My happy place is a white sandy beach, clear turquoise waters and unlimited margaritas. And nachos. Going on nice, hot beach vacations is definitely a luxury that me and my guy indulge in on almost a yearly basis. We certainly have to make other sacrifices throughout the year to accommodate this splurge but that week of paradise is so worth it! Over the years I’ve seriously fine-tuned our packing to a science. Read on for what to pack for a hot vacation so you never forgot or fail to think about anything when packing for your next vaca in the sun!
This is the Hot Vaca Packing List of all packing lists ever and I mean it. I have some truth backing me up on this because this golden list has been edited over about 6 years/trips. This list has evolved and been added to after every time I did forget something so that way it wouldn’t happen again. About a month ago (can I go back please?) I was on the gorgeous island of Curacao and I did not forget a dang thang!
It’s not a nice feeling when you’re in a foreign country without the comfort of something you really wish you had with you but forgot. Have no fear, Amanda’s Golden List is here to tell you what to pack!
I should say that this list is for you, ladies. It’s not an all-encompassing list for your kids and husband. It’s for you. Yes, if the kids are coming then you need to think about what to pack for them but today, it’s all about you, Mama. 🙂 This is what YOU need to pack for a hot vacation!
I’m definitely a girly girl who has a lot of products but when on vacation I really do try to be semi-minimal. I want to spend less time in the room and have less things to worry about traveling with. That said, their are some total essentials that you must not be without.
- deep conditioner-your hair is going to get all kinds of straw-like when in the sun/pool/ocean/lake. Trust me, your hair needs extra love on hot vacations!
- hair oil-even more crucial than a deep conditioner, if you ask me.
- makeup-I keep it to a minimum on vaca but I always bring some fun, bright lipsticks!
- body wash
- makeup remover/removing wipes
- razor & shaving cream-I actually love the Schick Intuition for vacation because it has a shaving cream bar built in and works really nicely.
- face wash
- facial moisturizer-I use a day one and night one at home but I just bring one on vacation.
- perfume-I have one that I almost exclusively use on vacation so whenever I smell it at home I’m hit with some serious nostalgia.
- Pepto Bismol
- bug spray
- SPF lip balm
- SPF! Lot’s of it! Don’t you dare fight me on this!
- eye drops-my eyes get really dry since I got Lasik a couple years ago.
- Gravol-I like one of these for the plane because they make me sleepy. They don’t have a strong affect but certainly makes it a little bit easier for me to fall asleep on the plane. This is less ‘what to pack’ and more ‘life tip’.
- bobby pins/hair clips
- extra hair ties
- hair brush-I love the Tangle Teaser for really knotty, ocean-destroyed hair.
- flip flops-casual pair and dressier pair
- sunglasses-a nice pair and a pair or two that you don’t mind losing in the ocean if it happens.
- jewelry-I leave my nicest stuff at home and enjoy the more fun, costume-y pieces in my collection.
- beach bag-something you can take your beach goodies in that you don’t mind getting sandy.
- bathing suit cover up-I love this for when I want to pop out of the pool to get a drink or snack but will be getting back in soon and don’t want to put my real clothes on.
- cardigan or denim jacket-in case the temperature drops at night where you’re going.
- hats-I like a baseball cap but I so wish I could pull off a beautiful sun hat!
- socks-for the plane, hotel room if the AC is too much, or if you’re doing any day trips.
- runners-if your itenerary calls for them. I like to wear runners on the plane for optimal coziness and so I have them if we decide to do anything adventurous once we arrive.
- underwear-I bring 2 pair per day. You do you honey boo boo.
- bras-I bring my regulars but I also like to bring at least one sports bra.
- tank tops
- light, long sleeve top-this piece of clothing could save 2 days of your trip after a bad sunburn.
- bathing suits-duhh! And lot’s of them so you’re never stuck having to put on yesterday’s cold, wet bathing suit!
- pen & paper
- travel docs
- little blanket or blanket scarf-I always freeze on planes!
- fuzzy socks
- plastic bags-for dirty laundry, wet bathing suits, etc.
- tweezers and mini scissors
- cards-fun for a relaxing night at the hotel
- portable speaker
- insulated cup-if you’re going to an all-inclusive you will totally thank me! This is awesome for when you want a big ol’ drinkie if you’re headed to hang out in the ocean for awhile and the little dinkie cup they typically give just won’t cut it. Plus, think about all that garbage you’ll be cutting down on!
Not Necessary but nice to have
- sleeping mask for the plane-yup. I’m “that girl”!
- a loofah
- hydrating leave-on face mask-for the plane or overnight when your skin in parched from too much sun.
- glowy body lotion-because I’m “extra”.
- robe & slippers-for around the hotel
- the nail polish that you’re wearing for touch ups.
- pillow & pillow cases-if you’re picky or want it for the plane anyway.
- beach towel-rare to find a resort that doesn’t offer them but it happens. Also handy if you go on an excursion and don’t want to risk losing (and paying to replace) the hotel’s towel.
My best tip!
Take your tooth brush, bathing suit, sundress, clean underwear, flip flops, and mini sunscreen in your carry on. That way, if your luggage does get lost, you can still totally enjoy your first day. I thank the good Lord that I have never lost a bag! Imagine landing in Mexico to find out your bag has been lost and you can’t even enjoy your first day of your vacation because you’re dressed for November in Chicago…
It will still suck and still be annoying that your bag is missing but I bet that pill will be much easier to swallow if you’re in the pool because your brilliant self knew what to pack and brought your bathing suit in your carry on! Also, I bet unlimited piña coladas and guac + chips help, too. 😉
Now you know exactly what to pack for a hot vacation. Don’t have a trip planned? Pin this post to your travel inspiration board and refer to it when you do. Note: WHEN you do, not IF you do. That’s assuming you do actually have the desire to go on vacation which I’m guessing you do if you’ve read to this point. Most of us can’t have it all but we all deserve to splurge and enjoy what we really want. We just have to plan and make other sacrifices to make it happen.