(Closed) Invited to a wedding on a cruise ship– what do we do for 4 hours?

posted 5 years ago in Destination Weddings
Post # 3
2958 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: August 2013 - Wynn Las Vegas

They should be selling drinks by that time…hang at the bar 🙂

Post # 4
6113 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: October 2013

You can get alcohol 24 hours a day on a cruise ship haha

Post # 5
2213 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: May 2014

@Horseradish:  Oh yes, the bars will be open.  They want to start making money as soon as people step foot on the ship.

Post # 6
3731 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: September 2014

@Horseradish:  Food and booze will be available. Go get a drink of the day and hang out on deck for a while. It’ll be delightful!

Post # 8
2474 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: August 2013

things get going on the ships first thing in the am…activities, the bars open by like 10am lol, it’ll be fine

Post # 9
9955 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: December 2012

I haven’t personally been to a Cruise Wedding in port before Full Embarkation / Sailing, but I have cruised so maybe I can shed some light on the situation

Most American Cruise Ship Companies (the ever familiar names like Carnival) have gone into the Wedding Business because it is so profitable (uber-expensive to get married onboard) and there is a high demand…

It is indeed awesome to marry, and then use the Cruise as one’s Honeymoon

(Mr TTR & I skipped the Cruise Ship Wedding… as we got married ashore… but we did the Cruise Honeymoon and it was INCREDIBLE)

As most Cruise Ships / Captains cannot marry Passengers at sea, they have to do it in Port, and with a registered Officiant from the State where the ship is docked

To manage that, they allow Wedding Guests to enjoy early boarding… and the ship until a specific time in which they’ll track you down, and get you off the ship before sail away

Regular Passengers on a Cruise that would depart late Afternoon, begin boarding typically around Noon.

VIPs and Priority Passengers (like people in Suites) often get early boarding like you are offered.

Once onboard, as someone else said, the Bars will be open… and the pool.  If you are so inclined you can pack your bathing suit along and take a dip

Starting around Noon when the regular Pax start to board, the Buffet will open (sometimes another restaurant or two)

When I come aboard as a Regular Pax, we typically head to the Buffet and grab some lunch (food is usually quite good on a Cruise Ship… especially so that first day aboard in the Buffet)

So you’ll want to check in with the Bride & Groom to make a gentle inquiry if there will be any eats served after their Ceremony… (again uber-costly)… so most couples just opt for Cake & Champagne

Which makes eating Lunch before hand, and then having Cake & Champagne “for dessert” make a lot of sense

Other than that I can tell you the 4 Hours will go relatively quickly.  As no doubt you’ll find yourself doing what most of us Regular Pax do after boarding (see we have to wait around too… as our Cabins aren’t ready, and our luggage has to be brought aboard and put in them…. usually happens sometime between 1 and 5 PM)… and that is either sitting out somewhere’s on deck admiring the view (maybe having a drink) and enjoying the Entertainment… always a band etc playing somewheres

OR… just touring the ship.

Cruise Ships are HUGE… and there is a ton to see on each and every deck… from the Embarkation Point (usually down on the 2nd or 3rd Floor) right up to the top… some ships now having 15, 16, or 18 Decks !!

So if you are smart, you’ll pack along a decent sized bag, or Hubby can bring a knapsack, and carry in it all the essentials you’ll need for a great afternoon… Bathing Suit – Suntan Lotion – Bottled Water – a Hat – and use it as a place to stow your sexy strappy Wedding Heels if you plan to explore the ship… you’ll appreciate having flip flops, sandals, runners or good walking shoes for all the walking.

Hope this helps,

PS… Find out specifically when you can go aboard… as YES you’ll probably want to spend every minute you can … it really can be that great an experience.  The Cruise Terminal where you’ll check in opens early… lol, very early.  And at that time of day, you’ll probably breeze thru the process curbside to shipside… maybe 20 to 30 minutes.  So if they say you can get aboard at 10:30 AM… be at the terminal by 10 AM… then you can maximize your time aboard.


Post # 10
9198 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: August 2013 - Rocky Mountains USA

LOL, I was going to say go get some drinks, but I see everyone beat me to it 😉  Way to go WB!

Post # 11
1340 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: November 2012

I just got married on a Carnival ship (Pride) in January. They want you at the port at 10:30, but you may not be able to board for some time after that depending on a number of factors including if there’s any inspections being donw by ICE or if the ship was late arriving back to port (it happens). If all works out according to plan you’ll be first on the ship ahead of VIP, Suite, and guests with Faster to the Fun. The bride and groom will head to their pre-determined cabin(s) to get ready and you’re free to roam the ship. My understanding is that Carnival now allows you (visiting guests) to pay cash at the bar (this was not the case in January), but gift shops and the casino will not be open. You’ll also be allowed to tour the public areas of the ship and eat on the Lido deck.

Honestly, the time passes really quickly and by the time you get on the ship, get directions from the coordinators and get back in time for the wedding ceremony, it’s really not a lot of time. My coordinator instructed my guests to be in the chapel 30 minutes before the wedding .

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