Summer is almost over, and you haven’t taken break. So, in the spur of the moment you hopped online, caught a deal, and booked a last minute vacation (insert high five). Excited to escape the hustle and bustle of life, you toss your clothes into a suitcase and dash for the door. When you arrive at your destination, ready to hit the pool, you realize – you packed everything except your bathing suit.
Avoid an emergency shopping trip and outrageous tourism prices with these essential summer getaway packing tips.
There’s something about packing for vacation that makes me think I’ll be changing outfits three times a day. In reality, I know I’ll be spending the entire trip waist deep in 80 degree water. Think honestly about your vacation style. Will you really be dressing up every night for a night out, or is room service in your robe a tastier option? Are you going to kickstart that new workout regime or recover those precious Z’s every chance you get? Take some time to assess your habits realistically and save the valuable suitcase real estate.
2. Don’t overpack
If I bring three outfits per day, I’ll most likely spend more time figuring out what to wear and less time lounging poolside. Try packing a few basics that can mix and match with each other. A plain cotton t-shirt can be dressed up with a statement necklace and a skirt or down with a pair of shorts. Still want to bring a bold statement piece? Go ahead – but aim to have that piece make an appearance again in another outfit to avoid overpacking
3. Pack smarter
As lovely as it would be to bring all your shoes on vacation, it’s not always feasible. Try to pack basic, neutral shoes that pair well with the various outfits in your wardrobe. I limit myself to packing one pair of formal, casual, and athletic shoes and wear the bulkiest of the three while I’m on the plane. Can’t decide which shoes to bring? Consider the more practical option. Instead of bringing your running sneakers and your walking shoes, bring a pair that can handle both running and walking.
When you’ve decided which shoes to bring, pack small items into shoes, like socks, underwear, belts, toiletries, or fragile items like sunglasses to maximize space.Further maximize space by wrapping each shoe in separate bags, like these reusable shopping bags made from recycled plastic drink bottles. For more tips on packing shoes, check out The Travel Channel’s video on shoe packing tips!
4. Pack consciously
I deeply care about purchasing sustainable and ethical products whenever possible. Here are a few of my favorite finds:
- HumanGear GoToob – BPA and PC-free travel tube:
These refillable tubes are BPA and PC-free as well as food safe! They are not only perfect for traveling with all of your eco friendly chemical free toiletry products, you can use them for things such as salad dressing, almond butter and tinctures. There is even a sweet little space for a label too! The Bay area based company gives back to their local community on a regular basis and consistently strives to create non-toxic products with the environment in mind.
- Krochet Kids – The Pike Weekender Bag:
Every product made by the Krochet Kids is hand-signed by the woman who made it. The company encourages consumers to visit the profile of the woman who made their product, so they can learn her story and how she is being empowered – they even encourage consumers to write to the artists! Their goal is to holistically equip people living in poverty with the skills, education, and resources to create a path toward independence.
- Loom Towels – Hand-made beach and bath towels:
These hand-loomed bath and beach towels use traditional craftsmanship and the highest quality GOTS certified organic cotton and dyes. Each towel is slowly woven by hand on old shuttle-looms in a family-run workshop in Turkey, keeping with traditional methods including hand-tied fringing and tassels with no factory involvement.
This startup provides products handcrafted from sustainable materials including FSC-certified wood, cotton-based acetate, recycled aluminum, and repurposed skateboard decks. They’ve partnered with organizations like the Nature Conservancy in Idaho and Boarding for Breast Cancer to provide funds that directly benefit the people and places in their community. The company has donated over 12% of annual profits to their Do Good Program, believing that even a small amount can dramatically shift the trajectory of people’s lives.
Taking a little time to realistically plan and prepare for your last minute getaway can help you maximize your relaxation. Additionally, you’ll have space in your luggage to bring back one-of-a-kind treasures as well as the extra mental capacity for beautiful vacation memories!
Happy and safe travels!