Princess Cruises

PRINCESS CRUISES: Planning for Your Adventure


Please be sure to review the Princess Cruises CruiseHealth webpage, where you can learn important information about your cruise, including any current health and safety measures. This page is updated directly by Princess Cruises so the information here will always be the most up-to-date!

What's Included with My Cruise Purchase?

What’s Included with My Cruise Purchase?

Onboard stateroom accommodations (your cabin), ocean transportation (your cruise), most entertainment and recreation onboard, meals in non-Specialty dining areas, Iced Tea/Lemonade/Water/Hot Tea/Non-Specialty Coffee, and the Princess Cruises commitment to guest satisfaction.

What’s Not Included?

Travel insurance (unless requested), specialty dining, spa services, gambling, art auctions, merchandise purchases, shore excursions, photographs, arcade, internet access, medical services, transportation to and from the port, port parking, laundry services, ship to shore phone calls, gratuities, alcoholic beverages, and specialty beverages. Ask a staff member if you’re ever unsure.

Final Payment

Be sure to mark a calendar with your Final Payment Date – this date comes 90, 75, or 60 days before sailing date depending on the length of your cruise, and that is the deadline date for paying off the remaining balance on your cruise. Contact me as soon as you’re ready to make that Final Payment – I’ll process your credit card and ensure that you’re confirmed as an official cruise passenger.

Your Princess Cruise Personalizer

Please create a Cruise Personalizer account online as soon as possible, and be sure to download the MedallionClass app. Starting now, you’ll want to begin exploring shore excursions for each port. Most importantly: once Final Payment is made you’ll log-in to your account and complete the Online Check-in process to save lots of time at the cruise terminal.

To set up your online account and link your reservation, go to:

Princess Cruise Personalizer

Princess Cruise Personalizer Walk Through

What is “Online Check-In” and What are “e-Docs?”

Online check-in” is a pre-cruise procedure in which you’ll complete necessary cruise paperwork online: you’ll print a boarding pass (called “e-docs,”), luggage tags, and a Cruise Card signature page (for your room key) to save lots of time when boarding the ship. It’s all done in your Princess Cruise Personalizer account after your cruise reservation is paid in full. Be sure to complete this process by logging into your account at least 5 days before sailing. 

Vacation Protection Insurance

Most insurance policies do not include coverage while traveling outside of the US, so purchasing travel insurance is always recommended. Many of today’s plans feature comprehensive coverage: Personal Property, Baggage, Medical, Emergency Evacuation, and additionally 24-hour Travel Assistance. The insurance which Princess Cruises offers still includes the “Cancel for Any Reason” feature which is very popular, under both the Standard and Platinum plans and includes coverage for flights and pre/post hotels booked through Princess Cruises. It’s a great way to protect your investment and provides peace of mind at a low cost. We can add the Princess Cruises plan any time before Final Payment by request, and cost ranges from 8-12% of the cruise fare. Princess Cruises often provides an insurance upgrade to Platinum Captain’s Circle Members by request. We also offer insurance through a preferred third-party vendor that might be more affordable or offer benefits that you might prefer, to request a quote comparison, please email your Wish Upon a Star with Us Travel Agent.

When Should I Plan to Arrive?

Arrive at the port the day before embarkation day (the day your ship leaves the home port). Explore the port area (it’s a destination too!) or relax without the stress of delayed or cancelled flights and sudden traffic incidents (trust me!). Your Wish Upon a Star with Us Travel Agent can easily arrange airfare and a pre/post-cruise hotel through the cruise line at competitive rates! Boarding time on embarkation day depends on your cabin location. You will see a specific timeframe for arrival during Online Check-in.

Please be sure to read the “Before You Cruise FAQs” for more information.


For documentation requirements, it is crucial to visit Preparing for your Cruise and select Travel Document Requirements. Please take note: passengers who are not natural-born US citizens or carry a birth certificate from Puerto Rico may have additional documentation requirements.

Passports are highly recommended for cruises but not required on every sailing.  It is each cruise passenger’s responsibility to make sure they have the proper identification documents needed to board. Though Passports are not required in order to board some sailings, they are strongly recommended and would be required in the event you must return to the United States by air.

If your cruise does require a passport:

Ensure that the name on the photo page matches the name on your cruise reservation and is valid for 6 months after travel.

If your cruise does not require a Passport:

You may choose to use a valid Passport to board the ship.

If you do not present a Passport, you will be required to provide proof of citizenship in the form of an original/certified copy of a government issued birth certificate (with raised seal and signature), and a laminated government-issued photo ID (driver’s license) for each passenger age 16+ that matches the name on the cruise reservation. If the name on your ID does not match the name on your Birth Certificate and/or Driver’s License, you may be asked to present a supporting document (i.e. a Marriage License, which shows your maiden and married name). It’s heartbreaking to see someone left behind in the terminal, denied boarding for not having the right ID.

Children traveling without both birth parents or children with a different last name than their parent may be required to show additional notarized consent.


Some countries require that any American passenger departing the ship obtain a Travel Visa and/or be booked on a cruise line shore excursion (Russia, Australia, China, India, and Cuba for example) in order to exit the ship.

Visa requirements for U.S. and Canadian citizens are listed on your Booking Confirmation under “Notices,” if applicable. You’ll want to check if an Visa Application Kit is needed for your sailing. All other nationalities, including those with U.S. or Canadian resident status, should contact me ASAP for info in obtaining the appropriate documents.

STEP/Smart Traveler Enrollment Program

International cruise passengers are strongly encouraged to register each trip with the US Dept. of Consular Affairs Smart Travel Enrollment Program (STEP) . By signing up you’ll be notified of new travel advisories and pertinent tourist information. Plus, registering for this free service by the US Dept. of State also enables them to better assist you during an emergency.


Daytime: The Horizon Court Café is a complimentary buffet open during meal times. There are also a variety of quick, grab-and-go style options to choose from! The Main Dining Room is open for a table-service breakfast, lunch, and multi-course dinner. Room service is available 24/7 (some charges apply).

Evening: Dine My Way

· Cruise dining has been re-imagined with Dine My Way, so you can dine when you want, how you want, with who you want and where you want! Once your cruise has been paid in full, you can access Dine My Way inside your Princess Cruises account on the Medallion Class app. You’ll be able to customize your dining time for each day, whether making reservations for the main dining room (which is included) or specialty restaurants (which charge an additional cover charge). You can choose to have dinner at the same time each night or change it based on what works for you.

Signature Dining: Each ship offers a variety of optional dining experiences for an additional fee (Sterling Steakhouse and La Mer French bistro, for example), and upscale dining options on Princess Cruises soar above the rest! We suggesting planning to try a couple – they really do make your cruise experience extra special, especially the Ultimate Balcony Dining experience!

Need a specific date/time for your special dining experience? Be sure to make your reservations right away when your booking window opens.


Princess Cruises recommends that guests “dress the same way you would for any stylish land-based resort.”

Daytime: Casual/resort wear is the norm during daytime hours. Shorts, t-shirts, slacks, trousers, casual skirts, blouses and sundresses are all perfect whether indoors or out. For lounging by the pool, pack multiple bathing suits, cover-ups, and a pair of sandals. Don’t forget work-out clothes for the fitness center, and also a sweater or two.

Evening: Smart Casual is the norm in the dining room for dinner. Cruises from 5-6 nights will have 1 Formal night, and cruises 7 nights+ have at least 2 Formal nights. Smart Casual: Jackets and ties for men, dresses or pantsuits for women. Formal:  cocktail dresses and evening gowns for women, dark suits and ties (or tuxedos) for men. Shorts, T-shirts, and bathing suits are considered too casual in the dining rooms at dinner.

Visit “What to Pack” for more details and notes for onshore attire.

PRINCESS CruiseTours

Maximizing Your Vacation: Princess CruiseTours

Memory-making experiences are the heart of every Princess CruiseTour. Pair your journey at sea with curated adventures on land, led by expert Guides who ensure that your vacation is hassle-free and full of entertainment. Leave the logistics to Princess Cruises so you’re free to soak it all in – all at an affordable price. Contact your Wish Upon a Star Agent to pair a CruiseTour with your vacation.


There are SO many options at each port and endless opportunities for relaxation and adventure!

—Visit Princess Cruise Personalizer to search Shore Excursions, where you can browse by ship and sail date.

—Consider checking with your Wish Upon a Star with Us Travel Agent for a list of trusted third-party excursion vendors. These excursion companies are known for offering additional shore excursion possibilities, competitive rates, and a timely return to your ship.

Some favorites: cultural bus tours, snorkeling, hands-on experiences, and activities unique to a destination. Just about every port has their own version of ziplining, Segway tours, dolphin swims, and ATV excursions, so instead keep an eye out for unique geographical and historical sites (like Dunn’s River Falls in Jamaica, The Baths in Tortola, Mayan ruins in Mexico, St. Kitts Scenic Railway, etc.)

Dreaming of an all-inclusive beach day? Spending the afternoon at a beach-front resort? This is your chance! Ask me for Resort Day Pass options in the ports you’ll visit on this cruise and start dreaming of the fruity cocktail you’ll try first!

You’ll want to reserve shore excursions as early as 6 months in advance of sailing.  Please note that the complete list may not be available until 120 days before sailing.

Embarkation Day (Cruise Day 1)

Check-in time and ship departure (embarkation) time varies by home port and ship. You will receive your Boarding Time while completing Online Check-in. Select a time as early as you can (early on the ship means more time to explore and relax!) and arrive no later than 2 hours before the scheduled embarkation time printed on your e-docs. Don’t forget to complete the Online Check-In process at least 5 days before Embarkation Day!

Children’s Clubs

Princess Cruises complimentary youth programs, “Cruising with Princess” provide entertainment for all kids 3-17 years divided into age-appropriate programming (Camp Discovery Ages 3-7 The Lodge Ages 8-12 and The Beach House Ages 13-17). If your children fall within these age ranges, don’t be surprised if they insist on spending LOTS of time in the Clubs. Most ships also have an After Hours rate of $5/child per hour for group childcare from 10pm-1am. NOTE: Pacific Princess does not offer children’s programming on every sailing.

Health Concerns and Guests with Special Needs or Diets

Princess Cruises ships provide quality service and accessible features to make your experience as relaxing and enjoyable as can be. Each ship is equipped with an Infirmary and Ship Doctor, available for an additional fee. ***Important: Please inform your Wish Upon a Star with Us Travel Agent of any new or existing pregnancy, routine dialysis, special needs, dietary restrictions, or medical concerns so we can inform the appropriate department.

Medical vaccination requirements and recommendations change periodically. Visit the CDC website for recommendations specific to each country on your itinerary. Travel health experts recommend giving yourself 4-6 weeks to meet with a travel health provider about how to plan for your travel and to get any needed travel vaccinations.

Stateroom Door Decorations

Decorating your stateroom door makes for a fun and memorable homecoming each night. Bring magnets, images printed on magnetic paper, or window cling to easily recognize your stateroom door. Other ideas include anniversary photos, wrapping paper, balloons, Veteran magnets, and more. Check Pinterest for ideas!

Luggage Policy

Princess Cruises does not limit the amount of luggage each guest brings aboard; however, for your comfort and convenience, it is recommended that you limit the number of pieces you take. Keep in mind that airline luggage policies may differ from cruise line luggage policies. Some items are permitted only in carry-on luggage (a CPAP machine, for example). Pack that carry-on wisely!

What not to bring: Prohibited Items Policy

Am I Allowed to Bring Alcohol Onboard?

Princess Cruises alcohol policy

Guests may bring 1 bottle (750 ml) of wine or champagne per adult, per voyage.   Any additional wine or champagne is welcome but will incur a $15/bottle corkage fee in order to be taken aboard. Beer, hard liquor, and fortified wines are not allowed to be brought onboard. Any beverages bought in duty-free shops on the ship or in port will be stored by the ship until the final day of the cruise.

Automatic Gratuities

As with most cruise lines, Princess Cruises automatically adds the standard gratuities to each guest’s onboard account while sailing. These “tips” are divided among your Dining Room Server, Dining Room Assistant Server, and Dining Room Head Server as well as your Stateroom Host/Hostess. It is recommended to add prepaid gratuities during Final Payment because it’s one less thing to budget for on the ship – let your Wish Upon a Star with Us Travel Agent know if you’d like to pay in advance.

Debarkation Day (Final Cruise Day)

Ships generally arrive back at their home port early in the morning, around 7am though this can vary by ship and sail date. The Captain will make an announcement soon after that for passengers to begin disembarkation.  Princess Cruises states that disembarkation may take up to 4 hours after the scheduled arrival of the ship in order to clear Customs and Immigration, so please be sure to keep this in mind as you are considering flight departure times.

Onboard Booking (save $$!): Future Cruise Incentives

You’ll have the chance to save $$$ on a future cruise OR earn onboard credit by making a reservation while still onboard. The incentives are usually pretty great, and, if you have booked your cruise thru a Wish Upon a Star with Us Travel Agent, we hope that you will choose to list your Travel Agent on the reservation when talking with the sales staff!

A few miscellaneous notes…

  • All purchases made onboard are charged to your Onboard Princess MedallionClass Account by scanning your room key card.
  • Dining and beverage packages can be a great value. Your Wish Upon a Star with Us Travel Agent can help you decide if you’re unsure.
  • Be sure to download the Princess MedallionClass app before your cruise! You can use the app to view the daily schedule, make reservations onboard, and so much more.

Still have questions?

Your Wish Upon a Star with Us Travel Agent is just a phone call or email away.