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grillinchillin

What is your favorite cruise "hack"?

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After almost 20 cruises I am amazed at all these fantastic ideas!  My contribution to this discussion is a small one.  Several years ago, I cruised with my sister, and two daughters.  Four women and one bathroom makes things interesting lol Anyway, I bought us each a small plastic basket from the dollar store for our shampoo, conditioner etc...everyone had their own baskets and we lined them up again the wall in the shower.  It worked really well and when cruise was over, we simply threw the baskets away. 

 

Vicki

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On 4/1/2019 at 6:48 AM, a,j,&fam said:

we bring dry erase markers.  Great to write notes / messages on mirror to other cabin mates,  to the room steward and to yourself.

I brought a magnetic dry erase board on my last cruise and wrote a note to the cabin steward on it with the dry erase pen that was hanging with it.  The cabin steward answered with a nice note IN BALL POINT PEN!  I now have a dry erase board that permanently says "I bring the ice thank you" on it!  LOL

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Just now, RICKnVICK said:

After almost 20 cruises I am amazed at all these fantastic ideas!  My contribution to this discussion is a small one.  Several years ago, I cruised with my sister, and two daughters.  Four women and one bathroom makes things interesting lol Anyway, I bought us each a small plastic basket from the dollar store for our shampoo, conditioner etc...everyone had their own baskets and we lined them up again the wall in the shower.  It worked really well and when cruise was over, we simply threw the baskets away. 

 

Vicki

 

I do this for my family, too!:classic_smile:  Same dollar store baskets (mine are oval, and come 3 for a dollar), but we each put one on our night stand for all of our personal small items.  It keeps the cabin from getting cluttered, and keeps things where we can find them.  I also use several more of these same baskets around the cabin for other items: one is full of individually wrapped alcohol hand wipes, on the counter under the TV, where they can be grabbed and taken with us as we leave the cabin; one is in a drawer at the dressing table holding hair accessories; etc., etc.

 

We use them at hotels and resorts, too.  Every time we return home from a trip, the baskets go into the dishwasher (little bit OCD clean-freak tendencies, here:classic_blush:), then get packed away with the rest of the travel gear for the next trip.  Eventually, after a few years and lots of trips, they break and get thrown away.  No great loss.

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I love my body pillow, so does my spouse.  We pack two pillow cases for the body pillow and then ask the room steward for SIX extra pillows (three in each case).  It always gets a funny reaction, but it makes the nicest body pillow and it's easy to pack!  

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57 minutes ago, cfralc said:

I brought a magnetic dry erase board on my last cruise and wrote a note to the cabin steward on it with the dry erase pen that was hanging with it.  The cabin steward answered with a nice note IN BALL POINT PEN!  I now have a dry erase board that permanently says "I bring the ice thank you" on it!  LOL

ROFLOL!!!!!!!!! That’s hilarious!!!!

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7 hours ago, cfralc said:

I brought a magnetic dry erase board on my last cruise and wrote a note to the cabin steward on it with the dry erase pen that was hanging with it.  The cabin steward answered with a nice note IN BALL POINT PEN!  I now have a dry erase board that permanently says "I bring the ice thank you" on it!  LOL

This actually made me LOL. But if you write over the ink with dry erase markers, it should erase right off. (I know for a fact it works for permanent marker, haven't tried in ink, but I suspect it would work just the same)- Unless of course you love it as a funny cruise memory!

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12 hours ago, ShakyBeef said:

 

I do this for my family, too!:classic_smile:  Same dollar store baskets (mine are oval, and come 3 for a dollar), but we each put one on our night stand for all of our personal small items. 

 

We used to bring a small collapsible gardening bag from the 99¢ store. But now we find it easier to bring back a bowl or two from the buffet to corral our small stuff like pens and sunglasses.

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17 hours ago, cfralc said:

I brought a magnetic dry erase board on my last cruise and wrote a note to the cabin steward on it with the dry erase pen that was hanging with it.  The cabin steward answered with a nice note IN BALL POINT PEN!  I now have a dry erase board that permanently says "I bring the ice thank you" on it!  LOL

Did any random cruisers write funny things or draw funny pictures on your board?

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12 hours ago, HeyNowMama1315 said:

This actually made me LOL. But if you write over the ink with dry erase markers, it should erase right off. (I know for a fact it works for permanent marker, haven't tried in ink, but I suspect it would work just the same)- Unless of course you love it as a funny cruise memory!

I actually tried that, but there is an actual indent from the ball point pen.  Cheap $ Store dry erase board!  LOL!  We still use it because it makes me laugh!  

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2 hours ago, bowlinmoe said:

Did any random cruisers write funny things or draw funny pictures on your board?

NO not on that one, it was inside our cabin.  I'm afraid of what random cruisers might write if there was a dry erase board on our cabin door.  I'm sure people have plenty of funny stories about that!!!  LOL

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We have done 35+ cruises and many other land based trips. Being Platinum we get several bags of laundry done 'free'. But don't like to put nice tops, etc out to be washed. I have started turning things that need to be washed when I return home inside out. Gives me a heads up when emptying suitcases.

Have used over the door shoe holder for many years, just a place to stash odds and end-chair clips, sticky note, pens, etc.

 

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I have used the over-the-door shoe holder for years in the bathroom, just to keep all the health and beauty items off the counter.

 

We also save about 2-3 weeks worth of wire dry cleaning hangers so that we can hang up our clothes instead of putting them in the drawers......Carnival doesn't give you very many....then we just leave them there when we leave.

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5 hours ago, august1963 said:

I have used the over-the-door shoe holder for years in the bathroom, just to keep all the health and beauty items off the counter.

 

We also save about 2-3 weeks worth of wire dry cleaning hangers so that we can hang up our clothes instead of putting them in the drawers......Carnival doesn't give you very many....then we just leave them there when we leave.

 

Your room steward will bring you additional hangers if you ask for them, but like you, I find it easier to bring hangers from home. 

 

My latest “hack” is bringing a pen with me, since Carnival has only provided a small pencil in our cabin the last several cruises. 

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We also bring an over the door shoe holder, but we use some strong magnets with hooks and hang it on the wall.  It's much more convenient for us, is out of the way for the stewards, and no worries about damaging the doors.

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On 11/9/2018 at 9:48 AM, pyropoodle said:

Got a lot of people sharing your room and running out of time to shower?   head over to the Spa and use their showers.  AHHHHmazing shower experience when compared to the in room shower...and totally free.   just please, put on some clothes when you head back to your stateroom. 

thanks for this tip. I will have 4 fifty yr olds in a room. was hoping we could do this

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4 minutes ago, turning50 said:

thanks for this tip. I will have 4 fifty yr olds in a room. was hoping we could do this

I am assuming in a suite? Hopefully not on an Upper Pullman!

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2 minutes ago, jbethel11 said:

I am assuming in a suite? Hopefully not on an Upper Pullman!

no we are in a ocean view and the one person who wanted the ocean view knows it is a bunk and that she will get the bunk. i made it perfectly clear I was going to have one of the two real beds

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13 minutes ago, turning50 said:

no we are in a ocean view and the one person who wanted the ocean view knows it is a bunk and that she will get the bunk. i made it perfectly clear I was going to have one of the two real beds

Lol, as long as you have established you will be getting the "real bed". 

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Not sure this is really a hack, but on embark day instead of fighting the lido crowd we head upstairs to the Italian restaurant (on the ships it's on).  It's free pasta bar away lunch and you sit down and order.   Just about no one is there! 

 

Also,  if you have kids or an elderly person with you, order room service and keep the tray to use in the buffet.   I don't care what anyone says,  when you're trying to get food & drinks for 2 a tray helps.  Who wants to go through the line twice? 

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I've enjoyed reading these hacks.  I'm usually ready for the way I like to travel but I'm looking forward to taking the grandkids on a cruise, so some of these will be great for newby cruisers!

 

-Like many, I used to send all of my clothes out to be laundered before the cruise so every article of clothing starts off clean and fresh for my cruise.  Clean and fresh, but not unwrinkled.  So now I forgo sending things out before the cruise and on the first day send what I need out to be laundered/dry cleaned on board.  Usually a few dress shirts, slacks, suit.  It costs slightly more but the compensation is no wrinkles and I find it makes packing easier.  Also, you get a fresh supply of hangers.

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Couple of things that we found really helpful:

this beach blanket while in port: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07CXL453D/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_asin_title_o05_s01?ie=UTF8&psc=1 It is super lightweight, almost like a parachute, came with stakes and it was huge for the 5 of us! I am excited to use it in other ways too. I got it for $17 on deal.

 

These metal hooks were awesome for holding my lanyard, drying my suit, etc: I picked these up for $6 https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0787Q54M1/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_asin_title_o04_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1 We had 2 cabins and 6 per cabin was great! 

 

Also we did bring towel clips, a small travel speaker, and a deck of cards- used all of those!

 

We designated one empty suitcase for dirty laundry at the getgo so that kept our cabin organized. 

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9 hours ago, Mediterranean_Honeymooner said:

 

Do you ever get flack from staff about having it out there?

I dont think they ever knew. We only hang it when we are using it and take it down afterwards ( fire safety) 

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On 4/18/2019 at 10:29 AM, cfralc said:

NO not on that one, it was inside our cabin.  I'm afraid of what random cruisers might write if there was a dry erase board on our cabin door.  I'm sure people have plenty of funny stories about that!!!  LOL

On our last cruise, the next door neighbors had a major door slamming problem. They also had a dry erase board. Lots of people wrote fun messages to them. I wrote "please stop slamming your door" with a friendly smiley face. They stopped slamming doors 😁

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