Packing seems daunting, especially if you are a beginner cruiser knowing you can not run into the market if you remember or need something.
So, what else to do?
Don’t worry; all you need is an ultimate cruise packing checklist so you will not overpack your bag and know what you need to pack and what’s not.
So, without further ado, let’s dig into the cruise packing tips.
What to Pack For a Cruise? (Essentials)
The maritime expedition experience can only be enhanced if you have all the essentials onboard.
So, this handy cruise packing checklist will help you decide what to pack for any cruise; even a beginner could pack like a pro.
#1 Necessary Documents
Before packing any other essentials, first, collect all the necessary documents. I use a separate bag or pouch for all the cruise-required documents.
Passport/Visa: Cruise ships stop at different countries’ ports, and few countries only allow cruisers if they have a valid passport and visa. So don’t forget both of these.
Credit Cards: Before starting a sea voyage, load all the credit cards with enough funds. Visa and Mastercards are globally accepted payment gateways. Also, add some funds to your PayPal and Google Pay accounts. Use this small magnetic wallet to manage cards.
Boarding Pass: You should have a print of your boarding pass that you must show on embarkation day.
Cash: Sometimes, the credit card won’t work, so having some cash in your bag is obligatory. Check the cash bag.
Travel Insurance Docs: If you have travel insurance, carry all the important papers.
#2 Daytime Wear
While deciding what to pack for your cruise, you must initiate the process with the basics; your daytime wear is the most important thing.
You must know every cruise ship has its dress code.
However, daytime clothing is casual; you can wear anything from T-shirts, slacks, jeans, casual tops, and sundresses on many cruise ships.
Here you can check the 30 best women cruise outfits.
Recommended: Ninedaily Women’s Tunic Summer Short Sleeve Top
Recommended Maxi Dress: YESNO Women Casual Loose Bohemian Floral Dress
#3 Night Wear
The second most important thing to pack is your nightwear.
Yes, each cruise’s day and night wear dress codes are different. However, the cruise dress codes generally fall into 2 categories; casual and formal.
Remember to pack a jacket, as the weather can get windy at night, or cruise ships can turn up the conditioner even if you’re about to get a warm-weather cruise.
Recommended Night Dress: Hanes Women’s Wear Around Nightshirt
Shoes will play a critical part in enjoying your cruise journey. You can have a better and more comfortable experience with the right pair of shoes.
We are saying this because we were unaware of this fact and packed the wrong footwear.
For example, most cruise lines are grainy and rocky.
So, it’s good to pack a pair of ANLUKE water shoes for everyone in the family. We recommend that they are multipurpose shoes you can wear even while swimming or on the beach. Moreover, they also have an anti-slip sole and quick drying for convenience.
Even the cruises offer different toiletries, but you still have to pack your own hygienic toiletries to avoid skin issues.
Toothbrush/Toothpaste: Teeth cleaning is a regular habit of everyone, so you should pack 2 – 3 toothpaste and brushes.
Deodorant: Roll on or stick deodorant to stay fresh.
Shaving Supplies: For a fresh look on the cruise, you should pack Razor, shaving cream, and aftershave or moisturizer. A personal barber kit is a more convenient option too.
Skincare Essentials: Moisturizer, sunscreen, lip balm with SPF, and any special skincare products you prefer.
Cotton Swabs and Cotton Balls: These can be handy for various cleaning purposes.
Lip Bam: The lips often dry on a cruise due to less moisture, harsh sun rays, and salty water. That’s why to protect your lips, and it’s essential to use Lip Bam.
Travel-Sized Tissues: These can be useful for various situations.
Lotions: To protect your skin and eliminate dryness of your skin, you should pack a lotion bottle.
Hair Care Products: Hairbrush, comb, hair ties, and any styling products you use. Check Recommendations
Feminine Hygiene Products: Tampons, pads, or any other necessary products.
#6 Packing Cubes
Your journey on the cruise packing list must start with the packing cubes.
These are the lifesavers for any cruiser or an active traveller. With it, you can keep your clothing organized.
The VEKEN Packing Cubes are best because they have enough folders to make your clothes wrinkle-free.
#7 Refillable Water Bottle
A refillable water bottle is a must have item for your cruise packing list.
These bottles come in handy sizes and are great for refilling water during beverage stations. On the contrary also helpful for shore excursions.
The one we got was MILTON 32 oz Large Water Bottle. Indeed, it was the best decision, where a carry strap and comfortable grip made it more handy and easier to carry.
#8 Over-the-door Organizer
If you love to keep your things organized and in place “over the door” organizer is something you must need to pack for your trip.
Fixwal 2 Pack Over The Door Organizer is best in this regard. It has 5 large pockets that are more than enough to carry our baby’s essentials.
Among all, it is a high-quality and large-capacity storage organizer.
#9 First Aid Kit
One of the best packing tips we can give you is a first aid kit.
You should pack all the prescribed medicines and the over-the-counter medications. Although medication facilities will be available onboard, keeping your personalized first aid kit in your luggage will still be a good idea, especially if you are an adventure seeker.
It doesn’t matter whether you made your own DIY first aid kit or buy from Amazon for less than $20.
#10 Magnets With Hooks
You will no longer need to worry about the space in your stateroom if you have magnetic hooks.
Neosmuk Magnetic Hooks are super robust, sturdy and strong enough to carry heavy items. These hooks are helpful even to hang bulky items like coats or jackets.
Having magnetic hooks in your luggage means optimizing your storage space.
#11 Beach Bag Or Backpack
A lightweight and quality beach bag is essential to hold the little essentials on the go.
For example, sunscreen, water bottle, lotion, lipstick, towels or other accessories.
You can use SHYLERO Beach Bag for this purpose. It is a sturdy pool bag that can hold up to 30 pounds. With that, it has a waterproof interior and is roomy enough to place plenty of your essentials securely.
There is a blazing sun on a cruise, so you should wear hats to protect your head and hair.
Hats take up a lot of space, so you can wear them on embarkation day instead of packing. Or you can also use adjustable hats that you easy to pack.
Recommendations: FURTALK Women Sun Straw Hat
#13 Noise-cancelling Headphones
Do you face difficulty in sleeping or prefer sleeping in a peaceful environment?
If so, you must pack noise-cancelling headphones. However, some passengers would love to listen to a blissful slummer around. Conversely, some still prefer a peaceful sleep after a long hectic day.
Wear the noise-canceling headphones and enjoy the beautiful view of the sea. You can also use the headphones on the moonlit deck; this gives a next-level experience.
So, in this regard, we have been actively using Sony wireless headphones. They have 100% strong bass to reduce noise up to 90%.
#14 Beach Towels
Casually, beach or pool towels are provided by the many cruise lines, then why pack?
Well, if you lose a beach towel during cruising, you must pay a fee instead. Furthermore, you can’t take it with you and can not quickly dry. So, they are not an excellent option if you have 2 beach days in a row.
For these reasons, we prefer owning soft linen towels that are skin-friendly.
If your cruise destination has cold weather like Alaska, you must pack a jacket.
Wait? Is it lighter enough to make your luggage easier to carry?
That’s why your go-to choice will be lightweight jackets for both men and women. These are water-repellent and windproof jackets to get a nice warm feel.
Recommendation For Females: Rokka&Rolla Women’s Lightweight Jacket Coat
Recommendation For Males: Rokka&Rolla Men’s Lightweight Jacket
A night light must be in your luggage so that once you wake up during the night, the lights automatically turn on.
It is also a safety feature; the motion sensor cruise cabin lights are plentiful. Moreover, it can be pointed in any direction due to its 360-degree rotating capability.
The size of this light is also compact, making it easy to pack.
The use of sunglasses turns out to be an awesome choice especially if your eyes are really sensitive to the sun.
Some may prefer having a hat for these reasons or can buy polarized sunglasses – it’s totally up to you. Later you can also use these glasses to add a touch of glamour to your outfit.
A cruise ship lanyard is good to have if you are worried to lose your cruise ID.
This detachable lanyard has the solution. It is made from high-quality and sturdy plastic and the seal will ensure your essentials remain dust and waterproof.
With that, it also had 3 attachments for more flexibility in carrying; a quick-release loop, a metal hook for easy clip and a flexible loop for extra protection.
So, place it around the next and be worry free and keep your keys and cards close to hand.
Recommended: Cruise Lanyard
#19 Cruise Luggage Tag Holder
We all know that each cruise ship has a rule to put a luggage tag on your bag. These tags will be folded and then stapled to it.
However, you never know how many times you have to staple or tape them.
In case cruise luggage tag holders are a valuable addition to the cruise packing list. These are the kind of reusable plastic covers in which you can place your luggage tag.
So, save yourself from the hassle of dealing with that flimsy paper and facilitate your cruising experience with them.
#20 Baby Powder
Nobody forgets to pack baby powder if they are about to cruise with the baby.
However, here the purpose isn’t for the babies.
You must add baby powder while packing, even if you don’t have a baby. It’s because baby powder is one of the best ways to get all the sand out of your body.
So, more specifically, on a cruise, you may not get rid of sand even after the shower. That’s why it’s always good to use baby powder hack instead.
#21 Aloe Vera Gel
Another hack for a healthy cruise experience is to pack aloe vera gel.
It’s hard to prevent yourself from sunburn during cruising, and Aloe vera gel acts as a quick remedy to get rid of it.
However, you can also get the Aloe vera gel on board, but it will be expensive as well.
Pro Tip: The aloe vera must be non-sticky for quick healing.
#22 Wrinkle Release Spray
Most cruise lines don’t allow iron, and onboard laundry can be expensive.
In that wrinkle release, the spray is all you need.
Despite how well you pack, your clothes can still get wrinkled, and you can not wear them, especially on formal nights. It will help your clothes to get crease free and enjoy the evening attire.
So, you must pack the Downy wrinkle release spray to keep yourself manageable.
Related Post: Does Royal Caribbean Have Irons?
#23 Waterproof Phone Case
Going to the pool deck, beach or sea is pretty obvious while cruising.
What if your phone is out of pocket and you tumble into water? That will be scary.
That’s why a waterproof phone case is an essential item to pack in luggage. And Hiearchool will greatly serve the purpose in this regard. This bag also has high transparency so that you can even get a crystal clear photo even under water.
So, by spending little, you can save yourself from subsequent experiences.
#24 Portable Charger
You can not end up having your phone battery at null during vacation. And instead of a power strip, a portable charger is always a good idea.
However, we recommend the Anker Portable Power Bank. It has a 10000 mah battery and can charge your iPhone up to twice.
So, nobody would have enough time to go back towards the stateroom and wait longer to charge the devices. That’s why you must consider packing a portable charger.
What You Don’t Need to Pack?
Since we had talked about what you need to pack while cruising. And to make your cruising experience easier, here we also have an ultimate list of what you don’t pack.
- Jewellery and valuables – They are not only unnecessary, but you also carry the risk of losing if do so.
- Limit your beauty routine to the essentials only and don’t overpack with extra toiletries.
- You don’t need to carry multiple jeans as they are heavy and get more space in luggage.
- Avoid bulky towels to save space.
- Pack one book only if you are a reading enthusiast; otherwise, prefer Kindle or any other digital source.
- A pillow is definitely unnecessary to pack until you need a medicated one.
Quick Takeaways from Cruise Packing Checklist
In conclusion, cruising is an exquisite experience, and you can’t even destroy it with unnecessary packaging. As in result, a huge part of your day will be spent taking care of it.
So, all you need is to keep your luggage minimal, but it doesn’t mean avoiding the necessities. That’s why we have stated the ultimate cruise packing checklist with our top recommendations.
Have you got any other recommendations to add to the list?
Comment below; we would love to hear about your experiences.
I am Zoe Grace, a passionate enthusiast of cruise ships. With a decade of firsthand experience in the cruising industry, I have developed a deep understanding of the intricacies and wonders that these majestic vessels hold.
Now, I am excited to embark on a new journey as an author, sharing my knowledge and insights with readers who share my fascination for the world of cruising.
Join me as we explore the captivating world of cruise ships together.