Are you searching for the ultimate packing list of things to take on your Disney cruise vacation?
In preparation for your big trip, making a packing list of essentials for your family may feel like a daunting task. You don’t want to leave anything at home, but you also don’t want to overpack.
In this post, I will detail the items my family takes with us on our Disney cruises. If you are looking for a printable packing list, you can sign up to receive a FREE PDF version to your email inbox at the bottom of this post!
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- Embarkation Day Bag Essentials
- Disney Cruise Packing Guide
- Organization Hacks
- Things to Buy before Your Disney Cruise
- Packing Tips
- Baby and Toddler Items
Embarkation Day Bag Essentials
Before I dive into explaining all the things you will need for your trip, I wanted to first discuss embarkation day. This is the very first day of your cruise when you board the cruise ship.
Since you will give your luggage to the porters at the Disney Cruise Line terminal, you will probably want to keep a small carryon bag with you when you embark.
The DCL crew members will deliver your luggage to your stateroom later in the afternoon or even after dinner. It is a good idea to keep important things that you may need throughout the day with you in a carryon bag.
Some items that you would want to pack in your embarkation day bag include:
- baby/toddler essentials
- identification/ passports
- Port Arrival Form
- prescription medications
- sea sickness medication
- dollar bills for tipping
- phone charger
- extra change of clothes
For more detailed information on embarkation day, you can check out this post- Disney Cruise Line Guide to Embarkation Day. In that post, I also discuss what types of outfits are best to wear on embarkation day.
Disney Cruise Packing Guide
If you are wondering what you should pack for your Disney cruise, this guide is a great place to start! It includes all the must haves that I take for my family.
In general, you can wear whatever you want (within reason) on the Disney cruise.
Even on “formal night” you will see loads of people wearing casual outfits. You shouldn’t feel out of place in a gown/suit or in a sundress/polo shirt.
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Plenty of people will be wearing both types of clothing, so you will fit in no matter what you decide to do.
DCL does have some dress code guidelines that you will want to follow if you eat in the specialty, adult only areas. You can find those guidelines here.
These are the clothing items I typically pack for my family’s cruises:
- Swimsuits– Pack 2-3 swimsuits per person. This way you have an extra suit to wear while the other one is hanging to dry.
- Coverups– You are not supposed to enter certain areas of the ship (like the buffet) wearing swimsuits. We like to pack coverups/sundresses to throw on over our swimwear. This way you can eat breakfast and then swim without going back to your stateroom to change.
- Dinner Attire– We usually eat in the Main Dining Rooms during our trips. You can typically find my husband in golf attire (polo and pants) and my daughters and I in casual dresses for dinner. I ALWAYS pack a cardigan or light jacket for my kids and I because the dining rooms can get chilly.
- Day Outfits– In addition to your swimsuit and coverup, you will probably want an outfit to wear during the day. We tend to return to our stateroom after swimming to change into dry clothes before going back out for other activities.
- Workout Clothes– If you plan on hitting the gym or the jogging track, you will want to include workout clothes on your packing list.
- Other Essentials– Also don’t forget shoes, socks, undergarments, and pajamas! The Disney cruise ships do have laundry rooms available for super reasonable prices if you need to wash clothes on your trip.
All of these items will not apply to everyone; however, I tried to include the really important things I’m always terrified of leaving at home!
- Passports/Identification Documents– We use our passports at check in and then store them in the stateroom safe throughout the trip.
- Driver’s License– Since we leave our passports onboard the ship, my husband and I take our driver’s licenses off the ship and into port. You will be asked to show your Key to the World card and your photo ID (not including minors) to get back on the ship.
- Cash– Take a bunch of $1 bills for tipping. We tip our drivers to/from the port, porters, and room service to name a few.
- Sea Sickness Medicine– I pack this in my embarkation bag just in case. You can click here to read my post on ways to prevent and manage motion sickness!
- Port Arrival Form– This is the piece of paper you print once you finish online check in.
- Other Important Necessities– glasses/contacts, phone, camera, chargers, medication
If your cruise itinerary includes the Caribbean islands, the Bahamas, or Castaway Cay, you are probably going to be spending time on a beach. These are the items I recommend packing.
- Beach Bag/Backpack
- Water Shoes (lots of shells at Castaway Cay)
- Sand Toys
- Collapsible Sand Pail (Amazon Affiliate Link)
- Flip Flops
- Refillable Water Bottles (Amazon Affiliate Link)
**Note that you DO NOT need to pack beach towels.
Disney Cruise Line provides some bathroom amenities in your stateroom. These include shampoo, conditioner, lotion, and body wash.
You may also want to pack the following:
- Face Moisturizer
- Shaving Cream/Razors
- Hair Brush/Hair Products
- Air Freshener
- Flat Iron/Curling Iron
- Hair Dryer (DCL provides one, but I bring my own.)
These come in super handy during your cruise, and they help to keep your stateroom really organized!
- Lanyards– These hold your Key to the World card so that you always have easy access to it. I have recently started holding my Key card in my phone case since I always have my phone with me to use as a camera. This is the phone case I use. (Amazon Affiliate Link)
- Collapsible Hamper– I take this with me every time we travel. Since it folds flat, it takes up very little space in your suitcase. You can see the hamper I have here. (Amazon Affiliate Link)
- Packing Cubes– These are AMAZING! Each member of my family has his/her own color. You can pack pajamas in one, workout clothes in another, undergarments in a different one, etc. They make it super easy to unpack your clothing because you can pile them on shelves or in drawers without mixing up your items. I HIGHLY recommend them! You can see the packing cubes I use here! (Amazon Affiliate Link)
- Gallon Ziplock Bags– I pack anything that can potentially leak in a Ziplock bag. I also pack a few extra bags to hold wet swimsuits that way we can change clothes while in port and put our wet suits in a bag.
- Magnetic Hooks– These are awesome! Did you know that most of the walls, doors, and ceilings on the ships are magnetic?! That means you can stick these hooks virtually anywhere in your stateroom and they will be secure. You can hang wet swimsuits, lanyards, etc. from these hooks. You can see the magnetic hooks we have here! (Amazon Affiliate Link)
- Over the Door Shoe Organizer– I use the magnetic hooks mentioned above to attach this shoe organizer to the bathroom door in our stateroom. You can then use the shoe organizer to hold anything from sunscreen to hairbrushes to toiletries. See the organizer I use here! (Amazon Affiliate Link)
- Hanging Closet Shelves– I like to pack this because it folds up really flat and doesn’t take up much space. You can hang it inside your stateroom closet for more storage space. This is the hanging closet shelf I use. (Amazon Affiliate Link)
Things to Buy before Your Disney Cruise
The items below are things you may want to pack and are mostly exclusive to Disney cruises.
- Door Decorations– Since the stateroom doors are magnetic, you can attach magnets to special decorations for some extra fun. (The majority of people do not do this, so don’t feel like it is something that is necessary.) On my most recent cruise, I bought some foam Christmas decorations from a local craft store. I hot glued magnets to the backs of these so they would attach to the magnetic stateroom door. I want to caution you not to spend a ton of money on these decorations. Ours have been known to turn up missing during a cruise so make sure you are ok losing whatever you put up.
- Light Card– On the Disney Fantasy and Dream, you need to put a card in the power slot in order to have electricity in your room. In other words, your stateroom lights and outlets only work with a card in the slot. Since any credit card sized card will do, we like to use an old Disney gift card as our light card. You can hot glue a magnet to the back of a gift card. Then it’s easy to store it on the magnetic wall when it’s not in use.
- Pirate Night Outfit– Disney Cruise Line assigns one night per cruise as a themed “Pirate Night.” You will notice that some people go ALL OUT on this night. So if you love to dress in costume, this is the perfect opportunity for you! You will find that others go more low key by wearing pirate themed shirts or a couple pirate accessories. If you don’t want to dress up, that is perfectly fine too!
- Other DCL Extras– Some Disney cruisers also make sure to pack things like Disney pins for trading, fish extender gifts for exchanging, and autograph books for character signing.
The following items are random things you may want to add to your packing list.
- Clothes Pins– You can use these to hang clothes to dry in the bathroom.
- Pen– Pack a pen in your embarkation bag so you can fill out forms while standing in line at check in.
- Dish Soap/Bottle Brush– If you bring refillable water bottles, you will want to pack dish soap to clean them in the bathroom. I also pack a bottle brush to reach down into the water bottle for cleaning.
- Pre-packaged Snacks– We pack pre-packaged items like popcorn and candy to take with us to the nightly shows so we don’t have to buy any onboard.
- Downy Wrinkle Releaser– Greatest thing ever!!!! If you have never used Downy Wrinkle Releaser, you are missing out. I literally NEVER iron. You just spray this on your clothes, smooth them out, and the wrinkles disappear as it dries. You can find travel sized bottles here. (Amazon Affiliate Link)
Baby and Toddler Items
If you are traveling with a baby or toddler, you will have extra items to take with you. Disney Cruise Line provides milk, juice, and water for free. They are also great about providing puréed food for little ones.
Some other items you may want to pack are as follows:
- diaper rash cream
- disposable diaper bags
- favorite toys/blankets
- sippy cups/bottles
- formula/breast feeding accessories
- swim diapers
- baby soap
You can click here to find my list of items to pack in your carryon bag when flying with a toddler!
Free Printable pdf
If you would like a printable packing list, you can sign up below for a copy to be emailed to you.
Did this Disney cruise packing list help you decide what to pack for your Disney cruise?
Comment below and share your own tips and hacks!