Packing Tips For Your Spring Vacation

suitcase on beachby Danielle Look

It’s mid-February, which means winter hibernation is almost over. Spring fever usually sets in around this time of year and vacation planning is in full swing. Whether you’re a college student planning a wild week in Cancun or an over-worked business professional longing for some time away from the office – chances  are good you’re headed somewhere warm in the coming months.

While destination and activities vary based on individuals’ interests and hobbies, there’s one common element of all spring vacations: packing. Here are some inventive ideas to make packing less stressful so you can start your getaway on the right foot.

Put new batteries in or charge all electronics. This includes cell phones, cameras, GPS devices, tablets, portable DVD players, iPods and laptops.

Save suitcase space by stuffing your shoes and rolling, rather than folding, all of your clothing. Rolling will keep your clothes from wrinkling, while stuffing socks and underwear inside of shoes will make use of suitcase space that would be otherwise wasted.

Pack versatile clothes that allow you to mix and match. Solid colors work best for mixing and matching. Try to bring articles of clothing that have multiple uses over many days such as light jackets and scarves. Pack flexible foundation pieces that can be worn casually or dressed up with accessories such as a black dress or khaki pants.

Call ahead to find out if your hotel room or condo will have laundry facilities. If you’ll have access to a washer and dryer, pack just enough clothes for half as many days as your vacation duration.

Bring as few shoes as possible. Instead of bringing multiple pairs of cheap flip-flops in an assortment of colors, get a nice pair of walking flip-flops with thick, rubber soles in a neutral color. Wear them on the beach, out to lunch, and around the hotel. To supplement your day sandals, pack a pair of dress shoes for the evening and sneakers if you plan to workout or engage in rugged activities such as hiking.

Bring one or two day’s LESS clothing than you think you’ll need. You want to go shopping while you’re there, don’t you?

Stock up on fun miniatures for toiletries. If you can’t find your favorite brands in travel size packages, invest in a set of small plastic bottles and fill them on your own.

Coordinate with your roommates to eliminate packing multiples of items that can be shared. Examples include curling irons, hair dryers, tablets, and beach toys.

Leave room in your bag for souvenirs on your return trip home. Speaking of souvenirs, bring supplies to make your own:

  • Make a sandy handprint keepsake; all you need is Plaster of Paris, a re-sealable plastic bag, measuring cup, and watertight pail.

sandy hand







  • Save a tourist map from the area and use it as a matte for your favorite spring break photo.

map matte







  • Bring a container to haul back sand and shells from the beach.

sand ornament







Use a money belt. Locals can spot a tourist from a mile away and you’re especially vulnerable during popular vacation times such as spring break. A money belt prevents pickpocketing and allows you to keep cash and ID safely on your person at all times.

Bring a first aid kit with travel size medications for common ailments such as pain relievers, stomach medications, allergy pills, Band-Aids, and triple antibiotic ointment. These commodity items are always more expensive in tourist areas than they are at home; save money by bringing your own.

By packing smart, avoiding unfavorable situations, and thinking ahead, you’ll be best prepared for a worry-free vacation.


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