GRAND CASE BEACH CLUB, FRENCH ST MARTIN
August 11, 2012
THE REPEATER
August 30, 2012

It is back to work after returning from a fun week at sea. Fifteen family members, including myself and my husband, boarded our cruise out of Miami and headed south to the Bahamas, US Virgin Islands, Puerto Rico, and Turks & Caicos. 

After a year of selling clients the smallest, lightest bags possible (to avoid domestic checked luggage fees) I was neurotic about packing as much as I could into the tiniest bag possible.  I packed for 8 days in my 22″ carry-on and was ecstatic I was able to fit almost everything (besides a few extra liquids I was able to stash in my husband’s bag). This was all thanks to my Eagle Creek packing cubes. While on board, I kept thinking ‘what products would have made this trip easier? ‘ and took a few notes on things to be sure to tell our clients that are packing for their next cruise.

My number one tip is to bring a refillable water bottle. It will save you money. Filling up a water bottle prior to each shore excursion was our plan and it worked really well. We packed a large, empty, Kleen Kanteen bottle–  but I wish I would have purchased the Vapur Foldable bottles to save on space.  It was also good to have a small day bag that did not feel too big and bulky. I have a black one (similar to our new Matt & Nat Metropolis) which is great for day and  night wear.  I wore it on and off the ship since you always have to carry your cruise ID with you onboard and during excursions (it serves as a room key and all incidental charges are put on the card). When I didn’t have my day bag, I wore a small wristlet that I’ve picked up in my travels or many people wore lanyards to hold the room card. 

Some other things I wished I had brought include- 1)a clock,  since there were no alarm clocks in our cabin; 2) layers, as  the air conditioning inside the boat was quite cool; 3) walkie talkies, which would have made our lives, as a family of 15, much easier (no joke!); and 4) emergency medicines, because even if you think that you will not get sick on your trip you might. We spent $16 for Advil Cold & Sinus.