Cruise Attire

Whether you’re cruising the Caribbean, relaxing on a luxury line or exploring the landscape from the deck of Volga River cruise, you will have to pack specific cruise attire to suit the voyage before setting sail. If you’re new to cruising, there are some cruise attire terms that you should familiarize yourself with. You may see the following terms when you read through your literature and/or travel documents prior to arriving at your cruise departure port. Casual wear, informal wear and semi-formal wear, and formal wear are the main categories cruise attire will fall under. Cruise attire may also be referred to as cruise wear, cruise clothes, cruise gear, yacht wear, sailing clothes, and outdoor wear.

Most mainstream cruise lines such as Carnival Cruises and Disney Cruises do not typically require a dress code, meaning casual wear is ok. Casual wear is attire that you feel relaxed in comfortable in. Sportswear is high on the list of the most popular types of casual cruise attire. Swimwear, t-shirts, shorts, polo shirts, and khaki pants are all considered casual wear. Footwear such as sandals, sneakers, flip flops, and deck shoes are all considered casual footwear. A general rule of thumb when selecting cruise attire for a casual cruise is to pick breathable fabrics such as cotton, and shoes that are good for walking. For cool climate cruises, add light windproof jackets, rain gear, and breathable clothes that can be easily layered.

Depending on the cruise line, evening activities may require informal or semi-formal wear. Informal wear can be compared to “business casual� wear in the workplace. This means can mean slacks and khakis as well as polo-shirts and sports shirts. For women, Depending on the cruise line, blouses, skirts, dresses, and pants suits fall into the formal and semi-formal wear categories.

On most luxury cruise lines, you will have formal nights and it is possible that you will also have formal nights on some mainstream cruise line’s as well. Formal wear usually means tuxedos for men and evening gowns for women. In some cases, this can mean dark business suits or a jacket and tie for men and cocktail or party dresses for women.

There are a few things to keep in mind when dressing for your cruise. While it is understandable that some of us would prefer to be as casual as possible when we are on vacation, use your best judgment when dressing for public outings onboard such as dinner, clubs, casinos, lounges, lectures, dancing, etc. Simply put, it’s probably not a good idea to sport your swimwear at the dinner table or a pair of sweatpants at the nightclub.

If you receive your travel documents and literature and you can’t locate the section that discusses cruise attire, give the cruise line a call. Better safe than sorry, right?

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