6 Unexpected Things People Forget to Pack for a Cruise

In honor of it being 2 years since I took my last cruise to Bahamas, St. Maarten, St. Thomas, & Puerto Rico I wanted to share a few items that may be unexpected, but definitely necessary to pack for a cruise.

1. Small Bills ($1, $5, $10)

For some people this may be obvious, but for new travelers this may not be so obvious. It is important to have small bills with you while on a cruise because the cruise ports ALWAYS have cute little souvenir shops and a lot of them do not accept credit cards or large bills. So, be sure to bring small bills.

2. Insulated Tumbler


This is my favorite tip. I bring my tumbler  on every single cruise. Why? Well the guava orange passion fruit juice they serve on cruises is my favorite juice ever, and having my tumbler with me means that on those fun days at sea while I’m laying out on the serenity deck in those comfy sun chairs I can have my juice with me while also keeping it cold. It also lets me take my drinks with me anywhere on the cruise ship without spilling it.

3. Birth Certificate

Going on a cruise tomorrow, but your passport hasn’t yet arrived? No problem! If you’re cruise is departing from and returning to the United States then a birth certificate, along with a state issued I.D., is proper identification.

4. Clothing for formal night/Captain’s night

I’m a foodie, so one of my favorite things about cruises is literally unlimited 24 hour food. Some cruise lines even have 24 hour pizza bars. Is that not the most beautiful thing you’ve ever heard?!? There are also dinner dining rooms where dinner is served nightly, while most nights are casual attire, the Captain’s Night/Formal Night does have an elegant dress code. For women this could be a cocktail dress, skirt with a blouse, evening gown etc. & for men this could be as simple as dress pants and a shirt/tie or as fancy as a full suit.

5. Jacket or Sweater

Yes, even if you are going on a cruise to the Caribbean you STILL need to bring a jacket or sweater with you. Sometimes it gets a little chilly at sea during the evening, but most importantly the dining rooms are COLD. The air conditioning is always blasting, and a jacket will make it more comfortable.

6. Lanyard


Your sail and sign card will be needed and used multiple times throughout the day. You need it to board the ship, to leave the ship while at the ports, to enter your room, shopping, buying drinks, casino, and for many other things. So it is necessary to keep it on you at all times. I like to wear mine on a lanyard around my neck that way I always have it with me and its easy to access.

6 unexpected things people forget to pack for a cruise

Have you been on a cruise? If so, what’s your favorite cruise line? Don’t forget to share, pin, comment, and tweet!

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Hi! I'm Diam, a 24 year old Ohio native who lives in Florida and is obsessed with all things travel! I've explored 30 states, 10 countries and many many islands all while knocking big adventures off of my bucket list! I hope to inspire you to start searching for travel deals (theres tons) & remember, you don't have to be rich to travel!

15 thoughts on “6 Unexpected Things People Forget to Pack for a Cruise

  1. Pinned! I had no idea you could travel on a cruise with your birth certificate. I’ll keep that in mind. We totally forgot about the Capt.’s Night. I had to pull pieces together for a makeshift formal outfit. Such a fail!


  2. These are super helpful tips! I’ve never been on a cruise, but it’s on my bucket list. I’ll keep these things in mind when I finally cross it off my list! 😀


  3. I’ve been on several cruises and can completely vouch for all of these things! So useful and important to remember 🙂


  4. Wow, I’ve never been on a cruise but you made me wanna go tomorrow. Love the idea of bringing clothing for formal evenings. I love dressing for cocktails/dinner parties etc so I’d enjoy it.


  5. I’m so happy that I scrolled through your post! We are planning to go on our first ever cruise tour this summer, and I totally needed this list! Thank you so much for sharing 🙂


  6. I went on a Disney Cruise last October. It was absolutely amazing – never felt so like a kid but I loved it.Plus we got to visit so many amazing places!


  7. This was so super helpful. Going on my first cruise next month wasn’t sure what to bring. The pictures and unexpected things to bring were great.


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