Cruising Essentials

There are many great things about cruising, but interestingly, one thing not mentioned very often in a cruise brochure is the fact you can usually take as much luggage as you like – if your cruise does not include flights. I’m a big over-packer, I admit it, but when there’s no limit in place, it doesn’t hurt to take an extra pair of shoes…or 5. I would class them as essentials, whether I wear them or not! 😉

So, what else is essential when cruising? Well, let’s have a look…


It’s probably obvious, but you’d be surprised how many people forget to pack a swimsuit – I met 2 people on my last cruise that forgot. Packing fashionable swimwear for your cruise is important. All cruise ships have a pool area, and many of them offer water sports or snorkelling as part of daytrips in regions such as the Caribbean and South Pacific. Therefore, it really is a good idea to pack a swimming costume of some sort. They can easily be poked into a small space in your suitcase, or if you’re travelling with kids, pack their swimwear in your hand luggage – as soon as you board, they can jump in the swimming pool and you can relax with a cocktail.

Travel adapter and extension lead

A lot of people forget this one, but not all ships have the same electrical outlets as what you’re used to at home. I always pack an adaptor, unless I am travelling with P&O Cruises or Saga – they have U.K. outlets in their cabins. You can usually buy them onboard, or rent them, but it’s always best to have your own.

Most cabins still only have one or two power outlets, so it’s also wise to pack a short extension cable – my friend and I always pack one when we travel because we have so many electrical items to charge. This way, we can both charge our phones, iPods or e-readers at the same time.


All cruise ships have a medical centre onboard, but it is still wise to take the basics with you. The last thing you want is to feel a little under the weather with flu and then spend time and money seeing the onboard doctor for simple things you could have packed, such as paracetamol and decongestants.

Remember to take seasickness pills too. Even if you have never been seasick before, it is still wise to take them. Changes in your body, or bad weather could mean you end up needing to take them. I have been on 47 cruises and been seasick once, but I still always take a packet with me on every cruise.

Sun Cream AND After Sun

Sun cream and after sun are vital. The sun is much stronger at sea, but you often don’t realise it until it is too late and you’re burned to a crisp. Always pack sun cream and a bottle of after sun. I don’t specifically use after sun myself, but I do use an aloe based moisturiser, which works in the same way. Even if you are not visiting a destination that is hot and sunny, you could still pack sun cream as it will also protect your skin in cold weather.

I could go on and on with a wide variety of other essential items, but if you’re a cruise-a-holic like me, you probably already know about them!

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