Cruise Line Dress Codes

Unsure what to pack? Confused about what 'formal night' actually means?

Worried you're not going to have the right outfits to wear? 

Don't panic, we've got you covered! We've listed all the dress codes for each cruise line with lots of links to give you further information on many aspects of cruising (not just dress codes)!

We think this will answer all your questions about what to pack on your next cruise! 

Last Updated August 2019 

Azamara Club Cruises

Dress Code Summary

Azamara describe their dress code as 'Resort Casual' 

Formal Nights? 

Azamara have NO formal nights though you can of course dress up in formal wear if you wish to! 

Restrictions

Bare feet, tank tops, baseball caps, bathing suits, shorts & distressed/torn jeans are not allowed in the dining room or specialty restaurants. When dining at Windows Café, guests must wear footwear and a cover-up or shirt.

Useful Links: 

Azamara list some packing tips & further dress code information here: 

Packing Tips

Carnival Cruises

Dress Code Summary

Carnival have casual daytime attire, 'cruise casual' evening attire and formal evenings. 

Formal Nights? 

Carnival have formal nights which they describe as 'Cruise Elegant' evenings. They have 1 on a 2-5 night cruise with 2 evenings on a longer cruise.

 

Men: Shirt & Tie or Tuxedo is optional but trousers, shirts and sports jacket minimum. 

Women: Evening Gown is optional but cocktail dress, elegant skirts & blouses minimum. 

Restrictions

A minimum of shirts, bathing suit cover ups and footwear (including flip-flops) must be worn at all times in Lido restaurant.

 

The main dining room will stop you if you attend in cut-off jeans, men’s sleeveless shirts, tee-shirts, gym or basketball shorts, baseball hats, flip-flops and bathing suit attire. 

On Cruise Elegant evenings you will not be allowed to wear jeans, men’s sleeveless shirts, shorts, tee-shirts, sportswear, shorts, baseball hats, flip-flops and bathing suit attire in public areas. 

Useful Links: 

Carnival have a full listing of the dress code here - check the 'What to Wear?' question:

Full Listing of Dress Codes here

Celebrity Cruises

Dress Code Summary

Celebrity Cruises have replaced Formal Nights with 'Evening Chic' & 'Smart Casual'

Formal Nights? 

Celebrity have given formal nights a 'modern luxury reboot' replacing it with chic & glamorous on 2 nights in every 7 days.

Its dressier than smart casual but not as dressy than formal attire.  

Restrictions

T-shirts, swimsuits, robes, bare feet, tank tops, baseball caps and pool wear are not allowed in the main restaurant or specialty restaurant at any time. Shorts and flip-flops are not allowed in the evening hours. The dress code will be enforced at all restaurants. And guests are asked to follow the Smart Casual or Evening Chic dress code in the Celebrity Theatre for all evening performance

Useful Links:

Celebrity have some Q&A's here breaking down 'Evening Chic' & 'Smart Casual': 

Onboard Dress Code

There is some useful before you sail information including more about dress codes here: 

Before You Sail

Costa Cruises

Dress Code Summary

Costa Cruises is casual as standard but does have gala evenings where elegant dress is required

Formal Nights? 

Costa have formal nights which they describe as Gala Evenings where elegant dress is recommended. This appears to be 2 nights in a 7 night cruise. For example consider elegant dress to be a dark suit or tuxedo for men; evening gown or cocktail dress for women.

Restrictions

No beach clothes (shorts, sarongs or flip-flops); shoes are required in dining rooms

Useful Links: 

A host of useful with a little information on dress codes can be found here: 

Useful Information

Cruise & Maritime

Dress Code Summary

CMV like many cruise lines operate on a casual, informal and formal basis

Formal Nights? 

Generally, there are two ‘formal’ or gala nights planned on each cruise when many gentlemen wear a dinner jacket, although a lounge suit is quite acceptable. The ladies on these occasions have a chance to dress up and often opt for evening or cocktail dresses. On evenings proposed as ‘informal’, a suit or smart jacket and trousers, with or without a tie, for the men is suggested and the ladies have further opportunities to look elegant in a cocktail dress or trouser suits and stylish co-ordinates

Restrictions

You are not permitted to wear shorts or vests in the main restaurants. 

Useful Links:

You'll find a host of useful information including more about dress codes here: 

Useful Information

Crystal Cruises

Dress Code Summary

Crystal Cruises offer a more casual style of cruising than some other luxury cruise lines however 'Crystal Casual' still has some restrictions to keep dress code standards high. 

Formal Nights? 

Guests have two elegant options for preferred evening attire: Crystal Casual and Black Tie Optional. A Black Tie Optional evening offers a celebratory opportunity to dress more formally on a special evening(s). For men, this includes a dark suit with tie, or tuxedo; for women, this includes a formal cocktail dress, evening gown or dressy evening separates. On Black Tie Optional evenings, Crystal request at least a jacket to be worn by men and a dress, skirt or dress slacks and blouse or sweater to be worn by women.

 

On most voyages, guests can expect the following:
• 7-days (or less) cruises: Crystal Casual only, no Black Tie Optional evenings
• 8– to 10–day cruises: Up to one Black Tie Optional evening
• 11– to 13–day cruises: Two Black Tie Optional evenings
• World Cruises, Holiday voyages and Crossings may be scheduled differently

Restrictions

Waterside dining room attire is casual during the day; however, swimsuits, swimsuit cover–ups/robes, baseball hats and denim cut-off shorts are not appropriate. After 6:00 pm, casual daytime attire is not appropriate. Shorts and baseball caps are not permitted for men or women.

Useful Links:

Get the full breakdown of dress code including 'Black Tie optional' and 'Crystal Casual' options here:

Shipboard life

Cunard Cruises

Dress Code Summary

Cunard could be considered one of the more formal cruise lines at sea with dress codes strictly enforced. 

Formal Nights? 

There will be 2 or 3 gala nights each week. Gala evenings (sometimes themed) encourage you to be at your most glamorous from when the clock strikes 6pm.

For outfits think dinner jacket, tuxedo, dark suit for men. For women think evening/cocktail dress, smart trouser suit or formal separates. 

Restrictions

Even when wearing relaxed attire there's to be no torn or tattered clothing, shorts, sandals or sleeveless t-shirts. Relaxed attire can be worn in the following venues: 

 

​King Court, Lido Buffet, Golden Lion, Casino, Carinthia Lounge, Winter Garden, Garden Lounge, Yacht Club and G32.

Useful Links: 

Cunard have given you ideas of what to pack along with some sample outfits here: 

What to pack

Disney Cruise Line

Dress Code Summary

In general, most onboard dining locations are "cruise casual,” so casual attire, such as shorts and T-shirts, is permitted. Most cruises have special theme nights that provide opportunities to dress up.

Formal Nights? 

One formal and one semi-formal night on a 7 night cruise. Though optional, Disney recommend dress pants with a jacket or a suit for men, and dress or pantsuit for women. 

Restrictions

You are not permitted to wear swimwear and tank tops in the dining areas. In restaurants Palo & Remy you are not permitted to wear tank tops, swimsuits, swimsuit cover-ups, shorts, hats, cut-offs, torn clothing, t-shirts with offensive language and/or graphics, flip-flops or tennis shoes. Palo & Remy are much stricter in terms of dress codes. 

Useful Links:

Disney have a variety of dress codes depending on themes and locations. They also have a breakdown of how short and longer cruises work in terms of dress codes. You'll find a complete breakdown here: 

Dining Dress Codes

Disney link with a company called 'Cruiseline Formalwear' which offers the chance to hire formalwear and have it delivered to your stateroom. If nothing else you can have a look to see what Disney consider to be appropriate formalwear. 

 

Cruiseline Formalwear 

Fred Olsen

Dress Code Summary

The dress code is designed to ensure you feel relaxed and comfortable during your days and evenings on board. Most evenings are 'smart casual' on board with the odd formal night thrown in on cruises of 6 nights or more & even a theme night on longer cruises

Formal Nights? 

A cruise of 6 nights and more will see a formal night onboard. 

Most men opt to wear either a dinner jacket, or dark suit and tie.

Ladies are often seen looking fabulous in anything from a cocktail-style dress to a full-length ball gown.

  • 3 nights or less

    • Smart casual throughout

  • 3 - 5 nights

    • Captain's Welcome Party, but no formal nights

  • 6 nights

    • Captain's Welcome Party + 1x formal night

  • 7- 12 nights

    • Captain's Welcome Party + 2x formal nights

  • 13- 20 nights

    • Captain's Welcome Party + 3x formal nights

  • 22 nights +

    • Captain's Welcome Party + 1x formal night each week

Restrictions

Guests are asked not to wear bathing suits or vests in the restaurant during the day while trainers, T-shirts, shorts and tracksuits are not allowed in the restaurants for evening dining. 

Useful Links: 

A very comprehensive and clear breakdown for Fred Olsen can be found here: 

Onboard Dress Code

Also check out Fred Olsen's excellent videos on the subject. 

Holland America Line

Dress Code Summary

Holland America Line have simplified their dress code to simply smart casual which is most nights and the occasional gala night.

HAL recommend you pack as you would for any resort. 

Formal Nights? 

On gala nights women usually wear a suit, cocktail dress or gown and men wear a jacket and tie, dark suit, or tuxedo. Jacket and tie is the preferred attire in all fine dining restaurants on Gala Nights, though it is not required.

 

The number of Gala Nights on your cruise depends upon the duration of the voyage. 

Restrictions

No shorts in the dining room. Jeans without holes, tears or embroidery are welcome on most evenings in all restaurants, but on Gala Nights jeans are only allowed in the casual dining restaurants.

Useful Links: 

A useful Q&A regarding dress codes can be found here: 

Q&A on Dress Codes

MSC Cruises

Dress Code Summary

MSC is a pretty casual cruising experience so casual resort wear is a good way to describe it. 

Formal Nights? 

.Formal nights are pretty standard - suits or jackets and ties, and women cocktail dresses

There are 2 gala nights on a 7 night cruise. 

Look out for theme nights onboard including White Party or

Flower Glory Party

Restrictions

No jeans, T-shirts and shorts after 6pm and no swimwear in any dining room. 

 

Useful Links: 

MSC have lots of useful information for first time cruisers with a couple of questions around what to pack here: 

First time cruiser information

Norwegian Cruise Line

Dress Code Summary

NCL offer freestyle cruising - the freedom to do what you want, when you want, with who you want and how you want! 

Formal Nights? 

NCL do not have formal nights! They have some 'Smart Casual' in their more formal dining room or in our more upscale speciality restaurants. For women, it includes slacks or jeans, dresses, skirts and tops. For men, it's jeans or slacks with a collared shirt and closed-toed shoes. Kids 12 and under are welcome to wear nice shorts in all the restaurants.

Restrictions

NCL want you to be comfortable, but tank tops for men, flip flops, baseball caps, visors and jeans that are overly faded, with holes or tears and worn below the hips are not permitted in main dining rooms or speciality restaurants. 

Useful Links: 

NCL answer the question of what to pack here: 

What to Pack? 

P&O Cruises

Dress Code Summary

P&O Cruises have a number of different nights onboard - From formal / black tie nights to evening casual to theme nights such as 60's or tropical! 

Formal Nights? 

P&O Gala Evenings, or Black Tie nights, offer a chance to get dressed to the nines in glamorous evening wear. Don your favourite cocktail dress, tuxedo, ball gown or dinner jacket, or alternatively a dark business suit and tie. You may also wear formal national dress or military uniform. Typically there are 2 Formal / Black Tie evenings in 7 nights but does vary slightly. A full list of specific cruises and appropriate nights can be found on P&O's website (See Formal Nights link)

Restrictions

Away from the pool, shoes are to be worn and no pool wear in the ship’s lounges, inside bars, restaurants or reception. No tracksuits, football shirts, shorts or trainers in the evening after 6pm. 

Fancy dress and novelty items or clothing are not permitted on our ships; the only exceptions to this are clothing for official P&O Cruises theme nights and seasonal events such as Halloween and Christmas.

Any clothing that features inappropriate or offensive language, including novelty clothing with printed images or slogans, will not be allowed on board. We reserve the right to deny embarkation to guests who are inappropriately dressed. This policy does not apply to children aged 17 or under.

Useful Links: 

Everything you need to know about dress codes you can find here in this brilliant set of Q&A's in P&O's help section: 

Dress Codes Q&A's

Breakdown of Formal Nights: 

Formal Nights

Regent Seven Seas

Dress Code Summary

With Regent Seven Seas the attire ranges from Casual to Formal Optional

Formal Nights? 

On sailings of 16 nights or more, Formal and Semi-Formal attire is optional on two of the evenings. On the two Formal Optional evenings, guests are welcome to dress as per the elegant Casual dress code or opt for a more formal choice of clothing including gowns and cocktail dresses for ladies; tuxedos, dinner jackets or dark suits with tie for gentlemen. 

Elegant Casual comprises of a dinner dress for ladies including a skirt, or slacks with a blouse or sweater, a pant suit or dress; slacks and a collared shirt for gentlemen. Sport jackets are optional. Ties are not required. 

Interestingly to assist you with packing the last night of the cruise can be casual dress as the code is relaxed. 

Restrictions

Casual wear is not appropriate after 6:00 PM, with the exceptions of while dining at the Pool Grill or Pool Bar and on the final evening of the cruise 

Useful Links:

Find out more about life onboard with Regent with their FAQ's: 

FAQ's including Dress Code

Oceania Cruises

Dress Code Summary

Oceania Cruises are described as 'Country Club Casual' so no need for tuxedo's or evening gowns! 

Formal Nights? 

Oceania do not have any formal nights. For evening dining, elegant casual resort wear is suggested

Restrictions

Casual jeans, shorts, t-shirts, baseball caps, or tennis shoes may not be worn in the restaurants after 6pm

Useful Links: 

Country Club Casual Explained:

Country Club Casual

Oceania FAQ's including Dress Code question can be found here: 

FAQ's

Princess Cruises

Dress Code Summary

Princess tell us as a general rule you should dress for a cruise with Princess the same way you would for any stylish land-based resort.

Formal Nights? 

Princess Cruises have formal nights onboard and you can calculate the number of formal nights as follows. 

  • 1-4 Days 0 Formal Evenings

  • 5-6 Days 1 Formal Evenings

  • 7-13 Days2 Formal Evenings

  • 14-20 Days3 Formal Evenings

  • 21-28 Days4 Formal Evenings

  • 29+ Days 5 minimum Formal Evenings

For Princess formal night constitutes evening gowns and cocktail dresses for women with Tuxedos, dinner jackets or dark suits with a tie for men.

Restrictions

Dinner wear such as pool or beach attire, shorts, ball caps and casual jeans (with fraying and/or holes) are not welcomed in the dining rooms. Shoes must be worn.

Useful Links:

Princess Cruise have a great FAQ section which goes through what you may want to pack. 

What to Pack FAQ's

Seabourn

Dress Code Summary

Resort style attire during the day but either 'Elegant Casual' or 'Formal' during evenings. 

Formal Nights? 

Yes. The itinerary in the preliminary document booklet will inform you of the number of Formal evenings to expect during your voyage. As a rule of thumb, Formal evenings are scheduled as follows:

  • Cruises up to 13 days: One Formal evening

  • Cruises of 14 to 20 days: Two Formal evenings

  • Cruises of 21 or more days: Three Formal evenings

To Seabourn formal dress can be described as: 

  • In the Restaurant,

    • Men: Tuxedo, suit or slacks and jacket required.

    • Ladies: evening gown or other formal apparel. 

  • Dress in other dining venues is Elegant Casual.

Restrictions

Jeans are welcome in all dining venues during the day, but not appropriate in the Restaurant after 6pm. Swimsuits, brief shorts, cover-ups and exercise attire should be reserved for poolside, on deck or in the spa and fitness centre.

Useful Links:

Seabourn give some packing tips here: 

Dress Code Q&A

Royal Caribbean

Dress Code Summary

With so much on offer onboard ships its hard to know the right look and they will vary by venue but as a general rule Royal split their dress code into Casual Dress, Smart Casual Dress & Formal Dress

Formal Nights? 

Royal Caribbean operate formal nights requiring your best black-tie look – suits and ties, tuxedos, cocktail dresses or evening gowns

​As a general rule.. 

  • 3/4/5 night cruises - usually on Day 2

  • 6 night cruises - usually on day 2 and 5

  • 7 night cruises - are usually on Day 2 and 6

Restrictions

Bare feet are not allowed at any time in any venue and tank tops are not permitted in the Main Dining Room or Specialty Dining venues for dinner. Please keep swimwear to the Pool Deck. Shorts are welcomed for breakfast and lunch.

Useful Links:

Royal Caribbean have some information regarding dress codes in their FAQ's: 

Dress Code

Royal even have a little video you can watch which might be helpful... 

Watch here

Silversea

Dress Code Summary

Silversea shipboard attire ranges from casual to formal depending on the time and venue. Evenings can be formal, informal or casual

Formal Nights? 

Appropriate formal evening wear for ladies is an evening gown or cocktail dress; gentlemen wear tuxedos, dinner jackets or dark suits.

Tie is required.

On formal nights, guests may dine in La Terrazza and choose to dress informal; dresses or pantsuits for ladies, jackets for gentlemen (tie optional). This option also applies to Seishin and Stars on board Silver Spirit. Dining at The Grill is optional casual all nights. Following dinner, all guests are free to take advantage of any or all public spaces, however, jacket is required.

There is typically 1 formal night in cruises up to 9 nights. Full guide can be found with the links supplied. 

Restrictions

Nothing specified but we would expect the above dress codes to be strictly enforced so no casual wear in public on formal nights for example. 

Useful Links:

All you need to know before stepping onboard can be found here:

Dress Code Q&A

Marella Cruise

Dress Code Summary

Marella's dress code policy isn't entirely straightforward. They state it is 'easily' broken down into Beachwear, Casual, Smart.

However we note there are Gala & Formal nights as well as Dress to Impress which is slightly different. . 

Formal Nights? 

Effectively this depends on the ship. If you're on Celebration or Dream then it's time to get suited & booted - Men don their tuxes or suit and ties, while ladies put on their best cocktail dresses.

 

However if you are on Discovery, Discover 2 or Explorer then the Gala night is replaced by 'Dress to Impress'! This is a great chance to get dressed up, but how dressy you go is completely up to you.  

Restrictions

No restrictions specified although every venue seems to have it's own dress codes. Try stick to the Beachwear, Casual, Smart breakdown on our links and you should be fine.  

Useful Links: 

You'll find a useful ship by ship, restaurant by restaurant breakdown here: 

Dress Code Breakdown

Viking Cruise

Dress Code Summary

Elegant Casual is the name of the game. There are no formal nights onboard! 

Formal Nights? 

There are no formal nights onboard! Evening dress is “elegant casual” for all dining venues, performances and special events. On these occasions, required attire for ladies includes a dress, skirt or slacks with a sweater or blouse; for gentlemen, trousers and a collared shirt.

A tie and jacket are optional

Restrictions

Swimsuits, brief shorts, cover-ups and exercise attire should be reserved for the fitness centre, pool areas and sports deck. Jeans are not permitted as part of elegant casual evenings. 

Useful Links: 

All the help & FAQ's you need are here: 

Dress Code FAQ

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