Embarkation day tends to be very busy but I will endeavour to provide as much waffle as I can today. Another excellent nights sleep but awake at 5:30 so spent the time adding the video of the Drone Show to yesterday’s post. After breakfast, we took a long walk along Jumeirah Beach almost right to the end and back. We got very close to the ship and could just about make out our cabin. With the weather slightly overcast and with a nice breeze it was actually really enjoyable plus a great way to kill some time. We had to check out from the hotel at midday but had an embarkation slot of 2:30 so sat out by the pool until it was time to go. The cruise terminal was only a 10-minute drive from the hotel so we didn’t have far to go. What happened when we reached the cruise terminal beggars belief.
No cars, nothing other than 2 other passengers stood outside the terminal building. To say it was deserted is an understatement. We were met by a young lady who checked we had all the correct paperwork then ushered us up to the next level to check-in. This next area was also deserted so we walked straight up to the desk and within 7 or 8 minutes had completed check-in. All this time we had not seen another passenger getting on.
We had a 10-minute wait while the air bridge was adjusted but after that, we were soon on board. What a totally unique boarding experience!!!
Once onboard, the first thing we needed to do was to locate our cabin and pick up our Costa cruise cards. Our cabin is compact and very functional and will make a great home for the next 7 nights. For the first time, a proper shower cubicle and no clingy curtain.
After attending the English speaking welcome meeting we made our way back to the cabin to see if the luggage had arrived which unfortunately it hadn’t. It is very obvious that Costa is taking Covid very seriously with lots of additional measures on board. We have also been informed that passenger capacity is 4232 – 5078 but on this cruise, there are around 1000 or so we should have plenty of space. One thing I will need to get to grips with is the WiFi, it is looking like I can only use one device so transferring photos may become an issue. I can write on my phone but most of my photos are on the camera and tablet. I will find a way!! Muster was at 5:30 and conducted in your muster station and wearing your life jackets. At least this is now conducted inside and not out on the prom deck lined up in rows with the shortest at the front. However, in true Costa style, we had this in 6 languages and it took an incredible 45 minutes. In 7 previous Costa cruises, I have never known it take as long as this before. We eventually made it back to the cabin at 6:20 to find our cases still not there. They eventually arrived just after 7:00.
Being so close to the Drone Show start we decided to hang around in the cabin. Once again we have not had an opportunity to explore the ship on day one. We are on second sitting for dinner tonight so I will catch up with how that went in my next post.