This list of spring break packing essentials is geared more to students headed on a tropical spring break, but can easily be modified for anyone.
Heading to a beach vacation rental with the fam? Download the SmarterTravel Beach Packing list to take with you!
What to Pack for Spring Break: Luggage
- Away’s The Bigger Carryon is popular with millennials and it’s easy to see why. The hard-sided luggage is unbreakable and the bigger size of this carry-on (yes, it’s still compliant with overhead bin requirements) lets you pack an extra outfit or two.
- Pacsafe Citysafe CX Anti-Theft 17L Backpack is the ideal personal item for spring break as it can hold your laptop and all other in-flight essentials.
What to Pack for Spring Break: In-Flight Essentials
- Over-Ear Headphones and Airplane Adapter: You’ll definitely want these for the trip home.
- Offline Entertainment: Just in case you’re taking any shorter flights to your destination that don’t have seatback entertainment. Plus, you can bring it to the beach or pool with you. Here are SmarterTravel’s latest book recs for travel.
- Pen, Passport, Credit Cards, and backup I.D.: The last thing you want to forget to pack for spring break is your passport and I.D. Make sure to have a backup identification card to take out with you to bars so you can leave your passport safely locked up at the hotel.
What to Pack for Spring Break: Shoes
- Water Shoes: If you’re planning on a catamaran boat cruise or a day trip to a cenote, I recommend traveling with water shoes. I love these stylish ones for women by Sea Star that come in an espadrille style. Guys, OluKai makes a stylish version for you, too.
- Dressy Shoes: Top Moda Women’s Ankle Strap Open-Toe Heeled Sandal is a great comfortable option for women. Men, check out Rockport’s loafer styles, like this one.
- Comfortable Shoes: SUAVS Zilker Knit Sneaker is perfect for both men and women for travel days and holds up for light excursions.
- Flip Flops: I like Roxy Women’s Jyll Sandal Flip Flop for women and Dilken’s as an affordable option for men.
What to Pack for Spring Break: Clothing
- Bathing Suits: This is all about personal preference, but Cupshe (available on Amazon) makes affordable and trendy pieces for women, like this one-piece. Men, check out Kanu Surf (also available through Amazon).
- Cover-up: These are essential if you’re staying at a resort so you can cover up while walking around or heading back to your room. I like this one from Vince Camuto.
- Casual Shirts: Ladies pack some light and airy tops; men bring a few short-sleeve button downs, like this one, which comes in a few fun prints.
- Shorts: A spring break staple, shorts are a must for spring break. Women, pack a few pairs of jean shorts and some quick-dry ones for activities. Men, pack a few casual shorts as well as an active pair or two.
- Dressy Outfit: Bring a few dressier outfits for nights out. Ladies, a jumpsuit is a great versatile piece for this; men, make sure to check dress codes for bars and clubs if you’ll need a button-down shirt and or khaki pants.
- Maxi Dress: A solid, versatile maxi dress is perfect for evenings at the resort or during the day around town. I like this one from Lark & Ro.
What to Pack for Spring Break: Toiletries
- Mosquito-Repellent Bracelet: Avoid chemicals and the smell of DEET bug spray by just wearing a bracelet.
- Sun Kit: Sunscreen, after-sun lotion, and lip balm all in one convenient, travel-sized kit.
- Sun-Protection Mist for Hair: Don’t forget to protect your luscious locks from sun damage, too.
- Aloe Sheet Mask: Essential for any sunburn relief and to replenish your skin with hydration.
- Rehydration Supplements: To help you recover after a night out on the town.
What to Pack for Spring Break: Gadgets
- Instant-Print Camera: For some fun on spring break, pack an instant print camera.
- Portable Speaker: To liven up your sunbathing and pool lounging.
- Beach Safe: This one is small and compact enough that it won’t take up too much room in your suitcase. Or, opt for a hairbrush that doubles as a cash stash.
- Mobile Hot Spot: If you don’t have mobile coverage abroad, then consider packing a mobile hotspot, like the Skyroam Solis. You can buy day passes for the Solis and connect up to five devices at a time. Even if you do have mobile coverage, the Solis is a great way to avoid pricey Wi-Fi charges at your resort.
- Kindle eReader: Some reading entertainment is essential for beach lounging (as well as the plane).
- Portable Phone Charger: Pack a portable charger or charging phone case to keep your phone charged after taking all those beach Instagram photos.
- Waterproof Phone Case: For what to pack for spring break for your phone, you should make sure you have a waterproof case to protect your phone at the beach and on any day excursions.
What to Pack for Spring Break: Accessories
- Sarong: Use it as a blanket or shawl on the plane or at dinner, and use it as a bathing suit coverup at the beach or poolside.
- Sunglasses: I love this pair by Sunski. They’re super durable, affordable, and have polarized lenses.
- Crushable Hat: Essential for sun protection; a crushable style means you don’t have to worry about it when stuffing it into your suitcase.
- Zippered Canvas Reusable Tote: This zippered beach bag is great for added security.
- Microfiber Travel Towel: For what to pack for spring break day excursions, boat trips, or just to cool off at the pool, I recommend packing a quick-dry towel.
- Arden Cove Crossbody Bag: This waterproof and anti-theft bag is perfect to dress up or down when you’re on spring break.
- Water-Resistant Pouch: Throw this in your beach bag for added protection for your valuables.
- Water Bottle: Stay hydrated!
- Passport Wallet: To help keep all of your essentials together. This one doubles as a clutch, too.
- Waterproof Backpack: Guys, this is a great beach bag option for you.
Visit the SmarterTravel Spring Break Necessities List on Amazon.
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More from SmarterTravel:
- 10 Insanely Affordable Spring Destinations
- 5 Cheapest Places to Go for Spring Break in Mexico
- The Essential Beach Packing List
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