One of the most important things to address when prepping for your sailing adventure is your “what to pack for a cruise checklist”. Going on a cruise is an exciting adventure requiring very little planning and preparation. However, in this article, we’ll review everything you need to know about what to bring along. When packing, you should consider the destinations, the length of your trip, the season, and the activities you’ll be participating in — while these are all important, here’s a straightforward guide of basic essentials you should take!
Cruise dress codes may vary by cruise and itinerary. You’ll generally want to pack comfortable, casual clothes for daytime activities and more formal attire for evening events. Check if your cruise has any special requirements or if the effortless dress is acceptable 24/7. In general, you’ll likely go on a cruise in spring or summer, so light breathable clothes are definitely a winning option, although you should have a solution for when and if the weather goes bad!
When packing clothes for a cruise, it is essential to consider the destinations you will visit and the activities you will participate in. For daily wear, pack casual clothing: casual t-shirts, tank tops, shorts, skirts, jeans, sundresses, and pants. It is best to choose two primary colors to make combining them easier. To that, add a few pieces of clothing in neutral colors and those with patterns to have additional possibilities for combining.
If you are on a cruise that organizes formal evenings, you should pack traditional clothes for these occasions, such as suits and ties for men and evening dresses for women. You can also pack sleek garments such as elegant dresses, skirts, collared shirts, pants, or pantsuits.
In addition to clothes you will, of course, also need proper footwear. Bring slip-resistant flip-flops, and sandals for your time on the deck and beach. Tennis shoes, and special footwear for planned activities such as our guided tours are a must (hiking boots and/or running shoes are ideal for daily long trips). If you wear formal clothes, remember to bring proper shoes as well.
Always Croatia cruises often provide ample time to try out the pristine waters, so you will need everything you usually take to the beach on a cruise. Pack a few swimsuits and cover-ups. Be sure to bring enough sunscreen and after-sun lotion. Also, pack a wide-brimmed hat or a cap to enjoy all activities in the sun carefreely. Consider getting a packable hat. Of course, sunglasses are also mandatory. What you don’t need to bring on a cruise are towels.
One thing that’s always unpredictable is the weather! Even in the hottest months, bring along a breathable but waterproof packable jacket, a hoodie, or a light sweater. The weather can be unpredictable, and you may need warmer clothes for some planned excursions. The jacket will also come in handy for staying on deck during navigation. The wind can be very unpleasant.
And remember the basics – underwear and sleepwear.
Although you can get essential toiletries in every town here in Croatia, some of our cruises take you straight from the airport to board the ship, so it’s crucial to have some items in check. Things to pack should include a toothbrush, toothpaste, dental floss, hairbrush or comb, deodorant, sunscreen, and moisturizer. Most cruise ships offer soaps, shampoos, and bathroom towels in the cabin bathrooms. However, if you have any dermatology condition (such as sensitive scalp or skin), you may want to consider bringing your own shampoo, conditioner, body wash, or soap.
It is crucial to think about personal preferences and needs. For example, you may pack mouthwash, a razor and shaving cream, makeup and makeup remover, hair bands and clips, and other products you use for your personal care regularly.
When you go on a cruise, you must bring any prescription medications you take regularly. Pack enough for your trip, plus a few extra days in case of any unexpected delays. It’s also a good idea to bring a copy of your prescriptions. If it is a more serious medical condition, get a letter from your doctor explaining your medical condition and medications.
In addition to prescription medications, pack some pain relievers (e.g., ibuprofen), anti-nausea medications, antacids, anti-diarrhea medications, allergy medications, plasters, antiseptic sprays or ointments, and insect repellents — mosquitoes are unavoidable in the Croatian humid inland conditions during summer. If you travel with kids, bringing a thermometer and medicines is always a wise idea.
A typical set of electronic devices people bring on cruises includes smartphones and their chargers, tablets, e-readers, cameras, and portable chargers.
Smartphones help keep in touch with friends and family while cruising. However, you will use it primarily for taking photos, recording videos, and capturing memories. If you are more professionally interested in photography, you should bring your DSLR camera along. An underwater camera will create amazing shots of the deep Croatian blue.
Tablets and e-readers are great for reading and entertainment during your downtime on board, especially if you’re prevented from going on planned walking tours. Also, pack a laptop if you need to work while on the cruise. Since cruise ships have limited electrical outlets in the cabins, extra batteries, and portable chargers are a valuable addition to your luggage.
If internet access is essential to you, explore the offers of domestic mobile providers. Although our cruise ships are equipped with WiFi access points, the speed may vary depending on the location and may not meet your connection needs.
The essential things to bring are your travel documents (passport, visas, etc.). You should also get all the information about travel insurance.
A lightweight backpack should also find a place in your luggage. You will need it often, and it is necessary for shore excursions and walking tours. Bring a travel umbrella, and pack a reusable water bottle for hydration. Having a waterproof pouch for money and documents on a cruise would also be wise. Books, magazines, and crosswords are good choices for complete enjoyment while basking in the sun, relaxing on the covered deck, or in the air-conditioned lounge of the cruise ship.
One more thing you must remember is cash! Although we make most of our daily payments with cards, they are unacceptable in some of the smaller places your cruise will take you. Plus, it’s always good to show appreciation by tipping the crew and waiters in any restaurants you may visit.
The main difference in what to pack for a 7-day cruise versus shorter or longer cruises is in the amount of clothing and essentials needed to last you the entire trip. A good rule of thumb is to pack one outfit per day or two plus a few extra outfits that will cover you for the unpredicted.
For a 5-day cruise, you can pack slightly less clothing and supplies than for a 7-day cruise. For a 2-week cruise, you must pack more apparel and supplies that will last longer. It’s a good idea to check if your cruise ship has laundry facilities, allowing you to pack fewer clothes.
Adjust the number of toiletries, medicine, and all other necessities you will need during your trip as well.
The main difference in cruising in October and May compared to summer is the temperature and often, the weather. During these months, the weather offers a slight chill, although sometimes it can be warm enough to take a swim! For the colder months, you should pack light and warm sweaters and windbreaker jackets. Since it’s impossible to predict whether the weather will be warm or cold during your cruise in October and May, your best bet is to pack in layers — even a scarf might come in handy.
In contrast, the summer months, especially July and August, are predominantly hot. So light and airy clothes with short sleeves are appropriate. And the most important — swimwear, sunscreen, and a hat!
Packing for a cruise can initially seem overwhelming, but with some planning and preparation, it doesn’t have to be. By following our guide, you’ll be well-prepared for your cruise adventure in Croatia. So go ahead and book that cruise – you won’t regret it!
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