Packing For a Cruise

Cruises are probably the most difficult trips to pack for. In most cases, you have to fly to the port that you are leaving from, so you have to pack lightly to get all your stuff on the plane. Plus, your state room on the ship is probably going to be the size of your bathroom at home.

Putting size to the side, you have to bring formal wear on a cruise. Well, maybe you don’t HAVE to, per say, but you do if you want to dine in the formal dining room on certain nights – especially if you choose a seven day cruise or longer.

Then, whether you’re taking a December cruise to Alaska or a July cruise to Bermuda, you’ll want to bring enough bathing suits for every day on the ship (hot tubs are usually a thing).

The same goes for the amount of outfits you bring. You’re not going to have a chance to do laundry.

Given all of this, here is the list I use for a seven day warm weather cruise. Note that this is based on my experiences with several Royal Caribbean cruises and one Disney cruise. Feel free to download it (link below) and adjust it accordingly.

If you’re looking for something new to bring, consider this awesome t-shirt.

Packing for a 7-Day Cruise

Category Item #
Clothing Casual Top 7
Clothing Casual Bottom 7
Clothing Exercise Gear 2 to 3
Clothing Semi-Formal 2
Clothing Formal 2
Clothing PJs No more than 7
Clothing Underwear 10 to 12
Clothing Bathing Suit 3 to 5
Clothing “Cover Up” 1
Shoes Casual 2
Shoes Semi-Formal 1
Shoes Formal 1
Shoes Flip-Flops 1
Shoes Sneakers 1
Accessories Makeup As little as possible
Accessories Jewlery As little as possible
Accessories Hair As little as possible
Accessories Shower Only what you wouldn’t find in a hotel
Accessories Purse 1 Small – you won’t need to carry much
Accessories Sunglasses You can buy sunscreen on the ship
Other Leisure Books 2
Other Laptop Unnecessary unless you will use it w/o wifi
Other Headphones 1
Other Money Remember that purchases made on the ship will go straight to your account (no cash or card accepted)
Other iPod if your music isn’t on your phone
Other Camera/GoPro Unless your phone is your camera
Other Texting App if you don’t have an iphone and don’t have wifi

Things to absolutely not bring:

  1. Towels – unnecessary and space consuming. Trust me, they have plenty (even for when you leave the ship and go to the beach).
  2. The obvious – anything dangerous or flammable. You will walk through a metal detector every time you enter or leave the ship.
  3. Anything valuable – when you board the ship, you hand over your luggage and it is delivered to your door. Unless you overly trust the other guests, I wouldn’t recommend, say, leaving your diamond earrings in an outside pocket.
  4. Food – there is absolutely no reason to bring any food with you. Obviously, if you have any medication or supplements that you need with you, add those to your list. The ship will meet any dietary need you may possibly have. Their food supply is incredible.
  5. Your Hawaiian shirt – Just kidding. Kind of. This is the one time where it might be acceptable.


As always, contact me if you have any questions by visiting the “About” page!


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