I may not be an expert cruise-goer yet, but I slowly but surely plan on becoming one. As I prepare for my family vacation (yes, even when you graduate the stars somehow align and vacations work out) I have made a checklist of all the important cruise specifics. If you think I missed something crucial, comment below and let me know!
- Passport, or birth certificate. You can’t do much without it! While we’re on the subject… don’t forget your Drivers License either!
- Cash, credit card, debit card… although you think of a cruise as being completely paid for, you forget about the little expense that you need to have other forms of payment. Maybe you want to buy that cute pair of sunglasses a street vendor is offering… you’ll need cash. Off exploring a town and want to eat lunch, better have a card or cash! It’s better to be over prepared than under.
- Speaking of all this important stuff… have a wallet or purse to carry it in. You don’t want to be worried the whole cruise about misplacing one item.. keep it all together! And, also bring a pool bag/swim bag. Something that can get wet and that you will recognize as your own.
- SUN PROTECTION. Yes, even if you think you’re a tan goddess, you’ll still regret it if you don’t bring some sort of sunblock. My essentials for sun protection: athletic sunscreen, face sunscreen, tanning spray WITH SPF, chapstick WITH SPF and aloe vera, just in case.
- A hat. Or three. This year I will be packing a floppy hat, TCU cap and “cheap cap”. Depending on if I want to be stylish, if it’s game day… or if there’s a chance the hat might get lost… I’m prepared!
- The same motto goes for sunnies. I will bring a cute, but not overly expensive pair of shades… and a cheap pair of wayfers.
- Swimsuits. Plural. As in…you need more than one. Here’s where I am slightly excessive, but you don’t have to be! I prefer suits that I can mix and match… at least one suit where I can get some great tanning out of it (minimal tan lines) and at least one top that is more sporty… something I can wear around and not be worried that it will fall at any moment.
- Sundresses! These are your go-to on a cruise. Dress them down and use as a cover up. Dress it up and where to dinner. They are a crucial piece to any cruise bag.
- Big tanks. My personal favorite cover up. You’ll find me walking around the ship with my swimsuit, sunnies and a big tank. It’s the easiest thing to throw on and off. It’s also a great conversation starter!
- Shorts and summer tops. Don’t go overboard here. You might wear these out around town if you don’t plan on beaching it up, or maybe one night instead of sundress. But in my opinion, less is more… opt for the sundress when on the cruise… save these for your backyard BBQ back home.
- Shoes. Sandals to match your sundress. Flip flops for everything else. Done deal.
- ONE jacket or sweatshirt. You would be shocked how chilly it can get at night…especially if it rains.
- Fanny pack. You might feel like a sorority girl… but totally worth it. Throw it in your swim bag for easy access, or when you are walking around the ship and need to keep track of your camera and room key.
- Minimal toiletries. Deodorant, tooth brush/tooth paste, hair brush, sea salt spray, wand curler, mascara, bronzer and lip gloss. You don’t need anything else. Trust me.
- Electronics. Camera (memory card, batteries) and iPhone (charger). You won’t use your phone except for an alarm clock, maybe some music and as a camera. Not worth buying the minutes or data… DISCONNECT FROM THE WORLD.
- One book. One magazine. Make sure they are both something that can get wet. Left. Ruined. Etc. But, something that can entertain you as you relax on the ship at 8 am.
- Alcohol. Now shhhh, don’t tell anyone I told you this… but mouthwash bottles work great to sneak in liquor. Bring some crystal light packets… some vodka.. and always get a water bottle full of water on the ship… so much cheaper than ship boozing!
- A DAMN GOOD ATTITUDE. Be ready to have the time of your life with complete strangers.
AND PLEASE REMEMBER: Pack 2 bags.. normal suitcase and a bag of essentials for when you get on the boat (basically stuff to go to the pool). Sometimes it takes awhile for your bag to get to you!