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Is seasickness a problem for smaller cruise ships?

The Question: Is seasickness a problem for smaller cruise ships? What are the best remedies if you get seasick? I have heard that big ships pass them out like candies.

TRAVEL CONCIERGE: Yes, the size of the ship makes a difference. It's all about the greater tonnage and size of the stabilizers.

"Smaller cruise ships, like smaller cars on potholed roads, do ride a bit rougher than their larger brethren when encountering swells," says Denis Lim, president of Cruise Experts Travel ( "Guests who are very prone to sea sickness should cruise on the larger ships of 50,000 tonnes or more."

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Lim, who has been on more than 75 trips and has been ill only twice, also recommends choosing cabins closer to the ship's centre of gravity, located midship and on the lower decks.

And if you do start feeling queasy?

"I always take Gravol chewable tablets with me and at the first sign of rough seas, I will take two of these tablets," Lim says.

Mark Wise, who runs the Travel Clinic in Toronto (, suggests lying with your head at a 45-degree angle and avoiding activities such as reading. Beyond Gravol, he says, you can consider alternatives such as ginger-root lozenges and Transderm-V, a patch that works to prevent motion sickness.

As for handing out anti-nausea pills, Lim says most ships sell them in the gift store, and some luxury lines offer them for free from the front desk.

E-mail your travel questions to

Karan Smith is a former Globe Travel editor. Special to The Globe and Mail

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