Many novice cruisers will convince themselves that their luggage has been lost, just because it might not turn up for a while after they have arrived in their stateroom. Generally, this is because first time cruisers are far more used staying in hotels, where the guests do not check in all together. Obviously, on a cruise, this is precisely what happens, so there are countless items of luggage that get transported simultaneously. Thus, if your luggage fails to show up for several hours after your arrival, you can spare yourself some anxious moments by bearing this in mind.
One way of surviving until your main luggage arrives, is to put your essential small items into your hand luggage. This is particularly useful if you are travelling with children, or if you have medication you need to take. Before you leave home, always pack enough things in your hand luggage to get you through the first day. This way, if you are left without your luggage for an unusually long time, you will avoid any unnecessary stress.
With regards to what you should wear on board, every cruise restaurant has its' own dress code. Thus, before you leave, you should check to see whether the dress code on your boat is smart casual, black tie or informal and pack appropriately. Usually, Cunard and P&O cruises have a more conservative dress policy, whereas RCI and celebrity cruises allow you to wear almost anything you want. As a general rule, the smaller boats will impose more stringent dress codes. Some people dislike the idea of having to dress for dinner. Obviously, if this applies to you, then this will govern your choice of cruise line from the outset.
Do not forget that, even if you are cruising in exotic waters, the temperature can still become very cold in the evening. You do not want to have to stay in your stateroom all night, because it is too chilly to venture outside. Always take some warmer clothing with you, otherwise you might be forced to forgo some enjoyable star-gazing from the ship deck.
Inevitably, being aboard a cruise ship will take a few days of getting used to, irrespective of which cruise line you choose to book with. Ultimately though, it is just the same as a normal holiday, except that you are floating on water. Take heed of the above advice, and you will definitely blend in with the seasoned cruisers who are aboard your ship.