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It may surprise you, but the Director of Marketing for USA River Cruises… gets seasick! That’s right, I’ll admit it to the world – I get seasick. Motion sickness seems to be hereditary in my family. Fortunately, constant travel has meant that I’ve grown out of it considerably. My major symptoms now are headache, sleepiness, and sometimes dizziness. But I don’t take cruises to sleep all day. That’s no fun at all! If you’re in the same boat as me (that’s a pun, by the way), I’ve got a few tips that could help those of us who want to develop our sea legs!

Motion Seasickness Prevention for a River Cruise

*Book a RIVER cruise. Just thinking about rolling on the open ocean can cause a wave of nausea, but the smooth rivers of North America and Europe could be the perfect solution for you. Will I get seasick on a river cruise? Your chances are much smaller of getting motion sickness on river cruises, because there’s less motion. On the rivers, you’re not dealing with ocean waves and currents. The only exception to that may be the Great Lakes. But for most rivers in the US and Europe, the motion felt on the boats is significantly reduced.

*Fresh air! I learned this real fast in the car and on airplanes – a constant supply of cool air blowing on your face definitely calms the nerves. When I found myself feeling a bit of a headache from motion sickness on a river cruise, I just head outside and enjoy the cool breeze off the river.

*Stay out of the sun. Direct sunlight could cause you to overheat, and that will just upset your whole body, especially your tummy. Find a nice spot in the shade to relax.

*Stare at the horizon. Most people know this tip from getting sick in the car – find a fixed point to concentrate on. At night, when there is no horizon to watch, you can lay back and watch the stars. Well, not all the stars. Just find one special star to focus on. If you start to feel a bit seasick on a river cruise, head to a rear deck and find a chair (NOT a rocking chair), and watch the horizon you’re leaving behind.

*Avoid the front of the ship. It’s probably going to be moving the most. Stick to the middle or the back. (And if you’re on a paddlewheel, sometimes there’s a nice spray/mist that comes off the wheel. It’s very refreshing)

*Seabands on your wrists. They can look a little silly, but they worked for me! Once, on a very tiny river cruise, I wore them and I didn’t have any problems. But after a few hours, one got bumped off the acupressure point. As soon as it moved, I could feel every wave – and it wasn’t good. But I slipped the band back into place, and it got better again. When I did a Mississippi River cruise, I wore the bands for 2 days, just in case, morning and night. But once I was brave enough to remove them, I discovered that I didn’t need them.

*Peppermint or ginger products. I grew up eating ginger snaps on planes, although something with more ginger would probably pack a better punch. The scent of peppermint is clarifying to the mind, and the oil can help with indigestion and nausea – or so aromatherapy people say.

*Avoid strong odors. Don’t spray an excess of perfume, or sit next to someone who has. If you’ve been seasick, you know what I’m talking about.

*Talk to your doctor. They can suggest or prescribe medicine for you to take. Even if you just stick it in your suitcase for emergencies, its a good back-up to have.

Hopefully, armed with these tips, you can feel confident in booking a cruise for yourself. Yes, even the seasick can grow some sea legs! Give our agents a call: 800-578-1479.

~Ashley

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