This is a view from a Seaplane.....in Alaska. Rooster Sr and I went on an Alaskan cruise a few weeks ago....and had a blast! It was one of those 'once in a lifetime' opportunities and we tried to take advantage of each port of call. This photo is of a lake....on which we landed....in the middle of a mountain range. The pilot said that the ice just melted enough to allow the plane to land. True to form, after stepping out on to the plane floats, several large pieces of ice floated right by.
When we were planning to go on this trip, it required planning. I wanted to share with you some of the things we did...brought....learned.
As you might expect, each state room had an emergency plan on the door. They required everyone to practice emergency procedures and to learn where your gathering station was. (They did not allow photos of this....or I would have shown you). Each area had a sign so that you quickly found your station. Each station leader had a list of names that should be gathered there. Take home: have a predetermined place to meet and a list of emergency numbers for family members in case of an emergency.
It was funny to us, but a huge bottle of wine was waiting for us when we arrived. As we do not drink alcohol, we gave it to the steward....he seemed pretty happy about it! Rooster Sr, cleared out the mini-fridge of all the alcohol and and other beverages we don't partake of hoping the steward would take those away also. Nope! He just stored them in a cubby hole instead.
Rooster Senior soon put all his 'stuff' in the refrigerator. The only thing in there that belonged to me was....my favorite water bottle complete with the logo of my Alma-mater! Now, before you start laughing......the cruise liner charges you for every beverage but water and certain juices. I refilled this bottle (and Rooster Sr. refilled his bottle) over and over again throughout the cruise. My little bottle also has a clip, that I hooked to my purse when we were on excursions. Just as a frame of reference, a can of soda had a charge of $2.50 per can! We saw many people purchase sodas and gallons of water and brought them aboard at each stop.
This is 'my stuff'. I just wanted to point out a couple of things. I have a flat iron, and these surfaces are wood. I just put it into a glass to protect the surface and also to give me more room. There are metal barriers (look just above the wooden surface) that held all my items. Also, you don't have to take a blow dryer. This may not seem like a big deal, but it took me a long time on the Internet to find out whether I needed to pack one or not!
It was amazing how much could be put into the closet. They even had a pull-down rack that my husband hung his pants on. On the right side, there were shelves that we couldn't fill up!
Okay, things to take. We took coats that had zip-out jackets/liners inside. Depending upon the port we were in, we needed either the small jacket, the wind-proof jacket, or both. Also, do not forget your binoculars! Also, take an over-the-shoulder-bag to carry the binoculars, cameras, snacks, drinks, and also to place your purchases in. And.....take snacks. Purchasing them on board or even in port is costly.
Yes, I bought a cute hat....but I couldn't resist. I also used it! Now, Rooster Sr brought his computer....and we really didn't even use it. Just know that they charge for Wifi. I was also trying to get away from everything!
This is one of those shoe organizers that I bought at the big-box store. It provides storage for small things, books, and my husband's crazy things he thinks he needs, but never used. It can be hung in the bathroom for toiletries or in the closet, and it collapses and does not take up much room in your suitcase.
I had these in my carry-on, and used them too. It was amazing how many passengers were purchasing gloves, coats, umbrella's, etc. I mean, we all knew we were going to Alaska...where there is snow and everything!
There was a great deal of entertainment on board. However, some of it was not congruent with our values or standards. So, we came prepared with some DVDs and a DVD player. We used this at night in our room or on the deck with 2 sets of ear buds.
The other item is my Kindle-fire. This was really, really helpful. I had downloaded a book on cruising Alaska. It had information, suggestions, maps, and phone numbers for excursions, shops, etc in each port of call. We saved money by using this. There are many excursions that the cruise line offered, but sometimes you can get the same or similar excursions cheaper by using local companies. Of course, you can always read & play games on it too...and I did!
My husband brought this little lantern along as well. If the ship lost power or had some difficulty, we would be able to see in our room or navigate our way out off the ship. Even though we had a window, many staterooms did not. And, depending on the tide, exiting the ship happened on different levels. Having light would have been very important if we needed it.
So, we didn't really have to purchase things that we forgot or needed, we just enjoyed each other, had adventures, and relaxed for an entire week. If you go, use your preparedness mindset to help you pack and prepare. You will save money. Hopefully you will be ready for anything, and will be building life-long memories.