I put a lot of thought and time into my vacation planning as we travel a lot, but not everywhere we travel has been a blast. We have five and sometimes up to 8 people in our travel group(kids to adults) and we all like different things to make our vacations great.
I have to make certain that everyone will have their ‘wants’ matched up. I become a bit fanatical about the planning it is only because I want everyone to have something to do so that everyone has a great vacation but classic trips to the beach generally are not one-size-fits-all prophecy.
Before the fun starts, we had a lot to learn about Cruising Carnival Safety, Security, Luggage & Check-In. All we want is smooth sailing and so do you, therefore I hope this overview helps you sail through the navigation on-boarding process.
Cruising Carnival Safety, Security, Luggage & Check-In
At The Port
When we decided to take this adventure, it was to celebrate a graduation and to just get out and explore with an adventure that would be multi-generational.
We decided to embark upon a trip that was perfect for everyone in my family from ages 10-100, a cruise. A cruise lets the possibilities of what we would do each day open and endless.
Once we arrived at Port Canaveral in Florida, the actual reality of the vacation set in. Our first glimpses of the ship and a brand I had sailed with many times before was docked and waiting for our family and all the others!
It’s All In The Reaction
The kids ‘oohed and awed’ at the size of the ship, as they had never seen a cruise ship this close and the size is just beyond mammoth. Personally, I mentally recanted our other cruises and the fun we had and suddenly it seemed surreal.
We were really, here again, ready to travel and have one of the best weeks we have had in a long time. The ship was at the dock and we were just feet away from entering.
It’s funny that you forget the chaos that can happen in port if you do not know what to expect. Remember, your luggage will be screened and sent to your room, while anything you carry on is subject to screening and surveillance just like you are entering TSA.
You Are Here -Cruising Carnival Safety, Security, Luggage & Check-In
You might be wondering what is involved when boarding the Carnival Ships and I can tell you it is pretty much just like going to a floating hotel for a week, with better service, pristine cleanliness and groups of people, and families that want nothing more than to just have fun.
Some of the nicest people you will ever meet will join you and your family on a cruise ship and you will probably make some new friends. I am not referring to the idiots that get so intoxicated they can’t even speak (there are always those too!)
Once you are dropped off at the port, your cruise is about to begin. The process goes as smooth as you are prepared. For those of you flying in and already have been through the TSA checkpoints, you will be in great shape.
However, if you have opened the luggage that you cleared through TSA, added stuff into it, etc, it will slow you down. Just keep the same things in your carry on that you would if you were boarding a plane!
Luggage and Checking In – Cruising Carnival Safety, Security, Luggage & Check-In
We have cruised before and I knew that we needed to pack a carry-on to keep with us until our main luggage got to our room. While that is not true on all cruise ships (since we have been on others, Carnival has its own way!).
For those that want to sit out on the Lido deck and sun before getting food or into your room, you need this bag. If you are just fine hanging out in your clothes until your room is ready, then don’t pack one.
When you pack, pack a carry-on that will allow you to have fun in the sun until your luggage arrives at your room. See what to pack in my article Cruising Carnival Packing Tips Day One.
Honestly, after flying or transferring from a hotel to the ship by Noon, you will find you are famished and the first thing you do is Eat. Then we generally go purchase our beverage package
and wine package!
For those of you who cruise a lot with the same brand, you will note your check-in times flow nothing like this as you become a priority! This article is more for those new to cruising or not brand allegiant!
Security Checkpoint Carnival – Cruising Carnival Safety, Security, Luggage & Check-In
Once at the port, you pass through a security checkpoint and don’t try to take photos here or you might get hollered at! There are 2 different doors here and you go through either one side or the other.
If you are a VIFP Diamond or Platinum Level you go through one door and if you are just cruising and have not received status yet you go through the other.
Your bags are placed on a conveyor belt and scanned for illegal items. All small items are placed in a bin and you collect them once you are through. You then head on over to get your room key and your photo and get ready to get on the ship.
With your key in hand, and if you have VIFP status you load onto the ship, and if you do not you simply wait and they board you little by little, calling our your section for boarding. We were VIFP as we have sailed before and we went ahead and boarded.
You walk up to the designated area, are greeted by Team Carnival, and your family is photo’d by one of the ship photographers (your first of many), smile big and say, “CARNIVAL” and get ready to have fun in the sun!
You Are Almost On
Now that you smiled, move on, through an escalator and then down a hallway, and over a ramp that connects you to the Carnival Sunshine and suddenly you have entered the LOBBY of the ship. Uhhhhhhhhhhhh, let the excitement begin as the music is pumping, food is close and your vacation has begun.
Let The Luggage Begin – Cruising Carnival Safety, Security, Luggage & Check-In
Head to the Lido Deck and start into the food, just bring the luggage you have along with you! Fun in the sun is now! People cluster on the LIDO deck and on top of the ship decks.
Cruising Carnival Safety, Security, Luggage & Check-In & Your Luggage
If you have read all about your cruise you know that most rooms on the Carnival ships are not ready until at least 1:30. Most likely, your luggage will arrive after this. Again, if you are a VIP and brand allegiant, yours will arrive quicker than the others!
Consider that the number of guests on any particular ships, which weighs into the delivery of luggage to each room.
Often you can get into your room ahead of your larger luggage arriving, and if you have packed a small carry-on, hopefully, you will have the right items in it to start your vacation.
Read my article on Carnival Cruise Packing Tips for Your First Day to learn what to put in there. We changed and headed back out to the pool area, until the Muster Drill time.
What Happens When Everyone Is On The Ship? Muster Drill & Safety
Once everyone is boarded it’s time to set sail. It’s time for the Muster Drill and you Must attend. This is the quick safety course that shows you where to go in case of an emergency at sea.
The drill teaches you where to go in case of an emergency, and how to fasten the safety vests. There’s a little more too, but it’s mandatory!
You do not bring your life jackets with you, these are in your room closet and stay there. You will watch your crew member place one on.
For those under 12, you will be wearing a band for the whole cruise. This is an identifier. It is provided purely to help in case of an emergency when your child could be separated from you.
You are counted by one of the crew members, and that is how they make sure everyone is there. They also discussed FIRE on a ship and how deadly it can be. Further, discussion of smoking and no tossing cigarettes, again, due to fire hazards.
Listen, learn and then you can begin your journey safely. The drill is about 25 minutes then you are then free to have a fantastic trip.
Consider Your Safety
I am going to make a few comments here because it is necessary. You might be on vacation, but this will help you if there should be an emergency. The crew needs to be able to talk and you need to listen.
The spacing is tight in the muster lines. People were complaining about this drill, but what would happen if something happened while we were at sea? You need to know what to do, it is short, simple and may very well save your life! We loved it because we met a lot of people quickly.
When The Muster Drill Is Over
Head to the upper decks (or the deck in your room), because it is time to set sail. Let the Cruising Horn sound, and let’s go!
No matter which side of the ship you choose from above, you will enjoy this moment! It’s kind of the iconic moment and of course your starting point! Bon Voyage with Carnival!
Carnival Cruise Lines hosted my family for this incredible cruise. However, all opinions, comments, and thoughts are my own based on our 8 Night Cruise. All photos and content are subject to copyright!
Need More Cruise Inspiration? Check out my other articles on cruising? Learn 3 Tips to Effectively Pack for a Cruise, and how to create Well Packed Shore Excursion bags for all those port of call adventures in the Caribbean!
Learn why families take cruises and the best reasons to cruise just in case you are not already convinced that cruising is fun! Where do you find entertainment on Carnival and what happens in a Carnival Cruise Ship Dining Room if…. you get a fun Table Host?
For those of you that have teens, make sure to refer them to the article my teens wrote about the best cruising tips from teenagers for teenagers so they can get a flavor of what’s to come! Hint * you might want to read it to, lol!