First Time CruisingPart 2: Dining, Dressing & Dramamine
Is it your first cruise or weekend holiday? Fear not, fair one, for Gay.com has you covered on all the info you need to remove the stress and maximize the fun.
On Monday we got you set up with the basics for a trip, but now it's time to go a bit deeper. Well, as deeply as we can when we're talking about a party week loaded with tons of hot men.
Today we explore the food situation (pack some pregnancy pants for all the yummy options), what to pack given your limited storage options, and the realities of sea sickness.
Check it out.
You Are What You Eat
The primary dining rooms on most ships still have "main" and "late" seating options. Dinner is served in two shifts, and on many sailings you are assigned to one of them for the duration of your cruise. Most entertainment is also done in two shifts, with an early and late performance to match your dining option. Which one should you pick?
Popular option, with more time to return to the ship after shore excursions, and less downtime between eating and late-night partying.
Lets you enjoy cabaret acts and ship amenities between dinner and late-night parties. Alternatively, you can eat, see the show, and get to bed early if that's your thing.
Service in the primary dining rooms is a relatively formal, sit-down affair.
•Expect menus, waiters, wine stewards, etc.
•Unless your ship offers "restaurant seating," you'll be assigned to one table and waiter for the duration of your trip.
•Most tables hold eight people.
•If there are people you want to eat with, get your table assignment together.
•If you don't like your tablemates, speak to the maitre d' ASAP. It's rude to change during your first dinner, but arrange to switch before you leave the dining room.
•Breakfast and lunch in the dining rooms are sparsely attended so go with the flow.
•Most ships offer at least one alternate dining option, such as a casual buffet that you can enjoy at almost any hour of the day.
•Don't like what you're eating? Ask your waiter for a replacement; he will be happy to comply.
Many cruises also offer restaurants that are not associated with the ship's formal dining options. You will generally pay for these meals, but it can make for a nice respite from the large group setting. Check the details on these restaurants before making reservations.
Clothes Make the Man
On a gay cruise there are tons of themed events, so get info early and prepare accordingly. You're not obligated to partake, but you'll probably have more fun if you join in on one or more events.
Regular dress for a cruise is very casual most of the time, and at the ports of call. At night you will be expected to dress up a little, such as long pants and a collared shirt. Plan wisely, since space is really limited. Also bring:
•A sweater or sweatshirt because it can be cool at night
•A lightweight rain jacket
•Plenty of shorts, swimsuits, T-shirts, and clean underwear (if you wear it)
•A backpack is useful for port visits, and fanny packs still deserve mockery
Motion discomfort (often called motion sickness or seasickness) is caused when the fluid in your inner ear and your eyes send conflicting messages to your brain about which way is up. The good news: Most people don't have to worry about it.
Modern ships have stabilizers, which help minimize the pitching and rolling that can cause the problem in the first place. Sometimes just getting out on deck and watching the horizon will calm the stomach. Sea-Bands are elastic and plastic wristbands that use an acupressure point to prevent seasickness; however, you need to have them on before you start feeling ill for them to work. Over-the-counter medications like Dramamine and Bonine both work reliably, although some Dramamine formulas cause drowsiness.
Okay, so now the main concerns are handled, what's left? Day trips, getting laid, and how to wrap up your trip without any headaches. Of course, that will have to wait until Friday.