The Ultimate Spring Break Packing List

Make Sure You Don't Leave Anything Essential Behind!

Woman placing white shoes in a vintage suitcase


Vera_Petrunina/Getty Images

Spring break is fast approaching, so it's time to turn your attention to packing and start planning out what to take with you. In this post, you'll find suggestions for clothing, technology, toiletries, and medication, as well as advice on what to leave behind. 


Usually travelers are recommended to only bring outfits for a couple of days to keep your bag light, but it's spring break. You likely won't be traveling to multiple places, and you'll want to look your best, so as long as it all fits in your luggage and you can carry it without too many problems, take as many outfit changes as you like. 

If you're heading to a beach destinations pack two or three swimsuits along with a coverup for non-pool/beach areas. Pack some lightweight jeans for any colder evenings. If you'll be heading abroad, look into local customs before you leave to see how much you need to cover up to be respectful. If you'll be spending time in the Middle East, for example, you'll want longer sleeves and long pants for exploring. If you'll be visiting any temples, make sure you have something to cover up to show respect — a shawl usually works for this.

Sunglasses and flip-flops are beachwear essentials, but bring your cheapest pair of both — you don't want to be upset if you lose or break them. Jazz up your outfit with a few pieces of statement jewellery — again, anything that you would be comfortable losing if the worst came to the worst. 


Spring break is a vacation, so you don't want to pack much of your technology at all! Instead, opt for a few essentials. You'll want to be able to keep in touch with family, snap tons of photos, and make your friends jealous on Snapchat and Instagram, so be sure to pack your smartphone in your luggage. 

If you're planning for more of a relaxed trip than a constant party, it might be worth loading up your tablet with movies and TV shows to keep you entertained in the evening. 

If you want to snap photos on a camera that's not connected to your phoen, considered taking a GoPro as your camera of choice. It's great for taking action shots — you can put it in a waterproof case and take it in the ocean or SCUBA diving with you — and it's rugged, so it's unlikely to get broken after a wild night of drinking. If you want a more impressive camera to get better photos, your typical DSLR is worth packing. 

If you'll need to get any work done over spring break, you may want to bring your laptop with you. If you don't have anything urgent to do while you're away, leave it behind, because being offline and in the moment is the best. 


You won't want to forget the basics: shampoo and conditioner, toothbrush and toothpaste, a razor, deodorant, and shower gel. What else do you need?

Definitely sunscreen and aftersun! Pick up some sunscreen with an SPF that's higher than 20 and reapply every couple of hours. Use after-sun to keep your skin moisturized after spending all day in the sun.

For girls, it's worth investing in some dry shampoo for your trip. You'll likely be too busy having fun to want to wash and style your hair everyday, so invest in some high-quality dry shampoo to keep your style lasting an extra few days longer. I love this one by Drybar.


It's wise to pack some Advil with you for those hangovers and overexposure to sun. Rehydration sachets are also a smart idea -- pop one in a bottle of water and it'll ward away any headaches for the duration of your trip. Bring a basic first aid kit with bandaids and such with you, just in case there are some accidents during your trip

Pick up a basic travel first aid kit before you leave for your local pharmacy to cover most over things you'll require.

Remember to pack condoms and/or birth control pills, whether you're planning on hooking up or not. It's better to be safe than sorry.

Other Essentials

A journal: Even if you don't think you're the journaling type, it always pays to have one on hand to document your favorite travel moments. Taking some time to write every day can also help you fully appreciate your trip and offers a chance to slow down a little.

A beach bag: Rather than taking a plastic bag or a daypack, take a canvas beach bag with you, so that you have somewhere to keep your essentials without them getting covered in sand. 

A dry bag: Carrying a dry bag means that if you want to cool off with some ocean time, you can take your valuables with you without ruining them with ocean water. It also minimizes your chances of being robbed on the beach. 

A safety whistle: It's small and light; pack one in your bag whenever you leave your room, especially if you're traveling alone. If ever you find yourself feeling endangered, you can use the whistle to alert people to your situation and get help. 

Was this page helpful?