aft, starboard, port...please explain!

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#1
MN
14 Posts
Joined Apr 2008
I am in the planning stages of our first cruise and awaiting some quotes from a TA on some balcony staterooms on Princess.
I see a lot of talk about these different postions on the boat for staterooms, and am totally lost! What do these things mean? What are the advantages/disadvantages? Thanks for helping a newbie!
#2
Washington
329 Posts
Joined Jan 2006
Originally posted by daughterofsarah77
I am in the planning stages of our first cruise and awaiting some quotes from a TA on some balcony staterooms on Princess.
I see a lot of talk about these different postions on the boat for staterooms, and am totally lost! What do these things mean? What are the advantages/disadvantages? Thanks for helping a newbie!

boat = ship
aft = back
port = left side
starboard = right side
forward = front
floor = deck

some will advise if you're prone to sea sicknes: stay mid ship - look at deck plans to locate facilities above and below your cabin/stateroom - ie: cabin below dining area where moving chairs might pose a problem. Some will evaluate itinerary for location of morning or afternoon sun as might relate to port or starboard side

see "Just a question" thread a few subjects away

hope this helps
#4
11,505 Posts
Joined Mar 2003
I can always remember port is left as they both have 4 letters in them.
Aft is the back because the aft is after the rest of the ship.
Just some tricks to keep the terms straight.
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#5
Naples, FL USA
1,748 Posts
Joined Mar 2002
While I don't know how universal this is, on the CB the pattern on the deck carpeting was the same on the port and starboard side of the ship. However, the port side had a distinctive red edging to it. If you think of red as port wine and port as left, it becomes very obvious which side to turn when exiting an elevator.
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#6
Fredericksburg, va. USA
80,945 Posts
Joined May 2001
You need to get the brochure for the line you'll be cruising--that way, you'll have the deck plans and can SEE what cabin you're booking! Once you are onboard, a ship is NOT hard to navigate--any more than a large resort hotel would be! After the 1st afternoon, you'll get your bearings and be fine!
#7
Bolingbrook, Illinois
5,476 Posts
Joined Jun 2001
Originally posted by Costest
boat = ship
aft = back
port = left side
starboard = right side
forward = front
floor = deck
hope this helps
Good answer - just a little extra - these directions (left, right, front, back) are when you are standing on the ship facing the front of the ship with your back toward the back of the ship.
(there was a previous thread where someone asked which way you needed to face front or back & if you were on the ship or on the dock)
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#8
Lake Norman
1,268 Posts
Joined Sep 2001
Further claification or confusion.

Aft refers to a direction while Stern refers to the location of the ship. For example, one walks aft to the stern. i know folks refer to "aft Cabins" but that is incorrect....technically they would be stern cabins.

So, fore and aft mean toward the front and rear.

Bow and stern refer to the location on the ship, pointy end and square end.
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#9
North Carolina
271 Posts
Joined Jan 2008
I found a lot of the posts on http://www.seauonboard.com to be helpful. It's got info mostly about Carnival but there's some good generic info including a list of seafaring terms.
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