Packing For An Alaska Cruise Is Easy
- Dress in layers!; You’ll hear this again and again when researching what to pack for your visit to Alaska. But what does that mean exactly?; Begin with a lightweight short sleeved shirt , add a hoodie , cardigan sweater or fleece sweater , add to that an all-weather coat , & scarf if it is warranted.; If you get hot, simply shed enough clothes to make yourself comfortable.
- Most importantly, bring an all-weather jacket, preferably with a hood.; I recommend a waterproof, breathable jacket rather than just a nylon windbreaker, especially if you plan to do a lot of outdoor stuff. Sometimes the wind kicks up across the ocean and even though it is sunny & warm, the cold wind will go right through you.; The jacket doesn’t have to be heavy & lined, if you layer correctly, you’ll take care of the warmth, this will simply keep you dry!; Brands you’ll find in my closet are Patagonia, ,;Columbia, , & when I can afford it , North Face or Arc’teryx ; 🙂
Wool And Wicking Socks
For days onboard when you want to enjoy some rest and relaxation, a pair of wool socks will keep your feet nice and warm. Enjoy the view from your balcony with a hot chocolate on hand and comfortable socks on your feet.
For outdoor excursions, we recommend packing a pair of wicking socks, which will keep your feet dry while youre busy hiking or running outside.
Suitcases For An Alaska Cruise
Its not just what you pack for an Alaskan cruise, its what you pack it in! While Im usually all about only traveling with a carry on, Alaska was a checked bag type of situation.
When you are checking a bag, weight is what its all about. Under 50 pounds is the name of the game with most airlines. You dont want 15 of those pounds to be your suitcase, so you have to go light.
If you do not have a full size lightweight suitcase, first check with your friends and family to see if they have one you can borrow. Suitcases are those things many of us dont use often and are happy to loan out. I went ahead and purchased a full size lightweight suitcase because we know wed get use out of it in the future.
I went with a Travelpro Maxlite 29 Spinner. Let me say, it is a BIG suitcase. My Dad had a 25 which probably have been fine, but it gave me room for souvenirs. And as big as it was, it fit perfectly under my bed on the Ruby Princess.
I HIGHLY recommend getting a suitcase that is NOT black, and then adding ribbon or something else to make it quickly and easily identifiable wherever you go. Also a portable luggage scale can save you a lot of money in overweight baggage fees.
Its just practical to take a carry on in case the airlines has a snafu with your luggage.;Even if all goes smoothly at the airport, youll still want that carry on for the ship. Once you board the ship you wont see your suitcase for a few hours, possibly late into the evening.
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Daves Alaskan Cruise Packing List
- 1 dark suit
- 3 dress shirts for under suits.
- 4 ties
- 4 smart shirts for dinners
- 1 pair trekking pants
- 1 set of work out clothes
- 2 pair shorts
What Dave Would Have Changed
Should have brought:
Would have left at home
- Bulky Down jacket
- 1 dress shirt
- 2 ties
- 1 pair casual shoes
- 1 suit
- 1 trekking shirt. Didnt need two as the excursions are short and not strenuous.
An Alaskan Cruise requires a little more planning than a Caribbean or even European river cruise when it comes to packing. You need many more layers and a lot more luggage.;
What To Pack For Your Trip To Ketchikan Alaskaan Alaska Cruise Packing List
Ketchikan Alaska is a wonderful place to visit and I am often asked about what to pack for your visit!; The best advice I can give you is to bring options with you!!; This is one vacation where you won’t go wrong bringing more than less.
Disclosure: Some links on this page may be affiliate links. When you buy a product through one of these links, for example, at Amazon.com, I may receive a small commission – at no added cost to you.; Thank you for your support!
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Lonely Planet Alaska Guidebook
Theres nothing quite like using the guidebook to guide your own exploration of a destination; and Lonely Planet is my favorite company . The Lonely Planet guide for Alaska is a great resource for planning and once youre on the ground in the Last Frontier.
If youve never used a guidebook before, check out my helpful post on;how to use guidebooks!
Bonus: Get this guidebook for free with a free 30-day trial of Kindle Unlimited.
Got Questions On What To Take On An Alaskan Cruise
If youve got any further questions on what to take on an Alaskan cruise, leave us a comment below. Working out;what to wear in Alaska can be tricky but we are here to help.
Want more Alaska cruise packing tips from fellow cruisers? Join our Facebook group. We can help you work out what to take on a cruise to Alaska based on our own personal experience.
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The Ultimate Alaska Cruise Packing List
I recently wrote about what to wear on on Alaskan cruise, but then I realized that putting together an Alaska cruise packing list isnt just about what to wear, it is also what to bring along for the trip.
Even if you are a pro at packing for a Caribbean cruise, an Alaska cruise is a different experience and you may have trouble deciding what to pack. It starts with trading the shorts for rain pants and the sundresses for sweaters. But dont worry, this packing list includes everything you should need for an Alaskan cruise based on our experience aboard the Norwegian Bliss last summer.
Of course, some of what you pack will depend on which Alaska cruise excursions you choose, and your ports of call. It always pays to check the weather for your ports ahead of time, but the secret is to be prepared and this packing list will help!
The other thing to keep in mind is that the weather in Alaska can vary greatly day-by-day. We cruised in late August, and it was pretty cool, windy, and rainy the entire time. I have a friend that cruised a few weeks earlier and they had some days where it was warm enough to need shorts and t-shirts.
What To Pack For A 7 Day Cruise
A typical Alaska Cruise is a 7 day cruise. 7 day cruise packing list for Alaska can be something the underwear and day and night clothing items for 8 days. That can be enough.
Why for 8 days? You can add a pre-cruise day. It is not recommended to arrange the embarkation day and your flight arrival day on the same day. I have seen cruisers who arrived at the airport in the morning and then joining the ship. It looked very stressful. Actually they told me so. Get away from stress. Its a cruise vacation!
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The Weather In Alaska
If youre traveling in April, pack for temperatures in the 30s and 40s Fahrenheit. In May, that warms to the 40s and 50s Fahrenheit, while June temperatures can creep into the 60s Fahrenheit.
Alaska is rainforest territory, and Juneau, a stop on many cruise itineraries, sees an average of more than 60 inches of rainfall each year. Alaska also is windy, and umbrellas often cant stand up to a robust Alaskan wind.
While its not unusual to see snow in the mountains of the Alaskan interior during the summer, dont bother packing your sturdy snow boots for the cruise. Snow tends to fall between October and March. Snow outside that window tends not to stick. Glacier excursions often include the necessary gear.
What You Wont Need Or Cant Pack For An Alaskan Cruise
Sometimes packing for a cruise isnt just about what to bring, but also what not to bring. On the ship there are a number of rules about what you cant bring and there are also a number of things that you dont need because the ship provides them already.
Hair DryerYes, you can bring a hair dryer if you want to, but its not needed. Every cabin has a built-in hair dryer, similar to a hotel room. So if youre the type that has a fancy hair dryer that you cant live without, then you can bring it but most people will be perfectly fine leaving it at home.
TowelsOf course, your cabin will have towels in the room but many people wonder about larger beach towels for hanging out by the pool or hot tub on their cruise. Were happy to say that these are provided on the cruise ship as well, so no need to bring them from home. Best of all, you are free to take these towels off the ship with you onto shore .
Alcohol/BeerYes, you can bring wine or champagne in small quantities on your Alaskan cruise, but nothing else alcoholic is allowed aboard. That means leave the liquor and beer at home; youll have to purchase it on the ship if you want a drink. You can buy bottles in port, but they will be held until the end of the cruise and returned the night before you arrive home.
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What Else Should I Pack For My Cruise To Alaska
1- Insulated travel mug. Pack two of these. One for coffee to keep you warm and alert on deck while you obsessively look for wildlife for days on end. And one to pee in so you dont lose your prime spot. Best to buy two different colors so you dont mix them up. Maybe one in black and one in yellow.
2- Sport sunglasses. Glare from the water and ice can be quite strong. Also glare from my pasty legs in the hot tub can be quite strong. Pack a pair of lightweight sport sunglasses.
3- Sunscreen. So white that medical schools use me to train their students because you can see right through my skin to examine how live organs work, Ive become a bit of a sunscreen sommelier. I use this Thrive sunscreen because its natural, reef safe, plant-based with a hint of antioxidants, and works great. Bring whatever you like though. Just remember to BRING it, because it will be expensive to buy onboard.
4- Trekking poles. For balance and stability on walks and hikes on uneven surfaces and for fighting off bears if you forget item #7.
5- Bug repellent wipes. For repelling bugs and getting all your drinks paid for by fellow cruisers getting eaten alive by mosquitoes on your excursions, an Off! wipe in exchange for a drink at the bar later?
Dinner Or Smart Casual Clothes
Aside from the comfortable and sports clothing youll wear during the day and on excursions, youll also want to pack dressier attire, too. During dinner in the ships main restaurant, cruisers will dress according to Celebrity Cruises dress code.
Women can wear a smart dress, skirt, pants, or jeans with a casual top, and men can dress in pants or jeans with a short-sleeve sport shirt.
As for shoewear, the only rule is that flip flops are never allowed during evenings on the ship.
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It Can Be Very Cold In Alaska Or Sometimes It Can Be Very Warm
We had days at sea where we were on deck all day as we rotated in the bay watching the Marjorie Glacier.;We needed to be prepared for everything.
We also wanted to be comfortable working out in the gym, hanging around the indoor swimming pool, sitting in the lounge enjoying coffee or a glass of wine and looking good when we go to see a Vegas style show.
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It seems almost impossible to pack light for such a trip.
It was a difficult task scaling down our bags to include 1 suitcase and 1 garment bag each.
But overall we were quite happy with our packing choices.
With just a few adjustments, you will have the perfect packing list for Alaska by learning from our experience.
Clothing To Pack For Cruise To Alaska
Now lets talk about clothes to pack for an Alaskan cruise. My Princess Cruises trip to Alaska was in mid-September, which can be considered the rainy season. Luck have it we had almost no rain at all, but you really need to be prepared and pack for it.
The temperatures in Alaska can vary greatly, especially in the true summer months, so it is all about layers.
Living in Phoenix my extent of layering is throwing on a cardigan, so I wasnt totally sure at first what this whole layering thing was about. Thankfully its easy, and you can probably work with whats in your closet. If you dont already have everything you need, check with family an friends to see if you can borrow things like rain jackets.
Heres what my Alaska outfit layers looked like almost every day
Thats a LOT of layers, especially for a girl who lives in jeans and short sleeve t-shirts. But I have to say, it worked very well. I usually left the ship wearing everything on that list. It was easy to pull off layers or add back layers as needed.
While I brought a number of camis and t-shirts, I only brought two vests, one lightweight jacket, one warm jacket, one rain jacket and one scarf. This helped save space for packing, though I do look like Im wearing the exact same outfit the entire time, and when you are wearing 834 layers it adds some bulk to you. BUT YOU ARE IN ALASKA, so who cares!
Borrowed rain jacket was big, but did its job.
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What Clothing Shoes And Accessories Do I Need To Pack For A Cruise
A cruise vacation covers a lot of ground, which means youll need a lot of flexibility with your wardrobe, too. You can generally count on transitioning from daytime casual to Evening Chic aboard the ship, and you should also be able to segue from a fun-in-the-sun beach outing to a rainy-day city walking tour with ease.
Consult the weather forecasts closely in the days leading up to your trip, and think in terms of layers and mix-and-match ensembles to make sure your suitcase doesnt burst at the seams. Dont be afraid to recycle your more gently worn outfits: Rest assured that your fellow cruisers will be none the wiser if you don the same duds twice.
Youll want comfy pajamas to cozy up in after a long day spent exploring port.
What Technology Items Do I Need To Pack For A Cruise
These days, all of those electronic gadgets that we love could take up a suitcase all their own! To be digitally entertained and easily catch up with emails and news back home, keep your cell phone and laptop high on your cruise packing list.
Your cell phone might be all you need to take pictures, listen to music, and have an alarm clock for the morning. If thats not the case, you might want to bring along a proper camera , music , and a travel alarm clock.
All those gadgets will need charging, too, so dont forget those chargers. A power strip can help ensure that the stateroom has more than enough juice to go around.
If youll be spending a lot of time by the pool and beach, do consider a waterproof phone case to help protect your cell phone. And if youre staying abroad at hotel pre- or post-cruise, dont overlook voltage adapters, as needed.
Finally, if youre headed somewhere with great wildlifelike Alaska, for instancea good pair of binoculars is sure to up those wow-factor moments.
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What To Wear On A Cruise To Alaska
What to pack for an Alaska cruise? Im asked this question a lot. And my answer is always the same: not as much as you think.
With the typical Alaskan cruise ranging from one to two weeks, your Alaska cruise packing list should include clothing layers for outdoor fun with mix and match outfits for evenings, including formal nightif the cruise will have one.
In fact, as couple travelers, you and your partner could probably manage with one checked bag between you, a rolling carryon for her plus a personal item bag. Hell be fine with a backpack, which you can also share on those fabulous Alaska cruise excursions. This advice remains the same for solo travelers, too.
Remember, lightweight, layered clothing is your friend. I traveled for 21 days in China using only a rolling carryon and a personal item bag. You can do it, too!
Must Have Items To Bring On Cruise To Alaska:
Sunglasses I recommend a pair of polarized sunglasses to block the sun and its UVA/UVB rays. The first time I used polarized sunglasses was like a whole new world for me! I kept taking them off and putting them on saying before, after.; They certainly improve visibility and make things appear crisper.
Sunscreen Even though you are in Alaska, you can still get sunburned! I personally used a lotion that had sunscreen in it and applied throughout the day.;
Binoculars This is one trip you will want to purchase a good pair of binoculars. It was all I asked for Christmas the year prior to our Alaska cruise vacation. Chris was pretty smart and got me a used pair of Steiner binoculars from the local pawn shop that stabilized and all. Everyone that we shared them with bragged about how well they could see the bears catching fish or glaciers calving.
Camera and gear dont forget your zoom/wide angle lens, GoPro, tripod , or extra camera batteries and SD card. If you prefer to take pictures from your cell phone, I suggest getting a wide angle lens to use with your camera phone. Then, you can edit your photos using the free app Snapseed. I find that using this wide angle makes for some good selfies, too. I found a great camera rain cover that was handy when I wanted to take pictures of the glaciers but it was sprinkling.
Multi-USB charger-Perfect for charging your cell phone, camera batteries, and other electrical items at the same time.
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