Creating a Vacation Memory Book—A Great Way to Look Back on Your Cruise!

Once the cruise bug bites you—You typically keep going back for more. After a while, your cruise vacations start to blend together. I’ve been on ten cruises, and have found myself asking which ship was that cruise again? Which cruise did we do that excursion? Which boat had those really awesome shows?… I like to remember each of my vacations separately. I’ve had so many great memories on so many wonderful ships, and I found myself desiring a way that I could truly cherish each of those memories. I wanted to be able to go back and revisit them.

This is why I decided that creating a vacation memory book was a great idea! This is especially helpful with cruises. There are so many ships out there, so it’s nice to be able to look back and decide for yourself if you want to go on something different from the ones you’ve done previously, or maybe you want to return to a boat you particularly loved! Either way a vacation memory book is a great resource to use when planning your next cruise!

Cruise Cards

When you go on a cruise you will get a card. On Carnival this is called your “sail and sign card.” This card is your room key, your credit card, your drink pass, etc. It becomes such an important part of your cruise. You no longer need to carry around your wallet or your keys, because this card serves both purposes. I always keep mine on a lanyard, and walk around hands free!

After the cruise, your card becomes worthless. It feels really weird to have it go from being such an important thing to have with you on the boat, to serving no purpose back home. I always saved my cards though, wanting to do something with them.
One day I was at Staples shopping for school supplies for a class in college, and I saw these clear plastic card holders that hook into notebooks. You can get them here. I got very excited, and instantly thought of my box of cruise cards lying in storage. I now had a place to display my cards!

I keep all of my cruise cards in a special notebook now to help me document and remember my cruise memories. I can look at my cards to see if I’ve been on a particular ship before, to look back on the date I took a specific cruise, and to just have a keepsake from each vacation. I’m missing the Royal Caribbean card from the very first cruise I took when I was 12, but now that I have a place to put my cards, (and now that I’m older) I don’t have to worry about losing them anymore!


After my card pages I have multiple clear page holders that I put colored paper in with the name of the ship I was on, and several pictures from the cruise. This helps me to remember that particular vacation. I love having pictures from the trip, because it really helps me to differentiate between the cruises when I can see the photo memories.

This can help me remember what a ship looked like, what sort of excursions we took, what destinations we traveled to, and who I traveled with. I have used my vacation book to help me when planning cruises. I have gone on the same boat a few different times, because certain ships stay at certain ports for a while. If I recognize the ship’s name when I’m booking, but I can’t remember too much about it, I just pull out my vacation book, and look at the picture memories from the trip. This really helps to refresh my memory, and helps me to decide if I want to go on that boat again, or look for another!



My vacation book is organized by the order in which I took my cruises. I have all of my cruise cards in first, because it’s a quick easy way for me to glance at all the cruises at once, and after the cards I have my individual cruise pages. The first page is the first cruise I ever took, then the second, third, and so on. This also helps with remembering individual cruises, because you can give it a timeline in your mind.

Write Down Some Memories

Something that I wish I did more of is written down specific memories and added them to my cruise pages. I typed up some memories from a cruise I took when I was young, in which I made several friends, and had a lot of funny moments, but it’s not something I did for every page. I do suggest adding some written words to your pages, because I think it makes the memories of your vacation even stronger.

Get Started!

Keeping a book with your cruise cards, ship names, pictures, and written memories really helps when planning future cruises. You will also love having something to look back on some of your most fun, relaxing, and happiest times. Start making your vacation book today!





12 Comments on Creating a Vacation Memory Book—A Great Way to Look Back on Your Cruise!

  1. Great ideas to remember a vacation! While this article is about creating memories for a cruise vacation, I do see its usefulness for remembering all kinds of vacations. Thanks for this very helpful post with very practical ideas. 🙂

  2. Hey, Courtney!

    This is such a great idea. I bet this works wonders for remembering all the specifics of every kind of vacation.
    And I like this approach way better than the one I have right now. Meaning, having a various folders for each holiday is not as awesome as having actually something tangible that you can fall back on.

    Thank you for the awesome idea.
    Cheers and have a great one!

  3. My wife and daughter are so into this right now. We took a trip to Maui last summer and I took notes every night as to what beaches we went to and other attractions we saw during the day. I knew that a month later we would forget all of the details. Anyway, they have so much fun putting these books together and I enjoy the finished product. One thing we always pick up on vacation are drink coasters, these make really cool pieces for a memory book. You have great ideas here and I can tell you and other readers, this is a fantastic idea. Thanks for sharing your expertise!

    • Thanks Steve! It’s so much fun. I love going back to look at this book! I love your drink coaster idea!! I already collect brewery stickers, and LOVE doing that. I might pick that one up to!

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