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Winter Clothes or Summer Clothes?


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We are planning on July 2022, I know in general we will need layers.  What about at dinner, shows, other things on board ship - will we typically want summer clothes or winter clothes?

Edited by vanreg
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  • vanreg changed the title to Winter Clothes or Summer Clothes?

Whether on warm weather cruises (ie, the Caribbean, French Polynesia or SE Asia) or itineraries with cooler weather I generally find ships to be somewhat overly air-conditioned.  While you won't need a wool sweater in the theater or at shows, I find I need something over my shoulders.  I also find that dress on Alaskan itineraries is more casual than on some other itineraries.  

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  Dressy casual for the ladies.  I can get by coordinating  one black pant, three nice short sleeve tops, and two sweaters.  Mix and match.  For Gala night add some glitz with Swarovski type jewelry and you are ready to party.  Shoes should be nice but comfortable for walking around the ship.  No shorts are allowed in the dining room.  Clean, dressy jeans seem to be ok.  

 

For men a collared shirt and/or sweater with nice pants, even an aloha style shirt is fine for the dining room.  For Gala night you can add a jacket and/or tie for an upscale appearance.  A suit or tux may be worn by some.  Most people want to pack light due to travel restrictions.  

 

The ship is usually pretty cool.

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22 hours ago, vanreg said:

will we typically want summer clothes or winter clothes?

 

oaktreerb's response to your question is excellent.  When I think of 'winter clothes", I think of what I wear in southwest Ohio during our Winter.  No, such won't be needed.  A good rainproof lined jacket (with a hood) might be desirable to have when one is cruising near the glaciers.  Or, when there is a cool rain, as can happen in July.  Packing a pair of shorts is a good idea, because it can be warm enough that wearing long pants might be too warm.  If you find that you didn't pack enough warm clothes, the Shops on Board will have clothing that might do.  Or, buy a sweatshirt or sweater ashore.  

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On 4/26/2021 at 1:41 PM, vanreg said:

We are planning on July 2022, I know in general we will need layers.  What about at dinner, shows, other things on board ship - will we typically want summer clothes or winter clothes?

 

On most cruises to Alaska I have experienced temperatures of 60F to as high as 95F. Wind and rain would be of greater concern to temperature in July. Therefore, a good rain jacket is recommended and as you indicated - layers.

 

With respect to attire during dinner, shows, etc I suggest checking with the cruise line's dress code and asking on the cruise line's Board on CC. Our preferred cruise line is elegant casual every evening, so long trousers and a collared shirt - either polo/golf or dress shirt. No jeans, shorts or flipflops in restaurants in the evening. Other cruise lines still do formal nights, but they are increasingly optional. 

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I have gone 2x over the 4th of July.

 

First cruise it was incredibly wet, foggy, windy, cold and it felt like ice pellets hitting my face when outside. The ship sold out of jackets. We saw very little due to the fog. It was miserable.

 

Several years later I went the same week and it was in the high 80's and probably hit 90. I got sunburned.

 

All of my other cruises to Alaska have been somewhere between those two when it came to temps.

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19 hours ago, Coral said:

I have gone 2x over the 4th of July.

 

First cruise it was incredibly wet, foggy, windy, cold and it felt like ice pellets hitting my face when outside. The ship sold out of jackets. We saw very little due to the fog. It was miserable.

 

Several years later I went the same week and it was in the high 80's and probably hit 90. I got sunburned.

 

All of my other cruises to Alaska have been somewhere between those two when it came to temps.

 

An excellent description of Alaska's weather in the Summer!

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The Spring of the year sees the dramatic climate change lingering over into Summer.

Rain Snow* Sleet Doom of Night (you know the Postmans crede) 

* not so much Snow as the Japanese current warms the Alaska coast line

 

Always layer up with the last layer being a moisture waterproof windproof slicker.

You can always strip off layer by layer till you are in full Norwegian blood ready 

for that Icy plunge in whatever is close to that SPA Hot Tub for resurrection.

 

As the mid-night sun tilts lower in the Autumn sky - cooler temperatures will prevail.

Late Autumn the humidity and moisture content thins to a degree.

Always - nights will be chilly (not frozen) -

This is not a Caribbean beach lovers cruise you know !

With all that glacier stuff around who needs air conditioning.

 

No you don't need parkas and bunny boots just layer up.

Sensible footwear - leave your twinkle toes in ice water and watch them curl up like elves boots.

Whatever your threshold of intoxication and pain will muster.

 

Unless your shore excursion takes you above the Artic Circle you will survive and be OK.

 

Note clothing at the start of the cruise season is expensive and not much if any bargains

sales price reduction - but get to the end of the season and buy 1 get 1 heck take another

we are clearing stock for next year - best year end sales are at Ketchikan.

 

Read on here at CC for more ideas on how to pack thinly and smartly - no overweight

bulky baggage to tote about - you wear those layers to reduce the airline baggage fees.

 

 

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Returning to part of the original question: many people report feeling chilly indoors aboard the ship and would advise always having a sweater handy or, for evening, planning on an outfit with sleeves. Many other people report that the ship is warm enough not to need those. In general this is the same regardless of whether it is hot or cold outdoors.

 

I tend to feel warm, so I dress aboard ship according to the climate -- long sleeves, plus a blazer for formal nights if there are any, in the Baltic, but lighter clothes in the Caribbean. In an Alaska cruise any kind of weather can and probably will occur, but it's often said that dress in general is more casual than on, say, European, itineraries.

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  • 2 weeks later...
On 5/3/2021 at 6:47 PM, Coral said:

I have gone 2x over the 4th of July.

 

First cruise it was incredibly wet, foggy, windy, cold and it felt like ice pellets hitting my face when outside. The ship sold out of jackets. We saw very little due to the fog. It was miserable.

 

Several years later I went the same week and it was in the high 80's and probably hit 90. I got sunburned.

 

All of my other cruises to Alaska have been somewhere between those two when it came to temps.

I second this. I go fishing in the Kenai almost every year in July. You can always count on mostly rain, but we had a couple days last year when I actually needed sunscreen and standing in the cold river felt good. 
 

That said, inside the ship it’s temperature controlled and so wear what’s comfortable for you. 

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Weather in southeast Alaska is a maritime climate year round, meaning that the Pacific Ocean dominates the weather patterns.  The water temperature is always cold (think hypothermia with prolonged time in the water) which means that breezes that blow across the water are cool, not warm.  If you are in port and outdoors on a sunny day you will have warmth from the sun, but onboard ship and out on deck, you may have a cool breeze even on a sunny day.

For recommended clothing, layers are good, plus a waterproof hooded jacket for rainy days.  Onboard attire tends toward more casual - think outdoor style clothing.  Alaska itself is very casual, even in the cities of Anchorage and Fairbanks.

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You will need warm and water/wind resistant clothes for glacier viewing days and certain excursions.  The wind off the glacier is cold!  There have been a couple of cruises where I didn’t use warm clothes but most cruises/excursions i did need them.

 

I wear layers on those days—undershirt, long sleeved shirt, puffy jacket, wind-water resistant outer layer as well as wind/water resistant pants.  Think a 3-1 coat (I like Eddie Bauer and Columbia products).  I also wear my cycling gloves (wind and water resistant), a warm hat, and merino wool socks.  You can always take off if it warms up.  I like to be outside viewing so I pack accordingly—nothing worse than missing a calving event because you were too cold!  Water resistant/proof is nice—umbrellas don’t hold up well on an Alaskan cruise.....

 

 

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