Overpacking for a cruise is easy, especially if you're taking your first one. With a little forethought and know-how, however, packing for a cruise will be a lot easier and lighter. Here are the items you don't need to pack for a cruise.

Many Pairs of Shoes

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Shoes are one of the most space-consuming items, and there is hardly a need for more than a couple pairs on a cruise. Depending on the itinerary, most passengers can likely get by with nothing more than one pair of shoes for dinner and a pair of sandals or athletic sneakers for the daytime.

Outfits for Each Day

If setting out on a tropical cruise, plan to be in your bathing suit and coverup most days. Men can don a bathing suit that dries and doubles as shorts during the daytime. A smart outfit can work for time ashore and for dinnertime. Cold-weather cruises are similar in that the two to three pairs of jeans or bottoms can mix and match with a few different tops and sweaters. In this case, passengers will often be wearing an overcoat when outside, anyhow.

Beer or Liquor

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While alcohol can be marked up and expensive on cruises, paying a little more for your booze is preferable to paying for beer or liquor that you cannot drink. On many cruises, passengers who bring their own beer or liquor may have it confiscated. If the beer or liquor is collected, the bottles will not be returned later, but rather thrown out. The only exception on some cruises is bottled wine, which, occasionally, is allowed, though only in limited quantities.


People have their rituals and routines, but while traveling, it is often easier to adapt to what is available rather than lugging along every indulgence. Take a hairdryer, for example. Cabins are almost always outfitted with a hairdryer.

Homemade Snacks

Like beer and liquor, cruises often have particular rules and guidelines about homemade food and snacks. Though it is perfectly fine to pack prepared, packaged food items, food items that are not sealed are not allowed on board.

Sentimental Jewelry

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Costume jewelry is the way to go when packing for a cruise. Though crime rates are low on cruise ships, it is always safer to leave heirloom jewelry or items that are highly sentimental at home unless it can be worn during the day and night, such as a wedding band or engagement ring. Be careful of loose jewelry that may slip off as well.