So, you've booked your next vacation with Princess Cruises, and your ship is enabled with MedallionClass. Congratulations! You're about to embark with some of the latest technology found on the Seven Seas.
Utilizing the various complimentary features of Princess' MedallionClass is entirely optional. You can still enjoy the traditional cruise experience you've come to expect with Princess and other lines.
But why stop there? While you've probably heard how this wearable tech will unlock the door as you approach your cabin, the OceanMedallion does so much more, truly "opening the door" to the vacation of the future.
To maximize what MedallionClass can do for you, there are just a few extra steps you'll want to do after booking and before embarking on vacation.
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Princess Cruise Personalizer
Once you've booked your cruise, fill out the Princess Cruise Personalizer, just as you have in the past. The Personalizer is found on the Princess.com website and is accessed with your booking number and birthdate. Through the Personalizer, you'll be able to arrange your bed configuration, select times for the main dining room and request fluffy robes for your cabin. You'll also be able to purchase shore excursions, book spa appointments and make specialty dining reservations.
Take a couple of minutes to note any special occasions you might be celebrating, along with dietary requirements or mobility and access issues -- doing this now will pay unexpected dividends during your cruise.
You can also purchase MedallionNet for internet access. This is Princess' proprietary new Wi-Fi system, and if you've accessed the internet at sea previously, prepare to be blown away by the speed and reach of MedallionNet. Buying it before embarkation ensures you will avail of the best rates.
After completing the Personalizer, and at least 12 days before the start of your vacation, go to the App Store and download the free OceanReady app onto the phone or tablet you plan to take with you on the cruise. You'll log in with your email address and create a password. (Note that the password for OceanReady has specific security requirements and may need to be different from your existing Personalizer password.)
The OceanReady app will prompt you to create an account with any personal information that did not transfer over from the Personalizer. You'll also take a selfie -- if it's a good, clean shot, it may suffice as your ship ID (if not, security will take a new one when you board). Finally, you'll scan your passport photo page, which saves your passport details in the system.
The whole process to upload the app and complete OceanReady should take no more than 10 minutes. Upon completion, OceanMedallion(s) will be shipped to your home address (as long as you finished the OceanReady process at least 12 days before departure).
Not planning on bringing a 4G phone or tablet on the cruise? Not to worry: There will be a few extra steps during check-in at the cruise terminal, but your medallion will be waiting for you there.
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Take a Screen Shot of Your Boarding Pass
It's not required, but take a screen shot of your boarding pass to keep on your device. While providing your passport at the cruise terminal normally suffices for boarding, it's still good to have a backup, just as one would with a paper copy of an airline boarding pass.
Also not required, but handy to get out of the way before arriving at the port: Download the five remaining MedallionClass apps. Here's a rundown of each, in order of priority:
The OceanCompass app is where you can identify your shipmates -- those sailing in your party or fellow cruisers you meet while onboard. The nifty 3D maps in this app allow you to explore the ship and locate your shipmates. Want to find a specific venue or locate the nearest bathroom? OceanCompass will not only display the location on the map but guide you to it.
Once you board, the OceanNow app can be used to order food or drinks. Enjoying your lounger by the pool and don't want to amble to the nearest bar? Use OceanNow to have a drink delivered right to you. Recall the old forms to order breakfast, which needed to be hung on your cabin door the night before? Order breakfast on the OceanNow app and have it delivered straight to your cabin.
PlayOcean is the app where you'll create your personal Tagalong, an avatar that will follow along with you on your cruise. Choose a seahorse, a sea turtle or a fish. Select a color scheme, markings, even the type of fin -- we're told there are more than a million unique designs possible. Personalize the Tagalong before you arrive at the port, and your avatar will greet you during the boarding process.
Two other apps to consider loading include OceanCasino -- use it to play games on your device, even before you board. The app isn't just for the casino: From your phone you'll be able to play bingo from anywhere on the ship, even poolside. Finally, OceanView is Princess' digital streaming channel designed for both land and sea. Want to dive into a tropical scene for your Caribbean cruise well before sail-away? Or a taste of the scenery and animals of Alaska before cruising the Inside Passage? Enjoy OceanView on your handheld, on major streaming platforms like Amazon Fire TV, Apple TV and Roku or watch OceanView on your cabin TV after boarding.
If you're having trouble with any of the apps before embarkation, call the Princess Cruises Ocean Navigator department for assistance: 844-525-0942.
Explore the Ship With OceanCompass
On embarkation day, OceanCompass will help you explore the ship. Use it to navigate to the pool, or to the buffet for lunch. As you meet fellow cruisers, invite them to follow along with you as a Shipmate. And note the large screens around the ship, which serve as oversized versions of OceanCompass. Use these to check the daily schedule (even days ahead). By tapping your OceanMedallion on the illuminated reader, you'll be able to access your personal itinerary and locate Shipmates.
Keep an eye on those screens -- you just might see someone you recognize.
During your cruise, if you're having trouble at any time with OceanCompass, MedallionNet or other MedallionClass features, stop by the OceanFront desk, dedicated to all things OceanMedallion, where navigators will help open the door on the future of travel.