As you peruse flights to beach destinations, you can’t help but fantasize about quality family time spent on the beach. Your mind drifts to the moment you get to turn your work emails off. You can almost hear the calm cadence of the waves and see your children building sandcastles. Yet the moment you click “book now,” thoughts of preparation and logistics required when traveling with children have you considering a staycation instead. Don’t panic! We’ve compiled a comprehensive spring break beachwear guide to maximize your time and minimize your stress. You’ll be able to pack more quickly and lightly, so you’re able to start relaxing before you even step foot on the plane.
This probably isn’t your first time taking your children swimming. It’s like a parental superpower to be able to pack a beach bag complete with your daughter’s swimsuit or your son’s swim trunks and anything else they might need within a matter of seconds.
But if packing quickly is your superpower, then overpacking is likely your kryptonite. We understand your desire to pack for all potential scenarios, but your luggage can burst at the seams with items you might not even touch. As you pack your bag, spend five more minutes to go through and take out those backup swimsuits and extra hats. If you do find yourself in need of an “emergency hat,” there will be no shortage of stores offering a temporary solution. Even if another one of your superpowers is superhuman strength, don’t waste it on unnecessarily heavy luggage. Save that strength for tossing your child up in the air in the swimming pool or for enjoying an extra-large margarita at cocktail hour.
Mathematically speaking, remember the tried-and-true equation: Less baggage equals more happiness. This equation is especially true when it comes to a family travel day. Add in the fact that beachwear is lightweight, which then, of course, multiplies your desire to pack 15 outfit changes. Finally, subtract joy as you lug your extra luggage through the crowded airport.
Call your accommodation beforehand. Inquire whether your condo or hotel offers a laundry service. If so, you can do a load mid-week and cut your packing list in half. And while you have them on the phone, verify which toiletries they provide. If your stay includes towels and hairdryers, you can save time, money, and energy by leaving these bulkier items at home. With this freed up space, you leave room in your luggage for souvenirs.
Pro tip: If you have a 10-hour travel day, tell your children that for each hour they go with no complaints, they will earn $1 to be used for souvenirs. We guarantee it will be the best money you spend on your entire trip! Never underestimate the power of a $5 “I Heart Hawaii” keychain as it can afford you hours of tranquility. You see a cheesy Florida Keys refrigerator magnet; we see a safe investment with incredible returns. Can you even put a price tag on a complaint-free travel day?
You’re convinced and ready to channel Marie Kondo. But with that parental instinct to overprepare in overdrive, are you really sure about which items spark joy? We’ve got you covered. The only items that should make your selective packing list should be multi-use items. For example, instead of packing numerous dresses, opt for a beach cover up or a swim dress instead.
At beach destinations, there’s an effortless and casual vibe wherever you go. A cover-up is a beach trip staple as it can be worn at the beach, walking the boardwalk, or out to dinner. A swim dress is both cute and functional as it doubles as a casual dress and as a bathing suit.
You can’t discuss a beach vacation without mentioning sunscreen. You’re well aware you need to pack sunscreen to keep your family healthy and comfortable while spending hours lounging on the beach. While there are countless brands and types of sunscreen, be sure to purchase a water-resistant sunscreen with at least 30 SPF if your child has a fairer complexion. Each sunscreen brand varies, so be sure to read the instructions on when to reapply.
Once you’ve packed your water-resistant sunscreen in your beach bag, take it a step further with UPF swimwear. UPF swimwear uses fabric designed to protect your skin against harmful UV rays. Make sure to pack your children’s long-sleeve rash guard so there’s less hassle when it’s time to reapply sunscreen.
Let the countdown to Spring Break begin! While we hope these tips helped lift your spirits, we’re confident they will help you lift your luggage, too.