Packing for any vacation can be stressful, but taking some time to plan beforehand can help things to go smoothly. There are some inherent differences between traveling on a cruise ship and using other forms of travel. You should take some of these differences into consideration when packing for your cruise.
There are some items that should not be packed on cruises. Valuables can be difficult to keep track of on a cruise ship with all of the activities going on, and certain types are best left at home. Wedding rings and other jewelry can easily fall off and become lost or misplaced in the transition from one activity to another on a cruise. At times, you may be very active swimming, dancing, drinking or participating in children's activities, and it may not be practical to bring these items along. If you do choose to do so, make sure you have a plan for how to store them in the room or bring an inexpensive necklace to put the ring on when you swim.
Many travelers these days consider some items essential, such as cell phones, cameras and laptop computers. Sometimes, these are necessary for business reasons, but if not needed, most of these items are better left at home.
The key to packing for a cruise is to pack lightly. Many travelers make the mistake of bringing much more than they would on a plane trip because they have a room to store their belongings in and are allowed to bring more. However, it is important to consider that the staterooms are small, and you will likely be sharing your room with a few other people. The more people sharing a room, the more potential for someone to leave it open or unlocked or to let others in who have access to your belongings. You should also check reviews about housekeeping staff from rooms and how any incidents were handled. When bringing any valuables, it is important to know who to go to report an incident and to do so as soon as possible so you have a good chance of recovering your items.
Many people bring expensive cameras on cruises because of the scenery and family memories to capture. However, it is important to consider the possibility of a camera becoming lost or damaged on a cruise ship. When deciding whether or not to bring your expensive camera, consider your personal habits and whether or not you think you are someone who can keep track of it. If you do bring an expensive camera, bring a neck strap so you can always have it on you or carry it in a fanny pack. Think before you bring your camera out of the room each time. For example, if your family is going swimming, it will not be a good idea to set the camera down next to the pool, so it would be best to leave it in the room. Many travelers purchase inexpensive cameras, disposable or otherwise, to take on cruises to reduce the risk of losing a good one. You will want to capture memories, but makes sure to be smart.
The type of money you carry is another important consideration. You may want to get recommendations from a travel agent on this subject. Most no longer recommend using traveler's checks, but experts disagree on whether to carry debit cards or credit cards. One thing to consider is that if you carry a credit card, you can dispute charges should the card become stolen, while with a debit card you are liable for those charges.