Over 25 things NOT to take on a cruise (2023)

Wondering what items you can't take on a cruise? You've come to the right place! Cruise ships have very specific rules and guidelines about what can be carried on their ships. There are slight variations between cruise lines, but for the most part there are consistent rules regarding thiswhat not to take on a cruise.

Over 25 things NOT to take on a cruise (1)

So you didyou have chosen your perfect cruiseand you used ours wiselythe ultimate packing list for Caribbean cruisesthat will help you prepare for the cruise, but you will learn everything in this articlethings you need to do don't go on a cruiseregardless of destination or cruise line.

Be sure to read oursexpert advice and the best cruise tipsso you can make your vacation perfect! And don't set sail without reading our list37 Must-haves for a boat tripneeded on the go!

Some of the links in this post may be affiliate links. This means that at no extra cost to you, I may earn a small commission if you make a purchase after clicking on one of my links. Read more in mycompensation.

What kind of articles are prohibited?

Certain items are always prohibited on cruise ships. In general, this includes, but is not limited to:

  • All kinds of weapons, including toys or replicas
  • All kinds of explosives, including fireworks
  • Anything that poses a fire hazard, such as candles, incense, hobs, irons and steamers, and appliances of any kind (except personal care appliances)
  • Drugs, including marijuana
  • Surge protectors and extension cords
  • Everything on wheels except prams and luggage.

What happens if you pack prohibited items?

Just like at the airport, you must go through security before boarding a cruise ship. You drop off your luggage, take your hand luggage with you and go to the security checkpoint. Here you go through metal detectors and your hand luggage is searched... Your bagregistered passes security checks, but behind the scenes.

If you are found to be in possession of contraband, they will confiscate it. Depending on the severity of the prohibited item, you may not be allowed on board at all. If it is an illegal substance, you could be fined, arrested or even prosecuted.

Some items may be returned to you at the end of your cruise.We have seen tables set up at the disembarkation filled with various confiscated items. Not everything is always returned, so it is important that you only take permitted items on your cruise.

What not to take on a cruise - Prohibited items

Weapons (including self-defense items)

This should be obvious, but we have to say it. Leave all weapons, even toy guns. Do not bring real weapons, new weapons, hidden weapons or anything that looks like weapons. Also, do not bring any ammunition.

This includes firearms, knives, sticks and pepper spray, brass knuckles, maces, swords, bows and arrows, and anything else that is considered a weapon. Toy weapons such as Nerf guns are also not allowed. Handcuffs are another thing you are not.allowed to bring.

Diving knives may be allowed, but usually the cruise line will keep them until you inspect them for use on your diving trip.

Drugs (including marijuana)

Illegal substances of any kind are not allowed. Marijuana is no exception to this rule. Even if marijuana is legal in your state or the state the cruise departs from, marijuana is still illegal at the federal level. Therefore, do not bring marijuana with you.It will be confiscated, will not be returned to you, and you may even be sued.

This applies to all types of marijuana, including oils, edibles, and other forms. This also applies to medical marijuana.

For prescription drugs, it is good practice to always carry the original prescription bottles with your name on them.


This is another item that shouldn't be on the list, but it's banned for a reason. Explosives are not allowed. This includes fireworks, flares, and anything else that can explode. Should have plenty of breathtaking experiences!

Candles, incense, lighters

Being lit with a lit candle holder and incense, it hurts but it makes sense. No naked flames are allowed on a cruise ship. No one wants to be caught in a fire in the middle of the ocean. Leave candles and incense at home.Candles for the atmosphere, please bringbattery operated flameless candles.

Lighters are allowed, but only regular lighters, not new lighters or flashlight lighters.

Irons or steam machines

No irons or steamers for clothing are allowed on the cruise. It's an annoying rule but they are considered a fire hazard. They will confiscate all irons and steamers. Also they don't provide anything in the room for you to use.

So the question arises: "How do I remove wrinkles from my clothes?" Some people hang their clothes in the bathroom when they take a hot shower. Some people bring onewrinkle removal spraysolve the problem. There are people who pay to use a ship wash service. And some people just carelessly rock their wrinkled appearance.

Which one you choose is up to you! You just need to know that it does not require an iron or steamer.

Extension cords with surge protection

Extension cords are generally not allowed on cruise ships. However, power strips are allowed and we strongly recommend that you bring at least one with you. Some cruise ship cabins have very limited power outlets, so a power strip can really come in handy. electrical outlets such as USB portsare even better.

we broughtthis outletwith us and it worked like a charm.

The passenger power rail must not have a surge protector installed. If this happens they will confiscate it. You can usually get it back at the end of the cruise when you first disembark. However, this is not guaranteed, so you should only bring an unprotected power strip with yousurge protector.

Hobs and cookers

No items with a heating element are allowed on the cruise ship, with the exception of personal care items such as straighteners and curling irons. If you try to bring anything hot, it will be confiscated. This includes, but is not limited to:

  • Heating plates
  • Coffee machines
  • Heated blankets
  • Humidifiers
  • Microwave
  • Boilers
  • Toasters

Roller skates and other items on wheels

Cruise ships, like any other boat, are subject to the vagaries of the sea. They rock and bump, sometimes unexpectedly. For this reason, no wheeled items should be brought in except for luggage, wheelchairs, scooters and pushchairs.

Do not bring the following items:

  • Skating
  • Roller shoes (like Heelys)
  • Let's go
  • Skateboarding
  • abuse
  • Skateboards
  • Scooters


The vast majority of cruise lines do not allow drones on board.Drones and other flying objects such as kites pose a risk to other people on board. They are therefore not allowed on board.

In fact, many ports and cities around the world have also banned the use of drones. The reasons vary from security to privacy to the protection of certain animal species.

Although drones are a fun and fascinating device, it is better to leave them at home and not take them on a cruise.


Whether you made it yourself or it's restaurant leftovers, open food is not allowed on board. You can bring reasonable amounts of unopened, packaged food, but if it's open they force you to throw it away.

This also applies if you have been in port and want to get back on board.Don't take leftovers with you because you'll have to eat or throw them away before they'll let you back on the ship.

Normally you don't need to bring food with you anyway, everything is included on board!


Cruise ships want you to buy alcohol through them, so they usually don't allow you to bring your own alcohol from home.

Some cruise lines allow you to bring a limited number of bottles of wine on board, which are allowed on the first day of boarding and must be in your carry-on baggage.

For example, Royal Caribbean allows 2 unopened bottles of wine per guest.cabin.

During Carnival, adults 21 years and older may bring 1 unopened bottle of wine per person.

Norwegian allows guests to bring unopened bottles of wine on board, but these bottles will be subject to a corkage fee based on their size. A 750ml bottle will cost $15 and a 1500ml bottle will cost $30.

If you purchase alcohol bottles on board or in ports, your bottles will be collected and stored safely. Bottles will be returned at the end of the cruise.

What not to take on a cruise - Unnecessary items

Now that we've covered the items that are strictly prohibited on cruise ships, let's look at other items that are not allowed on a cruise. These items are not necessarily prohibited, but you just don't have space on cruise ships that is valuable and limited, so carryingsome items will be a hindrance rather than a help.


Towels take up way too much in a suitcase. Plenty of towels are available during the cruise, both for use in the room and around the ship. They also allow you to check out towels on port days.

Please note that if you check out towels and do not return them, an additional fee may be charged at the end of the cruise.

Over 25 things NOT to take on a cruise (2)

Huge amount of clothes

If you're anything like me, you tend to get overly excited about holiday clothes. Trust me when I tell you, you don't need as many outfit changes as you think.

You'll need a maximum of one daywear and one evening gown per day. Add a pair of swimsuits, casual underwear, and anything else you'd wear to bed. Usually these will be formal nights or two, and during these evenings you can dress more elaborately if you like.

Expensive jewelry

No matter where you go on holiday, we never recommend bringing expensive jewelry with you, and cruise ships are no exception. While there are safes in your room and we would like to say that theft never happens, the truth is that​it happens. Items get lost, left behind or misplaced.

It's never a good idea to show your jewelry in odd places. It's quite possible that you'll become the center of unwanted attention and it's just not worth the risk. Leave expensive jewelry at home.


Cruises provide hair dryers in the rooms, so if you don't have a specific hair dryer that you can't do without, you don't need to bring one from home. Other hair care devices such as straighteners, curling irons, etc. go on a cruise.

Clothes hangers

Since you can't bring an iron or steamer with you, it's prudent to hang as many clothes as possible to prevent creases. But don't waste luggage space by taking hangers from home.

You usually already have enough hangers in your room, but if not, you can ask the cabin keeper for more, they will be happy to help!

What not to take on a cruise - specific cruise lines

Royal Caribbean

Royal Caribbeanhas its own list of prohibited items that you should read.


AccountCarnival websitedetailed rules and regulations regarding what can and cannot be taken on a cruise.


You need to familiarize yourself with itNorwegian List of Prohibited ItemsAlso.

Disney cruise

Disney has a long website with all the detailsItems that are not allowed on a Disney Cruise


To readCelebrity Behavior Policydescribes his forbidden items.


Princess cruise detailsyour list of prohibited itemsalong with many other frequently asked questions.

Important legal information about camouflage

In many places in the Caribbean, it is illegal to wear camouflage. This applies to all clothing and accessories, including hats and bags. Wearing camouflage can result in arrest and possibly a fine. They may ask you to remove the item, otherwise there is a risk of being sent homeYou may even be imprisoned. Do not take camouflage items with you when traveling to the following locations:

  • Antigua on Barbuda
  • Price
  • Barbados
  • Dominica
  • Grenada
  • Jamaican
  • Let there be Lucy
  • Saint Vincent i Grenadinerne
  • Trynidad i Tobago

Additional resources and information about the Caribbean and cruises

My husband and I absolutely love the Caribbean. It's our favorite holiday destination, with or without children. We go on Caribbean cruises, stay at all-inclusive resorts and return many times. Here are some of our other articles that you may find useful andinstructive.

37 must-have cruise itineraries to make your next vacation perfect

The best St. Lucia cruises

Top 10 best sightseeing tours in Cozumel

From the Top 10 St. Lucia Piton Tours

The best packing list for a Caribbean cruise

Professional tips and tricks for beginners

How to choose a cruise - everything you need to know

A complete overview of the best all-inclusive resort in Punta Cana

Full review of the Coconut Bay Resort in St. Lucia

That's why it's worth visiting Diamond Falls St. Lucy

Sulfur Springs ul. Lucia - How to visit the only Drive-In volcano in the world

Over 25 things NOT to take on a cruise (3)


Hi! My name is Rachel and I am a travel enthusiast, writer, and lifelong learner. Married for over 15 years and having two amazing children, I have learned that travel is one of the best ways to bond and create lasting memories... create with loved onesI share everything I learn with product specific tips and tricks and company reviews so you too can create memories all over the world!


What do I not need to bring on a cruise? ›

Here are some of the major things you don't need to pack for a cruise.
  1. Soap and Other Toiletries. Most ships are equipped with soap, shampoo, conditioner, lotion and shower caps. ...
  2. Dirty Laundry Bag. You'll find a laundry bag in your closet. ...
  3. Snacks. If there's one thing ships are loaded with, it's food! ...
  4. Computer. ...
  5. A Pillow.
Feb 20, 2020

Can you bring full size toiletries on a cruise? ›

While airlines have restrictions on what size of toiletries you can bring on a flight, at least in your carry on or personal bag, cruise lines do not. If you're not concerned about packing space, you can bring full size toiletry items including shampoo and conditioner bottles, shaving cream and other hygiene products.

Can I bring a hair dryer on Royal Caribbean? ›

Are hair driers allowed on Royal Caribbean cruise ships? Yes, you are allowed to bring a small or travel hairdryer with you on board. However, each stateroom has its own hairdryer, so there is no need to take one on your luggage.

Are there any restrictions on what you can bring on a cruise? ›

The best news about packing is that there is no (reasonable) limit on how much you can bring on a cruise. Most cruise lines “encourage” or “suggest” each passenger to limit luggage to two suitcases, each one less than 50 pounds. In addition, you can also bring carry-on luggage (more on that in a moment).

Can I bring full size shampoo on a Royal Caribbean cruise? ›

Happily for travelers, liquids are generally allowed on cruises if they're to be used for grooming. This includes full-sized bottles of shampoo, conditioner, body wash, gel, sunscreen and more.

What can't you wear on a cruise ship? ›

T-shirts, swimsuits, robes, bare feet, tank tops, baseball caps, and pool wear are not allowed in the main restaurant or specialty restaurants at any time. In addition, shorts and flip-flops are not permitted during the evening hours.

Can you take regular size deodorant on a cruise? ›

However, I'm happy to share that your cologne, perfume, and deodorant can be brought on board. There are no rules against smelling your best. As much as I like to pack light, my suitcase always seems to be bursting at the seams after our cruise.

Do bags get searched on cruises? ›

Will my bags be searched on a cruise ship? All baggage brought on board the ship will be X-rayed. When you go through security you will set your carry-on bags on the x-ray machine like you'd find at an airport. Checked luggage is also X-rayed behind the scenes.

Can you bring a 12 pack of soda on a cruise? ›

A small quantity is considered a maximum of 12 sealed, unopened cans/cartons of 12 ounces each or less, per person.” Given that most people sail with two people to a room, that means you can bring 24 cans/cartons of anything you want as long as it's non-alcoholic. Just be sure that it is not in a bottle.

Do you take your own towels on a cruise? ›

In general, cruise ships provide all of the towels you need. This means that you don't only get bath, hand, and face towels for your cabin, but you'll also be provided with beach towels for both swimming in the pool and swimming on your beach day excursions offshore.

Can I bring a shaving razor on a cruise? ›

Most cruise lines — such as Norwegian, Royal Caribbean and Holland America — ban scissors and knives with blades longer than 4 inches. Other lines, including Disney, prohibit knives regardless of blade length; this includes straight razors. Safety razors for personal grooming are allowed on all lines, though.

Can I bring a curling iron on a cruise? ›

Straightener/Curling Iron

Things that could start a fire are a big no-no on a cruise ship, so that's why you can't bring items like candles, clothes irons, or even coffee pots. What's a bit surprising is that you can bring hair straightener and a curling iron with you.

What can you not have in your carry-on? ›

What items are prohibited in carry-ons?
  • Liquids, gels, or pastes in bottles larger than 3.4 ounces (100 ml)
  • Guns and ammunition (including BB guns and cap guns)
  • Stun guns and tasers.
  • Sharp objects (knives, axes, razor blades)
  • Self-defense items (such as pepper spray, brass knuckle, billy clubs)
Feb 1, 2022

Can you bring food in your suitcase on a cruise? ›

Shelf-stable snacks like chips, pretzels, protein bars or any other items packaged in sealed wrappers are permitted on every major cruise line. Just stick with store-bought goodies including candy, savory snacks, cookies or granola bars instead of whipping up a batch of homemade muffins or sandwiches to bring with you.

Are passengers wearing masks on cruise ships? ›

Masks are still recommended – but not required – while indoors, except for eating or drinking or while in a stateroom. They are still required during embarkation and debarkation during all ports of call and on Carnival-organized shore excursions.

Does a cruise check your bags? ›

While most people focus on the exciting activities, delicious food, and beautiful scenery a cruise vacation offers, few think about what happens to their luggage before boarding the ship. If you're planning to go on a cruise, you might be wondering whether cruise lines check your luggage. The answer is yes, they do.

Can you bring deodorant on a cruise? ›

You are allowed to bring a quart-size, zip-lock bag of liquids, aerosols, gels, creams and pastes though the checkpoint in carryon luggage. These combined items need to be less than 3 ounces. More information from the TSA. So the 3-1-1 rule is the TSA's quick reminder: 3 ounces, 1 quart bag and 1 bag per traveler.

Do cruise ships check your carry on bags? ›

All cruise lines will check luggage for alcohol as well as drugs, weapons, irons, drones and other prohibited items during the embarkation process. They will check all checked and carry-on luggage with scanners as well as manual spot checks.


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