Packing for a cruise for most people means trying to streamline the pile as much as possible so you don’t have to lug around a heavy suitcase. But apparently some people try to bring the kitchen sink.
For these people, cruise lines post rules on their websites outlining what you can and can’t bring onboard.
There are obvious items in the no-no category such as weapons and anything that looks like a real weapon, illegal drugs (including medical marijuana) and anything that might potentially cause a safety hazard – such as candles and incense, fireworks, strings of holiday lights and small electrical appliances.
Beyond that, the rules vary by cruise line (including in terms of what alcohol you may or may not be able to bring onboard). It’s a good idea to check the regulations in advance so you don’t have items confiscated.
Here are 10 things you may not be able to pack on your cruise.
Musical instruments: Bringing along your guitar, or violin or saxophone is banned on some, but not all lines. You can bring your musical instrument on Carnival Cruise Lines, Royal Caribbean and Celebrity Cruises, but it will be confiscated if a noise complaint is received.
Martial arts gear: Leave your Ninja gear at home. Most lines ban martial arts items. Princess Cruises specifically notes, “No knuckle dusters, clubs, coshes and rice flails.”
Hockey sticks: Some Royal Caribbean ships have ice-skating rinks, but that doesn’t mean you should plan for a pickup game. Sticks are banned along with both baseball and cricket bats.
Surfboards: If you want to ride the waves in port you’ll probably have to rent a board. They are banned on the ships of Carnival and Disney. Royal Caribbean allows you to bring a Boogie Board, but it should be no more than 42 inches in length and used in port only.
Skateboards: Some lines outright ban skateboards, including Royal Caribbean and Celebrity Cruises. Carnival allows you to bring your skateboard, but for use in port, not on the ship (you need to keep it in your cabin or it may be confiscated).
Shoes with wheels: Your kids may love them, but shoes with wheels are considered a safety hazard on cruise ships and are banned by several lines.
Kites: Yes, they sing about kites in “Mary Poppins,” but you can’t “go fly a kite” when you’re cruising with Disney. Kites are banned from the line’s ships. Balloons, inflatable floats and wagons are specifically banned too.
Metal detectors: These are prohibited by Disney both shipboard and on the line’s private island of Castaway Cay. Metal detectors are also banned by other lines, including Carnival.
Scuba gear: Policies vary by cruise line –several prohibit diving knives. Banned on Norwegian Cruise Line ships is all scuba gear. Banned on Royal Caribbean are full or empty dive tanks and spears.
Grandma’s cookies: Bringing a snack from home may be a rule-breaker. Norwegian lists “unsealed food items” among things you can’t bring shipboard. Disney bans “Homemade, pre-cooked or other perishable food items plus any open snack containers.”
Clothes irons: Cruise lines generally ban any item with a heating element including clothes irons (though shipboard laundry facilities may have one you can use). An exception is made for hair curling and straightening irons, as long as you don’t keep them plugged in.
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