Spring Break packing tips

Brittany Moon

As Spring Break is right around the corner, some may be gearing up for a cross-country road trip, a flight to a tropical location or driving home to visit family.

Regardless of where students might be going, learning how to pack efficiently is important. Many want to know how to pack everything needed for a trip in only a carry-on suitcase.

Some may say that this task is too daunting or even unachievable, but it has been done and can be again. Having the perfect combination of transitional pieces is the recipe for success this Spring Break. This is especially crucial for travelers who will fly or ride in a packed van with friends.

One of the most important tips is finding the right piece of luggage. There are hundreds of choices when it comes to color, material, pattern and special accessories. Be sure to research and make sure that it is the correct piece for you.

After choosing your carry-on, the next item on the agenda is choosing the basis of the travel wardrobe. Begin with the outfit being worn while traveling to the destination. This outfit should incorporate pieces that will continuously be worn throughout the trip and also worn on the trip back home. Living in the Midwest makes things difficult when it’s cold here and possibly warmer somewhere else. Wear lightweight layers, like a basic neutral camisole, linen button down and blanket scarf with leggings or jeggings, along with the bulkiest shoe you plan to take. This trick is a lifesaver if one wants to bring heavier boots on the trip and can’t fit them in their carry-on.

After planning this outfit, choose other pieces that will easily go along with some of the items worn during travel. Try to keep a consistent color palette, which will make it easier to mix and match garments. As far as shoes are concerned, include a basic wedge sandal and a flat sandal for the beach and ocean side dinners. For cross-country road trips, pack tennis shoes for walking. 

Be sure to include one skirt — maxi or mid-thigh length is the most versatile. Shorts are also a must. Be sure to have a jean pair and either a lightweight poly-blend pair in a pattern or a cotton pair for a pop of color.

Dresses are another staple for the coveted tropical locations. A shorter, flowy dress is perfect to use as a cover-up and dinner outfit, as well as a tea length, high-low or maxi. A casual romper or a striking floor-length jumpsuit also fit this category.

Tops take up a small amount of room, so you can pack multiple tops to mix and match. Since the linen top was worn en route, there doesn’t need to be one packed. A fitted tee in a lighter color, a tank to be worn with shorts, a skirt or over swimwear and a cardigan are all essentials one should include in their suitcase. A few fun items to spice things up would also be crop tops, bandeaus and bralettes.

Swimsuits should be packed last and included with all undergarments in the zip compartment of the carry-on. There are many choices between styles and cuts, as well as colors and patterns of suits. Pack a swim cover-up if you feel it will be used often. If not, use tank tops or dresses you have already packed while walking along the beach. 

Even if packing in only a carry-on is not your plan, there are a few tips all travelers should keep in mind. Some experience horror stories while traveling, like losing luggage. There are a few precautions travelers can take. Pack an extra outfit into a purse or tote that is on the airplane alongside you. This would include a fresh pair of undergarments, socks, a basic tee and possibly a backup pair of shoes that don’t take up a lot of space. This will tie over the traveler until their luggage can be delivered to them. 

If you are taking a carry-on along with another suitcase, be sure to use up the extra room in your carry-on to be sure your suitcase meets weight requirements. Pack jewelry, toiletries that meet the size requirements and a pair of shoes if space can be spared.