• Donna Zabel

That Caribbean Beach is Calling--Here's How to Pack

For The Ladies:


First of all, don’t overpack!! Forget trying to pack an outfit for every occasion. You want the basics and essentials, but think of forgetting something as an opportunity to explore local stores for some fun shopping.


To start, put together your toiletry bag. Mine includes:

Toothpaste, toothbrush (2-one for the hotel, one for your purse), dental floss.

Some band aids & antibiotic cream—those new shoes might start to rub

Individual packets of laundry soap or Woolite—plan on washing underwear

Pain medication (Tylenol, aspirin, etc.). Meclizine (Bonine) for motion sickness.

Ear plugs—for the plane as well as your roommate

Eye drops—for the dry air on the plane as well as on the road

Comb and brush, shower cap, small magnifying mirror for makeup

Small alarm clock & tiny flashlight

Makeup remover pads (if you use makeup)

Deodorant & tiny perfume bottle

A few rubber bands and safety pins—it’s amazing how many uses they have

Small tubes of facial wash, facial cream, sunblock, favorite skin serum

Medications and vitamins (or carry in another toiletry-sized bag)

Sunscreen and bug repellent—sunscreen sticks and Deet impregnated cloths avoid TSA issues.

Stain remover stick, such as Tide To Go

Makeup, in a separate little bag if necessary.

Anything else you really can’t live without

The Clothes:

Bathing suit(s)—preferably 2, one to dry while wearing the other

Bathing suit cover-up(s)—or buy one from a local vendor. Sarongs also work.

Capris and shorts—a pair of capris for roaming around town or exploring, another nicer pair for evening. Shorts are OK for daytime

Several sleeveless or short-sleeved blouses or light shirts

Sundress or light summer frocks for evening. Two plus that nice pair of capris should be enough for a week. Or, if you prefer, lightweight pants and a couple of breezy tops work

Shawl or cardigan for air-conditioned restaurants

Shoes: one pair of walking sandals, one pair of dress sandals, and water shoes or flip flops.

Underwear sufficient for several days. Washing it out instead of packing enough for 10 days is why you have the laundry packets

Hat or hats for sun protection and bad hair days

Windbreaker jacket for rainy days

Any desired exercise clothing

Sleeping attire

For The Men:

The Toiletry Bag:

Shaving suppliers (look for little tubes of cream, if used)

Toothbrush, small tube toothpaste, dental floss, proxy brush if used

Medications and vitamins, including a little Pepto-Bismol

For trimming a beard carry a little scissors with TSA-approved rounded tips

Sunscreen and bug repellent

Deodorant

Comb(s)—several if you lose them as frequently as my husband does

Stain remover stick

Small shoe horn & sample sized shoe shine sponge or cloth

Chapstick/lip balm for sun-burnt lips

A few toothpicks—they may come in handy

Anything your traveling partner doesn’t want to carry


The Clothes:

Bathing suit(s)—one to dry and one to wear

T-shirts or other cover-ups to wear to the beach

Short sleeved or polo shirts

Shorts—at least 2 as they will get dirty

Long-sleeved collar shirts for evenings in the restaurants.

Pants—required for the better restaurants.

Shoes: comfortable sandals, water shoes or flip-flops for the beach, closed shoes for the evening restaurants.

Socks as needed for the shoes

Hat for the sun

Anything your traveling partner can’t fit in their suitcase

For the TSA Checkpoint:

All liquids carried in the cabin must follow the 3-1-1 rule:

Bottle no more than 3 ounces

All bottles fit in a 1 quart plastic zip-lock bag

One bag per person

Things that go in the liquids baggie:

Small bottles of favorite shampoo and conditioner, if desired

Small bottle of hair gel/mousse and hair spray, if used

Small mouthwash

Favorite dermatology products (for me, facial wash and lotions)

For Eveyone:

Passport and boarding passes

Copies of your passport packed separately from the passport

Copies of your flight itinerary

Copy of your insurance policy

Small bills for extra tips or souvenir shopping

Zip-lock baggies of varying sizes

Adapter for different electrical outlets

Emergency contact list

Snack bars/nuts for emergencies or when stuck on the airplane

A sense of adventure and excitement. You are off to the Caribbean!!

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