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Summer is the best year to plan a trip with your family or friends. No matter your travel destination, summer vacations ensure a fabulous time.
From rolling out the beach towels on a soft sand beach to sipping refreshing drinks at your poolside bar to swimming with sea turtles along a coral reef to sampling delicious local food and so much more gasp, wheeze, the trip can help you make unforgettable memories worth remembering for a lifetime.
Whether exploring your own country or planning an international trip, you should pack everything required to travel smartly, safely, and with style on your next summer vacation. Ready your summer trip packing list!
So without any further ado, let’s look at this champion among packing lists for details.
- Essential Things You Should Pack for Your Summer Vacation
- 1. Travel Credit Cards
- 2. Travel Insurance
- 3. Trolley Bag
- 4. Shoulder Bag or Handbag
- 5. Packing Cubes
- 6. Summer Clothes
- 7. Sunscreen or Sunblock
- 8. Sunglasses
- 9. Filter Water Bottle
- 10. Insect Repellent
- 11. Portable Phone Charger
- 12. Vanity Box
- 13. Umbrella
- 14. Wipes
- 15. Underwater Camera
- 16. Toiletries
- 17. Travel Documents
- 18. First Aid Kit
- 19. Daily Vitamins & Supplements
- How to Plan a Successful Summer Trip
- Things Not to Bring on a Summer Trip
- Beach Stuff You Should Carry for Summer Vacations
- Hiking Attire for Summer Vacations
- Best Payments Options while Traveling
- Duration of Summer Vacations
- Where can I go for my summer vacation?
- What can I do on my summer trip?
- How to plan a budget-friendly summer trip?
Essential Things You Should Pack for Your Summer Vacation
1. Travel Credit Cards
Some credit cards offer liability protection, rewards, extra air miles, tie-ups with some airlines, hotel discounts, quick transactions, and the peace of mind you need the most while traveling.
2. Travel Insurance
Travel insurance is necessary if you want a safe and fruitful summer trip. It provides coverage against all potential risks, especially when traveling internationally. There are several benefits of having travel insurance, such as:
- It can cover unforeseen medical expenses.
- It can ensure hassle-free trip cancellation.
- It can cover risks, like loss of passport or baggage.
- It can cover any delays in travel abroad.
- It can be a great help in case of emergency assistance.
Overall, travel insurance provides additional protection against all financial losses. So if you have travel insurance, keep all the details handy as you might need them anytime.
When choosing the best travel insurance plan for your next trip, consider going with TravelInsurance.com and InsureMyTrip. These insurance plans are designed to cover all your trip essentials, and we’ve used them a bunch.
See Related: Best Family Travel Insurance Plans
3. Trolley Bag
A bag is a must-have item for every trip. There are many options, from backpacks to suitcases to trolley bags and others. For your convenience, it is suggested to go for a bag with wheels—for instance, a trolley bag.
Trolley bags are the most comfortable, making carrying or moving your stuff easier. Consider the material and size of the bag while making your final selection. The material should be high-quality and durable.
Also, check if the suitcase is spacious enough to fit all your clothes, cosmetics, etc.
4. Shoulder Bag or Handbag
You can’t go on a summer trip without a bag. It is a strong choice for women to look fantastic and stylish while exploring the holiday destination. Since there’s a vast list of bags, choosing one for your trip can be difficult.
Though there are varying options, a basket, crossbody bag, turtle tote, or colorful shoulder bag could be your best pick. Carrying one of these bags is a great idea to keep all your essentials handy, such as sunscreen, sunglasses, and a scarf.
Additionally, do not forget to check a bag’s size, weight, style, and functionality before placing your order.
See Related: Best Travel Totes
5. Packing Cubes
Packing cubes are containers that help save space in your luggage. They are the best way to organize your things while on the trip. Packing cubes come in different shapes and sizes, making it easy to contain different-sized items.
You can use them to keep all kinds of gear rather than just storing clothes. These cubes can also help avoid overpacking by offering separate spaces for each belonging.
For example, consider one for your travel-size toiletries like lip balm, wet wipes, eye drops, hand sanitizer, camera and spare memory cards, and snacks.
Also, packing cubes come in sets and fun colors. Depending on your items and needs, you can choose any location to keep your things organized.
6. Summer Clothes
The attire you carry on a summer vacation can take the fun to the next level. Styles that can work best for women include:
- beach dresses,
- maxi dresses,
- short or long sundresses,
- mini dresses,
- halter top dresses,
- skirts, and
- tank tops.
They can also pack a pair of slide-on sandals, sneakers, flip-flops, closed-toe shoes, and crocs. On the other hand, men can carry some beachwear, lightweight pants, shorts, floral shirts, and t-shirts. They should also pack belts, shoes, crocs, and socks.
Also, consider packing sunhats and bathing suits, and take at least one pair of rugged jeans or long pants and a light jacket or sweater for chilly summer nights and air-conditioned rooms.
Moreover, bear in mind that lighter clothes are not only better for warm weather, they’re easier to fold, pack, and carry.
7. Sunscreen or Sunblock
Exposure to direct sun can cause sunburn, age spots, wrinkles, or skin cancer. If you don’t want to risk any of these skin-related issues, carry sunblock with you.
Sunscreen can protect your skin from tanning or sunburn. It also builds a protective layer between your skin and the sun’s harmful UV rays to prevent any permanent damage.
A wide variety of sunscreens are available in different sun protection levels, from sunblocks with SPF 10 to SPF 150. The closer you are to the sun, a sunblock with a higher SPF level will be needed for maximum protection from harmful UV rays.
If you don’t want to return home with severe sunburn or painful tanning, you must carry sunscreen with a high SPF level. Keep applying it on your face and exposed body parts after some intervals to ensure proper sun protection.
If you get burned, bring along a bottle of aloe vera gel to soothe those sun sores.
Regarding sun-related damage, most people are often concerned about their skin only. But they forget about another critical body part – the eyes. Whether traveling within your city or vacationing abroad, sunglasses are another must-have accessory for your summer vacation.
Sunglasses make you look cool and help avoid squinting in the sunshine. Moreover, they serve the most crucial purpose, i.e., protecting your eyes from UV damage.
Therefore, buy sunglasses that can block 100% of both UVA and UVB radiations to protect your eyes. Also, keep your sunglasses on a protective cover when not used.
See Related: Best Travel Sandals for Beach Destinations
9. Filter Water Bottle
It’s always important to stay hydrated, especially during the heat of summer. Drinking tap water is not always recommended if you’re planning a summer trip to another country.
Due to the change in atmosphere, water source, and level of filtration, you may feel sick (or get genuinely ill) after drinking tap water. The solution is to drink filtered water during your summer holiday.
Buying filtered water bottles throughout your vacation may cost you a fortune, especially on a budget. The best way is to buy a reusable water bottle with a filter! A filter water bottle from a reliable brand can clean around 99.99% of impurities present within unfiltered water, making it drinkable.
Carrying a filtered water bottle with you on your trip can help you lower or eliminate the cost of buying filtered water. It also ensures the availability of potable water on the go with convenience.
In addition, having your filter water bottles saves you money and helps you protect the environment by eliminating single-use plastic water bottles.
10. Insect Repellent
Most people remember to carry sunscreen or other items on a summer trip but forget the bug sprays behind them. Since there are several insects or bugs out there during summer, they can ruin your overall experience if not taken proper precautions.
An insect repellent can protect you from insects that spread dengue, malaria, yellow fever, chikungunya, or other diseases. Buy a bug spray and apply it on your skin or clothes to repel insects.
Consider reapplying if the waves wash the cream off to ensure maximum protection. If you’re looking for a more natural option, try coconut or tea tree oil.
See Related: Best Tumi Travel Kits
11. Portable Phone Charger
Cell phones play a crucial role in our lives. Whether you’re an Apple or Android user, your phone has your entire life saved within it. From finding emergency contacts to clicking pictures, posting new photos on social media, enjoying Netflix, and browsing the internet, our daily life revolves around cell phones.
A phone needs to be charged from time to time for proper utilization. The hustle of forgetting or misplacing your phone’s charger can create a distressing situation and ruin your overall fun. That means you must pack a charger to keep your phone charged and capture all the moments throughout the trip.
You can also carry a portable charger as a backup battery. Toss it in your handbag/tote bag/small backpack or whatever you decide to carry on, and keep charging your phone when you’re on the go.
12. Vanity Box
Beauty products are a must, no matter where you go. As you have different cosmetics, a vanity box is an excellent way to store them. A cosmetic bag can accommodate everything from body lotion to foundation to bronzer to lip shades. It also makes it convenient for you to carry your stuff around. As there are multiple compartments, cosmetic bags are great for avoiding mess.
Also, cosmetic bags come in varying styles, sizes, and colors. You can pick any size based on your needs. Overall, they are essential to keep your beauty products safe in one place.
See Related: Best Beach Bags with Cooler
Umbrella is another essential item on the summer trip packing checklist. You might face scorching summer heat while exploring a coastal region. This is where a travel umbrella comes to the rescue. It can provide maximum protection from UVA and UVB sun rays.
Not only this, but an umbrella can also keep you dry in the rain during your summer trip.
Traveling during summer can be annoying due to the heat. That’s why wet wipes are another must-have item on the summer trip packing checklist. You can consider carrying deodorant wipes to clean sweat and stay fresh throughout.
They come in small packages, allowing you to toss them easily into your daypack or checked luggage. Besides deodorant wipes, consider sanitizing and disinfecting wipes in your bag to ensure hygiene and good health.
15. Underwater Camera
Summers are all about enjoying water-based activities. Your underwater moments can be the best memories on a summer trip with family or friends. If you want to keep these memorable moments with you for life, consider capturing them.
You can use a reasonably-priced water-resistant camera to capture all your water-based fun. Also, ensure the camera is lightweight and compact to carry everywhere.
See Related: Best GoPro Accessories for Travel
Though basic toiletries are available in hotels you book, packing your own is a must when going on a summer trip.
As we all know, sweating is more apparent during summer. Therefore, it’s crucial to pack your favorite shower gel, mist, perfume, and other toiletries to smell fresh and remain sweat-free all day long.
Also, do not forget to include summer travel essentials like a hairbrush, moisturizer, and tampons. You should pack everything carefully to avoid buying any of these items at your holiday destination.
See Related: Best Travel Toiletry Bags
17. Travel Documents
Another necessary item is travel documents. For a hassle-free journey, you need a hard and soft copy of all the required documents. Travel documents are essential as they allow you to enter a foreign country and re-enter your home country.
Though the list could be vast, some mandatory documents for international travel are a passport, travel visa, identification documents, air tickets, proof of booked accommodation, and travel insurance details.
Without proper documents, you will have to face some troubles. For instance, if you’re traveling abroad, you will not be allowed to leave your home country. Or you could be stuck in another country until you arrange replacement documents. Arranging and keeping all needed documents together is recommended for a hassle-free traveling experience.
18. First Aid Kit
A well-stocked travel first-aid kit is another must-have item on a summer vacation packing list, especially if you are camping or visiting somewhere far from medical centers. Travel first-aid kits might even save you a trip to the emergency room, even if you are near a hospital.
A good travel first-aid kit can help you handle minor injuries or accidents as quickly as possible. These situations include minor cuts, bee stings or bug bites, allergic reactions, or burns.
Also, keep your first-aid kit easy to find and in a secure container – these rules ring especially true if you are going on a camping trip.
19. Daily Vitamins & Supplements
Carrying your medicines is mandatory if you have a medical condition like Eczema, Asthma, Sinus, or sleeplessness. It can help you deal with unexpected sicknesses or allergies in a foreign land.
Taking supplements is essential because your medication might not be available in other countries. Therefore, consider packing everything you need, including prescribed medication, pain relief, vitamins, antacids, or birth control.
Also, make sure to bring enough medicine that can last your entire trip. Moreover, keep the medications in their original containers to avoid the hassle, or get yourself a pill organizer.
How to Plan a Successful Summer Trip
You must follow some quick tips to plan a fun and successful summer trip. For instance, you need to do the following things:
- Make a travel checklist and collect all required items.
- Do the research and ask questions about your travel destination.
- Stay updated with weather conditions.
- Check for local events happening during your stay.
- Be prepared for unexpected situations.
- Buy travel insurance to secure your future.
- Do not overpack.
- Learn from people’s experiences by reading online reviews or suggestions.
Things Not to Bring on a Summer Trip
There are a few things that are not required on a summer trip. Some of them are as follows:
- Don’t carry a warm coat; wear layers to adapt to changing temperatures at night.
- Don’t bring a regular towel; instead, pack a quick-dry towel.
- Don’t carry heavy books; instead, put a lightweight book.
- Don’t bring expensive stuff, like jewelry.
- Don’t pack full-size toiletries.
Beach Stuff You Should Carry for Summer Vacations
We all know that beaches are hot in the summer. That means you can keep beachwear to enjoy plenty of time in the water or under the sun. Also, consider carrying a long or short swimsuit cover-up and flip-flops.
Since you will be under the sun, don’t forget to bring sunscreen to protect your skin from sunburn—also, intake as much water as possible to avoid dehydration.
Hiking Attire for Summer Vacations
If your summer trip involves hiking or other outdoor activities, be ready with the proper attire. Some critical hiking essentials include shoes, clothes, a long jacket, sunglasses, sandals, and a sun hat. You can also carry a bathing suit in your backpack.
Best Payments Options while Traveling
Though there are several ways to pay your bills, making your payments using a credit card is the safest pick. Many features of credit cards make them a top choice for travelers, for example, fraud protection. This feature of credit cards doesn’t offer direct access to your money, ensuring protection against fraud.
Duration of Summer Vacations
It’s no surprise that summer is the best time throughout the year to plan a trip with your family and friends. If you plan to go on summer vacation, consider taking around one week from your schedule to make the most of that time. Moreover, the duration of the trip also depends on your destination.
Where can I go for my summer vacation?
What can I do on my summer trip?
The activities you can do on your summer trip depend on your destination. If heading to a coastal region, you can do exciting water activities, like scuba diving, swimming, surfing, and kayaking.
On the other hand, consider checking out unique neighborhoods, shopping malls, museums, and restaurants if you’re in a city.
Remember that summer vacations are about relaxing and making memories regardless of your holiday destination. Therefore, soak up and relax on a beach under the sun.
How to plan a budget-friendly summer trip?
Well, you can plan a budget-friendly summer trip without any hassle. For this, you have to:
– Take public transfer instead of private cars
– Stay in hostels or Airbnbs instead of luxury hotels
– Spend only on essential items
– Keep track of all your expenses
Follow these quick travel tips to spend less on your summer trip. Moreover, when it comes to a budget-friendly international trip, consider booking your flights as soon as you decide on your destination for the summer holidays. Once you know where you’re traveling for your summer vacation, consider booking your flight with Skyscanner today to grab exciting offers.
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- About the Author
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Kyle Kroeger is the Founder and Owner of ViaTravelers.com. He is a full-time traveler and entrepreneur. Kyle started ViaTravelers.com to help travelers experience a fully immersive cultural experience as he did initially living in Italy. He’s a converted finance nerd and Excel jockey turned world wanderer (and may try to get lost on purpose). After visiting 12 countries and 13 national parks in a year, he was devoted to creating and telling stories like he’d heard.
Plus, after spending more time on airplanes and packing, he’s learned some incredible travel hacks over time as he earned over 1 million Chase Ultimate Rewards points in under a year, helping him maximize experiences as much as possible to discover the true meaning of travel.
He loves listening to local stories from around the world and sharing his experiences traveling the globe. He loves travel so much that he moved from his hometown of Minneapolis to Amsterdam with his small family to travel Europe full-time.