1. Carnival no longer mails out hard copies of cruise documents. You can now access and print them out yourself. Go to www.carnival.com. Scroll down to the bottom left of the site. You’ll see two links under ALREADY BOOKED? These links, “Fun Pass” and “My Documents” are the ones you want. By the way, you will need your Carnival confirmation number to print your documents. You will find that booking number on the email I previously sent you confirming your cabin purchase. (They don’t want your group booking number, they want your PERSONAL guest book number.) Note: you can easily find this number in the subject header of the email that I forwarded to you when your cabin was booked. It will say: /BkgXXXXXX/yourlastname/…. in the header. (Or the last name of someone in your cabin.) The numbers after Bkg (ie, booking), are the ones you want. If you have any problems locating your booking number, email me back and I’ll provide it for you.
2. Make sure you have a valid, current passport or the new passport card. At this late date, if you don’t have one, you will need to print your Carnival ticket and/or any plane ticket showing you’re flying to Miami or Ft. Lauderdale, and take it with you with your expired passport and/or drivers license (and any other needed documents) to your nearest passport agency. You must provide proof that you are traveling within 2 weeks time and need same-day service to get a new passport. You will likely have to wait a few hours while they do a rush order for you. If you have any questions about what is needed in regards to a passport, here is a link for you: http://travel.state.gov/passport/ppt_card/ppt_card_3926.html. And yes, the new passport card will suffice but if you ever plan to fly to a different country, you will need a full passport anyway, so we recommend you get the full passport instead of the new passport card.
3. If you don’t have your travel plans set up, please email me or call me at 646-321-8504 if you need help. Or go to maceddytravel.com and see what discount prices you can get.
4. We will provide you with special Fangs & Fur Cruise tote bags and button pins for ID, plus pens and some scripts Judy is putting together for you. If you are interested in our cruise tee-shirts, notebooks, postcards, mugs or anything else, we have set up a CafePress store for you. There are a variety of tee-shirt styles to choose from. I recommend you order immediately so that CafePress can deliver them in time for you. The mugs came out great, by the way, but I wouldn’t recommend bringing them on the cruise as they are breakable. CafePress store: http://www.cafepress.com/fangsandfur
Below are some coupon codes that may give you a discount on your order at checkout. I think all of them work but not certain.
CANNYSHELL – $5 off purchase of $50+
ATTICSINROAD – $5 off purchase of $50+
FCPMAR1 – $5 off purchase of $75+
FCPMar2 – $10 off purchase of $100+
LASTHIP – Free shipping on orders of $60+ (but make sure it will arrive in time)
FreeNewMoon – Free Twilight gift with any online order
5. Make sure you pack smartly. Most airlines (JetBlue excluded) are charging a fee for checked bags. So- bring one large suitcase and keep the weight under 50 lbs. You can also have a carry-on plus a “personal bag such as a purse,” so bring a large duffel or other small suitcase with more fragile items, such as a laptop, camera, etc. If your large suitcase weighs too much filled, put some of the heavier items in your carry-on suitcase/bag. Make sure to leave a little room for any souvenirs you might get on the islands! (And yes, there are self-serve laundry rooms on each floor if necessary, but I recommend you bring a small bottle of Woolite so you can take care of any minor laundry needs yourself.) Important: keep any needed medications with you in your carry-on. Once you arrive on the ship, your suitcase may take take a couple of hours to arrive at your cabin. So anything you will need the first afternoon, keep it with you.
6: If you are flying, remember that you can only bring small sample 2 or 3 oz sizes of liquids (shampoo, mouthwash, makeup, etc.) in a carry-on bag. My recommendation is that you bring your favorite full-sized, unopened bottles but seal them twice in ziplock freezer bags (or similiar packaging) so that there’s no chance of leaking, and then keep them in your checked-on suitcase. Your carry-on is more important for fragile items like laptops, digital cameras, etc. Remember to bring a high SPF suntan lotion if you plan to go off the ship, deodorant, toothbrush, toothpaste and other toiletries – you can purchase them on the ship or the islands if necessary but you’ll be happier with the prices at home.
7. Regarding “formal” night on the ship, the definition of “formal” is very loose these days. As long as you don’t wear jeans, shorts or flip-flops, you can be as informal as you like. On the other hand, you can also wear a tux and/or formal gown, and there are ship photographers to take professional photos if that interests you. I’m sure that with our group, we will run the gamut in terms of how formal we dress for this occasion!
8. Due to the final mix of people that are on our cruise, we won’t be having any children’s events or a formal costume party. If you want to bring a costume you are welcome to wear it for our private party, group photo or “formal” evening. Plus we will be doing some scenes from the project we write together, and your costume may come in very handy if you want to be an actor for that project. However, a costume is NOT obligatory.
9. Most people in our group are very interested in writing, so if you have an ongoing writing project, whether it be a book, poetry, screenplay, etc., please print out a hard copy and bring it along for notes and comments.
10. For those of you staying overnight at the Miami hotel and that are interested in meeting up with others in the group also staying there, I will provide you with more info on that in a later email.
11. Wise suggestion – write down a checklist of everything you need to bring on the cruise, and add to it over the next day or two as you remember other things! Then actually refer to the list as you do your final packing! (smile)
I will be emailing you probably a few more times before the cruise, so please read the emails promptly.
Talk to you soon!