29 Cruise Cabin Hacks Every Traveler MUST-KNOW

Taking a cruise is an adventure in and of itself. Although most cruises are intended to be a relaxing occasion, unpacking in a cabin can be slightly frustrating.

If you’ve ever taken a cruise, you know the cabins can be pretty cozy and compact, so you have to be smart about how you organize your belongings.

Although cabins can be rather snug, they tend to be laid out in a way that takes advantage of all the space available.

So to make the best use of the area, we have compiled some tried-and-tested cruise cabin hacks to take full advantage of every crevice, transforming even the smallest space into a neatly organized haven.

Cruise Cabin Hacks

Bring Only What You Need

Before we even get to the cabin, the biggest ‘hack’ is packing only what you’ll need and use.

The cabin space is tight, tight, tight. You don’t want to bring more than you’ll need.

Go through your wardrobe ahead of time and select outfits that suit both day and nighttime activities on the ship. Remember to factor in any special theme nights or dress codes.

Put Your Luggage Underneath The Bed

The first thing you’ll want to d when you get into your cabin is unpack and slide your luggage under the bed. This not only clears floor space but also helps to keep your cabin tidy and accessible.

If you have a carry-on and a larger luggage, you can store one inside the other making even more room.

Request Extra Hangers

Once on board, reach out to your cabin steward for extra hangers. This will let you maximize closet space and avoid wrinkled clothes.

Some people like to bring their own hangers. Don’t do that! It’ll be highly inconvenient and there are plenty onboard to request extra.

Packing Cubes, Packing Cubes, Packing Cubes!

Packing cubes are not just a cruise hack, but a life hack!

They turn the chaos of packing into a neatly organized ballet of belongings, each item in its designated place. Packing cubes keep your belongings sorted and easy to find, transforming your suitcase into a model of efficiency.

Designating a color for each family member can simplify the process even further, making unpacking and finding what you need a breeze, even in the most compact cruise cabin.

Desk = Vanity

Truth be told, the bathrooms can be as small as the cabins itself. Convert the desk in your cabin into a personal vanity area by organizing your beauty supplies neatly in the drawers.

There truly just isn’t enough space in the bathroom and the desk makes the perfect spot for all your makeup and skincare products.

Bring A Power Strip

Bring along a non-surge-protected power strip approved for cruise ships to accommodate your electronic devices and keep them all charged.

This simple addition to your packing list ensures that you can keep cameras, phones, and tablets fully powered, ready to capture every moment of your adventure.

Unfortunately, the cruises I;ve gone on didn’t have many outlets and we’d have to argue over who gets to charge and when.

Pack a Portable Charger

On a similar wavelength, pack a portable charger to make sure tyu always have enough juice.

A portable charger ensures your devices stay powered up while you’re on the move around the ship or ashore. It’s a travel MUST.

Magnetic Hooks and Clips

Your cabin’s walls are metal, which makes magnets your new best friend. Hang items like shore excursion tickets or wet swimsuits.

Make sure you get some heavy-duty magnetic hooks to make sure they stay on. This clever hack not only keeps your essentials within easy reach but also helps maintain a clutter-free and organized cabin.

Get An Over-The-Door Organizer

Using an over-the-door organizer in your bathroom can significantly maximize your space, offering a clever solution for the often cramped quarters.

Slip one over your bathroom door to store toiletries, keeping them off limited counter space.

Bring Air Freshener For The Bathroom

Bringing a small air freshener for the bathroom is a simple yet effective way to maintain a fresh and pleasant atmosphere in your compact cabin space.

Cruise ship bathrooms are notorious for being tight and lacking ventilation, so a discreet air freshener can make all the difference, keeping your personal retreat smelling clean and inviting throughout your voyage.

Whether it’s a spray, a plug-in, or a hanging freshener, this small addition makes a huge difference.

Packable Shelves And Hampers

Investing in packable shelves and hampers can revolutionize the way you organize and maintain your cruise cabin.

These ingenious items unfold to provide extra shelving for clothes and a designated spot for laundry, helping keep your living space tidy and sorted.

When not in use, they collapse flat, taking up minimal suitcase space. This hack is perfect for those looking to maintain a sense of order and cleanliness in their cozy sea-bound home.

Get A Motion Sensor Nightlight

Purchasing a motion sensor nightlight is a smart move for navigating your cabin in the dark.

These handy devices provide a soft, guiding light that automatically illuminates when you move, ensuring safe and gentle passage during late-night ventures.

It’s a small, thoughtful addition that enhances safety and comfort, allowing you to find your way without disturbing the peaceful ambiance of your stateroom.

Organize Your Papers

Maintaining a single, organized spot for all your essential documents, like excursion tickets, passports, and boarding passes, is crucial for a stress-free cruise experience.

Consider using a dedicated envelope or a travel document organizer where each vital paper has its place.

This method ensures that everything you need is readily accessible and secure, saving you from frantic searches and giving you more time to enjoy the adventures ahead.

Mesh Laundry Bags

Mesh laundry bags are perfect for keeping worn garments separate from the clean ones, simplifying the task of laundry once back home.

By designating these breathable bags for your used garments, you prevent the mix-up of clean and dirty items, making it easier to keep your living space organized and odor-free.

Once you return home, the task of doing laundry becomes a breeze, as you can directly transfer the contents of the bag into the wash

Utilize Shower Clips

Cabin showers are typically compact, and shower curtains can stick to you. Bring a few clothespins or magnetic clips to keep the shower curtain in place.

This simple hack enhances your shower experience, keeping the curtain contained and your bathroom floor dry.

Door Shoe Organizer for Snacks

Transform a clear shoe organizer into a snack station by hanging it over a door or on a wall. Fill it with your favorite treats, granola bars, or small packaged items.

This not only keeps your snacks organized but also saves precious drawer and counter space.

Suction Cup Baskets

Cruise ship bathroom
Source: @fraseratsea

Bring along a few suction cup baskets or caddies.

These can stick to the walls of your shower or bathroom, providing extra space to hold your toiletries, shower gels, and shampoos, keeping them within easy reach and off limited surfaces.

Curtain Rings for Scarves and Belts

Pack a few plastic curtain rings. They’re lightweight and can be used to hang scarves, belts, or even hats on closet rods or hooks, keeping them untangled and easy to access.

Dryer Sheets

Tuck a few dryer sheets in between your clothes and in your suitcase to keep everything smelling fresh throughout your journey.

They can also help reduce static and can be used to freshen up your cabin’s drawers and closet.

Clip-On Reading Light

If your cabin’s lighting is limited or you don’t want to disturb your roommate, a clip-on reading light can be a game-changer.

It provides just enough light for you to read or navigate the cabin without waking others.

Foldable Water Bottle

When cruising, every bit of space counts, making a collapsible water bottle an essential item for savvy travelers.

These innovative bottles are designed to shrink down to a fraction of their full size when not in use, easily fitting into a small purse, pocket, or compartment in your daypack.

This means more room for other essentials and souvenirs without the bulk of a traditional bottle.

Travel-Sized Humidifier

A travel-sized humidifier is an excellent solution for maintaining a comfortable cabin atmosphere, especially in the often dry environment of a cruise ship.

These compact devices are designed with portability in mind, easily fitting into your luggage without taking up much space.

Many models are ingeniously engineered to work with standard water bottles or have their own small reservoirs, making them convenient to set up and use.

Silk Sleeping Bag Liner

Cruise ship bed
Source: Source: @id90travel

A silk sleeping bag liner is a luxurious yet practical addition to your cruise cabin essentials.

This sleek, smooth material is known for its hypoallergenic properties and gentle touch on the skin, providing an extra layer of cleanliness and comfort.

Silk is also thermoregulating, keeping you cool in tropical climates and warm during cooler nights at sea, ensuring a restful sleep regardless of the destination.

Pack A Mini Electric Fan

A small, portable fan can improve air circulation and provide white noise if you’re a light sleeper. This is particularly helpful in inside cabins where air can feel stagnant.

Most travel fans are lightweight and compact, designed to fit easily into your luggage without taking up much space.

Highlighters for Daily Schedules

Bringing a set of different colored highlighters on your cruise is a small but strategic way to organize and enhance your onboard experience.

Cruise ships often provide a daily schedule of activities. Bring a few different colored highlighters to mark activities each family member is interested in.

Cord Organizer

In today’s digital age, you’re likely traveling with a variety of electronic devices, each with its own cords and chargers.

Keep your electronic cords and chargers tidy with a travel cord organizer. This prevents tangling and makes it easy to find what you need without rummaging through your bags.

Download All Your Entertainment Beforehand

Before embarking, download movies, books, or podcasts to your device.

While many ships offer entertainment, having your favorites on hand is perfect for downtime or while relaxing in your cabin.

Not to mention, the internet packages can get pricey onboard!

Glow-in-the-Dark Tape

Place a small piece of glow-in-the-dark tape on key items like your phone, light switches, or bathroom door.

It makes them easy to locate in a dark, unfamiliar room without turning on the lights.

Peppermint Oil or Ginger Candies

A small bottle of peppermint oil can do wonders.

It’s refreshing, can help alleviate seasickness, and a dab under your nose can mask less pleasant odors in tight quarters.

Another great way to avoid seasickness are with ginger candies. These ginger chews in particular have been a lifesaver for me when nausea hits!

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