The Best Cruise Packing List to Help You Pack Fast!

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Taking your family on a cruise can be magical and so much fun. Cruises offer so many things to do in one spot from water slides, fabulous food, and plenty of family activities for all ages no wonder why we include it on our 10 best vacations for kids! The hardest thing about going is knowing what to pack for your cruise! We have you covered with this cruise packing list guide. 

Best Cruise Packing List

Cruise Packing List

When creating your cruise packing list you should think about it in three categories. First would be things you need to get to your cruise, things you need on the cruise ship, and what you will need at each port call. 

When packing for a cruise, the one thing you don’t want to do is overpack! 

There is no need to have huge suitcases because the cabins do not have a lot of room to store them. To help give you more room in your suitcase I suggest following this cruise packing list. 


You will not need more than one outfit per day. You may want to consider adding in 2-3 extra clothing items for kids because they are prone to spills and accidents. Don’t forget to add the following clothing items:

  • Underwear
  • bathing suits
  • Beach cover ups
  • Casual wear
  • pajamas


Since cruise ships are so large walkie talkies will help you keep up with your family while on the ship. 

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This allows you to split up as a family and do separate things, but also be able to communicate with one another if you need to change plans or meet up. 

Clorox Wipes/ Hand sanitizer

Wiping everything down once you arrive in your room is never a bad idea. 

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Yes your stewards clean daily, but it never hurts to be extra cautious by wiping down the door knobs, remotes, and light switches throughout the duration of your cruise. 

Also having and using hand sanitizer is key to everyone staying healthy while traveling.


Cruises and ports do have sunscreen for sale, but it will be overpriced. 

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To save you some money be sure to pack it before leaving on your trip. You will use a lot of it so be sure to pack plenty. You will find that the sun is a lot more intense in certain places than others and you will need to reapply it more frequently.  Here are some tips on how to find the best sunscreen for kids.

Formal Wear

This is my favorite night of the cruise. Having your family all dressed up in their best to eat dinner together is the highlight of the cruise. 

Best Cruise Packing List

We love to also have our family photo taken by the photographer in our formal wear attire. Check out your cruise lines formal wear attire dress code because it sometimes does not have to be super fancy. 

It is always fun for the little ones as well to dress up. Something they do not do a lot and will find it exciting!


If you have a child still in diapers you do not want to run out. That is why it is important to add diapers and wipes to your cruise packing list.

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To make sure you pack enough diapers start before your cruise by actually counting the amount of diapers they use a day. Then take that number, multiply it by the amount of days you will be on your cruise and then add 10 more! You may find that you are changing diapers more frequently and do not want to run out. This includes swim diapers too, if your cruise ship allows them to go in the water. 


Best Cruise Packing List

You will find that a sweatshirt comes in handy while walking the deck at night on the cruise ship, especially if you get cold easily. You may also find that the cabins can be chilly especially after a long day in the sun. 

Shoe Organizer

Packing a shoe organizer to hang on the back of a door can help you keep your cabin room organized and your suitcases stored away. 

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Try using your shoe organizer to put daily necessities in, bathroom toiletries, or even your family’s daily clothes the night before in it so you are ready for the adventure that awaits you, especially if it is an early port call.  


Best Cruise Packing List

Not only is it important to pack your prescribed medications, but pack a medicine bag of anything you think you might possibly may need. Tylenol, pepto bismol, anti itch cream, aloe vera, benadryl, nasal spray, eye drops, cough drops, and kids dramamine are just some to consider. 

Just being prepared is key to a successful family cruise. 


Best Cruise Packing List

On the cruise there will be no need for cash. You will be able to use your cruise card that is linked to your credit card of choice for purchasing items that aren’t included in your cruise. 

But at port calls you will need cash for souvenirs, cabs, food, and rentals on the beach. 


A backpack comes in great use handy at port calls. 

Best Cruise Packing List

You can pack the items you need for the day like a change of clothes, wipes, sunscreen, hand sanitizer and anything else you need while off the boat. 

You will also love that your backpack will be a place to store any souvenirs you buy while off the boat so you don’t have to carry them around in your hands.

Surge Protector

Cruise rooms do not have a lot of electrical outlets. Bringing a surge protector can allow you to plug more than one electronic in at a time. This allows you to be able to charge multiple devices at one time. 

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Your kids will likely need down time and having their ipads fully charged will come in handy. 


You may want to consider a waterproof camera for your cruise. Taking underwater photos can be some amazing memories you capture while at the ports that will last forever. 

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If you do not want to do underwater photos any camera will do to capture some great photo ops while on your cruise vacation. 


Best Cruise Packing List

Sunglasses for the whole family is something I wouldn’t leave off my cruise packing list. You will be spending way more time in the sun than any typical day. 

Sunglasses will help protect your eyes from the sun and allow you to not miss the beautiful skies and water views. 

Door Decorations

Best Cruise Packing List

This is such a fun thing to do as a family to plan your door decorations out and buy and make them before you leave on your cruise so once you board you can quickly get your door decorations on your door. It is so neat to see everyone else’s door decorations, it also helps you find your room quicker!

Now that we have helped you with your cruise packing list share with us some items you have found useful on your cruise!

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