A washing machine and laundry basket

Doing Laundry on a Cruise, Everything You Need to Know

There are a few reasons why being able to do laundry on your cruise vacation can come in handy.  First, since you are at sea, you do not have the ability to run to a local department store to buy clothes if needed. It would be much easier to wash what you already have on hand. If you are traveling with small children, it’s helpful to have the option of washing clothes. Also, you might be sailing on a longer cruise or enjoying an extended vacation, which includes a cruise. Being able to do laundry is an advantage, as you will have clean clothes for your extended vacation. But can you do laundry on a cruise? The quick answer is sometimes. When the option is available, doing laundry on a cruise is actually very popular. You will find that many cruisers opt to wash clothes while on a cruise vacation. 

Options Available for Doing Laundry on a Cruise

While most cruisers use the clothes they have and return home to do laundry. There are a few options available to cruise passengers who want or need to do laundry while sailing. The easiest option is to hand wash a piece of clothing, such as a bathing suit, and hang it on the retractable clothesline located in the shower to dry. But this doesn’t work well if you have more than one item to wash. The good news is that when you have more clothes to wash than a bathing suit, cruise ship launderettes are available on some cruise lines, allowing passengers to do laundry for a small fee. Other cruise lines offer dry cleaning and laundry services, including wash and fold for a fee. Ironing services are an additional fee if you choose or need to have a few pieces of clothes ironed.

Are Irons Available on a Cruise Ship?

Irons pose a fire hazard on cruise ships. Because of this, irons are not available in staterooms. Some cruise lines have ironing rooms on a few decks where you can iron any clothes that need to be ironed. Other cruise lines offer ironing services for a fee. I make sure to iron everything that needs to be ironed prior to sailing. However, it is difficult to make sure that everything stays wrinkle-free while traveling to my destination. There is always something that gets wrinkled and needs to be touched up. Luckily, there is usually the option to visit the ironing room or pay for the ironing service when needed. 

Iron with no symbol across the picture
Irons are not allowed in staterooms

Laundry and Ironing Services Available on Royal Caribbean Cruise Ships

Royal Caribbean Cruise Line does not provide self-service laundromats or ironing rooms on its cruise ships. But all is not lost. Royal Caribbean offers laundry services for all passengers for a fee. The fee is calculated by the type and number of pieces of clothing that need to be laundered. Besides the regular laundry service, Royal Caribbean offers laundry specials during each voyage.   

Cost for Laundry Service on Royal Caribbean Cruise Ships

Royal Caribbean offers four different laundry services: wash and press, press only, steam only, and dry clean and press. The cost sheet for laundry service is placed in each cabin with the cost ranging as low as $1.99 for pressing a t-shirt or a blouse to $14.99 for dry clean and pressing of a suit. Along with the price sheet for laundry services, you will also find a paper laundry bag which is typically used for laundry specials. The laundry special on Royal Caribbean is usually for wash and fold and includes filling a laundry bag for $34.99. The goal here is to be able to fill the paper laundry bag without tearing it and to be able to close the bag.

Cost for Ironing Specials on Royal Caribbean Cruise Ships

In addition to laundry specials, you will find ironing specials on board some of Royal Caribbean cruise ships. Ironing specials include the pressing of 10 garments for $17.49.

Laundry Services Available on Carnival Cruise Ships

Carnival Cruise Line offers laundry services on their ships. However, the type of service available differs based on the type of ship you are sailing on. Some ships offer laundry services for a charge and other ships offer the same type of service and also have personal laundromats available for use. One service that is available on most Carnival Ships is dry cleaning services.

Dry Cleaning Services on Carnival Cruise Ships

Dry cleaning services are available on most Carnival Cruise ships. This service is especially handy if you need something dry-cleaned for Formal Night. The cost of the service is comparable to dry cleaning services on land. Of course, this might vary depending on the city you live in. There are two options for dry cleaning service: Same Day/Express service and Regular/Next Day service.

Same Day/Express service requires that you hand in the items that you want dry cleaned before 9:00 am in the morning to your stateroom attendant. Your dry cleaning will be returned to you by 5:00 pm on the same day. Just in time for dinner. There is an additional fee of 50% for same-day service on top of the regular dry cleaning fee. If you dry clean a suit and would like it returned the same day, the cost will be $11.50 for dry cleaning plus 50% of $11.50, which is $5.75 for same-day service. Your total for same-day service to dry clean your suit would be $17.25. 

If you choose regular service, your dry cleaning will be returned to you by 5:00 pm the next day.

Costs for Dry Cleaning Service

  • Brassieres $3.50
  • Coats $7.00
  • Dresses $9.50
  • Evening Dresses $11.50
  • Formal Shirts/Blouses $6.00
  • Jackets $5.50
  • Polo Shirts/T-Shirts $4.00
  • Shorts $5.00
  • Skirts/Slacks $7.00
  • Suit (2 Pieces) $15.00
  • Sweaters $5.00
  • Ties $3.00
  • Trousers/Pants $6.50
  • Vests/Waistcoats $3.00
  • Same Day/Express Service: 50% fee for same day service

Note: Prices are accurate as of May 2024. The cost for services can change and should be verified once you are on board your cruise.

Laundry Services Offered on Carnival Cruise Ships

Laundry Services will differ based on the ship that you are sailing on. The Excel class ships are Carnival’s newest and largest cruise ships. The Excel Class ships include the Carnival Celebration, Carnival Jubilee, and the Carnival Mardi Gras. These ships have the most amenities and offerings for their traveling passengers in comparison to other ships. However, Carnival did not include personal laundry rooms on these ships. Instead, passengers who need an article of clothing washed need to rely on the laundry service available on the ship. On the plus side, all three of these ships have ironing rooms available for use. 

The Carnival Firenze, Carnival Luminosa, and Carnival Venezia do not have personal laundry rooms or ironing rooms. You will have to use the valet laundry service if you are traveling on one of these ships and need something laundered or ironed.

The rest of Carnival’s fleet has personal laundry rooms available for use for a small fee. You will also find ironing rooms available on the rest of the fleet. 

Types of Laundry Services Available on Carnival Ships

Just as in the dry cleaning services, there are two options for laundry service: Same Day/Express Service and Regular Service.  

The same rules apply for Same Day/Express laundry service. You must hand in the items that you want washed before 9:00 am in the morning to your cabin attendant. Your laundry will be returned to you by 5:00 pm on the same day. There is an additional fee of 50% for same-day service. If you wash a sweat suit and would like it returned the same day, the cost will be $7.00 for wash and press services plus 50% of $7.00, which is $3.50 for same-day service. Your total for same-day service to wash and press your sweat suit would be $10.50. 

If you choose regular service, your laundry will be returned to you by 5:00 pm the next day, freshly washed and pressed.

Cost of Laundry Services on Carnival Cruise Line

  • Brassieres $2.00
  • Formal Shirts/Blouses $5.00
  • Handkerchiefs $2.00
  • Jump Suits $7.00
  • Nightgowns/Pajamas $6.00
  • Polo Shirts/T-Shirts $3.50
  • Shirts/Blouses $4.00
  • Shorts $4.50
  • Slips $2.00
  • Socks – each pair $2.00
  • Sweat Suit $7.00
  • Ties $3.00
  • Trousers/Pants/Slacks/Skirts $5.00
  • Undershirts/White T-shirts $2.00
  • Underwear/Panties $2.00
  • Same Day/Express Service 50% fee for same day service

Note: Laundry services include washing and pressing. Prices are accurate as of May 2024. The cost for services can change and should be verified once you are on board your cruise. 

The Handy Paper Laundry Bag and Cost Sheet

On most cruise ships, you will find a paper laundry bag with a cost sheet for laundry services either on the desk or in the top drawer of the desk. This is the bag you will use to hand in your laundry. The cost sheet is also an inventory sheet. The sheet should be filled out accurately with the number of items you are handing in for laundry services. You want to be sure to itemize every article of clothing so that you get everything returned to you.

Ironing Services on Carnival Ships

One additional service that is offered is ironing services. You do not have to visit the ironing room and iron your clothes if you do not want to. In the same manner that you send out laundry, you can also send out clothes to be ironed. The cost for ironing services is 80% of the listed laundry price. Looking at the sweat suit we sent out for wash and press service for $7.00, if we send out the same suit just for ironing, the cost would be $5.60. The cost of pressing a t-shirt is $2.80, which I personally think is worth the cost to avoid doing it myself. 

Self-Service Laundry Facilities on Carnival Ships

Many of Carnival’s Cruise ships have self-service laundry rooms available for passenger use. The self-serve launderettes are located on various decks throughout the ship. The self-service laundromats typically have about three washing machines and three dryers but this can differ on each ship. The cost for washing and drying is $3.50 for washing a load of clothes and $3.50 for drying a load of clothes.  In addition to self-service laundry rooms, there are also self-service ironing rooms available. The ironing rooms have about two or three ironing cabinets which house the ironing board and the iron. There is usually a sink available as well.

Self service laundry facility on the Carnival Magic
Launderette on the Carnival Magic
Sink in the self service laundry room on the Carnival Magic
Sink in the Launderette
Payment Scanner
Payment Scanner

Besides the washing machines and dryers, self-service launderettes usually have an iron and ironing board and a sink. The iron and ironing board are located in a small metal cabinet on the wall. You also don’t have to worry about packing laundry detergent or fabric softener, as small boxes of laundry detergent and fabric softener are available for purchase from a vending machine located in the launderette. The cost of detergent and fabric softener is typically about $2.00 per item. The detergent and fabric softener are good for one load of laundry. If you prefer using dryer sheets, you will need to pack them for your trip. 

Ironing Cabinet
Ironing cabinet
Laundry soap vending machine on the Carnival Magic
Laundry soap vending machine

You can find the location of all self-service facilities on your cruise ship by searching in the Ship Map section of the Hub App.

Ironing Rooms on Carnival’s Excel Class Ships 

While self-service laundry facilities are not available, you will find ironing rooms on board Carnival’s Excel cruise ships. If you need to iron a piece of clothing, you will be able to do so by visiting one of the self-service ironing rooms on board an Excel class ship. There are usually around three ironing boards and irons available in each ironing room. And luckily the ironing rooms look a bit more pleasant than the ones on the Carnival Magic. While ironing rooms are available, they are not available on every deck. You will need to take your clothes to the ironing rooms closest to you to get your ironing done. The ironing rooms are handy if you need to iron a shirt for Elegant Night and prefer to do it yourself.

Ironing Room on the Carnival Celebration
Ironing room on the Carnival Celebration
Sink in the ironing room on the Carnival Celebration
Sink in the ironing room on the Carnival Celebration

Wash and Fold Specials

Wash and Fold specials are offered on several ships. You can fill up one of the paper laundry bags for same-day wash and fold service for a cost of $15.00 per bag. You can hand in five laundry bags for same-day wash and fold service for $50.00. The Wash and Fold Special does not include pressing. The specials and the costs for the specials can differ on each ship. You will need to confirm the special and the cost available on your ship.

Pressing Specials on Carnival Ships

If you need a few items pressed there is a next day service special for pressing clothes. The special includes pressing of 12 items for $20.00 and 24 items for $30.00. 

Laundry Services for Carnival VIFP Club Platinum Members

If you are a VIFP Club Platinum card holder, you are in luck! One of the perks of being a Platinum member of Carnival’s VIFP Loyalty Program is complimentary laundry services. As a Platinum member, you receive two complimentary bags of wash-and-fold laundry services for cruises that are less than seven days long. If your cruise is seven days or longer, you receive three complimentary bags of wash and fold laundry services. There is a $15.00 fee for additional bags of wash and fold laundry. If you want to return home with clean clothes or are an extended vacation, a free bag of laundry is a great perk. this is a great perk.  

Doing Laundry on a Cruise Takeaways

While doing laundry on a cruise vacation might not be in everyone’s plans, it is actually a very popular thing to do. Many people choose to either do laundry themselves or send it out. You might be surprised to find that the machines in the personal laundry room are all in use and that you will need to wait until one is available. This is especially true towards the end of a cruise or after a port stop that includes lots of beach time, such as a stop on one of the private islands, such as Half Moon Cay. Regardless of the type of service you prefer, it is good to know that there are options for getting laundry done in case the need arises. Luckily, many cruise lines offer a way to get the job done. Happy cruising!

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