Arrive a day early to the home port of your cruise. Especially in winter, flights can be delayed and no one wants that last minute stress. All travel itineraries of the group can be organized in a tech tool like TripIt where everyone has access to view the reservations and keep track without lots of paperwork.
The transfer from the airport to the hotel and/or cruise port can be quite expensive when using the cruise line shuttle or a taxi. Whenever bigger parts of your group can arrive at the airport at a similar time, consider using a car and limousine service for your transportation needs. Not only is it one of the rare opportunities in life to use the service of a chauffeur driven stretch limousine, it’s also an affordable option for a group. It might even be cheaper than paying for a transfer per person from the cruise line! Consider companies like GroundLink or Blacklane and make your transfer an unforgettable event.
Secure Conference Space
All ships have conference space aboard – and it’s good for more than business meetings. Talk to the shipboard management or groups coordinator to secure one of the spaces and you can have your own private celebration! You can order food and drinks and even have a/v equipment to create special memories for all.
Stay In Touch
Communication on a ship can be challenging when at sea, since your cell phones won’t work without large fees. With rates of $7.99 a minute and up, we recommend that you keep the wireless off at all times unless you are cruising close to shore and can pick up a local signal. Instead, consider getting small message boards for your stateroom doors. You can write notes to each other about what you are going to do. Or consider getting walk talkies if you need to be in a more constant communication.
Align A Daily Meeting Point
Come up with a daily meeting point will make your days a lot easier. With everyone running around, its good to have a daily checkin established at the beginning. This way people can decide what they want to do and with whom, without spending a lot of time trying to find each other. Whether its for a coffee in the morning or a cocktail before dinner at your favorite bar, it’s an easy way to check in so that your family and friends don’t feel they need to spend the whole day together.
Book Group Shore Excursions
Consider booking your shore excursions as a group outside of the cruise line. For cheaper prices than the cruise lines, you can get great private excursion options from independent providers like the tour operator partners featured on ShoreFox. In many cases a personal driver and vehicle will be waiting for your group on the ship’s arrival – to whisk you away on a day of adventure and exploration. It’s a great way for everyone to have that memorable day ashore, with the type of personal service and value that everyone will love.
Planning group shore excursions is even easier with ShoreFox’s WishList. Easily search by cruise itinerary and save interesting shore excursions for the group. Then share the individual link with your family and friends, Group members can share thoughts, ideas and questions with each other and update their preferences all in one easy and secure environment.