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Do you have to dress up every night on a cruise?

For the night, different cruise lines around the world have varied dress codes. Continue reading to learn about the dress codes suggested by cruise lines for its guests.

By Cruise Booking Team

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While enjoying the vacation on a cruise ship with loved ones, one important thing to keep in mind is the way of dressing. There are several different events and places on a cruise ship where travelers are required to dress accordingly. With a wide variety of cruise lines, each of them has its own dress code. Although the travelers can wear the dress of their choice, some cruise lines specify a dress code for every night, especially for dinner at the restaurants. The specialty restaurants on cruise ships have either a formal dress code or a less formal dress code, such as smart casuals. For people who are new to cruising, worrying about the dress code can be a significant barrier, but it really does not need to be an issue.

Do you have to dress up every night on a cruise?

Dress codes might vary from one cruise line to another, here is the list of dress codes of different cruise lines that travelers have to follow. 

1 - Carnival Cruise Line

The dress code for the Carnival cruise line is generally casual where guests can wear jeans, T-shirts, tank tops, and shorts. It organizes a formal night which is also known as “cruise elegant” night, where male guests can wear a formal suit or a dress with a sports coat whereas female guests can wear elegant skirts or gowns. There are two elegant nights each seven-night trip, and there is one on shorter cruises. On cruise casual night the dress code is collared sport shirts, sports slacks, khakis, jeans, casual skirts or pants, summer dresses, and capri pants. 

2 - Celebrity Cruises

The dress code for Celebrity Cruise can be defined as chic casual, where khaki shorts are very much common. For dinner in restaurants and the main dining area guests are suggested to wear smart casuals such as sports shirts, slacks, skirts, and pants. Every sailing that lasts six nights or less on a Celebrity Cruise features a formal night, where guests have to be in formal attire. Passengers are encouraged to dress up for "evening chic" nights by wearing tuxedos and evening gowns.

3 - Disney Cruise Line

There are four types of nights on the Disney cruise line that includes formal, semi formal, dress-up, and casual nights. Men may wear tuxedos or suits to formal nights, and women may wear gowns, while semi formal and dress-up nights have similar dress codes of jackets and pantsuits. In cruise casual night all other casual wear is permitted except swimwear and tank tops. Seven night cruises have a formal and a semi formal night while dress-up night is available in three and four night cruises.

Also Check: How to get the best price for a cruise?

4 - Holland America Cruise Line

Holland America cruise line has both formal and casual nights. Formal nights in this cruise line are called "Gala Nights" and the dress code "Gala Attire". This formal attire is mainly for the dinner at all fine dining restaurants where men have to wear collared shirts or slacks and women have to wear skirts. On voyages of less than one week, there is just one formal night, but voyages of 8 to 13 nights have two formal nights. It also includes restaurants where guests can dress casually for dinner.

5 - MSC Cruises

The main dress code of the MSC cruise line is ‘casual resort wear’ but for the formal nights guests are required to wear suits, ties, jackets, and cocktail dresses. Even though it is not a formal night, for dinner guests are required to dress up much more elegantly. MSC cruises also host theme nights, with dress codes based on the specific theme, such as tropical night and white night. Casual attire, such as t-shirts and shorts, is only permitted at buffet dinners. Number of formal nights can vary depending on the duration of the voyage.

6 - Norwegian Cruise Line

Norwegian cruise lines do not follow a proper formal dress code; instead most of the time a cruise casual wear is accepted such as skirts, capri pants, jeans, shorts, and khakis. At night for dinner guests can go for casual or smart casual clothes at most of the restaurants. Although for specialty restaurants in cruise ships a formal dress code is suggested. The cruise line does not have any kind of formal nights but ‘Norwegian's night out’ can be considered as the formal night.


Nights in the cruises have significant importance where guests are required to wear a certain type of dress to match with the ambiance. If you do not wish to follow the dress code for dinner, there are various places to eat on a cruise where it is not required. The main thing to remember is that the nighttime dress codes of various cruise lines are merely suggestions; you are not required to follow them and it is entirely up to you whether or not you desire to dress up every night.

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