Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Cruises

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Cruises

Article excerpt

WE'RE getting ready for our summer family cruise. Over the years, we've learned what to take with us and what to leave behind, and we've developed a pattern of preparation that may help other potential passengers.

Months before the cruise, we check our passports. Ours are valid for several years, but if your passport will expire within three months after your trip abroad, you should get a new one. Renewals cost $55, and if your passport is ready to expire, a new one can be issued within three business days for an additional $30.

About a month before the actual cruise, we receive a set of documents from the cruise line: the cruise tickets, airline tickets (if we bought them as part of the cruise package), a small brochure answering general questions and sometimes another brochure describing the shore excursion options. Cruise and airline tickets: Check the names, sailing dates and airline flight details for errors in dates and names. Airlines can demand that you present identification that matches the names on the tickets. If there are any mistakes, contact your travel agent and/or cruise line immediately. The cruise information brochure: This helpful booklet answers frequently asked questions, providing information about: - Staying in touch with home. Family emergencies do happen, and we always make certain that several people know how to reach us at sea - with the caveat that doing so, by fax or satellite phone, is a very expensive proposition. Give the ship's fax and phone numbers to the appropriate person. - Dress codes. Most cruise ships have some form of dress code for different times of day. A few even have black-tie nights (with tuxedoes available for rent on board). This brochure should tell you what the dress codes are so you can pack the appropriate wear. - Extras. Does the cruise line provide robes? …

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