Complete Caribbean Cruise Packing Guide (2021)

From toiletries, to outfits, and everything in between, we detail our Complete Caribbean Cruise Packing Guide to help eliminate your stress.

Caribbean Cruise Packing List

If you are taking a Caribbean cruise, you might be wondering what you should pack. From toiletries to outfits, and everything in between, we detail what we pack for our trips in this Complete Caribbean Cruise Packing Guide to help eliminate your pre-cruise stress. Even if you are a veteran cruiser, you might find a few additional items that will be helpful on your next cruise.

Our Caribbean Cruise Packing List

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In our downloadable Caribbean Cruise Packing List, we list all the toiletries we pack for our cruise vacations. Yes, many cruise lines do provide some essential shower products, but we still prefer to bring our own. Even if you don’t pack as extensively as we do, the essentials should include medications, suntan lotion, and hand sanitizer.

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After all, you will probably be spending a lot of time in the sun and wouldn’t want to suffer from sunburn. Now more than ever, you will also want to help prevent the spread of germs to avoid getting sick on your vacation, so you can never have enough hand sanitizer. In 2021, you might also want to pack some disinfectant wipes and/or Lysol disinfectant spray to sanitize your cabin and other high traffic touchpoints.

Since irons or steamers are not allowed onboard cruise ships, we also find Downy wrinkle release very helpful for keeping our clothes as wrinkle-free as possible. Note: you will not need a hairdryer as one will be available in your cabin.

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Our Caribbean cruise packing guide outlines all the potential clothing items you will want to pack for your next cruise vacation. Regardless of travel destination, we usually group outfits into daytime use and nighttime use. For a standard 7-day cruise with a pre-cruise hotel stay, we typically plan eight daytime and eight nighttime outfits, choosing items that can be re-purposed for a couple uses.

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Of course, you should consider how you are going to be spending your days when packing for your cruise. For instance, if you plan to lounge around and beach it up the entire time, you will probably only pack bathing suits for daytime use. If you have shore excursions planned, like sightseeing tours, zip lines, or off-roading experiences, you will want to pack outfits to fit those requirements.

Most importantly, you will want to pack clothing items for your Caribbean cruise that are comfortable, lightweight, and multi-purpose. In the Caribbean, a raincoat is another essential item. You will also want to ensure you pack the appropriate footwear. This may include water shoes, sneakers, or flip flops.

A 7-night cruise typically has 1-2 “formal” nights depending on the cruise line, so you will want to pack your formal attire as well if you choose to dress for the occasion. Otherwise, “resort casual” outfits are appropriate for the main dining room. Woman should also pack a cardigan or light jacket as it could be a bit chilly on the ship.

Caribbean Cruise Packing List

Further, in 2021, you won’t want to forgot the newest fashion accessory- face masks!

Related Post: Where Should I Go on My First Cruise?

Other Useful Items

Besides the necessary travel documents and passports, we have accumulated a list over the years of other useful items for a cruise. Many of these products can be purchased relatively inexpensively on Amazon or at your local Target or Walmart.

Given that cruise ship cabins are small, you will want to maximize the space. Magnets (We use the 40 lb. ones) come in handy for hanging hats, beach bags, and other items in your cruise cabin. Additionally, we use an over the door shoe organizer, not for shoes, but rather to store toiletries and other small items to free up counter space.

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Further, you’ll wonder why you ever spent a day on the windy pool deck without these handy towel clips. The clips will secure your towel to the lounge chair so it doesn’t blow away. It will also serve as a helpful visual reminder of where you were sitting upon your return from the pool bar or the restroom. We love our Yeti water bottles when lounging by the pool or the beach as well. These bottles will keep a drink cold the entire day even in the Caribbean sun!

Some other usual items for your cruise packing list are cruise luggage tags. These plastic sleeves help to protect those paper cruise tags on your suitcases, as lanyards or cell phone pockets are equally as important to store your room key card.

Ziploc bags are great for storing wet items, while trash bags are handy to store dirty laundry over the course of the week.

Of course, a travel luggage scale will ensure you are not over your airline’s weight limit on the return trip home.

Related Post: Household Items to Pack for a Cruise


Admittedly, we pack much more in this category than most cruisers. So, our suggestion is to choose your essential devices whether they be smartphones, laptops, tablets, or cameras. Once you decide which gadgets you plan to take, you will find one of these cord organizers very helpful to keep all the chargers in one convenient location.

Speaking of all these electronics, a mobile power charger is essential as outlets are very limited in cruise cabins. You might also want to consider a portable power pack to keep your devices charged when going ashore.

Caribbean Cruise Packing Guide

Packing for a vacation shouldn’t be stressful. So, feel free to download a copy of our complete Caribbean cruise packing list and use this as a check list while packing for your next cruise.


Did you find our Complete Caribbean Cruise Packing Guide helpful? What items do you find essential to pack for a cruise vacation? Drop us an anchor below to share your cruise packing list.

Heidi is a physical therapist by profession, cruise enthusiast at heart, and Princess all the time! She is a self-confessed thrill seeker, obsessive planner, and over-packer. She is always looking for the latest and greatest adventures onboard and ashore, enjoys researching top things to do in ports of call, and loves dressing up for formal nights.
Heidi Bucolo
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10 comments on Complete Caribbean Cruise Packing Guide (2021)

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  1. My husband and I always pack a small flashlight. On the last night of one of our cruises, the ship lost partial power, which affected our cabin. They gave us glow sticks, which were not much help in packing! Since then, we carry a small flashlight on every cruise!

      Hi Patricia, Thanks for the suggestion. You can never be too prepared on a cruise. Happy sailing.

    Hi –we’re sailing on the BLISS in the near future. So does your over the door organizer work well on the doors in the cabin? Meaning the door closes oK? Did you use on the inside or outside of the bathroom door? Or did you use with the closet? Thanks

      Hi Charlene, great question. We sailed on NCL Bliss and used the over door organizer on our bathroom door. We always have it set up so it is on the outside of the bathroom door. It is great for storing odds and ends, like suntan lotion, sunglasses, and other small items. We take on on every cruise. Have a great trip.

      We found that taking silicone straws with a travel case helps a lot because now all the ships are green and ONLY give out cardboard straws

    Looking for first time cruise me and my husband first anniversary

    Battery operated “candles” they offer just a little light for the bathroom at night vs the glare of flipping the switch.

    I like the complete cruise packing list it sure helps with what NOT to forget

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