We have curated a list of the best packing tips from top travel agents. At the bottom of the post, we have provided a checklist that you can print and use.
Helpful Packing Tricks and Tips from Experienced Cruisers
Best way to pack for your cruise is using the “roll-up” method: Fold your t-shirts, polo like shirts, long pants and blouses when you can, in half and then roll them tightly. Place the rolled up clothes in the bottom of your luggage and layer them. This will give you a flat area to add your *shoes, belts, undergarments, socks and other loose items.
*Shoes: Stuff your shoes with loose items.
Dress Clothes for Women & Men-wrap your dresses / blouses, dress slacks / collared button down shirts in the plastic-like bags you get your dry cleaning delivered in and fold over once if putting these items in your suitcases. I put two items in each bag. The plastic prevents the clothes from getting wrinkled.
If using luggage that is designed for hanger types clothes, use the plastic bag method as well.
Travel irons and curling irons are not allowed onboard! Cabin stewards can confiscate them!
Always pack a small hand-carry bag with your toiletries, prescription medicine, and bathing suit in case your luggage isn’t delivered until later in the evening. Use clear Ziploc bags to store your meds, and other like toiletries in. Cruise lines supply shampoo and soap but you may want to bring your own kind-use the TSA standards for liquids.[box] CLICK HERE to subscribe to CruiseSource Blog Posts for FREE [/box]
Electronic plugs and cords: wrap your electronic cords and plugs with attached cords, tightly secured with rubber bands. If you don’t need them right away, stuff them in your shoes! Otherwise, place them in a Ziploc bag and put them in your carryon luggage.[fblike]
Be sure to pack ‘Bonine’ over – the –counter in case of motion sickness – works great. Also-SeaBands work great in conjunction with Bonine. SeaBands are located in the same area as Bonine.
If bringing your own Bottled Waters (no more than 6-16 oz’s): Put them in the luggage you are checking to be delivered to your room.
Surge Protector / Extension Cord – there are not enough outlets in your cabin! Please make sure the “gauge” (thickness of the electrical cord part) is 14 or 12. CPAP or BiPAP Users: Ask your travel agent (me I hope!) to inform the cruise line that you are a CPAP / BiPAP user and they will usually provide distilled water for your machine.
1. Day of Cruise-arrive early so you can enjoy the lunch buffet. You will have time to explore the layout of the ship and make your reservations in the SPA. Getting there early also minimizes the chances of missing that cruise.
2. For issues onboard that requires a trip to the Front Desk…go during off hours to avoid waiting in long lines.
3. Always take a carry piece of luggage with you on day of embarkation. I tell my clients to learn from MY mistake! When you get to the pier on the day of departure, you will check your luggage in with the porters and not see them until usually well after the ship as set sailed. You may want or need a change of clothes before dinner or just to freshen up after traveling all day. Also, please remember to put your meds in your carryon; DO NOT put them in your checked luggage.
4. Luggage Tags-let’s face it…the tags you can print off your printer are paper thin and can easily come off your bags. Do what I do-bring a black “sharpie” pen with you and write your cabin number and name on the free tags you can get from the pier porters-they are rugged and strong-takes 2 minutes.
5. The importance of Travel Insurance. Not only for cancellation protection – but for the security and peace of mind it provides. No one has ever called and voiced their regret on making the affordable insurance purchase. To the contrary – many people do regret not having the insurance, when something unfortunate occurs.
6). Use the plentiful hand-sanitizers stationed all over the ship AND wash your hands with soap & hot water-frequently! Norovirus is the common stomach flu and most common cause of acute gastroenteritis in the United States. This is not a cruise line illness. Anyone can get it at anytime, anywhere; another great reason why Travel Insurance is so important.
7. Take a Post-it-Notes pad to leave messages for your room steward. Use them to write a note to one of your friends or family members staying in another cabin to let them know where to meet you or where they can find you.
8. Check with your cell phone provider before you cruise to see if they can offer you special roaming rates if you plan on or have to have your cell phone on. Put your cell phone in “Airplane” mode if you have that ability as soon as the ship leaves the port.
If you have additional tips please add them in the comments!