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Questions...and Answers

In nearly 30 years of creating amazing vacations for gays and lesbians, we’ve been asked a lot of questions. Some expected, others less so. And while we’d love to include them all, we thought we’d start with the most common ones. If you’ve still got a nagging question that isn’t answered here, please ask away using either our handy contact form, or by picking up the phone and calling 800.328.RSVP (7787).

The Cruise Experience

I’ve never been on a cruise before, how can I be sure I’ll like it?
Some people worry that there won’t be enough to do, others think they’ll be too much structure. Well, we’re here to set you straight (metaphorically speaking). A cruise ship is like a small bustling city on the water. There are spas, gyms, stores, pools, restaurants, theaters, bars, and more. So, you can go to the movies, hang out by the pool, take a jog, or have a great meal—it’s all right outside your door. Plus, the boat stops at incredible ports where you can continue your adventure on land. The best part is, it’s all up to you. Choose to do it all or nothing at all.
The thought of hundreds or in some cases thousands of gays on a boat is somewhat overwhelming...does it really feel that way?
No. Well, yes and no. Yes, the boat is full of gays. No, they are not all raging queens. Sure some people may spend the whole trip just enjoying the parties, but many others are taking advantage of the incredible variety of activities. Whether you want to rage all night and sleep all day or you want to sleep all night and engage all day...there’s plenty to choose from.
I’ve heard that some of these cruises are basically a non-stop circuit party on water. What if I don’t want that? What if I do?
None of our vacations could be considered a non-stop circuit party. That said, we do offer lots of very fun parties for you to attend, in addition to the many opportunities for you to relax, dine with friends, and explore the best in gay entertainment. Check out some of our upcoming trips to see what’s right for you.
How many different kinds of cruises do you have?
We work with large ship cruise lines like Holland America Lines and MSC and more intimate ones like Avalon Waterways, who offer ultra-luxe European river cruises.
What are the accommodations like?
Like men, the accommodations vary by size...and in this case, also by price. All RSVP ships are considered premium properties with top-quality amenities. To find out more, explore the SHIP section of each vacation’s page.

About RSVP travelers

Describe the typical RSVP Vacations traveler?
First of all, there really isn’t a typical RSVP Vacations traveler. We attract a wide range of people – young and old, single and coupled, tan and un–tanned, body beautiful and body normal. At RSVP, everyone fits in...unless of course you’re homophobic, which we’re guessing you’re not since you’ve gotten this far. All kidding aside, most of our travelers don’t pack any attitude...just Speedos®, flip–flops, and other accessories.
Are women welcome on RSVP Vacations?
Yes. We love women (and who wouldn’t). In fact, lesbians are not only welcome, but encouraged to travel with RSVP Vacations. Currently, lesbians from across the country and around the world represent approximately 10% of every trip, and we’d love to see that percentage rise.
Are non-gays welcome, too?
Yes. Non-gays are welcome if they are not threatened by the homosexually-charged environment in which they will represent a minority (for a change).
I’m in a new relationship with a great guy. If we travel on one of these trips will I be in constant fear of someone trying to steal him?
While we have a strict no stealing policy when it comes to boyfriends, we can’t always enforce it. But all joking aside, most of our guests traveling with a significant other find the atmosphere friendly and non-threatening.
What if I have special needs?
We bend over backwards (pun intended) to help individuals with special needs have a fantastic time on an RSVP Vacations trip. So, if you have any medical and/or mobility needs, specific dietary requirements, ASL (American Sign Language) needs, or other requests, simply let us know. And please do so no less than 90 days prior to trip departure so we can make sure all your needs are met.

About Booking

Can I book a trip directly with RSVP?
Absolutely. All you have to do is go to our Reservations page to see all the ways you can book your RSVP vacation. If you have any questions, we have a well-trained staff to help you. Or you can call your favorite travel agent.
What’s included in the price of my vacation?
The price of your trip includes accommodations on the ship for the duration of the scheduled itinerary, all meals in the main dining room/buffet, room service, basic beverages (coffee, tea, and iced tea), all entertainment, and our signature RSVP activities.
What’s not included in the price of my vacation?
The price of your trip does not include airfare, transfers, shore excursions, alcoholic beverages, soft drinks, some specialty coffee drinks, bottled water, or spa treatments. Port taxes and gratuities are not included in the price of the trip but have already been added to your reservation as reflected on your invoice.
What is a "Non-Commissionable Fare and Port Fee" charge for?
The non-commissionable fares and port fees cover the cost of various port taxes, port fees, tonnage charges, and other costs related to your cruise that are not covered in the price of the cruise ticket. These charges may contain administrative fees and other direct costs of your vacation as well.
Do you help with the booking of airfare and hotels before and after a trip?
While we can’t help you directly with the booking of your airfare and hotels, we do offer special deals and promotions. Before you make plans, check out the Air & Hotel and Already Booked section for each destination. Wherever possible, RSVP Vacations tries to arrange attractive pre- and post-trip extensions, including hotel and activities.
Do you help find roommates? How does that work?
We offer a room share program at no additional charge. Share rooms are available in the categories listed on each program’s pricing grid and are subject to availability. Roommates are assigned by smoking preference.
What are my payment options?
We take VISA, MasterCard, Discover, American Express, and personal checks. Please no cash or third party out-of-state checks. We require an initial deposit when you book your trip, with an additional payment due 180 days before the trip. Full payment is due 90 days prior to the trip.
Once I’ve booked my trip, where can I find more specific trip information?
In a specially designated section of each cruise page called “Already Booked.” As the departure date for your vacation approaches, we will also send out informational emails with updates, party themes (because we know your costumes take planning), and information on reserving shore excursions and registering with the cruise line.
Are there any advantages to booking early?
The main advantage is choice of accommodation. Plus you’ll have more time to get excited, flaunt your good fortune, and invite your friends to come along.

Before You Go

Do I need a passport and visa?
All RSVP guests require a valid passport and/or visa* at the time of departure. You have the sole responsibility for determining your immigration requirements and obtaining appropriate documentation, including but not limited to visas, passports, etc. Boarding will be denied for failure to possess the appropriate immigration documentation.
*Visa and documentation requirements vary by destination and change from time to time without prior notice. Additionally, ensure that you check with the consulate of each country you will visit at least three months prior to departure to verify current regulations. It is your obligation to have complete travel documentation. Please reconfirm visa requirements 5-7 days prior to departure to verify current regulations.
Will I need to get any shots?
Well, if by shots you mean vaccines...no. But, if you mean small, rapid consumption of alcohol...then yes, maybe.
When will I receive my travel documents?
Once you’ve made your initial deposit, we will mail you a statement confirming your booking. Please review this information to make sure it is correct. Approximately one month prior to your trip departure we will email your travel documentation that includes cruise registration, packing suggestions, and other specific information pertaining to your trip.
What if I need to change the name on my ticket?
A name change fee may be charged for each name changed. Name changes are not allowed within 7 days of the scheduled departure.
Should I buy trip insurance?
Honestly, it’s not a bad idea, since it covers your travel costs/expenses in the event you need to cancel. To make it simple, RSVP Vacations has contracted with Travelex to provide you with this service. Just call 800.228.9792 or visit www.travelexinsurance.com for details. (Please note that you must purchase your trip insurance within 21 days of purchasing your RSVP Vacations trip in order to waive any pre-existing limitations.)
How much luggage can I bring?
You can bring as much luggage as you want but there are a couple things to keep in mind when packing:
  1. Less is more
  2. Airlines have their own baggage allowance restrictions
  3. Vacationing is about letting go of baggage, not bringing it with you
Do I need to fill out any special forms to complete my reservation?
Each RSVP guest needs to complete a Reservation Request Form, which you can download directly from our website. It’s important that you read, sign, and return these forms within your option period to confirm your reservation. If you change your form of payment, we will need a new Reservation Request Form with your name and the new credit card information.
After I have booked my trip, where can I find my Confirmation Number and Guest ID Number?
Your Confirmation and Guest ID Numbers are located on your statement. Use these numbers when communicating with us regarding your booking. If you’re unsure of your Confirmation or Guest ID Number, please contact us at 1.800.328.RSVP.

While on board...and off

How should I dress?
For daytime activities, we suggest comfortable clothes, a bathing suit, workout clothes – whatever makes you most comfortable. For evening activities, dress ranges from casual club wear to slightly more formal. The dining experiences onboard are certainly an opportunity to look your best. Collared shirts, slacks, or nice jeans are the norm. T-shirts, swimsuits, tank tops, and shorts are not allowed in the main dining room or specialty restaurants at night (T-shirts and shorts are fine at the casual buffet). You’ll also want to check our website closer to your departure date so you can attend our signature parties dressed to the theme!
What if I feel seasick?
There are lots of over-the-counter seasick medications to choose from. We sell them on board, but it’s always a good idea to bring your own.
When we get off the boat at ports, how can I be sure I will be safe?
RSVP carefully researches all of its ports and final destinations to ensure that they are gay friendly.
Can I smoke on board?
Smoking is allowed in designated areas.
Can I send email from the ship?
All of our ships are equipped with satellite internet service, accessible via WiFi from your own computer or from public computers onboard. There is a fee for this service, which can be quite substantial if used frequently. Please note that WiFi speed on ships is similar to late 90s dial-up speed.
Is there laundry on the ship?
Laundry service, including dry cleaning and pressing, is available onboard most ships for an additional fee.
What happens to my luggage at the end of the voyage?
At the end of your cruise or land vacation, porters will deliver your luggage dockside. Many cruise lines also offer an “express checkout” option the morning of arrival, which delivers your luggage directly to your airline.
Can I bring friends onboard the ship?
No, RSVP Vacations has a policy of no visitors onboard the ship. So, if you make friends while in port...you will need to keep them in port.