I know we should have a passport, but we don't yet. We've always used birth certificates for cruising. My daughter is now concerned as she keeps reading you need a passport for Belize. Could someone verify what you need for Belize?
I just got back from a 7 day Royal Caribbean Cruise and our first port of call was Belize City. You only need your passport when you check in to the ship. Then you just put it away in the cabin's safe deposit box. Do not carry it with you everywhere. You should make a copy if you want to carry it with you, but the original should go in the safe. The only time you need it again is when you disempbark at the end of your cruise and have to pass through US immigration. Thats it!
As of right now cruise ship passengers only need a birth certificate and photo ID to enter Belize. However, I do recommend you get a passport. It's much easier to carry around and for $60 its good for 10 years. You never know when you just may need one.
You are only required to have a passport if you are entering the country directly form another country. Passengers from cruise ships are exempted as you will be leaving the same day and have already shown proof of citizenship when embarking.
This is all true that you do not need one while you are cruising and only spending the day in these places but just remember if you ever missed the ship for some reason or other wouldn't it be nice to have a passport handy.