Summer Travel Checklist: What to Pack and How to Save Big
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Travel is back on, and with it comes the opportunity to fill up your summer calendar with trips, getaways, and escapes to the destinations that you’ve been craving to visit all year long. Statistics from Trip Advisor report that over two-thirds of Americans are planning to travel this summer. Before you start panic-packing and stressing over what to pack, we’ve scoured the web for the hottest deals and steals when it comes to packing efficiently, so your upcoming vacation will be stress-free. These practical and affordable items are what everyone should have in their suitcase, showing off a diverse range of goods that are equal parts stylish, versatile, and accessible.
If you haven’t solidified your travel plans, below are money-saving resources detailing travel hacks to finding cheap flights, hotels, and more.
- How to Save Money on Flights: A Travel Blogger’s Top Secrets for Finding Cheap Flights
- 8 Guaranteed Ways to Get Amazing Discounts on Cheap Luxury Hotels
- Expedia Travel Hacks You NEED to Know
Price: $24.99 at Bed Bath & Beyond
We love a product that tackles multiple things at once. Enter this all-in-one adapter that includes the four most common global plug configurations and two USB charging ports. And thanks to a 6A fuse and safety shutters, you can juice up your devices safely. Take it with you to more than 175 countries, including most parts of Africa, Asia, Europe, the Middle East, New Zealand, North America, and Russia. Plus, it’s lightweight and durable so your adventures aren’t burdened by extra weight.
Price: $17 at Target
Vaccination cards, COVID-19 test results, passports, boarding passes, cash, credit cards, keys — the amount of important documents and monetary items to have on hand can be overwhelming. But rather than shove it all in the front zipper of your backpack and hope for the best, stay organized with this heather gray travel wallet! You can focus on getting to your destination worry-free, as the wallet features a zipper closure and many interior slots and pockets. Stay organized and stay in vacation mode!
Price: $12.97 at Walmart
Sure, you want to work on your tan, but in the hotter temps and the longer days, sun exposure is a real concern when it comes to retaining that youthful glow. This is because harmful UVA and UVB rays have been known to link to skin cancer. Bask in the sand or by the pool with peace of mind thanks to this Banana Boat blend that offers broad spectrum protection in a convenient spray so you can apply, let it dry, and play hard! The lightweight formula gives you SPF 50+ coverage and stays on no matter the conditions. Pool, ocean, wind, sweat, sand and extreme heat? No problem!
For more sunscreen options, check out our guide to finding the best face and body sunscreen for your skin type here.
4. Beach Hat
Price: $19 $15.20 at Kohl’s
After you’ve lathered up your face and body with sunscreen, add on another chic layer of sun protection with this adorable, bohemian-inspired Panama hat designed by Lauren Conrad. Your summertime ensembles will be made instantly covetable, all while you shield your gorgeous visage from the sun’s powerful rays. The woven straw construction gives a laid back, beachy vibe, while the 4-inch brim lets you throw some shade all day.
Price: $26.99 at Amazon
Picture this: You’re at the beach and you have frisbees, cell phones, cameras, towels, cameras, and the rest of your beach gear thrown in a random receptacle. Suddenly, a wave makes an entrance, thoroughly soaking everything in sight and leaving you with a mess to clean. Avoid all that with this large tote bag which is water- and crease-resistant with an 11-inch handle drop, and you can even use it as a carry-on! Plus, it comes in more than 30 designs to fit your style!
Price: $22.95 at Backcountry
Show some love to the planet that offers so many beautiful places for you to explore! A reusable water bottle comes in handy at the airport, beach, and on hikes. Whatever you drink, this 20-ounce bottle has a lifetime manufacturer warranty and a leak-proof lid so spills are a thing of the past.
Price: $42.99 $32.29 at Target
Shore up on your vitamin D as you lounge in luxury atop your favorite circular dish! Perfect for pools, rivers, and lakes, this pepperoni pizza-style inflatable raft is ideal for one person to revel in the sunshine while drifting into a state of aquatic zen. Constructed from heavy-gauge PVC with RF-welded seams, the floaty is built to last summer after summer for everlasting (and cheesy) vibes!
Price: $25.99 at Amazon
In multiple colors and adjustable to fit any cranium, these high-definition stereo headphones include seamless bluetooth connectivity, long battery life, specially developed software and noise reduction technology. These features are designed to drown out ambient noises so you can lose yourself in whatever album, audiobook, or podcast makes you forget about your stresses. Not to mention the fact that they are foldable for packing into small spaces!
9. Beach Towel
Price: $23.99 $9.99 at Kohl’s
It’s called “The Big One" for a reason! At 34 inches wide and 68 inches long, this Turkish cotton and reversible towel lets you sprawl on the sand or wrap up after a dip in the water with a vibrant twist. The colorful design is made of OEKO-TEX materials, which are tested for harmful substances and manufactured in environmentally friendly facilities that have safe and socially responsible work practices. Quick to dry and uber-soft, it’s a must for any watery endeavors!
Price: $19.99 at Best Buy
Keep your beloved smartphone safe from the sea, the pool, the river, or the waterpark so you can continue exploring the great outdoors! This water-resistant mobile pouch fits most phones thanks to a strong PVC build and a sealed closure that prevents water from ruining all your selfie and panoramic pic opportunities. The sleek, clear finish lets you retain functionality when texts come through — although we do encourage a digital detox on vacation!
Price: $21.99 at Amazon
Plane food is often a bust, and no offense, but pretzels and peanuts are not for everyone. Plan accordingly by prepacking snacks in a reusable silicone snack bag that’s plastic-free, dishwasher-safe, microwave-safe, and eco-friendly. Unlike other plastic food receptacles, this particular design contains no BPA, no PVC, and no latex, and uses an innovative, airtight pinch-lock seal. Once you reach your destination, you can use it throughout the duration of the trip to refuel between your adventures.