Cruise ships are known for their food, entertainment, awesome amenities, beautiful views, and memorable experiences. However, there's one quirky tradition that's been gaining in popularity among cruisers of all ages - cruise ducks. These little rubber duckies have become a fun and playful part of many a cruise journey, adding a touch of mischievous fun to the onboard experience. In this post, I'll dive a little into their history and explore why they've become such a beloved phenomenon among many cruise passengers.

The exact origins of cruise ducks are a bit hazy, but the tradition is believed to have started years ago when a few passengers began bringing small rubber ducks with them on their cruises. As more passengers caught on to the trend, the concept of cruise ducks evolved. Passengers began organizing duck races in the ship's pools, hiding ducks in different areas for others to find, and even creating social media groups dedicated to sharing photos and stories about their cruise duck adventures.

So, what makes these little guys so appealing? For many passengers, it's a way to add an element of fun and personalization to their cruise experience. Decorating and customizing the ducks allows passengers to express their creativity and personality, while participating in duck-related activities helps to create a sense of camaraderie onboard.

These ducks also serve as unique souvenirs of the cruise. Collecting ducks from different cruises, or trading them with fellow passengers, has become a popular pastime, with some duck styles gaining a type of celebrity status within the cruise community. Furthermore, cruise ducks are a great conversation starter. Spotting a decorated duck or stumbling upon a hidden one often leads to interactions and connections with other passengers, creating memorable moments and new friendships.

If you, or your kids, like the idea of cruise ducks and want to join in on the fun during your next cruise, here are a few tips to get you started:

  1. Bring Your Own Ducks: Purchase a small rubber duck or two before your cruise and let your creativity run wild with decorations and accessories. You may even want to leave a note to the person who finds your duck.
  2. Participate in Activities: Keep an eye out for duck races, scavenger hunts, or other duck-related activities organized by the ship's entertainment team or fellow passengers. If you've joined a FB group for your specific cruise, post a question to the group and ask who else is planning to bring cruise ducks.
  3. Share Your Duck Adventures: Be sure to take photos of your decorated duck, or any you may find, then share them on social media using relevant hashtags. You can even join online cruise duck groups to connect with other enthusiasts.
  4. Respect the Environment: Always remember that when participating in duck-related activities, be mindful of the ship's rules and regulations. Avoid leaving ducks in sensitive/restricted areas and, please, don't toss them overboard.

It really is pretty amazing how this quirky little craze has caught on. When we were in Rome last fall, we actually came across a little store dedicated entirely to cruise ducks! We were going to buy a couple, but Italian cruise ducks were a little too pricey for our tastes!