Hi, I packed a very nice gown on one of my cruises by placing it in the plastic that you get from the cleaners I waited until the very end, folded it in half and it was perfect, if it is a little wrinkled hang it in the bathroom during your shower it will be fine.
Enjoy your self
I have always had good luck by laying the garment out flat on the bed and then rolling it up like you would a sleeping bag or a jelly roll. Take it out of the suitcase when you get to your room, hang it up, no wrinkles.
A garment or suit bag is the best way. If you have a husband or S.O that has a tuxedo or suit you can put in with his. Leave it in the dry cleaning bag place it on the hanger knob and use then use the folding board at the bottom to fold it in half. Make sure it's tight. (At least that's what my wife tells me I do wrong.) <VBG>
Don't worry, you won't be out of place. Many women will be in long gowns.
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"There is a great difference between being well traveled and just having been to many places." ~Me
I second family cruiser. I have a black tie fundraiser coming up before my cruise and I didn't buy a gown for that. I did however buy a black cocktail dress knowing that I will be able to use it for the cruise and for many other occasions to come. If you are a senior in high school and are buying it for prom then go for it, but don't waste the money buying it just for the cruise.
When we cruised I used my garment bag for my long dress. I also bought a large unfolded packing box from our local retail store. I cut the box panels to fit inside my garment when it, the garment bag, is folded. I put one box panel in first, then our clothes, then put the other box panel on top, then zipped it up. I covered the box panels with tissue paper and the clothes were in plastic dry cleaner bags. The box panels helped so the garment bag couldn't collapse or get all folded up as I traveled. We actually sent the garment bag down with our other checked luggage. Our clothes were as neat as when I packed them.
Hope you find the perfect dress for your cruise. Have a great time.
Garment bag all the way.....but before you place it in there....make sure it is already covered with a soft long plastic bag (like the kind that they use at the dry cleaners.) That will lessen any effects of wrinkling that *may* occur when being transported.