I just did this. VZW has an international data plan they can put you on. It's a pro-rated plan that gives you a certain amount of gigs for data over a 30 day period. It's $30 a month to add it and well worth it. Otherwise, if you don't plan on using internet on the ship or on land, then just flip on airplane mode and you're good to go. But I was able to post Facebook updates, check in on Foursquare, and check my bank account on the ship and in port, and it only cost me $30 extra on my phone and $10 on my girlfriend's phone.
Good to know! Thank you for your help everyone! Looks like airplane mode is the way to go unless I decide to buy a package. I wish I could be completely out of touch but that isn't an option at the moment!
when I went to spain I just turned off roaming data...used wifi hotspots to check in with family...and skype calls if i had to
That's what I did when I was in Turks & Caicos. The hotel had wifi everywhere, so listening to XM / Pandora / etc... was just about all I used the phone for. Everyone back home could wait the week to talk to me about whatever crap was going on.