When taking a cruise vacation, being overwhelmed by excitement is a natural phenomenon and who can blame you! There are, however, a few things you will need to be aware of, especially if you are a first time cruiser. Everyone can do with a bit of help, because we can forget to pack essentials or not know quite what to expect on a cruise. You will find some essential cruise travel tips in this article that will be of great help when you travel.Tip #1 – Avoid the shore excursions however attractive the cheap prices may be, because the possibility of being stranded is very real. Cruise lines on the other hand investigate the companies that they contract with and it is always a safer bet to go with your travel agent’s recommendation.Tip #2 – When booking your cabin on a cruise ship make sure you ask for a chart showing the layout of the ship and book your cabin away from the laundry room and other gathering points like stairways and elevators. The noise levels when people gather in these areas can be quite disturbing to say nothing of being irritating.Tip #3 – A packing list is a must if you don’t want to forget something. You can research the internet for ideas on what to take and make your list accordingly. Always make sure to pack an extension cord as the cabin will probably only provide one outlet.Tip #4 – Take a carry on tote bag with you when boarding the ship and pack it with the essentials like some toiletries and a change of clothes, anything you will have immediate need for. The reason being that everyone needs to board and the ship set sail before the luggage is sent to the respective cabins and it could be a while.Tip #5 – Make sure you are given a map of the ship’s layout in the information pack by your travel agent. Cruise ships are really big vessels and it won’t be fun getting lost every time you try to make your way somewhere. Familiarizing your self with the layout and then actually taking a turn around the ship to get oriented is well worth the effort.Tip #6 – While you may be tempted to take your best jewelry with you on the cruise, believe me it is not a good idea. It is recommended that you take one good set and nothing more to wear to the Captain’s dinner and any shows you will attend; leave the rest safe in your bank locker. Unless there is someone occupying your house while you are gone, home safes aren’t really a safe bet.Tip #7 – Don’t go slamming doors or shouting out good nights at the top of your voice at some early morning hour. True, you are in high spirits after a night of fun and frolic but your neighbors may be asleep. Cruise etiquette is an important part of the cruise travel tips.