How To Pack For A Cruise In 10 Easy Steps

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family of four packing

How to pack for a cruise in 10 easy steps

Today we are talking about packing for your cruise. We are going to break the packing process down into 10 easy steps. You’ll get some structure and ideas on how to keep the stress out of packing for a cruise.

How to pack for a cruise in 9 EASY steps:

  1. First- make a packing list – check your cruise lines prohibited items list to make sure that nothing you’re packing is forbidden. Categories should include: toiletries & medications, and stateroom essentials. Then, there’s the big one, clothing (swim, fitness, port day, ship day, dinner, formal night, embark/debark, pajamas, undergarments, shoes, hats). 
  2. Decide HOW you want to pack. Light/Carry on only? Anything goes? Check to make sure you have the luggage you need to support that packing style. Borrow or buy what you need. 
  3. Second- shop your list- we’ve created an Amazon store dedicated to cruise travel but you can also check dollar stores for inexpensive toiletry and accessory items. We also love discount stores like TJ Maxx, Ross & Marshalls for buying luggage and places like Target & Walmart for travel-size toiletries. 
  4. Third- lay out your clothes and make sure items match & coordinate and Try on anything you haven’t worn in the last few months to make sure it still fits comfortably. 
  5. Put foldable items into packing cubes and set hanging items aside in a corner of your closet.
  6. If possible, wait a few days or even a week and review everything you’ve packed. Look at your choices again & ask yourself the following questions: Have you overpacked? Do you love the items you packed? Will you reach for them? 
  7. Pack your suitcase & pack your embarkation day bag. Place heavier items at the bottom of your suitcase to create a better balance. 
  8. Check the weight of your bag if flying.
  9. Lastly, affix your cruise line luggage tags to your suitcase just before you head to the por
  10. Remember,  you need your passport and boarding documents, and medications. Everything else, in an emergency, could be purchased.

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Here’s what people are saying about the CruiseTipsTV Unplugged Podcast

  • Finally found where to review!
    September 11, 2022 by Jennifer M Preston from United States

    I have been listening to the show (and watching the videos, amazon, trying to learn instagram) since before our 1st cruise on Harmony of the Seas - booked during the pandemic and not taken until the December after. Since then we have taken 1 other where we adventured with our 9 year old (for the same itinerary) and we have a back-to-back planned for Oasis in January out of Miami. By FAR your family and content are my favorite to see (and I love the packing videos/podcasts - so keep them coming) We were completely prepared - left nothing at home and really wished for nothing - also when something came up we just went with it. Thank you for making my commutes smooth listening - and I hope to one day "see you on the high seas" - Jennifer

  • Essential for Your Cruise!!
    September 9, 2022 by Jana in Houston from United States

    I started watching Sherri’s YouTube channel before our first cruise, and I’m so glad. The tips on what to pack and how to efficiently set up my stateroom were invaluable. I just listened to my first podcast featuring packing tips and it was awesome! Do yourself a favor and don’t miss this podcast.

  • Activities that are no longer on cruise ships
    September 7, 2022 by A in Canada from Canada

    At end of our evening my wife and I relax listening to your podcast. Clear presentation without the ‘err’ and ‘um’ so often heard between words on other podcast. Having watched your three part packing video on YouTube my wife looked at me and went ‘wow’ it’s like magic. We have been practising for our next cruise! Anyway, when I was much younger cruising on P&O out of the UK (1970’s) on the SS Canberra I remember two things not seen today as cruise activities. 1) The ‘greasy poke’ whereby a pole was covered in something slippery and placed horizontally across the pool with a small prize for anyone who could make it across without touching the water. If I recall, everyone who attempted it fell into the pool as they tried to scoot across. 2) The ‘turtle race’ actually used live turtles (happy that this went way!) to see which one crossed the finish line placed on the dance floor and wagers were placed. Thanks for all you do a comment of time to educate and entertain about cruising. Sincerely, Andrew Alberta, Canada

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Sheri and her family are California based cruise content creators focused on providing practical tips and advice to new and seasoned cruisers. CruiseTipsTV’s audience enjoys following Sheri and her family as they travel the world by ship creating travel films. Sheri has visited destinations like Japan, Mexico, Alaska, Europe and the Caribbean, and has experienced 33 cruises on 6 cruise lines. She was named one of Porthole Cruise Magazine’s 10 Travel Influencers Changing How We Vacation in 2018 and 2019. Sheri has been quoted in the New York Times, CNBC, Forbes, Prevention, and Business Innovator Radio. Her YouTube Channel, CruiseTipsTV has over 87,000 subscribers and 17 million views.