34 Prohibited Items You Can’t Take On A Cruise

If you are heading on a fantastic cruise ship and vacation soon, then you may be unsure what is and is not allowed on the ship.

34 Prohibited Items You Can't Take on a Cruise (that could shock you)

Whenever we pack for vacations where you will be taking a plane, we always think about what items will be permitted through security, as so many are prohibited on planes.

The same goes for cruise ships. Actually, it may surprise you how many items you are not allowed to take on board a cruise ship for safety reasons and the security of all passengers on board.

When packing your bags for a cruise trip, you will need to consider the rules and regulations. Often, you are not allowed to take many different items because you will be traveling in and out of countries where the laws on certain items are different. 

Therefore, you may find that there are blanket rules and guidelines to ensure that there are no issues further down the line when traveling. 

While some of these items seem reasonable and sensible choices, some of them may actually shock you.

It is important that you check out which items are prohibited before you start packing your bags so that you can have a smooth, stress free experience when on the cruise!

1. Surge Protected Power Bars

One of the most important items you need to know are not permitted on a cruise are surge protected power bars. These extension cords are not allowed on a cruise.

This is because these surge protectors can interfere with the cruise ship’s electrical system, and they are an increased fire risk. 

You can however bring a non-surge protected power strip or power bar on a cruise (learn more about it here). 

2. Weapons

Weapons are not permitted on a cruise ship. This includes guns, knives of any kind, pepper spray and throwing weapons. This could pose a risk to all passengers on board the cruise, so no weapons are allowed under any circumstances. 

3. Drones

34 Prohibited Items You Can't Take on a Cruise (that could shock you)

Some cruises may carry their own policies towards drones but most will not allow you to bring a drone on board. This is because you cannot fly a drone above the cruise ship. 

Some cruises allow you to bring them on board for the purpose of flying them in the location in which you are docked on your travels, but many ports also have rules against using drones.

Be sure to check with the cruise line before trying to take a drone on board. 

4. Candles Or Burners

Candles and burners are not permitted on cruises as they carry an open flame. Open flames on cruises are fire hazards, and are therefore prohibited entirely. 

5. Incense

For the same reasons as above, incense sticks and incense burners are also not allowed on a cruise ship as they too have an open flame and are a risk.  

6. CBD Products Or Marijuana

CBD products and marijuana are not permitted on cruise ships. While some states have now legalized the use of marijuana and medical marijuana, other countries and ports have not.

Therefore, it is better to blanket-ban all of these products to avoid any issues when traveling. Even if marijuana is legal in your state, you cannot take it on a cruise ship. 

7. Recreational Drugs

In a similar way, drugs and illegal substances are not permitted on a cruise ship. Medication is allowed, but recreational drugs are not. Cruise lines have a zero tolerance policy when it comes to drugs.

If a guest or a crew member is found to have drugs on them, or drugs are in their possession, they will be sent off the ship at the next port of call. 

8. Coffee Makers

If you really cannot go without your homemade coffee when on a cruise, you may be wondering if you can take your coffee maker with you on your travels.

Unfortunately, coffee makers are not permitted on cruises. This is because they are heated, and could pose a fire risk. 

9. Hot Plates

In the same way, hot plates are also not allowed on cruise ships. Hot plates (as you can imagine) get very hot, and can also be a fire risk.

Cruises have ample opportunities for you to find food or snacks, so there is no need for you to try and prepare your own inside of your cabin. 

10. Kettles

You are also not allowed to bring kettles on board a cruise ship, as these can cause a fire hazard. Most electrical appliances are not permitted on a cruise because of this.  

11. Mug Warmers

Mug warmers are electrical appliances, and are also prohibited on cruise ships. There will be ample opportunities for you to get a cup of coffee or tea while on the cruise, so leave all of your appliances at home! 

12. Irons

Clothing irons are prohibited on board a cruise ship. Irons are a potential fire hazard, so you will not be allowed to bring one on board the ship. You will also not find an iron inside of your cabin.

Fires can be disastrous on a cruise ship, so these rules are heavily enforced. If you do need to have your clothes pressed, you can use the onboard laundry services. 

13. Steamers

Just like irons, clothing steamers are also not allowed on board cruise ships. Instead, you can use a wrinkle releaser spray to get any lines and creases out of your clothes.

14. Unpackaged Food Items

Homemade meals and food items are not allowed on cruises. Food that is wrapped and packaged is allowed, but perishable items and homemade snacks are not permitted. 

15. Alcohol


Most cruise lines do not allow passengers to bring their own alcohol such as liquor and beer on board the ship. Some may allow one bottle of wine per adult passenger, but you will have to check with the cruise line before boarding. 

16. Skateboards

Skateboards could cause accidents on a cruise ship, so they are banned. You will not be able to take a skateboard on board a cruise ship. They could run into another person, or you could cause an injury using one. 

17. Hoverboards

Just like skateboards, hoverboards are also not allowed on a cruise. This is because wheeled items can be dangerous on board a cruise ship. The ship may move or roll unexpectedly, and you may fall over or be hurt using one of these. 

18. Wheeled Shoes

For the same reasons as above, wheeled shoes are not allowed on cruise ships. 

19. Baby Monitors

Surprisingly, baby monitors are also prohibited on cruise ships. The cruise cabins also have metal walls, so the signal would be blocked and would not work anyway.

You will also not be able to connect a WiFi baby monitor to the cruise’s WiFi network as it will be blocked. 

Most cruises have a baby-sitting service at an additional cost, and they will provide you with all of the supplies you will need to ensure your child is safe while on board, so there is no need to worry! 

20. Surfboards

Surfboards are not permitted on a cruise ship as they can be launched off the ship. However, if you are planning on using this when off the ship at a port, then you may be permitted. Check with your cruise line.

21. Kayaks

For the same reasons as above, kayaks are also not permitted on board a cruise.

22. Toy Guns/Fake Guns

Replicas, fake guns and toy guns are not allowed on board a cruise. Weapons are outright banned, and fake weapons can cause panic among passengers. 

23. Inflatable Pool Toys

In most cases, there is not enough room on cruise ships and within cruise ship pools for inflatable pool toys. Therefore, they are not permitted. 

24. Pool Noodles

For the same reasons inflatable pool toys are not allowed, pool noodles are also not permitted on cruises. 

25. Fireworks

Fireworks are a huge fire hazard, and are therefore not allowed on a cruise ship. 

26. Kites

Anything that flies such as kites and drones are not allowed on a cruise ship. These cannot be flown above the cruise. 

27. Handcuffs/Restraints

Handcuffs or any kind of restraints are not allowed on a cruise ship. If there is an emergency situation, these could have disastrous consequences if someone is restrained. 

28. Balloons

While you may want to celebrate an event while on board, helium balloons are not permitted on a cruise!

29. Hookah Pipes

Hookah pipes are also not allowed on board a cruise. However, you can use cigarettes, cigars, vapes and e-cigarettes in designated spaces on the ship. 

30. Diving Tanks

You cannot bring diving tanks on a cruise ship, but be sure to check with your cruise line before traveling. 

31. Diving Knives

Diving knives can be used as a weapon, so they are also not permitted on a cruise ship. 

32. Metal Detectors

Metal detectors can interfere with the ship’s electrical and navigational systems, so these are banned from cruises. 

33. Meat And Fish

Anything that is perishable cannot be brought on board a cruise ship. However, if you purchase fresh fish or meat while on your travels, then you can ship these items to your home address instead. 

34. Bottled Water (in some cases)

Bottled Water (in some cases)

Finally, we have bottled water. Bottled water is often not permitted on cruises, especially if they have a no-alcohol policy. This is because passengers can try and bring their own alcohol in the disguise of a water bottle to bypass security. 

Bottled water will be permitted for medical purposes and needs, but they may need to be checked before you are allowed to board with them. 

Items You Can Take On A Cruise

After considering the list above, you may be wondering what items you can definitely pack in your bags to take on the cruise. 

For instance, you can take hairdryers, curling wands, straighteners and other hair appliances. Even though heated appliances are generally not allowed, most cruises will make an exception for these items as they are essential for some passengers. 

You are also permitted to take electric shavers if needed. Other items permitted include strollers, wheelchairs, and mobility scooters, but you may need to check if your cabin is accessible and has the space for such items.

You can also take personal accessories such as a portable fan, a nightlight, non-surge protected power bars, medication and cameras.

Electronic cigarettes, vapes, and cigarettes are permitted on most cruises, along with lighters, but there are designated areas where you are allowed to smoke on most cruises. 

Final Thoughts

To summarize, there are many items that are prohibited on cruise ships. Some of the above items may have surprised you, and you may be unsure why you are not allowed to bring them.

In most cases, it is a matter of safety, and these items are prohibited because they could be a risk or a hazard. 

If you are unsure what to bring with you on your trip, then it is always best to check with the specific cruise line you are traveling with to be sure!

Frequently Asked Questions

Can You Take Alcohol On A Cruise?

Most cruise ships will not allow you to bring alcohol on board. However, some allow one bottle of wine or liquor per person, and there could be a corkage fee too.

It is a good idea to check the regulations and rules of the ship you are boarding to see if they will permit alcohol on board that is not purchased from the cruise line. 

Can You Take Curling Irons And Hair Straighteners On A Cruise?

Yes. Hairdryers, curling irons, and straighteners are permitted on a cruise. Most cruise ships will have hairdryers available in the cabin, so you will not have to bring your own. 

Why Aren’t Irons Allowed On A Cruise?

Irons and clothing steamers are not permitted on a cruise ship as they are a safety and fire hazard. If your clothes are creased while on your trip, then you can hang them up in your cabin, or make use of the ship’s laundry services. 

Can You Take Full Sized Toiletries On A Cruise?

When flying, you may always worry about which toiletries and liquids you take on board the plane. This is not an issue for cruise ships, as you are allowed to take any size toiletries that you like.

There are usually also no restrictions on the weight of your luggage on a cruise ship, however if you are flying at some point during your journey, then you may have to ensure that the weight is limited to suit the regulations of the plane. 

Can You Take A Dog On A Cruise?

In most cases, dogs are not allowed on a cruise. You are permitted to take service animals, but pets are not allowed.

Some specific cruises may allow dogs such as the Cunard’s Queen Mary 2 cruise, as it has its own kennels and boarding spaces for dogs, but most will not.

Guide dogs, hearing dogs, seizure alert dogs and medical alert dogs are allowed on most cruise ships as they are essential for the wellbeing of the passenger.

However, these dogs will need to be officially registered, and you will need to run it by the cruise line first before booking.

As some passengers claim that their dogs are service dogs to get around this rule, you will have to provide the proper documentation for your service dog in order to board with them. 

Alex Kallen

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