Pixie dust tends to lose it’s luster when you have to buy something just to get through the day, so let’s save some money and magic with this Disney Cruise packing list. This packing list includes everything you’ll need to cruise in style, along with some extra magic items that are specific to Disney Cruise Line.
Print this list and check off each item as you put it in your suitcase. Save the On-Deck/Day Bag portion to take with you as a quick checklist before you leave your stateroom each day.
What to Pack for a Disney Cruise:
- The Basics: Clothes/Toiletries/Meds
- What to Pack for Formal Night
- On-Deck/Daily Bag
- Disney Extras Packing List
- What to Pack for Castaway Cay
- What NOT to Pack
The Basics: Clothes/Toiletries/Meds
These are the essentials like clothing, makeup, medication and swimwear.
- 1 pair of shorts/skirt/dress for every day of the cruise: If packing skirts, be advised that the deck is windy. Know what I’m sayin?
- 1 shirt for each day
- At least 2 sweatshirts or sweaters: Even if you’re setting sail for the Bahamas, the deck can get quite chilly at night… think about a car headed down the freeway in the summer. Still breezy.
- 2 pairs of sweatpants
- 1 pair of socks for each day
- Sneakers: You’ll need these for trekking on island paths, working out in the onboard gym, or just giving your feet a break from flat sandals.
- Flip-flops or sandals
- 1 pair of underwear for each day of the cruise (seems obvious, but my son forgot these once)
- Hats: I’m a big hat-lady, and the skin on my face has thanked me. Pack a hat for sun protection even if you don’t normally wear one. It’ll be great when you’re eating that buffet in the morning (blaring) sun.
The Big Makeup List
Set aside from toiletries, here’s an extensive list of makeup items (there is a formal night!) so that you can make sure you’ve checked off every last thing. Your makeup needs can vary, so start out by circling what you’d typically use, and then check these off as they go into your suitcase.
- Waterproof Mascara: For the pool and spa. You’ll thank me later!
- False eyelashes
- Eyelash glue: Don’t use the cheap kind. A cruise is no place to risk your eyeballs.
- Eye primer
- Setting powder
- Makeup sponges
- Makeup remover (in a travel-sized bottle)
- Lip liner
- Night cream/moisturizer
Toiletries and Medicine
- Deodorant: The spaces on a ship are small. Do us all a favor.
- Shampoo/Conditioner/Lotion/Bodywash: You’ll only need to bring this if you don’t like the H2O brand of free products provided in your stateroom.
- Daily Vitamins: I suggest using a daily vitamin organizer and only packing as many as you need.
- Prescription medications: Pack in original prescription bottles.
- First-Aid Kit: There is first-aid onboard the ship, but this could save you a trip for a minor incident. Your kit should have bandages, alcohol wipes, and antiseptic cream.
- Pain meds: Bring your preference of ibuprofen, acetaminophen, aspirin, etc.
- Motion-Sickness Kit: I really recommend you keep a zipper bag dedicated to motion-sickness supplies. These can include Sea-Bands, aromatherapy oils for behind the ears, Dramamine, etc. Put whatever you need in here so it can be accessed quickly without looking through your other meds. The sooner you stop seasickness, the better!
Extra Medical (Like extra magic, but not as fun)
- Contact Lens Case
- Contact lens fluid
- Glasses case
- Dental appliance case
- Earplugs (for sleeping, this is a different kind than swimming)
Babies 6 months and older are welcome to party on a Disney cruise.
- Pre-packaged baby food: You can bring your own on the ship as long as it’s still sealed.
- Diapers: Enough for every day of the cruise. Yep, count them again.
- Diaper Bag
- Swim diapers (Children in diapers are permitted to use the splash pads)
- What Not to Bring: There is a lot of baby stuff that can be provided upon request by Disney Cruise Line, free-of-charge. Pack n’ Plays, bottle warmers, strollers and more are among our what-not-to-pack list.
- Baby hat that ties or fits snugly (for the windy decks)
- Warm clothes: Pack a jacket, socks and sweatpants for potentially chilly nights.
This may seem like an obvious one, but there can be a few extras involved:
- Swimsuit/trunks: Try them on before you leave the house! Especially if it’s been a while since summer. Kids grow out of these faster than you’d think. Ladies, pack a suit that isn’t likely to fly off on those waterslides.
- Swim shoes: Not a must for the pools, but some want them for the beaches.
- Earplugs: If you’re a swimming-with-earplugs person, you’ll know that these are different than sound-proof earplugs.
- Swim cap
- Cover-Up: A light button-up will work great to keep the sun off of your arms.
- Sunhat: Yes, I’m going to put “hat” wherever possible on this list! For the deck, try to get a hat that has a chinstrap or fits snugly, as the wind can really kick up.
- Small personal swim bag to keep glasses, etc on your chair.
- No Towels: There’s towel service on the ship, so don’t burden yourself by bringing personal beach towels.
Disney Cruise Formal Attire
There is likely an optional formal night onboard your cruise, where everyone gets the play dress-up while attending dinner and the nightly Broadway-style show. It may be easy to remember the pants, shirt and dress, but don’t forget the trimmings:
- Dress socks
- Formal shoes
- Slimming undergarments: If you are a lady who loves her Spanx, I know you’d be mad if you left it behind.
- White t-shirt: This is one that guys can forget to pack to wear under a dress shirt.
- Tie: Not required, but they sure do look spiffy.
- Jewelry: Pack it up carefully, and keep in your carry-on. Be sure to use the safe available in your cabin for any valuables.
The packing doesn’t stop at home. You’ll need to pack up a day bag every day when you head out of your stateroom for fun on the ship. The hallways are long, so running back to your room can be a pain. When you print this packing list, cut out this section and tuck in a day bag so you’ll have a handy checklist for day-to-day items.
- Hats: With everything to do on deck, you’re likely to get a burnt nose even before you hit the beach.
- Sunglasses: You’ll be taking these out and putting them back in your bag more than any other item during this trip.
- Cellphone: If this is your primary camera, keep it in a Ziplock or other bag to prevent it from getting wet on deck.
- Water bottle
Disney Extras Packing List
This isn’t just any cruise… so, of course, there are Disney extras you should pack, too.
- Mickey ears and Minnie headbands: Don’t forget these. There will be plenty of photo-ops on the ship and you don’t want to be stuck buying a pair onboard for $28. I suggest you head to Etsy to score ears that no one else has.
- Autograph book: Your best Disney friends will be fully expecting to sign autographs for you.
- Large Pen: Some of those special Disney friends have big hands and will appreciate a very large clickable pen to get the job done.
- Disney Trading Pins: The shops on the ship will have trading books open, cast members will be wearing pins, and there will even be special pin trading events on your itinerary.
- Disney Cruise Door Magnets: This is a Disney Cruise activity that you’ll want to participate in. Those hallways are long on a Disney ship, so to make your door easier to find (and seem more like home) get a set of cruise door magnets.
But you don’t need anything fancy or laminated to make your door the envy of your neighbors. I recommend the kind you print out yourself and then just adhere sticky magnet tape to (it can be found at any Walmart for about $4).
I’ve actually been creating printable Disney Cruise door designs for years on Etsy. It’s just the ears, clothes and accessories… your stateroom door number will complete the set!
- Fish Extender: This is a Disney Cruise Line phenomenon that you’ll have to put a bit of planning into to get in on. Families can join a Facebook Group that will assign them to a group of cruisers that will be on the same sailing.
Each family constructs a “fish extender” (called so because it hangs from the fish or seahorse outside your door), where small gifts are collected. Kind of like reverse trick-or-treat.
- Pirate Attire: (For the Caribbean and Bahamian sailings) Some people go all-out will entire costumes, but whether you go full-on eyepatch or just wear a lace-up vest and a striped skirt, you’ll want to pack something at least pirate-esque for the big “Pirates in the Caribbean” celebration.
What to Pack for Castaway Cay
One great thing about Castaway Cay is that there are shops on the island, so if you can buy whatever you forgot on the ship. But those little extras aren’t included in the price of your cruise, and you can bet they come at a premium: It isn’t cheap for Mickey to ship sunblock and swim trunks to a private island!
These items are in addition to the basic Disney Cruise Packing List.
- Bottled water or Camelback: There are cups of water available, but for refillable and practical hydration you’ll have to purchase sealed bottled water on the island. If you are refilling your water bottle, use the cups provided… don’t touch the bottle to the spigot.
- Sun Protection: You’ve probably used your sunblock, hats and wraps a few times already while on the deck of the ship. Round those items up and pack them for a long day on the beach.
For the Beach
- Beach Bag: Pack a separate bag that you have designated just for carrying your swim essentials. You’ll want to make sure it’s big enough to fit everything. Use zipper bags to carry smaller items within your larger beach bag.
- Sand drink holders: These are a nice-to-have to keep your drink from tipping over in the sand. They are shaped like pointy cups, so could be easy to pack if you can spare the space.
- Sand Toys: Pick up a few at the dollar store at home, and make sure to get one shaped like a castle: The kids will be begging for the castle bucket set selling for $20 in the island shop. When packing, use the large bucket as a container for underwear and socks.
If you don’t want to bring the toys back home, be a good samaritan — pass them on to another family before you get back on the ship. If you’re packing them up, bring a mesh bag to help carry and knock off the sand.
- Baby Powder or Sand-Off Mitt: Both of these can help to dust the sand off of your body. I suggest just dusting off and taking a shower on the ship, but some people (a lot of kids) can get fussy when sand gets stuck in uncomfortable places.
- Waterproof Watch: In the real world, we are attached to our phones at all times. But in the fantasy of Castaway Cay, everyone plays the “What time is it?” game, because their phones are likely tucked away.
- Bug Spray: There will likely be a complimentary bug spray tent when you get off the ship, but if you’d rather use your own brand, feel free to bring it along. Notes: In 4 visits, I have never had an issue with bugs or bites on the island.
- Stamps: There is a post office right by the port where you can send a postcard or letter to someone back home (or even yourself!) No need to bring postcards, paper or envelopes — these are all complimentary and located in the drawer of your stateroom desk.
- Dental Floss or Picks: The island BBQ includes corn and ribs, so bring a bit of floss if having stuff stuck in your teeth is typically an issue.
- Eye Drops: Where there’s sand, there’s the potential of sand in your eye. Packing this tiny bottle could save you from a spoiled day.
What NOT to Pack on a Disney Cruise
Loose prescription meds: The standard for customs and security is that these remain in their original bottles.
Towels: There is towel service on the ship. No need to pack your cool Incredibles towel.
Valuables: There is an in-room safe, but it’s just a good idea to keep valuables to a minimum. Plan carefully for formal night jewelry and don’t bring more than you need. The less to keep track of, the more carefree your cruise.
Hair Care and Lotion: The shampoo, conditioner, bodywash, and lotion provided by Disney Cruise Line is high-quality H2O products. Unless you have sensitive skin or a product preference, you don’t have to pack these.
Food is Restricted: Don’t pack and food on/off the ship. Customs laws prohibit the transfer of fruits, meats, etc. outside of the United States. Depending on where your cruise goes, this could vary.
A Lot of Baby Stuff: Pack n’ Plays, strollers, bottle warmers and more are provided upon request on a Disney cruise. Check our full list for what is available.