In preparation for our first ever Disney cruise, I read countless recommendations for what to pack. Oh my goodness… I think some people recommended packing most of their house!!! I tend to be a bit of an over packer (especially with clothes and shoes), so the hubby looked at some of the lists I had bookmarked and promptly crossed off a bunch of items… he knew we would end up with a suitcase full of stuff we didn’t need. He was mostly right… ha,ha! So, without further hesitation… here is my list based on a 6 night Western Caribbean cruise on the Disney Magic at the end of March!
Daily Clothes (I know… I’m starting with the obvious):
– 1-2 light sweaters or a light jacket to go over dresses or short sleeved tops make a huge difference on breezy nights. The inside of the boat wasn’t as chilly as everyone warned it would be, which was a nice surprise since I am always cold.
– 1-2 casual pants – great for the one cooler/breezier day at sea and any random times you might want to dress a little warmer
– 2-3 shorts/casual skirts – these were perfect for the day when not in swim attire
– shirts – goes without saying since you’ll need something to go with the pants/shorts/skirts
– 1-2 swimsuits per person – it was nice to have a spare to wear if my other one was still drying
– workout clothes if you are so inclined – they offer fitness classes (yoga, body sculpt, cycle, abs, etc) in addition to the normal fitness equipment and there is a running “track” on the perimeter of the 4th deck. I never did it, but I read it is approximately 1/3 mile per lap.
– sandals/athletic shoes – I alternated between about 3 pairs of sandals and my tennis shoes for the 7 days on the boat
Since this was my 1st cruise, I was a little worried about dinner attire… I shouldn’t have been. I saw a wide range of clothing at dinner each night regardless if it was a “cruise casual” or “dressy” evening. I would say khakis were the standard for men most of the time, while the women varied between skirts/sundresses and cute pants/capris. I definitely saw a fair share of jeans too… especially the last evening! However, I never saw anyone turned away from dinner, so don’t stress out about it!!!
– 1-2 dressy outfits – our cruise had 1 evening designated as dressy attire. My girls like to dress up, so we brought a couple more nice dresses for them. They loved it!!
– 4 cruise casual outfits – I would classify this as recommended business casual for men with collared shirts and nice jeans/khakis. For the women, business casual still applies but I would also say cute “girl’s night out” attire as well.
– Pirate night – there was no way I was going to get the hubby to wear a costume to dinner, so we went with pirate themed outfits for the evening… lots of black & white stripes for us and pirate shirts with black skirts and boots for the girls. They give everyone a pirate bandana at dinner, so that was a perfect addition to our outfits. They also sell some pirate things in one of the shops on the boat if you need any last minute items or costumes.
Random Stuff to bring:
– Travel size anything when possible. The bathrooms are not roomy, so the less space you can take up the better!
– Hangers (wire ones are the easiest and lightest) – the closet has some hangers in it, but they wouldn’t have been enough for all of our shirts, dresses, etc.
– Some sort of carrier for all your toiletries – the bathrooms have hardly any storage space, so if you can hang it on the towel rack or hook behind the door, it’s much better. I use a Mary Kay roll-up travel bag, which keeps everything stored nicely!
– Goggles – my kids swim with them and they are much smaller than snorkeling gear 😉
– Sunblock… sunblock… sunblock!
– Sunglasses – it’s bright with the ocean reflecting the sun!
– Camera – make sure you enough space on your SD card! I took hundreds of pictures!!
– Chargers – camera, electronic devices, etc.
– Lanyard for Key to the World card – a friend recommended this and it was nice to have. I bought two on Amazon big enough to fit our passports (mainly because they would be big enough to fit my phone since I use it to take videos)
– Beach bag – great to fit all the beach necessities on days you are off the boat
– Meds (prescription and basic over the counter) – my oldest had a cough when we left for the cruise, so I came armed with children’s Motrin, cough syrup, and Vicks. I would have been lost without them!! They have your basic over the counter meds on the boat, but since I already had a suspicion I would need them, it was nice to save money.
– Hairdryer if you are picky about it. The one in the bathroom puts out as much air as standing in a breeze!
– Laundry stuff – only if you are the “do laundry on vacation” type. I am not, so I didn’t bring anything, but I did hear rave reviews of the laundry facilities! They are centrally located on the floors so easily accessible too!
– Something to autograph – I brought an autograph mat for an 8×10 frame and colored sharpies, dropped it off at Guest Services in an oversized ziploc bag the first day, and they delivered it (signed) to our room the day before we got back to port!
Random stuff not to bring:
– Bottled water – they sell it on the boat (both for your room or a 6 pack for excursion days). There is no question it costs more on the boat, but I can’t imagine lugging extra waters for everyone (unless you are driving to the port).
– Power strip – I read to bring this multiple times. One blog said theirs was confiscated. If you plan your charging times appropriately, you won’t have any problem plugging 2-3 things in at the same time. Also, the alarm clock was also an iPod/iPhone dock, so it worked out perfectly!
– Lots of extra clothes – I brought too many shirts and ended up not wearing 1/2 of them. My bag would have been much lighter had I left them at home!
Hopefully these suggestions help make packing a little easier for your next Disney cruise!