Whether you’re jetting off to Paris or relaxing on the beaches of Goa, knowing what to pack for summer can be tricky. The weather’s warm, but the temperature can also drop unexpectedly. You want to pack light, but you don’t want to pack too light and regret it later. To help you out, we’ve come up with a list of ten must-have items for your summer carry-on.
1. A scarf
A lightweight scarf, especially one that can unfold to be a small blanket, is a must for every summer traveler. It can double as a cute accessory to wear on vacation and also can be used as a wrap for colder flights. Packing even a small jacket will take up too much valuable space in your suitcase. A scarf solves the packing problem and keeps you cozy when you need it!
2. Micellar water
If you’ve already tried this cosmetic miracle, you know exactly why this stuff is a god-send. If you’re not familiar, micellar water is basically water with tiny traces of oil or “micelles.” The neat thing about micellar water is that you can wash your face without actually washing your face. Unlike most facial cleansers, you don’t mix this product with water. You simply dab some on a cotton ball, smooth it over your skin, and voila! This is perfect for removing sweat and grime on-the-go when you don’t have time to find a restroom and properly wash your face like in between sightseeing tours or on the airplane. (Also, who wants to wash their face in a public restroom anyway?) With micellar water, you can refresh your face quickly. Plus, there’s an added bonus: micellar water removes your makeup! Save space in your toiletry bag and pack this 2-in-1 miracle product! And speaking of toiletries…
3. Travel size toiletry kit
When you buy travel size toiletries from the drug store, you’re wasting money, throwing off your routines, and potentially causing problems at TSA.
Travel size items are not cheap. That tiny bottle of shampoo might seem inexpensive (it’s just $2.99 right?) but if you’ve already paid $5.99 for a full-size bottle of that same shampoo, why are you spending more money? Buying a travel kit with refillable bottles lets you take the products you already have.
Also, when you opt for buying travel size items, you’re putting yourself at the mercy of what the store sells. There are so many products out there, when you find one you really like, you stick to it. And there’s a reason for that. Using a bunch of new products can interrupt the skin routine your skin is accustomed to and cause everything from dryness to breakouts – the last thing you want on your vacation. Stores don’t always offer the products you love in travel size so opting for a refillable kit gives you the peace of mind that you can keep your beauty routine the way it is.
Finally, just because things are in the “travel” section does not mean they are TSA approved. Even though they are in the travel section, some products are over the TSA’s 3 ounce rule limit. Sure, maybe the TSA agent won’t notice your bottles are slightly bigger, but why take that chance? Do you really want to argue with TSA over shampoo when you have a flight to catch?
Your best bet is to save money, skip the hassle, and get a travel kit. The refillable bottles are the correct size and so is the clear zip bag they come with.
4. Sunscreen, sunscreen, sunscreen
Make sure you at least pack one bottle of sunscreen. It may be tempting to skip this important skincare product and opt for buying it at your destination. However, if you’re staying at a resort, this could cost you. Resorts know that you probably don’t want to venture out into a foreign country to get things you forgot to pack like flip flops and sunscreen. As such, they’re liable to jack the price way up. Make sure you have enough sunscreen so you avoid the price gouging!
5. Flats are your friends
There’s nothing wrong with looking cute on your summer excursion – just be smart about it. Don’t pack heels you’re going to wear for one hour at dinner. Roll up ballet flats or a cute pair of sandals will let you look stylish while being kind to your feet. And you can fit them more easily in your suitcase.
6. Empty water bottle
You can’t bring your own water through security, but taking an empty water bottle allows you to fill up right after leaving security. You’ll save money on those overpriced airplane soda cans and you can fill up virtually anywhere you go on vacation.
7. Phone or tablet with all the apps
Airlines often have free movie and TV streaming when you log into their app in flight. Make sure you have all the airline apps pre-downloaded. Also, check out the airports you’ll be flying through and see if they have apps as well. Some larger airports will offer things like wayfinding so you don’t get lost and miss your flight.
8. Solar charger
Put the summer sun to your advantage! These portable chargers rely on mini solar panels to charge electronics like phones and tablets. You won’t have to worry about finding an outlet. Just place it in the sun next to you while you read your Kindle on the beach.
9. Foldable bag or tote
A collapsible bag serves multiple functions depending on your needs. You can take it out for day trips, quarantine dirty laundry, or use it to hold souvenirs on your return trip.
10. Carry-on or carry not?
When you hear “carry-on bag,” you probably picture a small, roller suitcase. However, the term “carry-on” doesn’t apply only to those cute bags. A carry-on could also be a hiking backpack or larger tote. Make sure to consider what you’ll be doing on this trip and what your suitcase needs will be. If you’re staying in a resort, the roller case may be the bag for you. If you’re looking to spend a significant amount of time outdoors, you might want to consider the backpack option. Just make sure it fits the airline size requirements.