I often get asked about dress codes on cruise ships and, as Royal Caribbean is one of the largest cruise lines in the world, many people ask what to wear on a Royal Caribbean Cruise.

Well, the answer of what to wear on a cruise can vary quite a bit depending on what cruise line you’re travelling with, the time of year and the destination.

Here’s my mini-guide to what to wear on a Royal Caribbean cruise…

Day wear 

Tailor your day wear depending on where you’re travelling to and the weather conditions there. If you’re heading somewhere sunny then shorts, t-shirts, sundresses, swimwear etc should be in your suitcase. If you’re heading to a cooler destination then pack some jeans, trousers, t-shirts and jumpers or jackets.

What to wear on a royal caribbean cruise

Perfect cruise day wear

Whatever you would wear on holiday normally is generally appropriate on a cruise ship during the day. Pack as you would for any other holiday for daytime and remember that comfort is key when going ashore to explore.

Evening wear 

There are three different evening dress codes on Royal Caribbean ships – casual, smart casual and formal. To find out how many of each night there will be on your cruise visit this page from Royal Caribbean’s website.


The casual dress code is defined as “polo shirts and trousers for men, sundresses or trousers for women”. 

what to wear on a Royal Caribbean cruise

A typical casual night outfit for me

For a casual night I usually throw on a pretty sundress with flat sandals and I find that works perfectly for me.

Smart Casual 

Royal Caribbean suggests that smart casual is “jackets and ties for men, dresses or trouser suits for women”. 

What to wear on a royal caribbean cruise

This is my personal type of smart casual night outfit

Smart casual nights can be a little confusing. Some people get rather dressed up for smart casual nights and others don’t. I tend to pack a few smart dresses and a pair of heels for a smart casual night. On other nights I wear the exact same type of dresses that I would wear on a casual night but jazz them up with heels, nice hair and a nice handbag.

For gents, a lounge suit, or trousers, a jacket, shirt and tie also works great.


Formal nights are suggested to be “suits and ties or tuxedos for men, cocktail dresses for women”.

what to wear on a royal caribbean cruise

Thomas and I ready for formal night!

Formal nights are your chance to get really dressed up, something I always really enjoy! I usually always go for a full length gown, but cocktail dresses are also perfect. A really fancy trouser and top set would also certainly work.

For gents, a tuxedo or three piece suit is definitely the way to go. There are usually some guys in ordinary lounge suits too, but the majority tend to be more formal.

Have any more questions about what to wear on a Royal Caribbean cruise? Let me know in the comments below!