Custom Alaska Cruises FAQ

Click on the questions to reveal the answers:

How do I go about booking a cruise with Custom Alaska Cruises?

Please use the mailer form on the contact page, or alternatively give us a call using the numbers listed on the top of the site.

How many people does a stateroom sleep?

Each of our staterooms has one oversize full bed which comfortably sleeps two adults. There is also a pull down twin overhead which is ideal for children or close family.

How do I get to Petersburg?

Check out our Transportation & Directions page for more details. Petersburg can be reached by air, with Alaska Airlines www.alaskaair.com or by sea using the Alaska Marine Highway System www.dot.state.ak.us

Alaska Airlines services Petersburg with twice daily jet service. One option is flying Seattle to Juneau with a connecting flight to Petersburg. Or, Seattle to Petersburg with stops in Ketchikan and Wrangell. Most flights go through Juneau to get to Petersburg regardless of where you are coming from.

We suggest you arrive in Petersburg the day before your cruise.

For more detailed information on what to do in Petersburg please check our Petersburg, Alaska page

What time do we leave Petersburg and what time will we get back at the end of our cruise?

The Sikumi departs Petersburg around noon on the first day of your cruise. We would suggest arriving in Petersburg the day before your departure and lodging overnight there. We return to Petersburg late morning on the final day of your cruise so that departing passengers can make the 12:10pm flight north out of Petersburg if they wish. (The flight south is later in the day).

Can you recommend a place to stay in Petersburg?

A few options are: The Scandia House www.scandiahousehotel.com #800-722-5006. Located downtown on the main street, a block or two from the marina, easy access to local shops. Clean, with complimentary muffins, coffee, and juice in the morning.

The Tides Inn #907-772-4288. Located a block or two up a small hill from the main street. They also offer coffee, juice and muffins in the morning.

The Waterfront B&B www.waterfrontbedandbreakfast.com #907-772-9300. Located near the ferry terminal, about a 10 minute walk or 2 minute taxi ride to the Sikumi.

Please check out Petersburg page for more information on accommodations in Petersburg.

Is there a chance of sea-sickness?

For our regular 7 day cruises we travel in protected waters so sea-sickness is not usually a problem.

However we have a variety of sea sickness remedies onboard for those that did not bring them. For those that are particularly sensitive we suggest the “3 day patches” over tablets.

Can we be contacted during our cruise in case of an emergency?

The captain has a cell phone which may be called in case of an emergency. Cell phone coverage is limited however, so we also have a SAT phone on board the Sikumi, this is situated in the wheelhouse so is not always answered – anyone trying to contact us is advised to keep trying until they get through. Numbers for both phones will be provided when your booking is confirmed.

What shall I pack?

Weather conditions on a boat are always variable so plenty of layers are essential. For a detailed list of what to pack please go to our Alaska Cruise Packing List page.

What kind of luggage should I bring?

We recommend a duffel type or soft bag as this can easily be stored in the closet in your stateroom, however if you do want to bring a larger bag, we are happy to store it for you on the lower deck after you have unpacked.

Do I need a fishing license in order to fish and if so where can I get one from?

Yes, you will need a valid Alaska fishing license. These can be purchased at most convenience stores, gas stations and supermarkets in Alaska. Alternatively, you can buy online at www.admin.adfg.state.ak.us/license/

What ports will we be stopping at? Will we be going to Juneau?

We will only be stopping at 2 ports, Petersburg, AK and Baranoff warm springs. We will not be stopping in Juneau. We stop a different remote location every night.

Do cell phones work on the Alaska Cruise?

Cell phone reception is very limited while we are cruising the Inside Passage, however your cell phone will work in Petersburg before and after your cruise. If you really need to be in contact for the duration of your cruise, we would suggest rent a satellite phone.

Can I bring my laptop on board and can it be plugged in to re-charge?

You are more than welcome to bring a laptop on board. You can easily re-charge your tech devices as we have regular 110V power outlets on the Sikumi. We do have a computer on board for everyone’s use, which can be used to download and share photos etc… We provide disks to copy the photos onto.

Is there internet available on the boats?

Unfortunately, we do not have an internet connection on board.

How many crew members will there be on our cruise?

On a regular cruise there will be five crew members – the captain, a naturalist/guide, a gourmet chef and two stewards.

What sort of medical facilities are there on board and what would happen in a medical emergency?

Our on board naturalist/guide is certified in Basic Life Support, Anaphylaxis First Aid and CPR for adults and children. We carry an AED unit on board as well as a small tank of oxygen. In the case of a serious emergency, the Captain would contact the marine operator via SAT phone or VHF. If necessary the coastguard would send a Medivac helicopter and the client would be airlifted to the nearest hospital at their expense, (you will need to make sure any travel insurance you take out covers this). Our Zodiac skiff is prepared for immediate deployment also and makes 35 knots, so at worst it could be a few hours to get to a hospital.

Are there any laundry facilities on the boats?

Yes, we have laundry facilities.  Our crew is happy to take care of your laundry requirements while you are on board. If possible we try to minimize the use of the washing machine to save fresh-water.

We would like to explore Alaska further before/after our cruise. What do you recommend?

We suggest you get in touch with Dave at Viking Travel in Petersburg 907-772-3818 or email david@alaskaferry.com, who will be able to help you with any further travel arrangements while in Alaska. Or, go to www.travelalaska.com and request a free colored brochure. It is a great resource divided into regions with activities, lodging, transportation options and more.

What months are the bugs really bad?

Bugs are a little like the weather – hard to predict! Whilst on board the boat however the bugs aren’t around to annoy us as they don’t come out over the water, it is only land excursions where we would encounter bugs. Generally the warmer months of June, July, and August would be the worst. We would recommend bringing a good bug repellent whatever time of the year you are traveling. If you are really concerned you can buy protective face masks as an extra precaution.

I have very picky eaters, is the menu able to be customized?

Yes. We send out Client Profiles to all of our booked clients prior to the season asking for food and drink preferences as well as any special needs that we need to be aware of. At this time, please be very specific as to allergies, dislikes, likes, etc. We do customize the meals to the likes of our guests the best we can.

Why Buy Alaska Cruise Travel Insurance?

Cruise Travel Insurance is an excellent way to safeguard yourself from any unfortunate circumstances which may result in you losing the value of your trip.

We know that sometimes there are circumstances that are out of your control, and throw a hitch in your plans. While we hope nothing happens, it is always best to be prepared.

We are proud to announce that we at Custom Alaska Cruises, can now provide Travel Guard Insurance to our clients to help protect their trips.

You can purchase travel insurance anytime after deposit, however the longer you wait after your initial deposit, will effect the level of protection available. We recommend getting a quote before your Alaska small ship cruise and purchasing at the time of booking.

Travel Guard plans have varying levels of protection and in each level there are add on’s available for an additional fee, such as car rental coverage, medical evacuations, etc. We have worked to simplify the process and we have created a plan along with Travel Guard to help our clients.

Contact us for your Travel Guard quote and we will find the best plan for you. We look forward to having you aboard!

970-217-6359

Should we buy trip insurance and if so, who should we buy it from, and how much does it cost?

We have trip insurance available from Travel Guard (www.travelguard.com). Insurance cost is based on your age, the coverage and total cost of the trip. We recommend the Cruise, Tour, and Travel policy, but the other policies have different coverage’s that you may feel comfortable. One big item to look at is medivac coverage. An airlift from Petersburg to Seattle runs about $35,000 should one be needed, and is covered in these policies.

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