Look, I was a Navy sailor for about one hot second and my time on warships gave me the biggest aversion to the concept of “cruising.” Then came my husband who invited me on a family cruise in the Caribbean. Well, it was actually fantastic…(side note-except for the workers on the ship who were extremely kind but living in an indentured servitude kind of way with long work hours and months away from their families…hmmm kind of like the Navy).
On a last ditch effort to make a baby moon happen this week, we booked an insanely good deal on a Southern Caribbean cruise. P.S. cruise ships won’t let you on past 23/24 weeks of pregnancy (check with the cruise line).
Cruising is like a floating Las Vegas that is less smokey, more family friendly, everything is included (except a few things like alcohol or spa treatments) and you get to pull into gorgeous ports for a day at a time.
You are going to meet people like this, who know how to have a good time, no matter what:
**Bring enough clothing so that you do not need to do laundry. It can cost $25 for a really small bag or $2.50 per undergarment! It’s there if you really need it. Usually there is a clothesline in your bathroom where you can rinse your swim suits or a few pairs of unmentionables if needed.
**Go ahead, pack heavy. Remember how the people on the Titanic brought all these steamer trunks? Yeah, like that! You don’t want to be using the leche of a donkey because you forgot your favorite cold cream…or do you???
Formal Wear: Find out how many there will be. There will also be nice restaurants aside from the usual dining room (the usual dining room is very nice and included in your fee, sometimes there are other restaurants that cost an additional fee) so find out the dress code in case you want to go to those as well. Clothing ranges everywhere from semi-sundress to ball gowns and tuxes. Pack a shawl! THIS is why I was trying on all my stretchy dresses last week!
This cruise ship had an English pub. Neat.
Some cruises will have theme nights like a “white party” or the Supberbowl may be happening that week so bring your team gear.
Casual dresses-You will live in these on a cruise. They’re easy! This black one got a lot of wear.
Bring an inexpensive cross body bag that you won’t mind getting sunscreen all over and that won’t attract pickpocketers. I got this one from Forever 21. Also bring a “pool bag.” My airline carry-on LeSport Sac bag doubles for this.
Casual Attire-Be sure to have evening outfits that are warmer and comfortable too just for going to dinner or bowling. You can have some jeans on hand but think more like cropped pants with sandals or skirts.
Swimsuits: I would bring at least 2 (unless you’re pregnant like me and only have one large mumu type to your name). These are easy to rinse out and hang in your room shower. Have a few cover-ups to wear to and from the pool area.
Shoes: Bring really comfortable, flat, good walking shoes in case you want to do one of the more active excursions in port. We did a cruise in that stopped in Athens, Greece and comfortable shoes were so helpful when climbing the Acropolis.
You need sandals/flip flops for pool and beach time. Sneakers for the gym.Formal shoes and some comfy casual shoes to wear while playing in the arcade or for board games in the library.
Exercise Clothes: The cruise ships have really nice gyms and they usually have a bunch of equipment facing a big window with a gorgeous view of the ocean! Bring some headphones and an iPod. Some ships have basketball courts and even rock climbing walls.
PJs, lots of undergarments.
Camera & toiletries.
No need to pack:
a blowdryer-we’ve had one in every room so far
towels-the ship will lend out towels to you for the room, pool, beach, spa etc.
For the flight there, here is your perfectly packed carry-on. I would even suggest you pack one set of clothes in your carry on in case your luggage gets lost. This has happened to one of our family members on the last family cruise and Chris’ bag was lost on our last trip to Seattle. If they lose your bags,..go shopping.