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Frequently Asked Questions

Cruise Related
  Q1. What does my cruise fare include?
  Q2. What is not included on the cruise?
  Q3. How do I pay for onboard expenses?
  Q4. What currency is used onboard?
  Q5. How many suitcases can I bring?
  Q6. Is there smoking allowed onboard the ship?
  Q7. What happens if I have to cancel?
  Q8. How much do I have to pay when I book a cruise?
  Q9. What is there to do onboard the ship?
  Q10. Will I get sea-sick?
  Q11. Will I be able to work-out and eat healthy onboard?
  Q12. Do I have to eat at a certain time everyday?
  Q13. What if I need special meals?
  Q14. What is the dress code on the ship?
  Q15. How should I pack?
  Q16. Are there laundry services available?
  Q17. What happens if I get sick on the cruise?
  Q18. Can I bring a visitor onboard the ship for a tour?
  Q19. Are gratuities included?
  Q20. Are there activities for children? Is there any age restriction?
 

Q21. How much is Travel Insurance?

Alaska Related
  Q22. When is the best time to travel to Alaska?
  Q23. Will I see wildlife on an Alaska Cruise?
  Q24. What shore excursions are available?
  Q25. Can I add a pre- or post-cruise hotel stay?
  Q26. Do I need to know English to get around?
  Q27. How far away is Alaska?
  Q28. What is the weather like in Alaska?
  Q29. Is a passport and/or visa required?
   
   
   
   
   
  Q1. What does my cruise fare include?
  A1. Most Alaska cruises include food (3 meals a day plus room service), regular drinks (like coffee, tea, juice, iced tea & lemonade), entertainment, use of the ship's facilities, and your accommodations. Some luxury cruise lines will include more, such as alcoholic beverages, gratuities, shore excursions, and more. Please ask your Alaska Specialist for more details.
 
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  Q2. What is not included on the cruise?
  A2. Most Alaska cruises do not include gratuities, alcoholic beverages, soda pop, shore excursions, specialty coffees, WiFi internet, gambling, spa or salon treatments, specialty restaurants, specialty fitness classes or personal trainer classes, and personal items. Some luxury cruise lines include gratuities, alcoholic beverages, soda pop, WiFi internet, specialty restaurants, and even some shore excursions. Please ask your Alaska Specialist for details.
 
  Q3. How do I pay for onboard expenses?
  A3. For your convenience, most cruise ships sailing to Alaska set-up a stateroom account when you check-in for the cruise. Similar to a hotel, everything you purchase onboard the ship gets charged to this account and at the end of your Alaska cruise the account can be settled by credit card or cash.
   
  Q4. What currency is used onboard?
  A4. Onboard a cruise ship in Alaska the currency used is US Dollars. The purser's desk will cash travellers cheques and some foreign currency.
 
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  Q5. How many suitcases can I bring?
  A5. There is no limit to the number of suitcases you may bring on board an Alaska cruise. All cruise lines request guests bring items no heavier than 200 pounds, per stateroom.
   
  Q6. Is there smoking allowed onboard the ship?
  A6. Each Alaska cruise ship is slightly different, however most ships do not allow smoking in staterooms, or on stateroom balconies, and dining area's on the ship. Smoking is permitted in designated areas in bars and/or outside on open decks. Please look for signs on board your ship.
   
  Q7. What happens if I have to cancel?
  A7. If you are cancelling over 90 days in advance you will receive the deposit you paid back (on all cruise lines except luxury cruise lines). If you are cancelling after the final payment date, cruise line penalties come into effect. The penalty amounts vary by cruise line and the date you are cancelling; the closer you are to the departure date, the higher the penalty from the cruise line. Ask your Alaska Certified Expert about any other charges that may be incurred.
 
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  Q8. How much do I have to pay when I book a cruise?
  A8. If you are booking a cruise over 90 days in advance most cruise lines only require a deposit. The deposit amount varies depending on the cruise line between $250-900 US per person. If you are booking within 90 days of the cruise, full payment is required. Most cruise line deposits are fully refundable up until the final payment date (90 days prior to sailing).

Many luxury cruise lines require final payment 120 days prior to departure, not 90. Please contact your Alaska Specialist for more specific information.

   
  Q9. What is there to do onboard the ship?
  A9. Each night when you are at dinner your stateroom attendant will clean your stateroom, give turn-down service, and provide a guide for the following day. Onboard activities offered include port lectures, movies, dance classes, bingo, live music in various lounges or at the pool, entertainment shows each evening and much more! Plus, you can use the ship's facilities like whirlpools, swimming pools, fitness center, library, card room, etc.
 
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  Q10. Will I get sea-sick?
  A10. It is possible to get sea-sick on an Alaska cruise, however all the major cruise lines have added stabilizers to each ship when they were built. These stabilizers are used to keep the ship steady when it is in rough water.

If you usally get car sick, then you could get sea-sick. We suggest that you visit your doctor prior to your Alaska cruise vacation and discuss methods to avoid sea-sickness. One popular method is purchasing the patch (which is placed behind your ear) or taking gravol.

If you begin feeling a little woozy, there is a medical center onboard with a doctor and nurses to help you!

   
  Q11. Will I be able to work-out and eat healthy onboard?
  A11. Yes. Most medium and large Alaska cruise ships offer fitness facilities. All dining areas on your cruise ship will offer a menu of items to choose from. Light menu choices and vegetarian dishes are also available.
   
  Q12. Do I have to eat at a certain time everyday?
  A12. No. Most Alaska cruise ships offer 24 hour room service complimentary, plus a casual buffet-style restaurant that is open 24 hours. No matter what time of day you are hungry something is available for you!
 
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  Q13. What if I need special meals?
  A13. Special meals can be accommodated if you inform your Alaska Certified Expert when booking your Alaska cruise. Many cruise lines offer vegetarian, vegan, kosher, diabetic, no dairy, low salt, low cholesterol, Indian vegetarian, and more. Special meal requests must be requested at the time of booking.
   
  Q14. What is the dress code on the ship?
  A14. During the day on board your cruise ship casual attire is acceptable. During the evening dress codes vary by cruise ship. Some cruise lines, such as Regent Seven Seas Cruises and Norwegian Cruise Line, offer a Country Club casual attire dress code every evening of the cruise. However, most other cruise lines have two formal nights on a 7 night cruise, three formal nights on 10 or 12 night cruise, and four formal nights on a 14+ night cruise.
   
  Q15. How should I pack?
  A15. When travelling to Alaska we recommend you pack layered clothing. Long pants, t-shirts, sweaters, a light rainproof jacket with hood, umbrella or hat, and comfortable walking shoes. If you like to visit the spa or use the swimming pools on board please bring a bathing suit, cover-up, water shoes, etc.

For dinner in most restaurants resort casual attire is acceptable. Cruise Line's ask guests to not wear jeans, t-shirts, shorts, cut-offs, tank tops or bare feet in dining areas.

If you need to bring prescription medicines don't forget to bring the original containers. We recommend keeping all prescriptions with you in your carry-on or purse when boarding the ship.
 
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  Q16. Are there laundry services available?
  A16. Onboard most Alaska cruise ships laundry service is available through room service for a fee. Washing, pressing, and steaming is offered.
   
  Q17. What happens if I get sick on the cruise?
  A17. There is a medical center onboard all large cruise ships. In the medical center there is a doctor and nurses to assist with injuries or questions. The medical center hours are limited, however the doctor is on-call 24 hours a day.
   
  Q18. Can I bring a visitor onboard the ship for a tour?
  A18. Unfortunately no.
   
  Q19. Are gratuities included?
  A19. This depends on the cruise line. Some luxury cruise lines include gratuities in the cost of the cruise. However, most cruise lines do not include gratuities. Each day of the cruise your onboard account is charged a fixed amount, typically $12.00 to $14.00 USD (per guest, per day). This fee covers all gratuities for the staff onboard, but can be adjusted by contacting the purser's desk if you have an issue. Please contact your Alaska Certified Expert for specific cruise line guidelines.
   
  Q20. Are there activities for children? Is there any age restriction?
  A20. Many of the large cruise ships offer youth programs complimentary when cruising Alaska. Some cruise lines do have an age restriction of 6 months, please ask your Alaska Specialists about the cruise you're interested in.
 
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  Q21. How much is Travel Insurance?
  A21. Travel Insurance premiums and coverage vary. Please contact your Alaska Certified Expert for more details.
   
  Q22. When is the best time to travel to Alaska?
  A22. The Alaska Cruise season is only from May to September each year. May and September are considered low season, June is shoulder season, and July and August are peak season. In our opinion June is the best time to travel to Alaska because of its mild weather, longest daylight hours of the year, whales are migrating, off-season prices, and it is less crowded. If you're interested in viewing the Northern Lights, the best time is in September.
   
  Q23. Will I see wildlife on an Alaska Cruise?
  A23. Yes, it is possible to see wildlife on an Alaska Cruise or Cruisetour. During May, June, and September many passengers spot whales right from your cruise ship; however, that is not guaranteed. We recommend taking a specific whale watching excursion from Juneau to guarantee whale sightings. When cruising glacier areas it is quite common to view birds, seals, and dall sheep. Bear watching is offered by excursion, but only between late July and September each year.
   
  Q24. What shore excursions are available?
  A24. Many shore excursions are available in each port of call. Click here to view our destination information.
   
  Q25. Can I add pre- or post-cruise hotel stay?
  A25. Yes, pre and post hotel packages are available. Your Alaska Certified Expert can offer packages in Anchorage, Vancouver, Seattle, and San Francisco. If you are looking for a week long stay your Certified Alaska Expert can help with packaging air, hotel, and tours for you. Consider adding time on land in Alaska or in the Canadian Rockies.
   
  Q26. Do I need to know English to get around?
  A26. The main language in Alaska is English. Onboard cruise ships in Alaska the crew is international and may speak many different languages. For more details contact your Alaska Specialist.
 
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  Q27. Where do I fly to and what airlines go there?
  A27. Most Alaska cruises travel from Vancouver, Seattle, Anchorage, or San Francisco. If you are taking a one-way cruise between Vancouver and Seward/Whittier (Anchorage) you will need to buy an open-jaw airline ticket. Most major airlines will offer this. Ask your Alaska Certified Expert for more information.
   
  Q28. What is the weather like in Alaska?
 

A28. Below is a list of the average temperatures per month in Alaska in Celsius.


Juneau & Inside Passage: May 12C, June 16C, July 18C, August 17C, Sept 13C


Anchorage: May 12C, June 17C, July 18C, August 17C, Sept 13C


Fairbanks: May 21C, June 21C, July 24C, August 21C, Sept 12C

   
  Q29. Is a passport and/or visa required?
  A29. Yes. US and Canadian citizens are required to have a valid passport for any/all Alaska cruises. All other citizens travelling should contact a local Consulate in their country for visa requirements; all Alaska cruises visit both the United States and Canada. Cruising2Alaska.com is not responsible for issuing or informing passengers of passport or visa requirements.
 
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