Top 10 Packing Tips for Cruisers

Here are some “must have” cruise packing tips to make your holiday more enjoyable.

1.  The first day

For the first day of your cruise, you will not have access to your checked bags until later that evening.  Pack your carry on with not only your travel documents, but also with a bathing suit, change of clothes, evening shoes and anything thing else that you may need.  This way you are ready to explore the ship the first day in comfort.

 2.  On board attire 

Slacks, shorts, t-shirts, capris, casual shirts, sun dresses.  These will be perfect for both indoor and outdoor during the day.  .

 3.  Pool wear

Be sure to pack 2 swim suits (so you won’t need to put on a wet suit), casual shoes, flip flops, sandals, and running shoes.  Also have a cover-up, t-shirt and shorts for entrance into the buffet.

 4.  On-board fitness centre

Bring some extra socks, shorts and t-shirts for those work outs that can’t be missed.  It is always so hard to get back into the routine if missed during your holiday.

 5.  Dress for Dinner

A guide to the schedule in the Dining Room.

Cruise Length Formal Smart Casual Casual
3-4 nights     1      0 Remaining
   5 nights     1      1 3
6-7 nights     2      1 Remaining
8-11 nights     2      2 Remaining
   12 nights +     3      3 Remaining

Dress Guideline for these nights;

Casual:  Sundresses or pants/capris for women, collared shirts and slacks for men.

Smart Casual:  Dresses or pants suits for women, jacket and ties and slacks for men.

Formal:  Cocktail dresses or elegant pant suit for women, suit and tie or tuxedo for men.

Remember, t-shirts, shirts and covered bathing suites are not appropriate attire in the dining rooms for dinner.  These are considered casual dress and will be appropriate in the buffet restaurants.  Smart Casual wear will be needed for any Specialty Restaurant.

The above is only a guide.  I would be happy to confirm the specifics for the cruise you are holidaying with.

6.  On shore

When going ashore be sure to pack sturdy, comfortable walking shoes.  Don’t forget your hat and sunscreen to protect yourself from the sun.  The cruise line always supplies the pool towels which can usually be taken on shore for those water based shore excursions.  So you won’t need to pack you beach towel (a great space saver).  When going ashore in Europe you will wish to know about possible restrictions.  Men and women must have their shoulders and knees covered.  So pack a scarf, shawl or sarong to put over your shoulders if needed.  You will need to dress conservatively to receive access to churches, cathedrals and museums.  And for those Northern itineraries you will need some warmer attire.  Pack mittens, sweater, warm hat, and a jacket with a wind break outer shell.  A collapsible umbrella will come in handy for Alaska and Europe as well.

7.  Jewelry

I would suggest you leave your valuable jewelry at home.  You are wishing to blend in rather than stand out in the crowd.  Thieves are always looking for these opportunities.  If you absolutely must bring your favourite necklace and accessories of value be sure to lock them in the purser’s safe.  And always pack them in your carry on and not in your checked bags.

8.  Medication

If travelling with medications be sure to have them in their original containers with their labels.  If you will only need a portion of these medications, speak with your pharmacist to see if you could get them in smaller containers.  Always carry your medications in your carry-on bag.  Especially if you can’t do without them during your holiday.

9.  Save space

* Shoes take up weight in your suitcase.  Wear your heaviest pair to allow you to get that outfit you can’t leave home without in your case.

* Bring along an extra light weight, empty bag for those extra souvenirs that you picked up in your travels.

* Roll your clothes instead of folding.  You will be surprised how much more you will fit in that bag!

* See what can be packed inside another item.  Socks inside shoes, belt inside the collar of a dress shirt.

* When thinking about your outfits be sure you can mix and match.  This will allow you to turn them from 2 outfits to 3 or 4.

10.  Little extra must haves

Your camera is needed to catch those special moments.  Be sure you have an extra memory card.  Bring along binoculars to bring those sights that much closer.  It is not often thought of but perfect to see the baby seals up close.  If you will be spending any time by the pool be sure to bring your favourite author along.  Either on your tablet or Kobo to save that precious space.  If reading isn’t your thing then a couple of puzzle books on your tablet with them pre-loaded.

Connect with me and I’ll take the stress out of planning your next cruise adventure. I will help you experience the best of each destination, discover new cultures, all the while enjoying great food, and making new lifelong friends.