Over the years, I've been on several cruises, and each has been a learning experience. Since cruising is the exception for my travels rather than the rule, I find myself struggling with the packing aspect every time.
I've slowly come to terms with my cruise packing abilities, and I've even come away from this last cruise with a few things that most people (including myself!) don't ever think about packing for a cruise.
I saw so many families using these on our last cruise, and I loved the idea. No one wants to rack up super expensive roaming charges on their cell phones, so bring a few walkie talkies along instead. You can still keep up with the kids, your other family members, or friends, and your cell phone bill next month will thank you.
An insulated tumbler
I bought Landon and I some cheap insulated mason jar-style mugs before our last cruise, and we used those things constantly. We'd get extra lemonade or ice water to take with us by the pool, and our drinks actually stayed cold. They were well worth the $6 investment.
Therefore, it probably comes as no surprise that I never buy the drink package. This varies by company, but most cruises will give anyone tea, coffee, and water, as well as some sort of flavored water. While some of the flavored waters are decent, I quickly tire of most of them, as they're often watered down. The easy solution to this is to bring your own Crystal Light (or similar) packets and/or those water drops that come in a million flavors. That way, you can make the lemonade as strong or weak as you'd like.
Lightweight blanket/ throw
Every time I book a cruise, I tell myself to pack a sweater. But can you guess how many times one has actually made it onto the boat with me?
Learn from my mistakes, people!
Small DVD player + DVDs
There were several times that I would've happily welcomed a movie of my own choice; if my daughter had been with us, it would have been awesome to quickly cue up Frozen or Toy Story instead of watching whatever was on the tv.
There is a lot of food on a cruise. You could pretty much eat morning, noon, and night if you really put your mind to it. (If you take that path, as I did on my honeymoon cruise 5 years ago, you will come back stunned at the scale. You've been warned.)
However, you'll sometimes find yourself wanting something other than the snacks that are available to you. I love pizza, finger sandwiches, and brownies, but I would've loved some chips or Skittles on the cruise. You might be able to find these in the ship store, but be prepared to pay about double what you would on shore for a Snickers.
An Extra Pair of Cheap Sunglasses
However, there will be times when you're on the cruise, and you'll want to look over the railing to the water below. You'll watch those beautiful, expensive glasses fall ten stories into the depths of the Mediterranean or the Caribbean, doomed to only be worn by the most fashion-forward of sea life.
Avoid that heartbreak by packing a pair or two of cheap-o peep-o sunglasses, and save the snazzy, fancy ones for activities where your head isn't hanging over the ocean.
Still, I have to say that watching them set up their lightweight hammocks between sets of palm trees did have me a little jealous, as no one else in the compound had seating that was cool, comfortable, and came with a great view.
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Which of these would you want to take on your cruise? If you've been on a cruise, what did you forget to pack?
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