Travel Hacks,  Travels

Must Bring Items When Traveling by Sea for Days

I recently visited Coron, Palawan via 2Go Travel and it’s honestly one of the longest sea travel I’ve had. It took us about 54 hours (March 2023) before we get into our destination since the ship had to dock at the Port of Puerto Princesa City first. It was way longer compared to my trip in 2019 when I traveled to Palawan for a backpacking adventure. That may sound excruciating especially with the fact that we did not have signal nor internet the entire time. However, it turned out fun. If you’re wondering how and why, I think it’s just a matter of packing the right stuff. If you’re also up for the experience but making it a fun one, here are the top 10 items that you should bring when traveling by sea for days!

a stairs to the entrance of a giant white ship
Departing from Puerto Princesa City Port for Manila

Fully charged power banks

I’ve traveled by sea countless times and one of the things that I noticed especially when I’m boarding on a ship that sails for days from a destination to another is that, there is a charging station installed at the common area. One time, it caused me Php 85.00 ($1.50) to have a phone fully charged. It’s an added expense if you do not have a power bank, of course. Thus, make sure that you bring fully charged power banks when traveling by sea for days to save some bucks, too.

Personal medicine kit

Personal medicine kit is seriously one of the items that you should bring when traveling by sea for days. There’s a chance to suffer from motion or travel sickness as waves can sometimes get unpredictable. Thus, it is a must to stash a pack of Meclizine hydrochloride (medicine preventing nausea and dizziness) tablets in your bag when traveling by sea for days. You might also want to include a menthol stick or ointment that can really make you feel better especially when applied to the temporal part of the head.

Bringing your own personal medicine kit is a must as the ship’s clinic may only offer limited medicine on board.

Personal toiletries

Some ships have toiletries for sale in their stores on board. However, expected limited and a bit pricey items. To avoid the hassle, double check your list of to-bring and packed items if you have enough toiletries to use while on board.

handy black bag for toiletries packing hacks
Got this organizer for my toiletries for only Php 200.00 from a one-stop shop

A Pillow and a blanket

Some types of accommodation in the ships do not come with the use of pillows, blankets or linens. Hence, if you are unsure about it, you can always bring your personal stuff just in case using it comes with a fee. You may always opt to bring your own anyway for health and safety purposes.

Card or board games

If you’re traveling with a few friends or family, it is best to bring card or board games when traveling by sea for days. In this case, you are not limiting your activities to sleeping and eating for the entire duration of your stay in the ship. It’s also quite a way to make friends with other passengers.

Take note though that they do not allow gambling in the ship!

Extra food or snacks

While ships often have their own stores that sell snack, take note that it may be a bit pricey and limited, too. Hence, bring extra food or snacks that you think you may want to nibble during your trip.

A book or a journal

Since you can’t do much in a ship especially the ones with limited facilities an amenities, bringing a book or a journal can be of good stuff to spend some time on while traveling by sea. There are good spots anyway to enjoy these such as the comfort of your own bed, the lounge and at the decks.


You might not be going out for a swim but bringing of sunscreen when traveling by sea is still a lowkey must! When you hang out by the deck or in the open air spaces of the ship, you may still be exposed to the UV rays. Thus, you might as well apply sunscreen before you go out for some fresh air especially at midday to protect your skin from the damage the harmful rays could bring.

Reusable water bottle

Just like snacks, the ship may offer beverages in their store on board but the price difference could be big. If you have your own bottle, you can just ask for a refill at their cafe or restaurant. Also, bringing a reusable water bottle could not only make you save some bucks but it’s also quite a sustainable option, too.

Ear plugs and sleeping mask

If you are sensitive in noise and light especially when trying to get some sleep, then, ear plugs and sleeping masks are a must. The sleeping area in ships that travel from a destination to another for days are usually shared and open. Unless the ship has a private room that you may want to rent (which costs a lot), then you may not need these since you have your own private space.

Anne Elizabeth Gumiran, also known as Queenie, is a 20-something, full-time public school teacher, a part-time travel blogger and a freediver. She started putting her stories of adventures and misadventures into words and pictures in 2017 and continues to do so as she shares her advocacy, Sustainable Traveling.

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