metalguy:


    Hi Carlyn,

    Welcome and please send PM to "Taketheday" from this forum.
    She will help you with all questions related to access & facilities for disabled on Majesty (and Miami).
    link to her profile:
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    Re: Stuff You Wish You Knew Before Your 1st Cruise

    by STACH100 » Wed Jul 24, 2013 9:00 am

    THE LINE UP!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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    Re: Stuff You Wish You Knew Before Your 1st Cruise

    by X-Thor » Wed Jul 24, 2013 9:37 am

    carlynjason wrote:Hi all, Just a question, I'm sure I'm not the only 1 but I'm disabled (have MS) and cant stand for too long (talking about the boarding) is there seats there or a special entrance for us disabled? Thanks in advance :metalguy:


    I think they have a way for disabled people to broad without much inconvenience. I'd advice you to send an e-mail to someone at UMC and ask. And maybe add it as a special request?
    70K 2013 SURVIVOR (Cabin 2120)
    70K 2014 SURVIVOR (Cabin 2565)

    In perpetual post-cruise depression/pre-cruise anxiety.

    Doing my best to be there for 2015.
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    Wishlist: Blind Guardian and Saurom. Will probably like 90%+ of the bands onbroad anyway.
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    D.T. Metal
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    Re: Stuff You Wish You Knew Before Your 1st Cruise

    by D.T. Metal » Wed Jul 24, 2013 9:39 am

    My two cents - aka the view of a older cruiser (old as in AGE ;) )

    - DON'T get to the port early; you WILL be standing in line forever. We usually leave the hotel around noon and the line to get onto the ship are not that massive no more.
    - Take your own luggage. The security is NOT like at the airport where you have to take stuff out and as some might remember, Troy or Elizabeth had some money stolen out of their luggage. The rooms are usually ready by 1 or 2pm so you won't have to slep your shit around for long anyways.
    - same with departing. Take your stuff with you and you don't have to leave when it's your "color" turn - just go to deck 4? (can't remember where we debark) and leave on your own.
    - DO NOT OVERPACK. Seriously, if you are stateside, a carry on is ALL you need - unless you plan on staying in Miami days b4 and after the cruise.
    - Explore the ship - really!!!
    - Especially for the Euro folks - DO eat in the sit-down restaurant. Last cruise I ate more at the buffet (schedule wise had too) and by Thursday morning my feet and ankles were swollen. I assume the buffet food is loaded with MSG and that's why. Just my opinion.
    - Use the outlets for ordering drinks. The servers that walk around charge an additional service fee - ??? this I am NOT sure about, but if you order from the same walk around waiter, they WILL remember you (especially if you tip or round up your bill) and DO take care of you faster.
    (FYI for newbies: you give them your seapass and you have to sign a receipt when they bring you your drink)
    - Attend all pre-cruise activities !!! A total must. Especially on SoBe, if you see a bunch of folks with metal shirts and even if you are a loner or shy - do approach, you will instantly be one of the gang!
    - Check the running order if possible in your hotel to plan out your time. FYI - it prolly is not going to be posted until Monday morning! This way you can check who you REALLY want to see and when and where.
    - Don't worry about excessive moshing, crowd surfing, and or fighting. Doesn't happen. Pure euro crowd. - FACT! :headbanger:

    - Remember to sleep just enough - DISAGREE !! You can sleep once back at home or take a power nap in the theaters or on the pool deck. NO reason to go to your cabin during the day to get some zzzz's. No one will paint on your face with a sharpie or disturb you in anyway. People might take pictures with you sleeping but that's about it. (hint - Daniel :mrgreen: )

    Most of all - MINGLE - strike conversation with the random dude or dudette next to you. We are all there for the same purpose, no egos. DO attend the forum meet up by the basketball court and DO NOT miss the beach party the day prior.
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    Re: Stuff You Wish You Knew Before Your 1st Cruise

    by Stained Class » Wed Jul 24, 2013 9:43 am

    ^ good post.

    I heard of someone that used a walk up server and told them they would tip and extra few bucks if they went and grabbed a couple slices of pizza as well. That way you can eat without missing a second of the shows!
    9 time cruiser

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    D.T. Metal
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    Re: Stuff You Wish You Knew Before Your 1st Cruise

    by D.T. Metal » Wed Jul 24, 2013 10:31 am

    More specific on things to pack, or not:

    - for the guys - pack LIGHT. You can be shirtless most of the day, so no reason to pack tons of shirts! If you prefer not to go shirtless, one shirt per day and maybe 2 extra (just in case) is plenty.
    - for the gals - same applies - go shirtless with a bra or bikini top (the guys will appreciate this) :mrgreen: naaa, seriously, NO need to pack some extra fancy clothes unless you want to.
    - everyone should be fine with ONE long-sleeve or hooded sweater for the entire cruise. Nine out of ten times you wont be needing one, but just in case. Of course, if you are a wimp when it comes to a fresh ocean breeze on the pool deck at night - bring more. BUT, you def won't need them in the theaters or lounge.
    - same goes for long pants!
    - shoes - personal choice I guess. I was fine with a pair of sneakers and flip-flops - but then again, I would kill myself in high-heels and go for the more comfort approach.

    - sunscreen, sunglasses and hair dohicky's are a must, I agree.
    - my iphone worked fine as far as time and alarm, but maybe bring a watch just in case.
    - I never got sea-sick, but maybe bring something if you think you will. There is patches for behind the ears and pills I think.
    - sanitary wipes - hmmm, personal choice also. Wash your hands after using the restroom and there are Purell dispensers at the buffet entrance as well. The cabins are cleaned pretty good and if you leave a tip at the beginning of the cruise, your steward will be extra helpful. BTW, your steward WILL introduce himself, so if there are issues just get with him.
    - security - I left high value items in the cabin in plain sight and NEVER had an issue. So if you need to bring your laptop (which will not fit into the safe btw) you should be fine. Well from the cleaning crew at least - get to know your cabin mates before hand, so you know whose ass to kick just in case something is missing. :lol:

    - meet -n greet with the bands - the lines are IN-fucking-SANE. Don't expect to have the bands sign all of your stuff. Bring one or maybe two items, take a pic with them and move along so the 100 people behind you will have a chance to do the same. The artists do mingle with the crowd as it is, so no need to hold up the process.
    - DO attend karaoke - it will start off slow on Monday, but by Wednesday at the latest the place is hopping.
    - If Jeff will do this All-Star-Jam again - DO NOT MISS THIS. Check the running order to see who you might miss during this, so you can plan accordingly.
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    X-Thor
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    Re: Stuff You Wish You Knew Before Your 1st Cruise

    by X-Thor » Wed Jul 24, 2013 12:58 pm

    D.T. Metal wrote:- for the gals - same applies - go shirtless with a bra or bikini top


    I fully support this.

    :wank: :wank:
    70K 2013 SURVIVOR (Cabin 2120)
    70K 2014 SURVIVOR (Cabin 2565)

    In perpetual post-cruise depression/pre-cruise anxiety.

    Doing my best to be there for 2015.
    --
    Wishlist: Blind Guardian and Saurom. Will probably like 90%+ of the bands onbroad anyway.
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    Feanorgandalf
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    Re: Stuff You Wish You Knew Before Your 1st Cruise

    by Feanorgandalf » Wed Jul 24, 2013 1:10 pm

    My big tip is to consider carrying your own luggage on board. However when I boarded I wasn't sober and wrote the wrong room on my luggage tag. the room didn't exist and my stuff was found the next day with the band equipment
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    Re: Stuff You Wish You Knew Before Your 1st Cruise

    by Stained Class » Wed Jul 24, 2013 1:36 pm

    Feanorgandalf wrote:My big tip is to consider carrying your own luggage on BROAD. However when I BROADED I wasn't sober and wrote the wrong room on my luggage tag. the room didn't exist and my stuff was found the next day with the band equipment

    What time did you broad at?
    9 time cruiser

    I'm in a band
    www.facebook.com/Apprenticemetal

    I run a festival
    https://www.facebook.com/events/2854966994515383
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    Feanorgandalf
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    Re: Stuff You Wish You Knew Before Your 1st Cruise

    by Feanorgandalf » Wed Jul 24, 2013 1:44 pm

    Stained Class wrote:
    Feanorgandalf wrote:My big tip is to consider carrying your own luggage on BROAD. However when I BROADED I wasn't sober and wrote the wrong room on my luggage tag. the room didn't exist and my stuff was found the next day with the band equipment

    What time did you broad at?


    Nice "fix". I broaded at noon i think. we had a ton of leftover alcohol at the condo we rented and needed to polish it off
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