Cruise Ship Safety Tips

Cruising is one of the safest forms of travel, and most cruises pass without incident. But it is always worth taking a few basic precautions to stay safe. When you get on board it’s easy to forget that you are sharing your vacation with CruiseAway by Dreamlines Pty Ltdthousands of other people, and all it takes is one person to spoil the experience.

Most of the following tips are common sense — go easy on the booze, don’t flaunt your cash, keep valuables in your safe — but sometimes they are all too easy to forget when you’re on vacation. The most important thing to remember is have fun, but be aware — just like you would on a night out at home.

  1. Pay Attention to the Muster Drill:  Before your vacation gets started, you must attend the muster drill. This is where you learn where your muster station is, how to don a life jacket and what the alarms mean, should they be sounded. While most passengers listen attentively, every muster has a few people talking all the way through it, people on their cellphones, people trying to get a drink from the bar (all outlets are closed during muster) and couples who hide in their cabins thinking they’ve pulled one over on the authorities. Not clever. Even if you’ve heard the drill a thousand times, pay attention; don’t see it as an inconvenience, but rather as an important part of your cruise experience.
  2. Keep Calm:  If something happens, stay calm, get your life jacket and go to your muster station. Don’t stop for anything else.
  3. Drink Responsibly:  Alcohol is a major factor of personal safety incidents on cruises, so go easy on the booze and be aware of your limits. There’s plenty of alcohol on board and it’s easy to get carried away, so know how much you’re consuming.
  4. Buddy Up:  If you’re cruising alone, find a friend early on. That way he/she can look out for you. You’re also far less of a target when traveling in pairs. Don’t advertise that you are traveling alone, and don’t walk around alone in areas by yourself late at night.
  5. Practice In-Cabin Safety:  Whether you’re new to cruising or not, you’ll notice that not all cabin doors automatically close, so give them a pull when you leave and a push when you are inside to make sure they click shut.  If the door has a dead bolt, use it. If it doesn’t, consider a door stopper. Cabin stewards carry them, so ask for one, or bring your own.
  6. Be Safe on Your Balcony:  Keep the door locked at night. Also check your balcony before you go to sleep, and don’t leave the door open when you are not in your room, especially in port. (Contractors who clean windows and do maintenance can easily gain access.)
  7. Use Your Safe:  You can usually get a laptop, a tablet, cellphone and jewelry/watches inside. The majority of cabin stewards are honest, but it’s not worth putting temptation in their way. Better still, leave your valuables at home.
  8. Get to Know Your Steward:  Ask his or her name on day one and establish a rapport. Your steward will notice if someone other than you is trying to get into your room.
  9. Don’t Carry Large Amounts of Cash:  There is no reason to bring a lot of money on board. All on board transactions can be carried out with your room key as a credit card. When on shore excursions, take out what you need, but don’t advertise it.Cruise Ship Safety Tips, all about cruises, best cruise deals, best priced cruises, Cruise ship safety tips, cruise vacation, last minute cruises
  10. Don’t Accept an Invitation to Crew Quarters:  This is not a good idea, ever. It could result in instant dismissal for the crew, and you will likely be asked to leave at the next port stop.
  11. Be Careful on Shore Excursions:  The cruise lines organize the shore trips because they are moneymakers for them; in return, you get some assurance of quality and security. You can save a buck (or many) by going it alone, of course, but beware. Make sure you negotiate any fares and fees upfront. Most cabbies are honest when the cards are on the table, but if you do not agree in advance, the sky will be the limit and you may find yourself in a police station for failure to pay the fare.
  12. Bring Your Medications:  If you have special needs or allergies, bring your own medications and supplies. And keep an “emergency kit’’ ready to go; it should include prescriptions, your cell phone, room key, glasses, and a photocopy of your passport.Avoya Travel
  13. Wash Your Hands:  To avoid shipboard illnesses such as the norovirus, wash your hands thoroughly and often, and use the hand sanitizers placed around the ship.

30 Comments

  1. Jukka

    Every cruise I have been it’s the number 3. that seems to cause the most trouble. Not saying on myself, but I see people who are just too wasted all the time on boats. I have even heard of people jumping in to the sea drunk and disappearing for good. So definitely be extra careful if you enjoy drinking a lot and are on a boat. Great safety tips Leahrae!

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      Thanks Jukka! Yes, some people just get pretty stupid when they drink too much. Not necessarily a good thing on a cruise. Thanks for stopping by and reading my cruise ship safety tips.

      Reply
  2. Zulfaqar

    Hi…like the article. Some great tips and advice. Would never have thought about half the stuff you mentioned, very useful stuff. Thanks

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      Great, now when you cruise next or take your first cruise, you will be prepared! Thanks for reading Cruise Ship Safety Tips.

      Reply
  3. Leah

    This is great, i have not been a cruise before but have been looking at a couple of short trips. This is just what a first time cruiser should know 🙂

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      Yes Leah it is! Thanks for stopping by!

      Reply
  4. Will

    Great tips and advice Leahrae, I’m going on my first cruise this summer so I’ll definitely make sure to remember all of these. I was wondering, is cell service limited as well? That might be something to prepare for, especially on some of the large boats. Thanks for sharing!

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      Yes, cell service will be limited. On port you will have service. Just make sure you check with your provider about coverage. I always add a plan for the countries I am visiting. Cheaper than the roaming fees. I am glad you enjoyed Will. Thanks for stopping by.

      Reply
  5. Nicole

    This is just what I needed to read. My fiance and I are going on a cruise for our Honeymoon and neither of us have been on one before. I would have never thought about most of these tips due to being caught up in just getting married. Thanks for the great advice. I know our cruise will be amazing and safe!

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      I know it will be too Nicole. Exactly what I did for my honeymoon, and I guess that started my love for cruising 🙂 Have a great time and if you have any questions, please feel free to ask.

      Reply
  6. Dwyan

    very thorough precautions to take. I have never been on a cruise ship but always wanted to, just never found the time. Didn’t know there might be such a stiff penalty with being invited to crew/staff quarters but I guess that makes sense. I know no one likes to listen to safety instructions, just like on the airplane! I like your website and will definitely keep it bookmarked! Thanks again.

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      Thanks Dwyan, for visiting Cruise Ship Safety Tips. So true, that many do not like to listen to the safety tips. I am guilty of that as well on an airplane. But I have heard it so many times. I think I know how to do my seat belt, but the oxygen mask on, etc. I do pay attention to the exits, as that can vary from plane to plane.

      Reply
  7. Madi

    I’m supposed to be going on a cruise next spring break with my boyfriend and his friends and I am so excited, but I haven’t been on a cruise since I was just a little baby!

    Your post was extremely helpful in making me feel just that much more prepared for the trip! Thanks!

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      Great Madi! I hope you have a wonderful time, which I am sure you will. Please drop in after your cruise and let us know what you thought!

      Reply
  8. Barbara

    Hi!
    I have never been on a cruise but never say never. Right? If I`ll ever go on one I will definitely go through your site A-Z. You have so much great tips. Thank you for sharing!

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      You are welcome Barbara, and glad you enjoyed visiting Beach Travel Destinations. I hope you will come back when you are ready to take your first cruise.

      Reply
  9. Andrew

    I took a cruise just over a month ago with Norwegian and wow, you’ve definitely covered it all! Even the cabin doors that “mysteriously” open and close lol. Valuable information here – everyone take note! Thanks for sharing these safety tips with us all 🙂

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      Thank you Andrew for stopping by and visiting Cruise Ship Safety Tips. Glad you agree with what I have presented in this post 🙂

      Reply
  10. Mick Krug

    Great webpage on Cruise ship safety tips. Most people over look these things which I think is a shame. The most important tip is keep your door key with you at all times and don’t give out your room number to anyone.

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      Yes very true. Now that everything can be charged on your room key, it is wise to keep it close at hand at all times. Thanks for stopping by!

      Reply
  11. David Thomas

    I’ve never been on a cruise, but would love to. You gave some great tips! Do you have any recommendations for cruises for people with kids? I have a 5 year old. Would love to take him on a cruise! Just hope we can afford it some day!

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      You can afford it. Think about what you spend on a hotel when you take a family vacation. Then you have to pay for food, entertainment, and everything else. A cruise may cost you $50 a night, but it includes everything. In the long run, cruises are definitely cheaper. The top cruise lines for kids are Royal Caribbean, Carnival, Norwegian, Disney, and Princess. Thanks for your great questions and stopping by.

      Reply
  12. Eric

    You mention safety tips but I am curious what the statistics are for crime on a cruise line. Which ones are awarded as the safest and which ones are the more dangerous? Also, how many different alerts are there, how long does the muster session last and will there be a Q&A after it in case you get stuck next to somebody who won’t be quiet?

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      Great questions Eric. I don’t know of any statistics, but does crime happen aboard cruise ships? Yes, but it is not a common occurrence. The last report done by the Coast Guard on crime was back in April of 2017. The two cruise lines with the most crime were Carnival (10 reported) and Royal Caribbean (11 reported). There are some that reported no crime, like Celebrity Cruise Line. Muster drills last about 30 minutes, and then if you have questions, you can ask at the end, or you are free to go. I don’t know what you mean by how many alerts are there. Keep in mind, on todays cruise ships, every square foot of public space – on the open decks, in the bars, restaurants and recreation areas – is monitored by CCTV security cameras.I hope I answered your questions. Thanks for stopping by!

      Reply
  13. Luke

    Great safety tips!

    I have only one cruise (years ago) and I remember the Muster Drill. Like you mentioned, many of the crusiers paid little attention to detail during this time, and would have no idea of what to do in case of an emergency.

    Your article brings up a great point regarding traveling alone. Just like visiting a big city, being seen alone can make you a great target for those with less than good thoughts in mind. Will just take one less than honest member on a cruise to ruin your vacation! Always wise to meet and strike up a conversation with a few people on board.

    Following these useful tips will surely bring a safe, fun and memorable vacation. Thanks for sharing!

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      You are very welcome Luke, I am glad you enjoyed reading. Thanks for stopping by and taking the time to leave some comments on cruise ship safety tips.

      Reply
  14. Jacob

    Great points! I think it is a great idea to use the safe provided and to keep from brandishing my cash unnecessarily!

    I have been thinking of taking a cruise lately, and I’m glad I found your site. You make some great points about being safe on the trip and I’m sure this will make my time more enjoyable!

    By the way, any destinations you recommend? Thanks!

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      Thank you Jacob for stopping by and I am glad you found the information useful. Boy, as far as destinations go it really boils down to taste. For me, I love tropical beaches, so my favorite is going to be a southern or eastern cruise. Southern Caribbean ports include Antigua, Aruba, Barbados, Bonaire, Curacao, Dominica, Grenada, Martinique, St. Kitts, and St. Lucia. Eastern Caribbean ports include the U.S. Virgin Islands, the British Virgin Islands, St. Maarten and Puerto Rico. This is the Caribbean I love!

      Reply
  15. Linda Sams

    I love your site. I have not cruised yet….but I really want to now. I have bookmarked your site for when I am ready. Everything I could ever want or need to know is here. When I am ready to cruise, I will contact you to set things up for me!

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      Great Linda, you will love cruising. Once you take your first one, you will want to continue cruising. It really is the best of vacationing. Thanks for stopping by, and when you are ready to book, you know where to find me 🙂

      Reply

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