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Glossary of Cruising Terminology

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Add-On: A supplementary charge added to your cruise fare. Typical add-ons are travel insurance, airline flights to and from the cruise, pre- and/or post-cruise hotel packages, and pre-or post-cruise land tours.

Aft: Near, toward, or at the rear (stern) of the ship.

Ahoy: The traditional greeting onboard ships. The term originated as a Viking battle cry!

Air/Sea: A comprehensive package that combines both the cruise itself and air transportation to and from the cruise's ports of embarkation and debarkation. Air/Sea programs are usually add-ons available at extra cost.

Air City: The city chosen by you to serve as the origination and termination point for your flights to and from the cruise.

Air Transportation: The optional, extra-cost air travel portion of your cruise booking.

"Anytime Dining": Princess Cruises' flexible, evening dining program that allows passengers to select from a variety of onboard restaurants during their cruise, as opposed to their "Traditional Fixed Seating" program.

Atrium: An interior, often sky-lit, multi-deck, open area of a ship. Typically, atriums are centrally located near elevators, shops, restaurants, cafés, and guest services. Shipboard atriums can extend anywhere from two to ten decks or more.

Atrium Cabin: Something new to the industry (available only on the largest Royal Caribbean ships and Cunard's QM2), atrium cabins offer passengers windows that face the ship's interior, overlooking the central atrium or promenade.


Baggage Allowance: The amount of baggage, generally consisting of the passenger's personal effects, permitted by the cruise line free of charge. The allowance is very generous (and if you reach it, you're packing way too much!) Of much more concern to you should be the baggage allowance that applies to your airline travel to and from the cruise.

Balcony Cabin: Any cabin accommodation with a private, exterior balcony. The trend is towards more and more balcony cabins on ships. Once a luxury, some ships (Coral Princess, Crystal Serenity, for example) now feature balconies in over three-fourths of their cabins.

Beam: The width of a ship at its widest point. Ships in excess of 110 feet are too wide to transit the Panama Canal.

Berth: There are two definitions: the dock or pier where you embark or debark from the ship; the bed in which you sleep onboard the ship.

Below: The lower decks of a ship. Saying, "Let's go below and walk aft down the companionway to the tender station," will impress all your friends. (You'll probably be making the walk alone, however!)

Bearing: The ship's compass direction, such as a "northwest bearing."

"BL" Category: On Carnival Cruise Lines, BL is a "Balcony Guarantee" cabin. When you book this category you will be guaranteed accommodation in a balcony cabin.

Booking: A request by a travel or cruise agent to a cruise line's reservations department to reserve a cabin.

Bow: The front part of a ship. The opposite of the bow is the stern.

Bridge: The navigation and command center of the vessel. If your cruise offers a tour of the bridge, take it!

Bulkhead: Basically, a wall. A bulkhead is an upright partition dividing the ship into compartments or cabins.

Bulwarks: The protective structure, lip, or railing that surrounds open, exposed deck areas of a ship. Scuppers (openings) are provided in bulwarks to allow for drainage of seawater or accumulated deck water.



Cabin: Your room. Call it a cabin, a stateroom, a suite, an accommodation, whatever - it's your personal space onboard.

Captain: (See "Officers")

Captain's Cocktail Party: Usually, the second night into a cruise, the Captain will "host" a shipboard cocktail party. All guests are invited (there may be several of these parties, each lasting approximately one hour) and cocktails are usually complimentary. The Captain's Dinner typically follows (see below).

Captain's Dinner: Usually, the second night into a cruise, the Captain will "host" dinner in the ship's main dining room(s). The ship's galley generally pulls out all stops to deliver their finest cuisine.

Captain's Farewell Cocktail Party: On longer cruises (5-nights or more) there is often a farewell cocktail party hosted by the Cruise Director on behalf of the Captain. Cocktails are usually complimentary and all passengers are invited to attend.

Captain's Farewell Dinner: The Captain isn't going anywhere - you are - home! So, the second- to-the-last night of longer cruises (5 nights or more) is often devoted to the best food the ship can offer, knowing that your last impressions are what you often leave with.

Category: A price gradient of cabins, usually presented from the most expensive to the least expensive. Cabins in the same category are usually on the same deck and general location, and provide similar features and amenities. Individual cabin layouts and furnishings may differ slightly, however. Categories can get complicated - The Golden Princess, for example, offers no less than 32!

Class: Cruises today offer one class of travel providing all passengers equal access to just about all shipboard areas and activities. There are, however, some cruise ships that provide concierge service, private lounges, or specific dining venues available to those passengers who choose more expensive accommodations.

Companionway: An interior stairway. Watch your step! Entrances into shipboard companionways often begin with a step up, before you make your way down.

Crossing the Line: When a ship crosses the equator for the first time during a cruise, there's often a special "initiation" ceremony that takes place among the passengers and crew. Curious? Take an exotic cruise and find out!

Cruise Card: The small, credit card-size personal I.D. document, generally given to each adult cruise passenger for their use in charging shipboard purchases, entering their cabin, and embarking and debarking the ship.

Cruise Director: The Cruise Director is in charge of all onboard entertainment and social events. Aided by the Assistant Cruise Director, the Cruise Director is the most visible member of the staff member.

Cruise Fare: The actual cost of the cruise excluding port charges and government taxes, and excluding insurance or other optional hotel or land packages.

Cruise Rate: With 7 Blue Seas, your Cruise Rate is the cost of your Cruise Fare plus port charges, but exclusive of government taxes, insurance and other optional extras.


Davit: A shipboard device used in lowering and raising the ship's lifeboats or tenders. Stroll out onto your ship's promenade and introduce yourself to the davits.

Debark/debarkation: To exit, or the process of exiting the ship. The term "disembark" is also used.

Deck: On a ship, the different floors are called "decks." Passenger decks are either named or numbered (or both). For example, a deck may be referred to as "Sun Deck 11." For various reasons, cruise lines seem to have a love affair with certain deck names such as, "Lido," "Promenade," "Sun," "Sports," etc.

Deck Plan: An overhead diagram illustrating cabin and public room locations in relation to each other. Crew and staff areas are off-limits to passengers and are not diagramed on ship deck plans.

Deposit: A partial payment of the cruise fare required at the time of your booking to secure the cabin being reserved. Deposits vary by cruise line and by length or cost of the cruise.

Double Occupancy: The "per person" cabin rate applicable to a cabin capable of accommodating at least two persons.

Draft: The measurement in feet from the waterline to the lowest point of a ship's keel. Typically, a cruise ship has a draft of about 25 feet.

Dress Code: Even the most casual of cruise lines supports an onboard dress code. Although the overall trend is drifting towards a slightly more relaxed, casual dress code (tuxedos and sequined evening gowns are no longer required) don't expect to enter the main dining room at night in a tank top, cut-offs, and flip flops. See our FAQ pages and articles under "First Time Cruisers" for additional dress code information.

Dry Dock: A sealed docking facility from which water is pumped enabling maintenance and repairs to be performed on a ship's hull and keel. Don't worry - you'll never be onboard when a ship is in dry dock!

Duty-Free Port: A port free of customs duty and most customs regulations. But "duty-free" doesn't always mean a bargain. There may be national or local taxes that apply instead.


Elbowroom Factor (as defined by 7 Blue Seas): The relative spaciousness of a ship. We've taken the ratios of ship tonnage and passenger count (often referred to as "Space Ratios"), and translated them into the terms Snug (space ratio less than 30), Cozy (space ratio of 30-35), Roomy (space ratio 36-45) and Spacious (space ratio above 45).

Embark/embarkation: To enter, or the process of entering or boarding the ship.


Family Stateroom: Specific accommodations vary, but family staterooms usually provide for 4-6 passengers in lower bed configurations (i.e. no bunk beds). These accommodations often feature convertible sofas, separate sleeping areas, and extra sinks, bathrooms, and/or closet space.

Fantail: The rear overhang of a ship.

Fare Market Value (FMV): The Fare Market Value, or “FMV,” represents 7 Blue Seas’ estimated, fair market price (including port charges) for a specific cruise departure. This dollar amount is derived by analyzing the price history and seasonality patterns of this and other competitive cruise ships sailing similar itineraries.

Fore: The front (or bow) of the ship.

Forward: Toward the fore (or bow) of the ship.

Final Payment: The last payment of the full cruise fare plus any necessary or agreed extras, such as taxes, air add-on. Final Payment must be received before your cruise tickets and correlated travel documents are issued and sent to you.

First Sitting: The earlier of two meal times in the ship's dining room - often called "main seating."

Food & Beverage Manager: He or she is responsible for the management of all shipboard restaurants, bars, and galleys; overall cleanliness of all food preparation and service areas; and food purchase and budgeting. The ship's Maitre d' reports directly to the F&B Manager.

Frequent Cruiser Program: All major cruise lines have them - membership clubs for their frequent cruisers. In most cases, eligibility begins with your second cruise with the same cruise line. Advantages may include membership pins, cruise discounts, specially-selected cruises, onboard amenities, private cocktail parties, early notification of new itineraries and newsletters or e-mails.

"Free-Style Cruising": Norwegian Cruise Lines' term used to describe their onboard program whereby passengers have the freedom to choose where and when they dine, and a wider variety of entertainment and activity options.

Funnel: The ship's smokestack. Some funnels have a "winged" upper portion to help send any exhaust particulates away from passenger decks. The ships of Carnival Cruise Lines feature this distinctive funnel feature.


Gangway: The ramp by which passengers embark or debark a ship.

Galley: The ship's kitchen. A mega-ship's galley may serve over 6,000 passenger meals each day. If you have a chance to tour your ship's galley, go for it - you'll be amazed by its cleanliness and organization.

Gentleman Host: A cruise-sponsored program whereby well-traveled, mature gentlemen (usually retired bankers, businessmen, etc.) are employed shipboard to serve as dance partners, conversationalists, and shore excursion escorts for single women.

Gratuities: Basically - tips extended to cabin attendants and dining service personnel. Dining gratuities are often automatically added to passenger accounts, particularly on those cruise lines that feature flexible dining hours and dining venues.

GRT: Gross registered tonnage, i.e., a measurement of 100 cubic feet of enclosed revenue earning space within a ship.

Guarantee: Pay attention here - A "guarantee" is the cruise line's promise that the passenger will sail on a stated voyage in a specified price category or type of cabin, at an agreed rate no higher than would ordinarily apply for that voyage. Due to space and yield management requirements, a cruise line may "upgrade" guarantee passengers to a higher level of service. Passengers who choose a guarantee arrangement, however, are unable to choose a particular cabin. Some of the various Guarantee Categories (they vary by cruise line) are noted alphabetically in this Glossary.

Guarantee Share Fare: Acceptance of some lines of a single booking at the standard double occupancy rate, with the understanding that the client is willing to share use of the cabin with a stranger of the same sex and smoking preference.

Guest Lecturer: An individual, not usually on permanent employment with the cruise line, who speaks on a particular hobby, skill, or activity that he or she is considered expert. Typically, guest lecturers offer lectures and seminars on history, sports, entertainment, books, etc.


Harbor Pilot: See "Pilot."

Head Waiter: Supervises all waitstaff in his or her section to monitor service and efficiency. Traditionally, the Head Waiter personally prepares or serves specialty items.

Homeport: A port of embarkation/debarkation within the continental United States. The current trend is towards the increased use of Homeports in ship itineraries. See our Homeport page for more information.

Hotel Manager: Most cruise ships employ a Hotel Manager to oversee the entire hotel operation (Food & Beverage, Entertainment, Housekeeping, etc.).

Hot Weekly Deals: Every week, the staff at 7 Blue Seas scrutinizes the latest cruise offers and presents onsite the best of the best on the Hot Weekly Deals page.


Inaugural Sailing: The first "official" sailing of a ship with passengers, usually directly following the ship's "Naming Ceremony." However, since Inaugurals are primarily publicity events, it's not uncommon for cruise lines to schedule two or more "inaugural" cruises.

Inside Cabin: A cabin having no exterior-facing (sea-view) windows or portholes. (See "Atrium Cabins" for a new wrinkle in inside cabin definitions.)

Inside Passage: The sheltered channels of British Columbia and southeastern Alaska protected from the Pacific Ocean by forested islands.

"IS Category: On Carnival Cruise Lines, IS is an "Inside Guarantee" cabin. When you book this category you will be guaranteed accommodation in an inside cabin.

Itinerary: A ship's schedule of port stops and days at sea. Most cruise itineraries vary from 3 to 12 days. The 7-day itinerary remains the industry standard though the trend is towards shorter cruises. Seven-day cruises generally include 3-5 port stops and 2-4 days cruising at sea.


Jacobs Ladder: A rope ladder lowered from the deck of a ship while at sea, to facilitate the boarding of crew or emergency staff.


Keel: The centerline of a ship running from fore to aft. Think of it as the spine, or backbone of a ship.

Knot: A unit of speed reflecting one nautical mile per hour, or 1.15 land miles per hour. (A nautical mile is 6,080.2 feet; a land mile is 5,280 feet, hence the speed differential.) Most cruise ships move along at about 18 to 23 knots. The current trend is towards faster ships.


Large Ship (as defined by 7Blue Seas): A ship of a GRT (gross registered tonnage) between 65,000 and 100,000 tons. Carnival Legend, Celebrity Constellation, Crystal Serenity, Disney Magic, Holland America's Zuiderdam, Norwegian Dawn, Coral Princess, and Royal Caribbean's Brilliance of the Seas are examples.

Lifeboat: Small boat carried on the vessel and used in case of emergency. By law, the total capacities of all lifeboats far exceed the total number of passengers and crew members onboard.

Lift: An elevator. Either term - lift or elevator - is acceptable and widely understood by ship staff.

Lower Bed: A single bed placed at the conventional height from the floor.

Leeward: The side of the ship sheltered from the wind. (Opposite: Windward)


M.S.: Abbreviation for "Motor Ship."

Maiden Voyage: The first sailing of a ship following sea trials. Maiden voyages are not necessarily Inaugural Sailings. A cruise line ship may schedule a Maiden Voyage prior to the official Inaugural Sailing.

Main Seating: The earlier of two meal times in the ship's dining room. Often also called "first seating."

Maitre d' (Restaurant Manager): The Maitre d' is responsible for the day-to-day operation of the restaurants, including the quality of food preparation, presentation, and service; and guest seating.

Midship: In or toward the middle of the ship; the longitudinal center portion of the ship. Midship cabins tend to be pricier because they generally experience less motion during rough seas.

Mini-Suite: Typically, a large passenger cabin that offers separate sleeping and sitting areas.

Murphy bed: A bed that folds or swings into a closet or cabinet when not in use. Where offered in cruise accommodations, a Murphy bed is typically used for the third or fourth occupants of the stateroom.

Muster: To assemble passengers and/or crew, usually to their assembly areas in the event of an emergency at sea.

Muster Drill: A safety demonstration conducted by members of the ship's staff that instructs passengers on the route to and location of their muster station, use of their life preservers, and other important safety information. The muster drill is usually conducted before or shortly after the cruise departure.

Muster Station: The location where groups of passengers are asked to report in the event of an emergency at sea (or, as during a Muster Drill). Usually, muster stations are either interior public rooms or open deck or promenade spaces familiar to passengers. Every passenger is assigned a muster station. The location and fastest route to that location is posted within every cabin.


Nautical Mile: A distance equal to 6,082.2 feet. A land mile is 5,280 feet.


Officers: The Deck Officers, in order of command, are - Captain, Staff Captain, Chief Officer, First Officer(s). The Captain is first in command of the ship. As second in command, the Staff Captain is fully capable of assuming command of the ship, if necessary. The Chief Officer's primary responsibilities include overseeing maintenance and supplies for the ship. The First Officers' main responsibilities are to maintain around-the-clock staffing of the bridge, even while the ship is in port.

Open Seating (or Open Sitting): Access at any time to unoccupied tables in the ship's dining room, as opposed to specific table assignments.

"OS" Category: On Carnival Cruise Lines, OS is an "Outside Guarantee" cabin. When you book this category you will be guaranteed accommodation in an outside cabin.

Outside Cabin: A cabin having window(s) or porthole(s) offering an exterior view.


Panama Canal Cruise: A cruise that transits or visits the Panama Canal. Don't assume that all "Panama Canal" cruises transit or even enter the canal. An increasingly popular cruise is one that goes to the Panama Canal but not into or through it. Sound like a tease? Not really. Passengers can debark and take tours to view the operation of the canal, even transit the canal aboard other, smaller vessels.

Panamax: The Panama Canal permits ships no wider than approximately 110 feet - any wider and the ship just won't fit. Ships that squeak under that maximum are often referred to as "Panamax" ships. For a list of Panama Canal cruises

Passage Contract: Detailed terms of responsibility and accountability found in the cruise ticket.

Patch (or "The Patch"): A transdermal medication that is applied to the skin via an adhesive patch to prevent or reduce the onset of seasickness.

Per Diem: The per person, per day cost of a cruise. There's a huge variation among (and even within) cruise lines but high range per diems for the highly competitive 7-night Caribbean cruise market typically starts at $200 or above; mid range hover around $150; low range per diems are $100 or less.

"Personal Choice Dining": Princess Cruise Lines' term used to describe their onboard dining program whereby passengers have the freedom to choose where and when they dine.

Photo Gallery: A gallery where photographs of passengers taken by the ship's onboard photographers are displayed. Photographs are available for purchase, reprinting, enlarging, or custom framing (or burning…but only after you pay for them!)

Pilot: A person licensed to conduct a ship into and out of a port. Pilots (or "Harbor Pilots), familiar with the harbor's traffic, tides, currents, and channels, generally are employed to conduct ships to and from their pier or anchorage. Pilots are not members of the ship's company, but board the ship prior to arrival at port. On departure, once the ship has been conducted to open water, the pilot debarks the ship.

Pitch: The rise and fall of the ship's bow while at sea. (See "Patch!")

Port: The left side of the ship when facing forward (and also, of course, a harbor or Port-of-call).

Porthole: Circular "window" in the side of the ship's hull or superstructure. Most cruise cabins today feature picture windows, full-length glass windows, French balconies, or balconies.

Port Charges: A charge levied of cruise lines by local government authorities. This charge is passed on to the cruise passenger. To present a fairer representation of cruise costs, 7 Blue Seas includes Port Charges in all quoted cruise prices, unless otherwise noted.

Port-of-Call: A country, island or territory, or population center a cruise ship visits.

Portside: The left, or port side of the ship.

Private Island: An island or beach property leased or owned by a cruise line for the specific use of its cruise passengers. Private islands typically offer an array of beach and water sports.

Promenade: Usually the open walkway - almost always covered in teak decking - that runs almost the entire length of each side of the cruise ship. Some promenade decks encircle the ship. The promenade is often where you'll see lifeboats, davits, deck chairs, joggers, and strollers.

Purser: The central administrative officer on board for passengers as well as crew members.


Quarters: Officer, crew and staff accommodations onboard a ship. Also, the coins that go into (but seldom come out of) shipboard casino slot machines.


"R1" Category: On Norwegian Cruise Lines, R1 is an "Inside Guarantee" cabin. When you book this category you will be guaranteed accommodation in an inside cabin.

"R2" Category: Category: On Norwegian Cruise Lines, R2 is an "Outside Guarantee" cabin. When you book this category you will be guaranteed accommodation in an outside cabin.

Registry: The country in which a vessel is registered. For tax purposes and some regulatory reasons, most cruise ships are registered in foreign countries. The Bahamas, Liberia, and Panama are favorites. Incidentally, if you are wed at sea, your wedding is registered in the nation of your ship's registry.

Repositioning: Typically, when a vessel moves from one seasonal cruise area to another i.e. from Alaska in the summer to the Caribbean in the winter. The movement (or segments of the movement) from, say, Vancouver to Ft. Lauderdale may be termed a "repositioning cruise."

Roll: Sway of the ship from side to side while at sea. (See "Patch!")


S.S.: Abbreviation for "Steam Ship."

Sailing Time: The actual hour at which the ship is scheduled to clear the dock and sail.

Scupper: An opening in the bulwarks of a ship that allow accumulated deck water to flow freely overboard. Crew members regularly hose down open deck areas of the ship (to remove salt water residues or the remains of someone's spilled cola.

Seasickness: An archaic term that once referred to motion sickness at sea before there were pills, patches, pressure bracelets, stabilizers, and cruise line marketing geniuses!

Second Sitting: The later of two meal times in the ship's dining room. Often referred to as "late seating."

7 Blue Seas: The world's best source for cruise line, cruise ship, cruise port, and cruise booking information.

Shipboard Account: A day-by-day, itemized account of a passenger's onboard purchase activity. Alcoholic beverages, shore excursions, gift shop purchases, and Internet charges, are all examples of items that are typically added to your shipboard account. Most such accounts are automatically billed to your credit card.

ShipShopper Index™: 7 Blue Seas objective, worth-based cruise ship rating system. An advance of the highly subjective "star" ranking system, ShipShopper allows cruise vacation planners to easily compare ships sailing the same or similar itineraries during the same time of the year just by consulting the ShipShopper Index.

Shore Excursions: Shoreside tours operated by independent tour companies specifically for cruise passengers. An extra charge is usually applied to your shipboard account.

Shore Excursion Manager: His or her primary responsibilities are the promotion, arrangement, and supervision of all shore excursion programs arranged on behalf of the cruise line by the independent organizations that provide the various tours.

Single Occupancy: The occupancy by one person of a cabin that is designed to accommodate two or more passengers. A premium (Single Supplement - see below) is ordinarily charged.

Single Supplement: The additional cost (usually from 150% to 200% above the normal double occupancy cost) applied to a double cabin occupied by one passenger.

Size Category (as defined by 7 Blue Seas): Ship sizes range from Small (less than 40,000 tons), Medium (45,000 - 65,000 tons), Large (65,000 - 100,000 tons) and Very Large (over 100,000 tons).

Small Ship (as defined by 7Blue Seas): A ship with a GRT (gross registered tonnage) of less than 40,000 tons. Holland America's Prinsendam, and the Tahitian Princess are examples of this category.

Social Host/Hostess: A member of the ship's staff who assists in the various planned activities and functions onboard. Social Hosts/Hostesses, along with the Cruise Director and Assistant Cruise Director, are the most "visible" members of the ship's staff.

SOLAS: An acronym for Safety Of Life At Sea. An international convention convened whereby the design, construction methods and materials, life safety equipment, fire protection, and safety training of all cruise ships and staff were implemented. The result? SOLAS. All major cruise lines abide by all SOLAS requirements.

Space Ratio: A measurement of cubic space per passenger. The Gross Registered Tonnage divided by the number of passengers (rounded to the nearest whole number) equals the space ratio. Don't confuse cabin size with space ratio. You may have a spacious cabin (170 square feet or more) but your ship may have a low space ratio. 7 Blue Seas has correlated Space Ratios to fit 4 relative categories or snug, cozy, roomy, and spacious. See "Elbowroom Factor."

"ST" Category: On Carnival Cruise Lines, ST is a "Suite Guarantee" cabin. When you book this category you will be guaranteed accommodation in a suite.

Stabilizers: Wing-like retractable devices extending form the sides of the vessel to reduce roll and produce a more stable ride.

Stateroom: Passenger cabin - also referred to as an accommodation.

Starboard: The right side of the ship when facing forward.

Stem: The extreme bow or prow of the ship.

Stern: The rearmost part of a ship. Combined with stem, we have the term, "from stem to stern."

Suite: Traditionally, a spacious accommodation that includes separate living and sleeping rooms.


Tender (or Launch): A smaller vessel used to move passengers to and from the ship and shore when the ship is at anchor. Some cruise ports, due either to limited docking facilities or harbor depths, require ships to anchor offshore, necessitating the use of tenders to transport passengers ashore. Passengers with certain disabilities may be restricted in their use of tenders.

Theme Cruise: Any cruise that offers or suggests a specific onboard "theme" such as sports or 70's disco music. Other themes include history, cooking, arts & crafts, or even lunar eclipses or comet watching.

Thalassotherapy: The use of water jets and marine products (seawater, seaweed, sea mud, and sand), that when applied to the skin, help remove toxins and increase circulation. A number of cruise ships now feature these therapies.

"Total Choice Dining": Carnival Cruise Lines' term that describes their onboard dining program whereby passengers are offered multiple dining times rather than the traditional "first and second seating."

"Traditional Fixed Seating": Princess Cruises' evening dining program that offers passengers the ability to dine at the same time, with the same dining partners and same wait staff, as opposed to their "Anytime Dining" program.

Transatlantic: A cruise that crosses the Atlantic Ocean. However, ships are no longer in a race to cross the ocean. Even Cunard's QM2 takes a leisurely six days to cross the "pond" non-stop. Today, stops in Europe, the Azores or the Canary Islands, and the Caribbean are often scheduled into transatlantic crossings.

Travel Documents: Those paper documents required in cruise travel. Passage tickets, passports, visas, air travel tickets or confirmations, etc. are examples of travel documents.

Twenty-four hour clock: Shipboard passenger clocks look just like your clocks at home. Still, you may hear crew members using the 24-hour standard. Conversion is quite easy (yea - right!) From 1 a.m. through 12 Noon the system is basically the same: 0700 is 7 am and 1030 is 10:30 am, for instance. For afternoon and evening hours just subtract by 12: 1700 becomes 5 pm, 2200 is 10 pm.


Underway: A ship in motion. Once your ship has left the pier or its anchorage, the ship is considered "underway."


Very Large Ship (as defined by 7Blue Seas): A ship in excess of 100,000 gross registered tons (GRT). Very large ships include the Carnival Conquest, the Golden Princess, and Royal Caribbean's Navigator of the Seas.


Windward: Facing into or the direction from which the wind is coming. (Opposite: Leeward)


"X" Category: On Royal Caribbean and Celebrity Cruise Lines, X is a "Balcony Guarantee" cabin. When you book this category you will be guaranteed accommodation in a balcony cabin.


"Y" Category: On Royal Caribbean and Celebrity Cruise Lines, Y is an "Outside Guarantee" cabin. When you book this category you will be guaranteed accommodation in an outside cabin.


"Z" Category: On Royal Caribbean and Celebrity Cruise Lines, Z is an "Inside Guarantee" cabin. When you book this category you will be guaranteed accommodation in an inside cabin.