Six Cabin Tips from Veteran Cruisers

Inspiration Travel



Whether heading south to the Caribbean or north to Alaska, many travelers go into their first cruise with a little uncertainty. That’s because cruise ships are so unique. They’re a world apart from everyday life. They seem to come with their own set of rules, behaviors and choices.

Savvy, experienced cruisers have learned how to navigate these choices successfully, so we’ve turned to a few of them to advise less-experienced cruise travelers. Here are some of their tips about getting the most out of your cabin:

1. Most cabins have insufficient numbers of outlets, especially for travelers who need to charge smartphones. Solve this problem by packing your own power strip. And don’t hesitate to ask your cabin steward if there are any “hidden” outlets in your cabin. These are designed to maximize space so efficiently that they can be easy to overlook.

2. Cruise ship cabins are built off-ship and then installed as complete units. These are constructed of metal, which means their walls are magnetic! Pack a few magnets, and use the empty wall space to organize the selection of newsletters, planners and invitations you receive each day.

3. One of the drawbacks of interior cabins is the lack of natural light. Combine that with the travel—and the fact that most cruise cabins don’t provide alarm clocks—and it can impact your sleep schedule. If you prefer something other than a clock to tell you what time it is, tune your in-cabin television to the station showing the camera view from the bridge. Mute it, but keep the TV on all night. It works as a subtle nightlight and you’ll definitely know when the sun has risen.

4. There’s room under your bed. Empty suitcases can take up precious closet or cabin space once you’ve unpacked. Take a look beneath your bed. On many cruise ships, this space is open—and high enough to hide an empty suitcase or two.

5. If your bed is less comfortable than you prefer, ask for assistance. Some cruise lines will provide bedding extras like alternative types of pillows or egg-crate mattress toppers for passengers who need them.

6. Plan for cramped quarters. There’s not much counter or shelf space in your bathroom, so pack an over-the-door shoe bag to store your toiletries. Also, your ship’s housekeeping department can provide additional hangers upon request.

If you’ve cruised before, what are your favorite packing tips?