Once you’ve figured out what clothes you’ll need, don’t forget to include the other essential items for a trip to Phoenix. When you’re deciding what to pack for Phoenix, be sure to consider the season and your activities.
What to Pack for Phoenix
These 10 items should be on every traveler’s list when considering what to pack for Phoenix.
Reusable Water Bottle
Because the desert is so dry, you’ll need to drink more water than usual to stay hydrated. Even Phoenicians carry water bottles with them wherever they go. Pack a reusable water bottle and keep it with you—regularly refilling it throughout the day—while you’re in Phoenix.
The sun in Phoenix can be intense, especially during the summer. Avoid a burn by bringing sunscreen with at least SPF 30. To minimize your risk of skin cancer, your sunscreen should contain either ecamsule, avobenzone, oxybenzone, titanium dioxide, or zinc oxide. If you’ll be at the pool, make sure your sunscreen is water resistant, too.
Your lips can burn just as easily as the skin on any other part of your body. Protect them and keep them moisturized by tucking lip balm with UV protection into your travel bag. Lip balm can also ease lips chapped by the dry air and dehydration.
Phoenix’s “dry heat” equals dry skin. Invest in a moisturizer with ingredients like hyaluronic acid or dimethicone, which help keep your skin hydrated. Lanolin, mineral oil, and petrolatum lock in the moisture that’s already there.
The dry climate can also dry out your eyes if you’re not used to it. When you’re considering what to pack for Phoenix, don’t forget rewetting drops, especially if you wear contact lenses.
Blowing dust and sand can irritate contact wearers’ eyes. If you wear contacts, bring your glasses. On windy days, you might want to trade your contacts for your glasses. You might also want to have a pair of glasses handy in case the dry air causes your contacts to irritate your eyes.
Long hair can get hot during the summer, and can get in the way when you’re hiking, mountain biking, or horseback riding. Keep your neck cool and the hair out of your eyes with hair ties you’ve brought from home.
If you plan to spend any time outside in Phoenix, pack a wide-brimmed hat that will protect your ears and neck, not just your face. Wear it while lounging by the pool, hiking through the desert, or standing in the sun.
The camera on your phone is fine for selfies at the pool, but to capture Phoenix’s incredible sunsets or the view at the Grand Canyon, you’ll be happy to have a digital camera. If you’re a thrill seeker, you may want to pack a GoPro instead.
It may sound silly to pack an umbrella for a trip to the desert, but during monsoon season from mid-July to mid-September, Phoenix can get intense afternoon storms. Come prepared by tucking a compact umbrella in your luggage.
More from SmarterTravel:
- Phoenix Travel Guide
- The 10 Best Hotels in Phoenix
- Best Cheap Hotels in Phoenix
- Which Phoenix Resort Is Right for You?
- 10 Fun Things to Do in Phoenix
- 10 Must-See Phoenix Attractions
- The 10 Best Day Trips from Phoenix
- Best Cheap Eats in Phoenix
- 10 Best Restaurants in Phoenix
- Where to Find the Best Mexican Food in Phoenix
- What to Wear in Phoenix
—Original reporting by Teresa Bitler