Boats · Travel

How to Avoid FOMO When You’re Cruising

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Do you get fear of missing out when you travel? Me too! This is likely to be heightened on a cruise and that isn’t for everyone. The limited time frame, abundance of options and tight schedule mean it can be hard to relax. The fear of not fitting everything in can leave you running from pillar to post (or is that from bow to stern) which is fun but boy, do I need a nap afterwards. Here are my tips to avoid FOMO when you’re cruising.

Virgin Voyages Scarlett lady crusie ship from the stern, moored alongside Grandeur of the Seas cruise ship

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On Board Activities

The Problems:
Both a blessing and a curse, there is so much to see and do. Everyday, an action-packed itinerary will appear in your stateroom and it can feel so overwhelming. The need to try everything is strong! Then, big ships not only have a full list of entertainments throughout the day (exercise classes, bingo, trivia, deck game etc etc) but many of them also have crazy facilities. Rock climbing walls, rope courses, water parks, hot tubs, pools and the spa are all vying for your attention.

Our Solutions:

  • 1.) Look at the itinerary for the day and pick three things that you are really interested in doing. Then don’t look at it again! It is so tempting to keep glancing at this list and stuffing your hours full of every little thing. You will be running through the ship trying to make the start of your next activity and it can be maddening.
  • 2.) Fit other things in when you feel like you have the energy. The waterslides and pool will be there for the whole time so save those for days you aren’t so bothered by the other entertainment options or you are feeling particularly bouncy.
  • 3.) Build in time to head back to your room and just relax. I have only managed this on a couple of cruises and managed dearly needed naps. The early mornings of port visits combined with the late nights of shows nd parties (if it is that kind of cruise) can leave you wiped out. Having some quiet time in the middle of the day, or before dinner is so valuable.

On Board Dining

The Problems:
So much food, so little time. Over ordering and over eating is chronic problem…over ordering and wasting food is even worse. This is especially bad when you are paying for speciality dining & the whole menu looks good. It is no fun feeling like you are depriving yourself of delicious things but there are ways around it.

Our Solutions:

  • 1.) Convince your travel buddy to order the other dish you want to try & split them. This can take some serious haggling skills, and of course it only works if you have the same dietary requirements. The nice thing is, the more people you are travelling with, the more you can try.
  • 2.) You can also ask for small portions of several dishes so you aren’t wasting anything. Just ask the crew nicely and they can normally bring some little tasters. Virgin Voyages was particularly good at this.
  • 3.) Don’t feel like you have to have four courses just because there are four courses on the menu. If dessert looks amazing and you might get too full then skip the starters or soups that you are less bothered about.
  • 4.) A quick note (whinge) on buffets – Take tiny bits of everything that looks good, you can always return and get more of your favourite bits. It blows my mind how much abandoned food I see piled on people’s plates in buffets, only for that same person to return with even more.

Shore Excursions

The Problems:
My toxic trait is that when it comes to travel, I want to do it all! If our ship is docked in a beautiful city for a day, I am going to have an online map covered in pins and hurtle round them at speed. It is great fun but exhausting. It is also slightly stressful with the need to constantly clock watch. We have all seen the videos of people running down cruise piers (go and fall down that rabbit hole if you haven’t) and I live in fear of being one of them.

Our Solutions:

  • 1.) Book a tour run by the cruise line that covers the main sights and you can relax knowing the ship will wait for your group. You can let them do the work, doing a tour means you don’t have to do any navigation.
  • 2.) Try and focus on one area if you are visiting a city independently. If you avoid having to take any public transport between spots then you will have a much nicer time. Try and organise a nice loop and make sure you have the number of a local taxi, or uber/lyft etc on your phone if you have to cut your loop short and dash back to the ship.

Departure Times

The Problems:
My favourite time of a holiday day is the “sundowner” where you enjoy a drink and people watch as the sun sets. It is one of those things you don’t really get a chance to enjoy at home all that often and just screams “relaxing vacation”. I really don’t like leaving before the sun is gone but it is one of those things that is all too often on a cruise.

Our Solutions:

  • 1.) Compare cruise lines and their itineraries to find options that stay in nice ports overnight or depart much later in the evening. We had two overnight stops when we sailed with Windstar Cruises and it was so nice and chilled. Enjoying your sunset in port and then having the option to eat in the town or head back on board is really nice. Of course, if you are cruising in summer, this is going to be much later at night.
  • 2.) Learn to embrace the joys of a sunset at sea. The reflections on the water can be so beautiful. Developing the joy of grabbing a cocktail at the bar and heading up on deck for the show in the sky is a new routine to love.

Final Thoughts on How to Avoid FOMO When You’re Cruising

Do you find time to relax in a cruise or are you like me, desperate to squeeze out every last drop of everything? I really hope these tips will help you relax into your cruise and you can return rested and relaxed (not frazzled and knackered). Happy sailing!

Rosie xx


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