Beach Getaway Packing Tips
Beach vacations are just plain fun and exciting! All that sunbathing, sightseeing, snorkeling, swimming, sailing, surfing or just hanging out by the pool is always something to look forward to. They don’t require much planning or shopping, but they promise so many low key activities for your toddlers that’ll leave them tired and ready for bed! How much should you plan for your beach vacation? What should you pack? After planning for beach vacations for six years, here are our recommendations.
Packing for a beach vacation should be lighter than packing for a cool weather one. You don’t have to pack as many layers of clothes and you certainly don’t have to carry those bulky overcoats. During the day, you and your family can walk around in bathing suits and cover ups around the resorts, to the beach or to resort restaurants. If you are going out into town or visiting a park or sightseeing, you should wear regular clothes such as shorts and skirts (for a mixed trip, dress over your bathing suits!). Realistically you only really need two light sweaters (and/or light jackets) for the evenings when the sun sets and the ocean breeze gets cooler. Now If your resort is an all-inclusive (or you like to go out to a nice restaurant for dinner), your boys will need some nice Hawaiian and/or polo shirts for tops and shorts for the boys, dressy casual pants for the dads (jeans are not allowed in most resorts). As usual, little girls can get away with anything! They can wear nice dresses/skirts with tops. Like the girls, moms can wear almost anything for dinner, except bathing suits. You can put a pair of nice shorts with sleeveless tops on, dresses, pants, flip flops or sandals or even high heels! In summary, we recommend that you pack two different outfits per day for a beach getaway that promises lots of activities throughout the day. One outfit will be for the beach/pool or water sports and another for dinner time.
When you’re traveling with infants or toddlers you should plan ahead and be prepared to take away the anxiety of the trip. If you have an international destination, make sure passports and ID’s are easily accessible for all members in the family. That’s right, even your 3 month old baby needs a passport! include a small medicine box with children’s Tylenol, band aids, acid reducers such as Tums, and a lot of sun block in your main luggage pieces.
If you travel by airplane, you need to remember a few things:
Backpack or carry on “must haves” for infants:
- Bring a clean diaper for every 3 hours of travel and diaper rash crème. As much as you would like to only change your baby at the airports, you still need to account for those diapers in the plane so pack a few spares with ziplock bags for disposal.
- Bring a small roll of toilet paper that you can buy from a store at the Travel section, unscented wipes and Lysol wipes for the times that you will need to clean after a dirty diaper, clean the table or something else…
- Small hand sanitizer lotion. There are a lot of germs in airports and if your infant or toddler likes to put things in their mouths, it is helpful to sanitize once in a while
- Pack a bottle with breast milk, or a bottle with formula to add water at the airplane. The flight attendants can help you with warm water and voila! You have a readymade bottle! Have an extra bottle with nothing in it for long flights…in case you may need it for water or apple juice. Those bottles will be helpful to give to your child while the plain takes off or lands. Your child will be reliefed by drinking or sucking after the change of pressure.
- Teething gel and tylenol for pain or fever in case your baby is teething
- Feel and touch books to read stories
- Extra blanket for your baby when it gets too cold
Backpack or carry on “must have’s” for toddlers:
- Before traveling, talk to your toddler about airplane traveling. Cut out a picture of an airplane from a magazine, talk about the experience of takeoff or landing and what they will feel during those times •
- Don’t travel if your child has an ear infection unless their Doctor approves. It could do damage and will make the takeoff and landing very miserable for them (and for all the passengers as well).
- Bring a new coloring book that has not been opened or untouched. Kids like to have something new to play with, read or just draw on for long flights.
- DVD player or a laptop, but first make sure it is fully charged. Too many times, we have travelled with all the movies we wanted to see and the DVD player doesn’t have enough battery to complete the long flight. Some airports offer plug-ins, so you can charge while you wait.
- Bring a movie that the kids have not watched enough or even a new movie to keep them entertained. Bring the charge cord with you.
- A bag of party-favor-size-play dough. Your 3 or 4 year old will love to make animals or have you make some for them.
- Some games that you could play are: I Spy, Tic-Tac-Toe, Guess the number between 12 and 14. If all else fails, download new applications such as Idoodle2lite, Touch Hockey, Voice Cards, Monkey Preschool Lunchbox. But, be ready to plug your iphone so don’t forget the cord.
- Allow your child to occasionally stretch their legs by walking up and down the aisles and when they get to the airport and in between flights, let them run around.
- Bring a camera to capture those breath-taking moments.
- Extra set of underwear, socks or clothes to change into in case of any accidents happening…
- Toothbrush and toothpaste for the red eye flights
- If your toddler is into Legos, bring 2 or 3 characters that they can play with during the flight. It will keep them occupied.
- If you have girls, bring them a princess sticker book or a small stuffed animal that will make them feel comfortable and take anxiety away. But, don’t forget them at the airports. They may be the last thing you will remember to bring with you.
- Consider taking an evening flight, have your children wear comfortable clothes such as sweat suits and strap-on shoes that are easy to take off and put on at the TSA safety checks.
- Track your flight with your child, if the airplane has this feature. Talk about the states or regions that you are flying over as you travel to your destination.
- Finally, be ready to have some fun! enjoy the trip and take lots of pictures!