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How to Make a Beach Vacation Packing List

Don't leave things behind and risk paying tourist-trap prices at your destination. Remember everything you'll need for your trip with these list-making tips.


  • Step 1: Consider trip length and location Consider the length and location of your trip when customizing your list. Include an extra pair of shorts or another bathing suit or two if you won't have access to the cleaners. You might include snorkeling gear if you're staying at a coastal hotel rather than with a friend who has gear.
  • Step 2: Make lists for each person Make a list for each person going on the trip. Include the specific items of clothing, underwear, nightwear, athletic gear, beachwear, shoes, sandals, accessories, medicines, cosmetics, and toiletries for each person.
  • Step 3: Separate luggage Create separate lists for checked bags and carry-on luggage if you're flying. Consider carry-on items like wallets and credit cards, magazines, kids books, crayons, snacks, antibacterial wipes, water bottles, cameras, extra batteries, travel information, maps, tickets, music players, and portable DVD player with DVDs.
  • TIP: Don't forget to consider the amount your airline charges for checked baggage. If the price is steep, try to do without some items so you can carry your bag with you. You can always buy something if you really need it.
  • Step 4: Make a miscellaneous list Make a separate miscellaneous list with everything else you'll want to bring, like sun block, baby powder, first aid kit, aloe vera lotion, vitamins, cell phone and other chargers, snorkeling gear, boogie boards, rafts, swim toys, tote bags, a cooler, beach chairs, and address books and stamps.
  • TIP: Make a note next to any electronics to charge them up before you go.
  • Step 5: List condo supplies List supplies you'll need if you're staying at a condo or private residence. Consider including paper towels, napkins, paper plates, dish and laundry detergent, towels, bath soap, shampoo, bathroom tissue, kitchen garbage bags, coffee, coffee filters, and baggies.
  • FACT: A 2006 survey of vacation preferences found that hitting the beach and other warm-weather activities was the top choice for 29 percent of adults polled.

You Will Need

  • Length and location of trip
  • Individual lists for each person
  • Separate lists for checked luggage and carry-on items
  • Miscellaneous list
  • Condo list
  • Checked baggage prices (optional)
  • Note to charge electronics (optional)

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