21 Fun games to bring on a cruise ship. Image is a hand holding Uno cards

21 Fun Games to Bring on a Cruise {2024}

Take a look at these fun games to bring on a cruise. While cruise ships do have plenty of amenities and activities, bringing along your own games can elevate your experience.

We have put together a list of the 21 best games to bring on a cruise. We selected these games because they are fun, portable and easy to learn.

21 Fun games to bring on a cruise.  Top image is a cruise ship, bottom image is a hand holding Uno cards

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21 Best games to bring on a cruise vacation

1. UNO

UNO is a great choice for a game to bring on a cruise because you can play with just 2 players or can play with 10. If you meet any UNO fans on your cruise ship they can join in.

Match the number or match the color, with a few twists and wild cards along the way. Uno is very popular game, it’s easy to learn and fun for all ages.

Mattel Games UNO Card Game, Toy for Kids and Adults, Family Game for Camping and Travel in Storage Tin Box (Amazon Exclusive)

Family friendly – Ages 7+ – 2-10 Players


SKIP-BO is a card sequencing game that combines strategy and luck.

The Skip-Bo instructions give an option to play a shorter game which you may want to start with as a full Skip-Bo game can take anywhere from 45-60 minutes. It is nice to have an option to play a shorter version.

Mattel Games Skip Bo Card Games, for Adults and Family Night, Kids and Adult Games, 2 to 6 Players Storage Tin Box (Amazon Exclusive)

Family friendly – Ages 7+ – 2-6 Players

3. Yahtzee

Yahtzee is a classic dice game that you are probably familiar with. A portable version of Yahtzee like this is a great choice to bring on a cruise ship. The container doubles as the shaker cup and the score sheets are more compact that the traditional Yahtzee sheets.

Yahtzee is a great cruise game for couples as it only requires two players. Highest score wins.

Hasbro Gaming Yahtzee Board Game, Fast-Playing Dice Games for Kids, Teens, and Adults, Strategy Games, Family Games for Kids, 2 or More Players, Ages 8 and Up

Family friendly – Ages 8+ – 2+ Players

4. Boggle – travel size

Boggle is a fun word search game. This travel sized Boggle is a great game to take on a cruise. It takes up minimal space in your luggage and is one of the few games you can play on your own or with others.

If you are up early before your travel companion, grab your Boggle game, grab a coffee and find somewhere comfortable sit and play a little game of Boggle.

Hasbro Gaming Boggle Classic Game

Family friendly – Ages 8+ – 1+ Players

5. Azul Mini

This is the travel version of the board game Azul. Azul is a tile placement strategy game. This portable version of Azul has indented plastic trays to keep your tiles from sliding around.

Each game lasts 30-45 minutes.

Azul Mini Board Game - Portable Tile-Placement Fun, Strategy Game for Kids and Adults, Ages 8+, 2-4 Players, 30-45 Minute Playtime, Made by Next Move Games

Family friendly – Ages 8+ – 2-4 Players

6. Qwirkle – travel sized

Qwirkle is a fun board game for all ages that also comes in a travel size. Travel Qwirkle is a tile game where you create rows and columns by either matching different colors or shapes.

It is a strategy game that adults will love but also a great cruise game for kids as it is about shapes and colors.

MindWare CSG-QWIRKLE_Travel_UK, Mixed Colours

7. Rummikub

If you like Rummy, you will love Rummikub. This travel-sized tile game comes in a convenient tin.

Players take turns placing the tiles in runs and groups Rummy style. You can watch a video tutorial on how to play Rummikub here.

Rummikub in Travel Tin - The Original Rummy Tile Game by Pressman, Blue (B07GLGBW9X)

Family friendly – Ages 8+ – 2-4 Players

8. Scrabble To Go

This classic word game comes in a really smart designed travel version. Scrabble to go has a smaller folding board where the tiles click into place.

This version is really great because you can pack up mid game and resume later. The tiles will stay in place and the letter racks have a privacy shield that clicks down and locks your letter tiles into place. This makes Scrabble to go the perfect travel game to bring on a cruise.

Scrabble is also a game that almost everyone knows how to play, making it easy to have another couple join in.

Winning Moves Games Scrabble to Go Board Game

Family friendly – Ages 8+ – 2-4 Players

9. Pass the Pigs

This compact game can be played anywhere. Pass the Pigs is a fun twist on a dice game. Instead of rolling dice, you roll 2 pigs.

You score points based on the pose of the pigs. You can then choose to pass the pigs to the next player or gamble and roll again. Roll and “oinker” or a “pig out” and you will lose points. The first player to get to 100 points wins.

Kids, teens, and adults will like this game.

Winning Moves Games Pass The Pigs, Multicolor, for ages 7 and up

Family friendly – Ages 7+ – 2-4 Players

10. I Spy Travel

I Spy Travel is a great game to bring on a cruise if you have younger kids. Kids aged 4+ can play and there is no reading required.

This is a seek-and-find card game that is travel themed. I Spy Travel is a great game to have on hand not only for cruises, but can be played at airports, on camping trips and road trips.

It’s a small investment to keep the kids entertained. And, the best part is that it can be played by one person.

Briarpatch | I Spy Travel Card Game, Ages 4+

Family friendly – Ages 4+ – 1+ Players

11. Monopoly Deal

A much faster and smaller version of the classic board game. Monopoly Deal is a card game that can be played in 15 minutes, a little longer if you are playing with more than 2 players.

The aim of the game Monopoly Deal is to be the first to collect 3 compete set of properties of different colors. Of course, there are cards that can slow you down.

The entire family will enjoy this game.

Hasbro Gaming Monopoly Deal Card Game, Quick-Playing Card Game for 2-5 Players, Game for Families and Kids, Ages 8 and Up, Christmas Stocking Stuffers (Amazon Exclusive)

Family friendly – Ages 8+ – 2-5 Players

12. Cover Your Assets

Here is another fun game to try. Cover your Assets is a card game that is played with 2 to 6 players. Make pairs of assets, challenge and try to steal other players assets and defend your own. The first player to $1,000,000 in assets wins the game.

Here is a short YouTube video with gaming instructions.

Grandpa Beck's Games Cover Your Assets | from The Creators of Skull King | Easy to Learn and Outrageously Fun for Kids, Teens, & Adults Alike | 2-6 Players Ages 7+

Family friendly – Ages 7+ – 2-6 Players

13. Bananagrams Duel

If you are looking for a fun 2-person game to bring on your cruise, take a look at Bananagrams Duel. It is a great couples game and is travel sized.

Bananagrams Duel is a twist on the classic Bananagrams. The duel version is played with only 2 players. There are little banana shaped cards with different themes. Flip a card to uncover the theme, then using your letter dice try to form as many words as you can, sticking to that theme.

Bananagrams Duel: Ultimate 2 Player Travel Game | Small Space Word Race

Family friendly – Ages 7+ – 2 Players only

14. Five Crowns

Five Crowns is a Rummy style card game where you try to get runs and “books” (sets of 3). Each round the number of cards dealt will vary as will the wild card. This Five Crowns card set comes with a bonus score sheet which is helpful.

Five Crowns can be played as a solitaire version. Here is a short video on how to play Five Crowns solitaire. Five Crowns is a great game to bring on a cruise since it has different ways to play. Play alone or with family and friends.

Playmonster SET Family Games Five Crowns 25th Anniversary Tin (SME4156)

Family friendly – Ages 8+ – 1-7 Players

15. Farkle

Farkle is a easy to learn dice game. Roll the dice, decide to keep your points (as seen on the scorecard), or gamble and roll for more points. However, you run the risk of getting a “farkle” and losing your points for that round.

Farkle is another game that can be played alone (score as many points as you can in 10 rounds), is a game for couples, and a game that can be played in small groups.

Brybelly Farkle: The Family Dice Game | Fun Dice Game for Game Nights | 1 Cup & Dice | 1 Player Game Only

Family friendly – Ages 8+ – 1-8 Players

16. Clue – the card game

Clue is known as Cluedo outside of North America. The card game version is the travel variation of the classic Hasbro game.

Determine “whodunit” using the evidence cards and the case file cards. You do need 3-4 players though, so if you are cruising with family it might be of interest, but it isn’t a couples game.

Hasbro Gaming Clue Card Game,3-4 Player Strategy Game,Travel Games,Christmas Stocking Stuffers for Kids Ages 8 and Up

Family friendly – Ages 8+ – 3-4 Players

17. Mexican Train Dominoes (Pack and Go version)

Pack and Go is the travel version of Mexican Train Dominoes.

The object of the game is to use all the dominoes in your hand to score zero. After 13 hands, the lowest score wins. If you aren’t familiar with Mexican Train Dominoes, here is a great video that explains the game in detail.

This is a great cruise game to invite fellow passengers to join in, a little friendly competition fun. This game will require more table space than a card or dice game.

Pack & Go Mexican Train Dominoes from Spin Master Games Portable Dominoes Set Kids Games Classic Board Games for Adults and Kids Ages 8 and Up

Family friendly – Ages 8+ – 2-8 Players

18. Battleship – travel size

The kid approved classic board game comes in a travel size. It is a great idea to bring some small games to play on a cruise ship. This is a good game to keep the kids entertained while you are getting ready for dinner, on a rainy day, or makes a great activity before bed.

This is an easy to play, compact strategy game for two players. The only downside to the Battleship travel game is the many small pieces.

Battleship Grab and Go Game (Travel Size)

Kid approved – Ages 8+ – 2 Players only

19. Connect 4

The classic Connect 4 kids game that most people are familiar with comes in both a travel sized traditional game as well as Connect 4 card game.

The travel sized version, or grab and go as they call it, is the 4-in-a-row simple game you are familiar with just a compact size.

The Connect 4 card game is a fun twist. Players are dealt 2 mission cards to start with, those mission cards are kept hidden from other players. For example, one mission card might show 4 red circles in a row. Taking turns, players flip over tile cards building patterns as you go, matching colors. If your tile card has a red circle, you would try to lay that beside one of the tile cards already laid that has a red circle on it. Once you lay a tile card that completes the pattern of the 4 red-in-a-row (as in your mission), you have completed that mission. The first person to complete 4 missions wins.

Here is a video showing how the Connect 4 card game is played.

Connect 4 Grab and Go Game (‎Original version)

Family friendly – Ages 6+ – 2 Players only

Hasbro Gaming Connect 4 Card Game for Kids Ages 6 and Up, 2-4 Players 4-in-A-Row Game

Family friendly – Ages 6+ – 2-4 Players

20. Printable cruise games

Printable cruise games are great games to bring on a cruise. You would print them at home and bring them to play on a cruise ship.

It is a good idea to print a few extra incase you meet new friends who would like to play.

There are a couple great choices. Consider a printable cruise scavenger hunt. This is great family fun and very inexpensive.

Scavenger hunts are a great way to involve the whole family.

Cruise ship scavenger hunt for kids

Another idea for games to play on a cruise is printable cruise themed bingo. Cute cruise vacation themed bingo cards.

Cruise bingo and scavenger hunt game to print

21. Chess, Checkers, Backgammon (3-in-1)

This magnetic, travel sized version of 3 classics are great games to bring on a cruise. Bring along this one case and you have 3 different games to play to mix things up. The ultimate 2-person games. Chess, checkers, and backgammon. That’s hours of fun.

These games are geared more towards adults and older kids. Checkers, however could be played by younger kids, with a little help. Having this set on hand is not only great for travel but also for camping or even to play at home. A great game set for couples.

3 in 1 Chess Checkers Backgammon Set, KAILE Magnetic Chess Travel Magnet Chess with Folding Case 13"……

Adult favorite – Age varies (older kid/adult) – 2 Players only

Most cruise lines have a library onboard that does have a few board games that passengers can play. However, these games often already taken or have missing pieces. It is always best to be prepared and bring your own games on a cruise ship.

You can play games on a cruise in the library, your stateroom, on an open air deck (be careful of the breeze), or find a quiet area in one of the ship’s public rooms.

Games can be a fun way to spend sea days.

Summary of the best games to bring on a cruise

Packing a few of these games to play on a cruise can enhance your onboard entertainment and create memorable moments with family and/or fellow cruisers. From classic card games like Uno to compact board games like chess to fun games like Pass the Pigs, there is a wide range of options to cater to different sized groups and preferences.

Whether you are enjoying the sun at one of the tables outside or looking for indoor entertainment during downtime, this selection of travel-sized games ensures your cruise will be full of fun and laughter.

These inexpensive travel games are a great investment and provide hours of fun.

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