Packing these extras could mean the difference between a fantastic cruise or one with a few hiccups.
You've loaded the suitcase with your favorite fashions, books, flip-flops and sunscreen. Got everything?
What if your suitcase zipper breaks? Or the bathroom has less storage than you thought? A few extra items could very well turn out to be essentials:
- Duct tape: Suitcase zippers break and locks may pop. Since it's not always possible to buy a replacement case, a few go-rounds with duct tape can save the day.
- Kid’s scissors: Useful for cutting the duct tape as well as for trimming bangs, removing the price tag on your new Hawaiian shirt and snipping stray threads. Pull them out when it’s time to remove the plastic wristbands after a day at an all-inclusive beach club.
- Flashlights or nightlights: Exactly what’s needed when one guest is snoozing and the other is tip-toeing around a pitch-black stateroom.
- Bubble wrap: When packing, use it between layers of clothes to prevent wrinkles. During your cruise, wrap it around breakable souvenirs.
- Suction hooks: Great little gadgets. You can buy a set of two at many stores with bath departments. Use in the stateroom’s bathroom to hang a wet swimsuit, or figure out other places hooks would work nicely. They’re extremely handy, particularly when three or more people are sharing a tiny cruise ship bathroom.
- Hanging shoebags: Individual pouches offer valuable extra storage for toiletries, socks, jewelry and anything else you want to keep organized.
- Highlighter pens: Use them with the onboard newsletters to keep track of the activities you select. Even better, bring different hues for each person in your party. Color-coding your schedule will help identify favorite activities, such as the ever-popular how-to-fold-a-towel-animal class, and everyone will know at a glance which activities are theirs.
- Garbage bags: Tuck a few in the nooks of your luggage. Packing these can help you keep dirty clothes safely away from the fresh attire. Bonus uses, extra padding for breakables, a safe place for leaky shampoo bottles and storage for damp bathing suits.
- Your own pillow: If you’re picky about a particular level of fluffiness, bring one that meets your standards. A pillowcase with a bold pattern helps distinguish it from the cruise line’s property.
- A bath puff in a bold hue: Tie it to the top of your suitcase. It’s a quick way to identify your baggage after the cruise.
Patti Roth and Sherry Laskin