Gone Cruising

Become an expert before you board

Enjoy the excitement of travel and the luxury of having your holiday all planned out with a domestic or international cruise. On this page you'll learn all of the essentials you need to address before you go, on your cruise and, of course, ensuring you have the right insurance.

Before you go

Before you head off on your cruise, it’s important to be prepared. Pack for your destination, but also be prepared for the weather at sea. You may be planning a cruise through central America where the average land temperature is mid 30s, but the temperature at sea may be very different. Pack some lightweight options and even a weatherproof jacket to keep you cosy on your cruise.

Here are some more things to keep in mind before your cruise:

What's included?

Be sure to check what your cruise fare covers you for. For instance, many cruise fares cover onboard food in main dining rooms only and charge extra for all other speciality dining facilities.

While cruising may be appealing as an all-inclusive travel experience, you may still be required to pay gratuities. This will depend on where you are cruising, so check with your cruise company for full details on gratuities for your cruise. Daily gratuities are often charged to your Cabin account and may also be added to each purchase you make whilst on board. 


Passports and visas

For international cruises, passports must be valid for six months from your return date to Australia. You will also be required to carry your passport and cruise card when going ashore.

When it comes to visas, it is your responsibility to organise relevant visas for all of the ports you will be travelling to - even if you are not disembarking in a country.


Be sure to check which currency your on-board purchases will be charged in, as this  can vary depending on cruise line and embarkation point.

You can purchase the appropriate currency in advance, otherwise most charges will be charged to your cabin. 



On your cruise

A cruise can be a once-in-a-lifetime experience, so you want to make the most of it!

There are plenty of activities to keep you busy or to help you relax as you watch the waves go by. Just some of activities you can do onboard include poolside Zumba, trivia night and variety shows. These will usually be displayed each day at coffee spots and bars. Don’t miss out on all the fun!

If you want to stay active, there are plenty of options with gym classes on your cruise, walking tracks around the deck, or simply choosing the stairs before the lifts. Remember, there will be amazing food on offer almost 24 hours a day, and you might want to burn some of it off! You can even choose to cycle between stops while on a European River Cruise.

Depending on how long your cruise is, it may also offer formal nights. The dress code will mean shirt, tie and jacket for men and formalwear for women. There is often the option to hire formalwear on board, but you may need to be book prior to sailing.

Many cruises also offer kids' club activities for a range of different ages. Keep in mind that there may be a minimum age for your children to be left unattended in the kids' club. 

Make sure you're covered

Whether you're cruising internationally or in Australian waters, it's important to make sure you're covered.

Domestic cruising

If you are going on a cruise that is only in Australian waters or calling into ports in Australia, you will still require an insurance policy that includes medical cover while you are on board the ship, as most ships' medical providers are not registered with Medicare (though check with your cruise provider).

When you get your travel insurance with RACV, you will need to select Australian Cruise as your destination. This will then allow us to give you medical and evacuation cover while at sea, while your existing health insurance will cover medical providers in Australian ports.

Please note the Domestic insurance policy does not include any medical cover as we are a general insurer and cannot cover medical costs in Australia. Therefore, the Domestic policy is not suitable for cruises.

International cruising - including Europe river cruising

Our International Cruising policy Includes all ports you plan to visit, whether you are disembarking or not. This will confirm if cover is available for that country.

You will also need to check www.smarttraveller.gov.au  as we do not provide cover for any country with “Do Not Travel” status.

RACV Travel Insurance, choose from our comprehensive range of travel insurance plans