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Tuesday, 28 June 2011

E-Tickets; the whats, whys and wherefores.....

Cruise E-tickets. Always a controversial subject and one of the most common complaints for modern cruisers, but why do they annoy so many people? After all airlines have been using e-tickets for years.
I think the problem stems from the perception ,(quite rightly), that many people have about cruising.
Cruising is stylish, sophisticated, elegant and luxurious so turning up at the port with a piece of paper you've printed out yourself just doesn't sit right with some people. Especially as it was only a few years ago when all the cruise lines where sending out ticket 'packs' to people that included luggage labels, excursion information and their tickets. Indeed some cruise lines even went so far as to send this information in a nice leather wallet that people could bring with them. But no more I'm afraid.
The cold 'fact of the matter' is the majority of cruise lines these days are operating an e-ticket system so unfortunately it means people are going to have to get used to this new system.
There really isn't anything to be scared of though, it's such an easy process, (assuming you have internet access; if you don't just speak to your travel agent, they should do it for you).
All you need do is log in to the relevant website of the cruise line you're sailing with, (a handy link that lists all these sites can be found here), and type in your cruise line reference.
Once you've got that far there's a whole host of things you can do.
You can check in online, (insurance details, passport details etc), so you don't need to do it at the port.
You can view and book shore excursions.
You can print your cruise e ticket.
You can book extra 'treats' for your cruise like champagne breakfasts on your balcony.
You can view all your booking details and sometimes change things like table size and bed configuration.

It really is an easy system to use. If you ask the cruise lines about it direct they'll tell you this system is easier for clients to view as it can be accessed as soon as the booking is made and it's more environmentally friendly. Whilst this is all true I'm sure the fact that it's a lot cheaper for them also came into consideration.
If for whatever reason you can't figure the new system out any travel agent you've booked with should be happy to help you with the process but this is definitely the way the world is going so the sooner people get used to the new system the easier they'll find it.

Happy cruising

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