Patriot Port Parking

10 Things to Pack on a Cruise

Ten Things You’ll Want to Remember for Your Cruise

If you’re anything like me, packing for vacation is probably the hardest part of the whole darn thing. Parking? Easy. Port? No problem. Customs? A breeze. Packing? Whoa, there! I have to check my bags about ten more times to make sure I didn’t forget my toothbrush! Or my comb, or my favorite sandals, or an extra bottle of lotion, or… Well, you get it.

That’s why this week, Exploring Port Canaveral is taking a step back from Brevard County to help you remember to pack these ten things for your upcoming cruise. Some of these may already be on your list, but most aren’t on the usual checklist for every vacation. If you like the idea of any of these, you may try packing them in your luggage on your next trip out to sea!

1. Charge More with a Power Strip

A power strip can mean an end to your electricity shortage on the ship!

Cruise ships are famous for having virtually no outlets. If you want to plug in more than a few electronics (phone, fan, laptop, hair dryer, etc.) at a time, a power strip can add the space you need. An extension cord can also come in handy. Power strips and extension cords will let you organize and position your electronic stuff without having to play musical plugs. Trust me, you’ll love having the extra plugs and just one power strip will make your life easier!

2. Don’t Forget Over the Counter Medicine

Most people are extra careful to pack their prescriptions with a note from the doctor, but what about your regular, everyday, over-the-counter meds? They may not be as important as prescriptions, but you might miss them just as much if you forget them. A few common medications to fend off headaches, seasickness, upset stomachs, or allergies can save the day on vacation if you need them. Many families also bring Neosporin and Band-Aids for quick cuts and scrapes that might happen on an adventure. Remember, it’s always better to pack them and not need them than to wish you had some ibuprofen for a killer migraine. Don’t let seasickness or allergies ruin a perfectly good day!

Dramamine, Ibuprofen, Tylenol, or Pepto can make or break a great vacation!

3. Switch Up Your Shoes

Water shoes have better gripping and protection for your feet

Shoes are a crucial accessory for every man and woman on a cruise. With different kinds of activities on the ship and off the ship, it makes sense that you should bring all different kinds of shoes, right? Be sure to include casual shoes, water shoes, and walking shoes on your list alongside formal heels and tennis shoes. Comfortable, relaxing shoes are great for lounging around the pool or cabin. Water shoes are essential for those planning to do any water activities. These shoes tend to grip better underwater and keep you from stepping on rocks (like if you’re going kayaking!). Sore feet aren’t fun, and you can avoid them with proper foot gear.

4. Kill Time with Playing Cards

What? Playing cards? Why would you bring playing cards on a ship designed to cater to every desire and need for entertainment?

Well, you’d be surprised. There are plenty of opportunities for downtime while sailing the seas. Playing Old Maid or Hearts with family or friends is a great way to pass the time. And if you’ve signed up for any activities or shows on your ship, you’ll probably want to arrive early.  

How will you pass the time until the show starts? Pull out your deck of cards! Or any other travel-sized game that you’ll have fun with. The choices are endless! Don’t want to carry anything? These fun games can be played with just your mind and some creativity!

5. Avoid Stale Air with a Small Fan

Yes, this item is a little big, but you might welcome it during those warm days on the sea. While cruise ship cabins are air-conditioned, the quality of the A/C can vary. A travel-sized fan helps circulate air and keep it fresh and moving if the A/C isn’t doing much for you. In addition, it can add white noise at night while you sleep, and you can hang wet socks and swimsuits up in front of a fan to get them to dry faster!

6. A Lanyard Keeps Your Key on a Leash

At home, I keep my keys on my lanyard to easily pull them out of my purse or pocket. On a cruise ship, I can do the same thing with my room key and ID card. On most cruise ships, your ID card is important for so many reasons. It doesn’t just have your identification on it, but it also has information about your reservations, on-board purchases, drink packages, and more. They can also function as room keys and port IDs. So, put your room key/ID card on a fun, colorful lanyard to keep track of which is yours!

7.  A Spot of Cash for Here or There

There are three big reasons to bring some cash: off-ship purchases, tips, and casino runs. While your ID card will let you make purchases on-board, off-ship souvenirs and trips will require different funds. Tipping the staff of the ship will also require cash, so small bills are important for gratuities. And finally, if you want to tempt Lady Luck at the casino, you’ll want to bring dollars and change for gambling.

8. Keep the Sun Off with a Hat

You’ve probably already put sunglasses on your list of important items about thirty times. However, your awesome Ray-Bans will go miles more if you pair them with a cute hat or a ball cap. Your face and top of your head will thank you for not leaving it out to burn in the tropical sunshine!

9. A Light Jacket Keeps Away the Wind

Most people sailing in the Southeast (like from Port Canaveral) are headed to the Caribbean, the land of seas and sunshine. However, that doesn’t mean that you should only bring shorts and tank tops. At night and in the shade, you’ll find that the wind can add a nip to the air, and a light jacket, sweatshirt, or windbreaker will add a little warmth. Bring something with some waterproofing, and it can double as a coat if rain hits.

If you’re sailing during the winter, this is especially important. The ports on the Gulf and Atlantic are super windy, and during the wintertime, you will NEED a coat for the port even if the Caribbean stays tropical.  Patriot Port Parking has seen this happen with many families who overestimate the winter warmth of the South.

10. A Sweet Tote or Sturdy Backpack for Travels

Whether you’re going to a show on the ship or taking a tour on an island, you’ll want to bring all of your necessities without overloading a bag. Where better to put your IDs, water bottle, sunscreen, cash, camera, and more? A cute tote, drawstring bag, or backpack will let you keep your packed items light and secure while you’re going an an adventure!

Bon Voyage!

With all these items considered for your luggage, you’ll be better prepared than half the ship. Don’t forget to add some (or all!) of these items to your gear when you go cruising! Though each thing only adds a bit of fun, flavor, or comfort to your trip, your journey is sure to become easier and better with just a little help from this list!

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