11 Useful Things You Should Pack for Your Cruise

Taking a cruise continues to be a popular vacation activity. There’s something so appealing about riding the high seas on a luxury ship bound for exotic locales. There were approximately 26 million cruise passengers in 2017, so it doesn’t appear that the trend is going away any time soon. A cruise vacation can be quite different than other trips you’ve taken. 

Therefore, it requires a new approach to packing. To make sure you have the essentials, here are 11 useful things you should pack for your cruise.

Medications Plus Something for Motion Sickness

Of course, you’ll want to pack any prescription medications you take regularly. It’s also a good idea to grab things like over-the-counter pain relief, band-aids and buy spray. One thing many people don’t think about, however, is something for motion sickness

This is especially crucial if you’ve never been on a ship before. You definitely want to be prepared in the event that you’re prone to nausea. If you’re looking for a natural product that’s effective, you might want to consider the benefits of CBD oil.

Mix of Shoes

You know you’ll need an assortment of clothing items for your cruise, but don’t forget to pack shoes for every occasion as well. Unless you’re planning to lounge poolside the whole trip, cruising requires a lot of walking. 

Be sure to pack a good pair of sneakers. Flip flops or water shoes are essential for the beach. Dress shoes for the fancy nights out should be on your list, too, along with closed-toes shoes for activities.

Easy-to-Carry Bag or Tote

A tote bag, carryall or backpack is something that is a must-have for your cruise. You’ll need it to carry all your beach items for shore excursions. It can also come in handy when going on shopping trips at the port. This way, you won’t have to tote around multiple shopping sacks. Just toss them all in your tote bag.

Travel Size Toiletries

It’s well-known among regular cruisers that the cruise lines don’t always offer complimentary toiletries. If they do, it’s not likely you’ll have enough for your entire trip. Do yourself a favor and pack your own so you’re not stuck paying exorbitant prices at the onboard shop. Plus, travel-sized bottles will allow you to fit more of the other essentials you’ll need for your trip in your suitcase.

Various Types of Clothing

Cruises offer vast itineraries that can vary greatly depending upon your preferences and destination. With so many activities and locations to consider, you’ll want to be prepared with apparel for any situation. Flip flops and a bathing suit are things you should definitely have on hand if you’re going to a tropical location, and most cruise ships have multiple pools. 

Two bathing suits, at least, would be ideal in order to allow for the first to dry out. You’ll also want to include comfortable casual wear, formal attire, bathing suit coverup and sweater for chilly evenings. Mix and match items, as well as pieces you can layer, are always a good idea.

Accessories for Electronic Devices

We depend on our electronic devices these days. You might be planning to bring your cell phone, laptop, e-reader, and a camera. Don’t forget to also pack your chargers; you’ll need them. 

Other accessories like headphones and memory sticks are items you might also need. Staterooms on cruise ships tend to be short on electrical outlets, so a portable charger might also be a good idea. Some folks like to bring a power strip for additional outlets. Check with your cruise line to find out if this is permitted.

Passport or Birth Certificate

You’ll want to check with your cruise line to see which official paperwork you’ll need for your trip. A passport is probably necessary for international locales; however, it’s possible that your birth certificate could be acceptable if your cruise starts and ends at the same US port. You may also want to purchase cruise insurance to cover you in the event of a ship breakdown or other such issue.

Sunscreen and After-Sun Products

Sunscreen is probably a necessity even if you’re not visiting a tropical climate. If you are, it’s something you definitely don’t want to be without. As with most vacation and tourist spots, this type of item will cost far more on a cruise ship or at a port than you’d find it for at your local drug store. 

After-sun products are also helpful for soothing any sunburn you may encounter. It would be disappointing to miss out on the fun while you’re stuck in your cabin nursing a burn. Hats or visors can help to keep you comfortable in places that are particularly sunny, as well.


Something you may not have thought about is binoculars. This isn’t an item you would bring on the vast majority of vacations, but it can really maximize the lovely views from the ship deck. After all, you don’t want to miss a thing. Do you?

Wrinkle-Release Spray

Ironing while on vacation can be a real pain, so a convenience item like wrinkle-release spray is a smart travel supply for any trip. It’s especially useful when cruising because you won’t find an iron in your cabin for safety reasons. To stay sharp and look your best, be sure to add wrinkle spray to your packing list.

Organizational Supplies

Finally, staying in a cruise ship stateroom is much different than lounging in a hotel room. The rooms you’ll find on your cruise are far more compact than the average hotel room. In order to be comfortable throughout your stay, you may need to get a little creative when it comes to organization. Bring along extra hangers. 

You can’t always depend on the cruise line to supply enough. A shoe bag that hangs over the door is a space-saving and convenient way to store toiletries. Seasoned cruise travelers also recommend a laundry bag and special cubes to separate items in your suitcase. 

Hopefully, this list has been useful. Bringing these items when you pack for your cruise is a good start to truly enjoying your voyage.

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