Come pack with me for a 7-night cruise! Here are my top tips for carry on only cruise packing. How to prioritize and organize your cruise essentials.
My Carry On Only Cruise Packing Process
Watch this video below to see what all went into my suitcase for our 7-night Western Caribbean cruise:
Carry On Only Cruise Packing Tips
1 – Re-Wear Clothes
I re-wear clothing on vacation. You almost have to if you want to make carry on only packing work for you. This is especially easy to do on cruises. I will often wear a skirt or dress for a few hours in the evening when we go to dinner and a show. Then I will re-wear that item during the day later in the week.
I will also wash a few items of clothing in our cabin during the week and hang them to dry. If you are flying, it’s easier to pack a small container of powdered laundry soap.
2 – Pack Clothes that do Double Duty
Carrying over from point 1 above. If you’re going to re-wear clothing items, make sure that they are items that can serve multiple purposes.
Multi-purpose clothing items are a must: I have a pair of black (very lightweight) capri-style pants that work for plane travel, evening dinners. You just need to swap out cute tank tops and repeat the same scarf or cover-up sweater.
3 – Color-Coordinate Your Vacation Wardrobe
If you’re going to be re-wearing items, you will likely be mixing and matching items. This is easier to do if you pack layers that can mix and match with several different outfits.
Color-coordinate your wardrobe. DO things like:
- Pick either black of brown accessories (shoes, belts, purses)
- Pick a color palette that best suits your complexion – I wear lots of navy, green, and coral.
- Pack neutral pieces like denim, khaki, gray sweaters
- Pack as few shoes as you possible can – and make them work across your wardrobe
- Save that “must wear” piece (that takes up too much room and doesn’t follow the tips outline above) for another time… like a nice night out after your cruise
4 – Organize and Prioritize
Pack smarter, not harder my friends!
This means doing things like rolling your clothes to save space. I’m also a big fan of packing cubes to keep things organized, both when packing and in our cabin.
Carry On Only Cruise Packing for Kids
Watch this quick video below, and I’ll walk you through what I packed for our cruise – for BOTH a boy and a girl: