A family reunion cruise is a truly fun thing to anticipate and plan for. But, don’t think that the only thing you have to do is plan the fun. You also need a great deal of diligence to make sure all attendees are aware of all things cruise-related.
This means that you have to be as detailed about the information as possible. Remember, you’re dealing with people who may be going on a cruise for the first time.
We know that anyone tasked to write the family reunion cruise letter would be hard-pressed in finding the right words.
Included in this article are tips on how to write one, as well as a sample letter. All you have to do is modify it to fit perfectly with your own family reunion cruise.
Table of Contents
What to Write in a Reunion Cruise Letter
Here is a list of items one needs to know when writing a family reunion cruise letter. Take note of the various parts of the items listed, and understand how it applies to your reunion cruise’s situation.
This usually begins with a typical salutation. If there’s a fond way each member usually addresses the family collectively, it may be very smart to use that. It gives an immediate sense of belonging to each recipient.
Booking details vary on the mode of booking and payments. However, the common points in any booking are the installment payments due dates, available discounts for group and individuals, and money refund policies.
When writing the family reunion cruise letter, be clear if there are additional bookings aside from the cruise accommodation itself. For instance, it would be good to mention if there would be a hotel booking before embarking on the ship.
You would be traveling far away from home, so it’s important to bring your documents to avoid customs issues. The most significant document when crossing international borders is your passport.
Be sure to remind family members to have their travel documents fully updated. If you don’t have a passport with you, you could bring the following:
- Birth certificate for everyone, including children
- Valid driver’s license or a government-issued identification
- Marriage certificate, particularly for married ladies to avoid issues with name changes.
This is a needful reminder to those driving their vehicles to the port. Some ports have valet parking arrangements, but some do not. Make sure you clarify options such as availability of car or shuttle services at your chosen port.
Provide a range of charges per night for parking fees, and a range of fees for each class of vehicles. Also, indicate if there are parking lot facilities for those with handicaps. And, if the cruise provides a shuttle service to and from the parking lot.
Onboard Expense Accounts
An onboard expense account is a cashless system for purchases and services aboard the cruise ship. You could either set it up through a credit card or you could also pre-pay through cash. An alternative is to set up one master account, then add in the rest of the family into it. This way, all purchases would be billed as one.
It’s also important to inform family members ahead of time to keep all transaction receipts on hand. A final transaction statement would be delivered to you on your last night on the ship.
Duty-free items are usually goods that have entered that country without the usual local import taxes attached. It’s legal on cruise ships because they’re sold to foreigners, and not to those living within the visited destination.
Ensure that the family members are aware of duty-free rules and regulations in the countries and ports. Also, keep in mind that shops tend to close while in port to abide by the local customs laws.
Gratuities are small surcharges automatically added to the services on the cruise ship. These are voluntary and usually given only at the discretion of each guest. They’re a little way to express gratitude for the staff on board, who are working for your comfort throughout the cruise.
If there are families who choose to book hotels during stopovers, indicate the hotel reservation plans. Ask their opinions about it, and inquire whether they have their own hotel reservation or if they opt not to participate.
If you have determined to have registration fees, indicate how much you should charge to know which minor expenses can be covered from it.
Family Cruise Attire
Emphasize the importance of a family cruise attire, as well as the dress code for certain occasions.
Indicate arrangements for both formal and informal occasions.
How to Get the Word Out
You could easily send your letter digitally, through email, social media, or your own family reunion website. However, having a nice and colorful hardcopy can greatly enrich the experience when there’s a physical letter.
Sample Family Reunion Cruise Letter
Greetings to you all.
Our family reunion cruise is fast approaching, and we are all so excited to embark on our family journey! Final touches are in place, so be sure to check our family website for any latest updates and feedback.
As our cruise date is nearing, I’d like to remind you of a few details we need to take note of.
Cruise Date: mm-dd-yy
Departing Port: (location of cruise port)
All in all there are (x) family members going on the reunion cruise. Our travel agent has provided booking identification for each one of you. So, please check your emails for your booking information. If you did not get yours, kindly contact me or our travel agent to resolve the issue.
When you have received your booking details, kindly go to our cruise website to create an account. After doing so, you would be able to review your reservation and cabin number.
Please note that this has to be completed (3) days before our sail date.
Bring your updated passport to avoid issues with customs. Alternatively, you must at least have an original copy of everyone’s birth certificates or valid driver’s license.
Also, please note that the FIRST and LAST NAMES have to exactly match your reservation and travel documents.
Our rendezvous point for embarkation is at (location port). Please note that it (does/does not) offer valet services. Charges for long-term parking is $20.00 per day for cruise passengers.
There is also a shuttle service that would pick you up at the parking lot, and take you to the cruise terminal.
If you have any questions please feel free to email me or our travel agent.
We have set up a Master Expense Account, which is a cashless system for our purchases onboard. Please let me know if you’d like to be enrolled under the master account, so we could include you in it.
Make sure to keep all receipts for the final statement of the transaction that would be delivered on our last night on the ship.
If you’re opting out of the Master Expense Account, you could set up your own by linking your credit card or cash payments. ATM machines are also available on the cruise ship.
All items are duty-free while the cruise ship is on the high seas. However, please note that all shops would be closed when the ship is docked.
I would also like to remind you that there would be gratuity charges. Although gratuity payment for waiters and housekeeping staff are voluntary, we suggest giving them at least $3.00 a day.
Next, in order to add more glitz to our reunion cruise and easily identify ourselves in the sea of other cruise-goers, we’re going to have a customized attire. Our formal attire would also be of matching colors when we have family dinners.
I also like to remind you that, in order to make all preliminary preparation easier and to cover minor costs, the planning committee has decided to have a registration fee of $5.00 for this year’s reunion cruise. This would cover the cost of postage, shipping, telephone calls, and other miscellaneous spendings.
Please send your payments to (name of person) by (mm-dd-yy) at the latest.
Lastly, I’d like to note that the majority of our family members planned to arrive on the embarkation point on different days. So, we have opted not to reserve a specific hotel for the family.
I would like to remind everyone that the family group won’t be shouldering all pre-embarkation reservations. However, the majority of our families will be staying at the (name and address of the hotel).
I hope that this letter would help you prepare well and make our trip as smooth and stress-free as possible.
I look forward to a great time!
So, you now have all the vital information you need to write a fantastic and effective family reunion cruise letter. We are wishing you all the best, and hoping you have unforgettable fun on your cruise trip.