After you board the cruise ship, your first instinct is to walk around and explore the different activities and ‘welcome aboard ‘giveaways.
Not so fast!
Before you relax and start having fun, you really should go to your assigned cabin and check five essential things that may help you enjoy your vacation better.
The Five things to check:
- Make sure that all the room keys work! We have had several instances when one or more cabin keys were not synched to work with the door lock and couldn’t open the door
- Check the cabin’s plumbing and electric systems to make sure everything is in order since sometimes they malfunction and it is much harder to get someone to fix it during the night hours.If something is leaking or backed up, the quicker staff members are aware of it, the better. You should turn on the faucet, toilet, shower and tub if there is one, air conditioning/heating system, refrigerator, room lights, TV, phone and even the safe deposit box if you intend on using it.
- If you do discover something is not functioning adequately or broken report it immediately to the room steward or customer service.
Check the location of the room vent and make sure that it isn’t blowing over directly your kid ‘s bed especially if he or she is temperature sensitive.
- If it is, try to either designate a different bed for your child with autism or move the existing one away from the vent.Lift up the bed mattress and check (with the help of a flashlight) the back and seams carefully for any dark dots or spots.Luckily many cruise ships use metal frames, so the chance of cabins infested with bed bugs is smaller than hotels rooms.
- Carefully wipe down the cabin door knobs, shower and faucet handle with a cleaning wipe.Then proceed to clean the remote control, TV buttons and all the electrical switches. The last thing to wipe clean or spray with a mini Lysol is the toilet seat and shower floor.
- Though cruise lines clean the cabins; you should take extra precautions since you are traveling with a special needs person especially if he or she touches everything and continuously puts their hand in their mouth to try and lessen the chance of germs and disease.
Autism Travel Tips
- Write your cabin room number on your kid’s t-shirt or inside his shoes so others will know how to find you, if he/she gets lost.
If you are traveling with kids that wander off; check that the balcony door (if you have one) IS LOCKED.
- You should stick any contact alarms if you brought any on the cabin door and check that they work adequately.
- Place a poster or any picture on your cabin door so your kid with autism can easily distinguish it from the neighboring doors especially if he/she can’t memorize cabin numbers quickly.
- Take a minute and show all your family members where the nearest emergency exit door is located so they will remember in times of a real crisis.