A WOMAN has revealed some of the big mistakes passengers make on cruise ships.

Erica DePascale, who has worked on cruise ships for seven years, said it was mainly first-time cruisers who make the same errors.

This includes packing too much – which can make small cabins crowded – and even forgetting to book shore excursions beforehand, as they often sell out.

Here are the three big mistakes Erica told Business Insider passengers make – and how to avoid them when you are planning a cruise holiday.

Flying into the port city on the same day as your cruise

Brits will most likely fly to Florida for a cruise holiday, with most big names departing from Orlando or Miami.

However, Erica warns against flights that land the same day the ship sets sail, due to it being "super risky".

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She said: "Flights can be canceled or delayed, so it's best to fly in the day or night before and choose a hotel with a port shuttle to make your connection to the ship seamless."

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Skipping online check-in 

Passengers may not realise that most cruise ships let you check in online which can make the boarding process much easier.

Erica explained that some even let you do a "virtual muster drill" – similar to the safety announcement on planes – online, so you can skip this part when you arrive.

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Not only that, but online check-in often lets you pick your boarding time too.

She explained: "I've found that earlier boarding times are better so you can avoid the lines and have more fun on your cruise."

Immediately heading to the buffet on the first day

Even thought it can be tempting, you might want to avoid the buffet when you first get on the ship.

Erica said this can be the "most crowded place" on the first day as it is where most passengers go.

Instead, she recommends heading to cafes or snack bars to avoid long queues, and do the buffet later in the journey.

A cruise addict has revealed the worst things you can do as a passenger, which also includes overpacking.

And a cruise ship performer has revealed what it's really like to live and work on an international voyage.

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If you are planning your first cruise holiday, then you should look at booking one in 2024.

The world’s biggest cruise ship – Icon of the Seas – has been unveiled by Royal Caribbean, capable of carrying 7,600 passengers and costing more than £2BILLION – and it sets sail in 2024.

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