Cruising, like any travel requires advanced planning and packing. However, unlike regular travel where you can run down the street to the nearest drug store or Walmart, being on a ship gives you limited options to replace items forgotten. And often if you can find these items on board, they are quite a bit more expensive than on land.
Here are the top 6 items I forget when I travel:
#6 Tylenol – I’m VERY good at remembering my medicine, even my inhaler that I use only once in a while. It’s on my top of mind packing list. What I tend to forget, however is Tylenol. This particular brand is even more important for me, because due to a medical condition, I cannot take normal asprin, so my options are limited. No matter how fun your vacation turns out to be, you will invariably end up with a headache and curse yourself if you forgot your remedy of choice. Add to this list the medicines that rarely use, but should bring, like Benedryl, allergy medicine (I once paid $8 for 1 Zyrtec on business trip at the hotel lobby) and heartburn medicine.
#5 Saline Solution – If you wear contacts, you know this is a very important toiletry to have. While I sometimes have a small one in my purse, a lengthy trip requires a large. Add to that list a spare set (or 2) of contacts, as well as your glasses for an emergency.
#4 Hair accessories – Especially important if you have long hair and are going on a cruise. Trust me, you will want to have hair ties when you are walking on the deck at night and it’s windy. You’re on a boat, you WILL be wind blown.
#3 Hat – Sunscreen is something I have never forgotten on a trip. Many years as a lifeguard in the sun has taught me well. However, almost every trip I think, “Gee, wouldn’t it be nice to have a hat or visor?” and yet, every time I pack, I never think of it. It’s not that I don’t have any, I have plenty of Yankees caps, and a very cool favorite floppy straw hat for the beach. But for some reason, I never think to pack it!
#2 Deodorant – Another item I forget often, and something I’ve bought all over the world, including San Juan (there’s a great drug store right near the port – I always pick up forgotten items there if I can wait). Not wanting to spend the extra money for a travel size deodorant on board, I used my husbands for a few days. I do recommend it, women should not smell like men.
#1 Hair Brush – No matter where I travel, I always forget to bring a hair brush. It’s become somewhat of a joke in my family, “Did you bring your hair brush?”.
I realize this is my personal list, so here are some other items I find that are just as important and have been forgotten by friends, family or co-workers:
- Bathing Suit – It goes without saying that this is an item that is used often on a cruise, and not as easy to replace – who wants to go bathing suit shopping on board, with a limited selection?
- Sneakers – Flip Flops, or another pair of shoes – You wouldn’t want to be stuck in heels during your cruise or the one pair of shoes that weren’t the most comfortable
- Pajamas – Nothing that a pair of shorts and a t-shirt can’t fix, but if you packed light, this will cut into your allocation
- Medication – For everyone in the family
- Socks – important if you are bringing sneakers
Just remember not to stress yourself out over a forgotten item. There are always options. If it’s a toiletry item, call Guest Services first, many hotels and cruise lines will have some emergency supplies for you gratis. No matter where you are, there should be a small store to buy easily forgotten items. However, sometimes they are not open at that moment that you want to take out your contacts and reach for the saline solution that isn’t in the bag. Or, if you’re like me and always remember in transit, you could stop at the store on the way to the port.
Hope this list helps! What have you forgotten on a cruise?