What happens on disembarkation day on a cruise? This is the day you leave the cruise ship and here is what to expect.
Disembarking a cruise ship is very different to leaving a hotel. On a cruise ship, you cannot just walk out when you are ready to leave.
The reason is that you will have to be processed through immigration when you disembark the cruise ship. The same as you would at an airport.
Not all of the passengers can be processed at once, so the cruise ship passenger list is divided into groups.
This makes the process quicker than if the whole ship left at the same time.
When your group is called, also your luggage will be ready to collect from the cruise ship terminal. After you have been through immigration.
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What Happens on Disembarkation Day on a Cruise
Night Before Disembarkation Day
The night before you leave the ship you will probably have to leave your luggage outside of your cabin. This is normally before you go for dinner.
Pack what you need for the morning of disembarkation in your hand luggage.
Your luggage will be taken off the ship on your behalf and when your group is called to disembark the cruise ship your luggage will be ready to collect from the cruise terminal.
If you choose the walk-off option way to disembark, you will take your own luggage off the ship.
This means nobody will help you, so bear that in mind if you are unable to do this.
If you have not registered a credit card for your cruise purchases, you will need to pay your shipboard account. Otherwise, you will need to do this first thing on disembarkation day.
The morning of Disembarkation Day
You will have to leave your cabin by a certain time – usually, before 8 am.
Breakfast will only be open for limited times in the restaurants/buffet/food outlets, so check before.
Once you have left your cabin you will probably have to wait in one of the lounges.
This will be with your group number/colour and you wait to be told when you can disembark the cruise ship.
When your group is called you will go to the gangway of the ship and disembark.
Once off the ship and in the cruise terminal, you will go through immigration. You will show your passport and answer any questions/declare anything.
Once through immigration, you will collect your luggage. Then you are free to leave in whichever way you have chosen – taxi, private pick up, Uber or airport transfer.
What Not to Do the Day You Disembark the Cruise Ship
- Do not pack your passport, wallet, or medication in your main luggage – pack in your hand luggage.
- Do not book an early flight as you will not make it. Always book a flight after 1 pm – 2 pm.
- As there may be delays between clearance of the ship in port, going through immigration, collecting luggage and long lines.
- Check your shipboard account the day before you disembark for inquiries. It takes time to find out about your queries from the relevant departments.
- Leave your cabin later than asked to, as your cabin needs to be cleaned for the next passengers boarding that day.
- Do not bring open food or drinks from the ship with you when disembarking as they cannot be brought with you.
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