Cruising is becoming more popular with each passing year. In fact, the cruising industry grew an astonishing 77% over the past decade and is now worth $117 billion! And it’s easy to see why. We’ve got you covered on what cruise accessories to pack for your vacation at sea.
Cruises give passengers everything they need for a relaxing vacation in one convenient location. There is a plethora of food and activity options and well-planned shore excursions that let travelers get a taste of different islands or cities.
All you have to do is make sure you pack the right cruise accessories, and your vacation is sure to go off without a hitch! Don’t know where to start? Keep reading to discover 20+ items to include in your packing list.
1. Luggage Tag Holders
After you book your trip, the cruise line will email you an e-tag. This gets attached to your luggage and tells employees which cabin you’re staying in to ensure your bags get delivered to the right room.
You should take a look at these cruise line dedicated luggage tags.
Many cruise lines suggest that you staple your e-tag onto your luggage. However, suitcases go through a lot before they make it to your room, so there’s always a chance that your e-tag could rip off.
To avoid this, get a clear luggage tag holder for each bag. Just slip the e-tag inside to ensure your luggage makes it to your room safe and sound.
2. Seasickness Relief
Is this your first cruise? If so, you’ll want to bring some type of seasickness relief. Dramamine is perhaps the most common type of medication. But there are also motion sickness wrist bands that can help.
Even if you’ve been on cruises before, it’s always a good idea to pack some seasickness relief just in case the water is a little extra choppy. The last thing you want is to spend your entire vacation feeling nauseous.
3. Collapsible Tote Bag
A collapsible tote bag is one of the most important items to bring with you. You can use it as a beach bag, pool bag, laundry bag, or even a shopping bag.
We like this tote bag which is perfect during a port of call.
Getting a collapsible bag will help you save precious space in your suitcase. Just make sure you find one that is sturdy enough to carry everything you may need for a day on the beach, like a towel, cover-up, book, sunscreen, and water bottle.
4. Reusable Water Bottle
It’s important to stay hydrated when you spend your days under a hot sun. Instead of looking for plastic water bottles every day, get a reusable water bottle.
Not only are they better for the environment, but they’re also more convenient. Your cruise ship will fill up your bottle for free throughout your trip, so you’ll always have a supply of freshwater.
5. Travel Mug
Do you need a few cups of coffee to start your morning? While buffets have free coffee, cabins usually don’t. This leaves many guests trying to bring their coffee cup back to their room without spilling it all over their hand.
There are so many funny cruise mugs right here.
A travel mug makes this much easier. You can enjoy a hot cup of coffee in your room or carry it with you as you go about your morning activities.
6. Waterproof Phone Pouch
The average person checks their phone 47 times a day. While you may want to detox from technology a bit on your vacation, you’ll still likely want to snap some pictures and stay updated on showtimes and port cancellations by checking your cruise line’s app.
The best way to keep your phone on you and safe from water is to keep it in a waterproof phone pouch. There’s a lanyard attached, so you can keep it around your neck and use it while you’re relaxing in the pool or on the beach.
7. Underwater Camera
A waterproof phone pouch is great if you’re going to be near the beach or just in shallow water. But if you plan on going scuba diving or snorkeling, you won’t want to risk damaging or losing your phone.
Instead, consider bringing an underwater camera to take pictures and video of your amazing adventures.
8. Phone Case Wallet
Who wants to worry about keeping track of everything while on vacation? Instead of keeping loose credit cards in your pockets or carrying a heavy purse with you, consider getting a phone case wallet.
There are a few different styles to choose from, but each one turns your phone into a small wallet, so you can keep your phone, cash, and credit cards all in one place.
9. Power Strip
Cruise cabins typically don’t have many outlets. So, if you have quite a few electronics or heated hair styling tools, you’ll want to bring a power strip with you.
This power strip adapter is one of the best we’ve found which includes USB outlets. It is specifically for cruise ships.
To save room, consider getting a plug-in power adaptor that adds additional plugs without taking up room on the counter or floor. Just make sure whatever power strip or power adaptor you’re using doesn’t double as a surge protector. These are a fire hazard on cruise ships and will be confiscated if an employee sees it.
10. Over-the-Door Shoe Organizer
Cabins on cruise ships are notorious for being small. This makes it really difficult to stay organized.
However, an over-the-door shoe organizer can be a huge help. You can use it to store shoes, toiletries, and rolled-up clothes. There likely won’t be room for all of your clothes, but putting your outfit for the next day in one of the pouches will save you a lot of time and hassle in the morning.
11. Packing Cubes
One major downside of bringing an over-the-door shoe organizer is that it takes up a lot of room in your suitcase, especially with many cruise accessories. If you don’t have the extra space to spare, consider getting packing cubes instead.
You can choose to organize your clothes by type (i.e. shirts in one cube and pants in another) or pack entire outfits together. Whichever way you choose, you’ll be able to stay organized, and you won’t have to worry about digging through your suitcase looking for one particular item.
12. Hanging Toiletry Bag
While packing cubes are great for storing toiletries, a hanging toiletry bag is the better solution. They are designed to keep all your toiletries organized within the bag and can get hung over the bathroom door to save on counter space.
13. Wrinkle-Release Spray
When you’re trying to fit so much in your suitcase, clothes are bound to get wrinkled. But most cruise lines don’t have an iron and ironing board in their cabins.
A quick and easy solution is to pack wrinkle-release spray. It comes in a small bottle, so it’s easy to fit in your suitcase and all you have to do is hang your clothes up and spray them. The wrinkles will be gone in about 20 minutes!
When you check-in at the cruise ship, you’ll be given a card. This is used for almost everything on the ship, including unlocking your door, ordering drinks, and playing in the casino.
So, it can get annoying to have to search for your card every time you want to do something. Instead, consider bringing a cruise lanyard, so you can keep your card easily accessible at all times.
15. Light Jacket
Right now, you may be laughing at the idea of bringing a jacket as part of your cruise accessories. After all, you’re probably going on a cruise to enjoy warm and sunny weather. However, even when you’re cruising to the hottest destinations, you may want a light jacket.
There tends to be a lot of wind when the ship is moving, so things can get a little cold, especially during the evenings. You may also find that the cruise ship is a little too generous with the air conditioning and end up shivering during dinner or while watching a show.
16. Snorkel Gear
Snorkeling is one of the most common and most exciting shore excursions offered on cruise ships. However, renting your snorkel gear means using the same mouthpiece that hundreds of other tourists have used before you.
Check out this full-faced snorkel mask by clicking here.
Instead, consider bringing your own mask and snorkel. This could also save you money if the cost of renting gear isn’t included in your excursion price and helps ensure that you get a quality mask that fits your face. Plus, snorkeling gear is rather small and easy to fit in your suitcase.
17. Sandless Beach Mat
Lounging on the beach is all fun and games until you realize that you and your towel are covered in sand. You’ll then likely end up tracking sand back to your room and making a real mess!
An easy way to avoid this is by getting a sandless beach mat. Sand sifts through small holes in the mat or fabric, so you can relax without worrying about brushing sand off.
It should come as no surprise that sunscreen is a must on your vacation. It only takes 10-20 minutes to get burned, so you should always apply sunscreen before you leave your cabin.
19. Aloe Vera
Even the most conscious people can end up getting burned. All it takes is forgetting to reapply sunscreen one time after a dip in the pool.
If you do end up getting a sunburn, the last thing you’ll want to do is look for aloe vera on your ship and pay the ridiculously high price that they’re charging. By bringing a small bottle with you, you can save a lot of time and stress and get relief as soon as possible.
20. Phone Camera Lenses
Are you trying to get those Instagram-worth vacation pics? While most smartphones have nice cameras, you may want to invest in some phone camera lenses to take things to the next level.
These are very small and easy to use. All you have to do is snap one over your phone’s camera to get better close-ups or landscape shots. They even have clip-on lights to take the best selfies.
21. Beach Towel Clip
The pool is one of the most popular places to relax on a cruise ship. However, this also means that you’ll want to get there early and save your spot.
Unfortunately, it can get quite windy on cruises and your towel may blow right off your lounge chair while you’re taking a refreshing swim. By the time you get out, somebody will have likely taken your chair.
Here’s the 8-pack of clips most people purchase for their cruise. Can also be used for other things on the cruise ship, one of those very handy cruise accessories!
Beach towel clips are an affordable and effective solution. As the name suggests, you can use these to clip your beach towel to your chair and prevent it from flying off. Plus, it makes your chair easier to spot!
22. Waterside Safe
Do you like to bring your phone, wallet, and e-reader to the pool and beach? With so many people around, you may not want to leave these things unattended. If the whole family wants to jump in the pool, you may feel like you need to stay behind to watch everyone’s valuables.
However, a waterside safe is a better solution. It locks around your lounge chair, making it harder to steal. For extra safety, consider keeping it in an inconspicuous location, such as the bottom of your lounge chair, and draping a towel over it.
The best part of vacation is getting to catch up on your sleep. But if your room just so happens to be near a nightclub or next to some loud neighbors, you may have trouble sleeping. That’s why earplugs are a must. They’re incredibly small and affordable, so there’s really no downside to packing them.
Who doesn’t love a nice glass of wine while on vacation? Unfortunately, cruises charge a lot for alcohol.
A great way to save money is to bring a bottle of wine (and a corkscrew) with you. Just be sure to check the cruise line’s rules first. Many don’t allow outside alcohol or have a limit on how much you can bring with you.
Of course, if like to have a few drinks with dinner and when relaxing by the pool, you’ll want to get the drink package to save money.
Best Cruise Accessories and Gadgets to Pack
Don’t board your ship unprepared! Instead, follow the guide above to ensure you pack all the necessary cruise accessories and gadgets.
Not sure what outfits you should pack? Then check out this guide to learn what to wear on a cruise.