I believe in taking my electronics with me. Some for very good reasons. An iPhone, and I’m sure many other smart phones have many more functions then just as a cell phone. I use mine as an alarm clock, for music (remember to bring some head or ear phones), as a white noise maker, a regular clock (make sure you know how to change the time on it), and general keep me busy toy. I also bring my iPad for reading. I used to have a Kindle and I have found that bringing this type of item beats bringing lots of books. Where I do like good old fashioned books, I also know that on a long trip they take up too much room in my luggage. And when you are overseas they can be expensive to find in English. But remember, if you don’t want roaming charges, turn your cell phone to airplane mode so it won’t go looking for phone calls nor emails. If you don’t know how to do that, figure it out before you go. If in doubt, check with your carrier on how best to avoid overseas charges. And don’t forget to bring your charger for your cell phone.
If you want to take a camera I strongly suggest getting a small digital camera. I have known people who take large SLR/DSLR’s on trips, complete with tripods, lenses and all their gadgets. You stand out as a tourist when you carry too much camera gear. Also when you put all that gear into a camera bag you make yourself a target that screams I’m a rich tourist with lots of expensive gear (NOT a good idea). But regardless you need to remember to bring all those accessories you need for the camera – batteries, spare media cards, chargers, etc.
I frequently take a laptop on my cruises. Be aware that internet access on a cruise ship can be expensive. For example, current (07/2011) Royal Carribbean prices show:
The cost was $.65 per minute or you can choose a prepaid package
$35 for 60 minutes
$55 for 100 minutes
$75 for 150 minutes
$100 for 250 minutes
$150 for 500 minutes
These prices are subject to change and I’m sure they will. But many cruise lines do offer some sort of internet access. Check what their website says and be prepared to be “surprised” when you get there. Things may or may not work the way you expect.
These prices seem to be for either using their WiFi on your own laptop or using their computers on ship. This is a guideline and I’m sure will change. If you really need to bring a laptop and get internet service, you can always take your laptop on shore and find an internet cafe. Many ports will have international phones and internet cafes close to where the ships dock. If in doubt, just ask the crew, they usually know where these can be found in most ports.
With all these electronics you are carrying with you, you need to be aware of how you expect to charge them all. Bringing some sort of power cord is very helpful. Most cabins don’t have a lot of places to plug appliances in. You may find one in the cabin and one in the bathroom. A power cord helps. When DH and I cruise together, he always brings a power cord and an extension cord, just in case. Note I said a power cord, not a surge protector cord. Do not bring a surge protector.
Remember to bring your charger. Since the iPhone and iPad use the same charger I only need to bring one.
When you bring a camera remember spare media cards, spare batteries and the battery charger.
NOTE: I did a cruise in 2019 where my small power cord was confiscated when I boarded the ship. It was returned when I disembarked. By luck they didn’t take my “cube” that allows me to plug in a variety of usb cords. Since most of my items could charge using this, I was able to charge everything I needed. But be aware times are changing, and what is allowed may change.