It finally happened – you decided to book yourself on a cruise vacation because you need to rest, party, eat, drink, laugh, etc. Congratulations to you!

Whether you’re sailing Virgin Voyages, Royal Caribbean, Carnival, Celebrity, Explora Journeys or ANY of the many brands, below are some of my top “what you need” picks before you set sail (disclaimer – these are affiliate links that I may earn a small commission on at NO COST to you):

Electrolyte Powder Packets

Planning to get that drink package?! Make sure to stay hydrated by boosting your electrolytes with these easy-to-pack powder packets. I prefer this particular one because it is tasty and it dissolves FULLY into your water.

Magnetic Hooks

Cruise cabins are SMALL, ok? Unless you are in a spacious suite, you need to maximize all space. Save some floor area by utilizing magnetic hooks! Walls inside of the cabins are typically made from metal which makes them magnetic. Simply pop these on the wall and you instantly have a place to hang swimsuits, hats, towels – or whatever you want!

Neck Pillow

All neck pillows are NOT made equally, ok?! I have personally tested this one and it works GREAT. Not only is it customizable to your preferences, it is very soft to the touch and comes in a storage bag with an eye mask and ear plugs. That being said, it IS a little bulky so keep that in mind when packing it into your personal item sized bag.

Extension Cord (NON Surge Protector)

Despite what you may have heard, extension cords ARE allowed on cruise ships – surge protectors are NOT. If you are sailing on an older ship, you will quickly come to realize that the cabins do not have as many outlets as we are accustomed to in modern society. In fact, generally the only outlets in the entire cabin are on the desk in the middle of the room. This is bad news for all you late-night TikTok scrollers! Having an extension cord will save you the trouble of getting up constantly to check your phone.

Luggage Tag Holders

It is common practice for cruise lines such as Royal Caribbean, Carnival, and Norwegian, for example, to email you with travel documents 30 days prior to embarkation. Among those documents are printable luggage tags. These tags are supposed to be attached to your luggage to that when you arrive at port and drop off your suitcases, they know what cabin to deliver them to. Since they are paper, using these luggage tag holders is a great way to make sure they aren’t damaged AND it’s an easy way to affix them to your luggage once you have landed.

These simple items can make all the difference to your vacation. Of course, don’t forget to pack other essentials such as sunscreen, a small bag for in-port, a refillable water bottle, swimsuit, etc.

As always, if you’d like the support of a vetted travel advisor who may even be able to get you some extra OBC, I’d love to book your cruise vacation! Brands I book include Disney Cruise Line, Virgin Voyages, Royal Caribbean, Celebrity Cruises, Explora Journeys, and Carnival.