Holland America’s Vista Class ships do not have the expected launderette for guests to use. P&O’s Arcadia, a Vista Class ship has launderettes on decks C, D & E.

I believe most P&O ships provide free washing machines, although there is a charge for powder.  I take a small container of powder with me, a lot cheaper than buying on board. They also provide free tumble dryers and ironing facilities.

Most “older ships” have do it yourself laundries for a small charge. Have a look at the deck plan on your cruise line’s web site or brochure, if there are laundrettes on board they will be clearly marked.  Most ships offer bag wash, cram as much laundry into the provided bag for a fixed price.

Some 5-star ships offer free laundry in suites and most lines offer complimentary laundry for those with special award points, earned by frequent cruises on the one line.  I don’t believe this should dictate which line you choose – “I am on this cruise because I got a great laundry deal” is probably not the ideal situation!

All cruise ships have a laundry service but this can be very expensive if you wanted a lot washed. Some ships offer laundry deals near the end of cruises. Dry cleaning prices are usually similar to those charged on shore, although there is a surcharge for extra fast service.

Underwear and socks can be washed in the bathroom and hung to dry as there is usually a line in the shower. This is what I do to the chagrin of my wife Sandra who hates to see my socks in the bathroom.  Beware hanging up clothing on the balcony, they often blow over the side and the Captain will refuse to stop the ship to pick them up.

Short cruises up to 10 days are not a problem laundry wise, it’s the longer ones that need a laundry half way through.  Let’s face it, when spending thousands on a cruise, why not forget washing and splurge an extra $50 on a laundry service which will let you spend a couple of extra hours by the pool.

TIP: I read somewhere that if you turn your underpants inside out – you get an extra days wear!”