How to Pack for Spring Break

After weeks of slaving away at school, your fingers are cramped from typing and your brain feels like it’s about to implode. You look over to the calendar pinned on your wall and eagerly “X” out another day with a red sharpie. Just a few more sunsets until you get head far, far away from the assignments, essays, and never-ending reading assignments. But in all of the stress, you forgot about packing!

No matter how simple it may seem, packing is a science. While my goal is to begin to pack a week in advance, if you’re a procrastinator like me, it rarely ever happens. For last minute, “oh no, what the hell am I going to do, I have no time” packing, I find it easiest to separate your items into needs, wants, and don’ts.


This section includes those things that you should not and cannot leave home without. Scared you might be forgetting something? Don’t worry, fellow Wanderus, I got you.


You wouldn’t get very far without your wallet. Before you leave home, make sure that your wallet is packed with the following:

  • IDs
  • Passport
  • Tickets
  • Reservation information
  • Cash (converted to local currency, if necessary)
  • Credit card(s)
  • Itineraries
  • Insurance documents (health and travel)


This includes all the basics:

  • Shampoo & conditioner
  • Toothbrush & toothpaste
  • Comb or brush
  • Contacts (& solution!)
  • Moisturizer or lotion
  • Sunscreen
  • Deodorant

And anything else you need when you are freshening up in the morning.

Also, be prepared! Don’t forget to pack medication, aspirin, eye drops and whatever other health-related products you may need… one night may get too crazy.


The clothing you pack, of course, will depend on the climate of the place you are visiting. But I can advise you with some universal guidance for both hot and cold weather.

  • Pack more than enough underwear – if you’re travelling for 7 days, pack 10 pairs of undies. (Trust me, you can never have enough undies.)
  • Bring comfortable walking shoes.
  • Don’t overlook socks and sleepwear!
  • Have some clothing options, but don’t overdo it. (see Don’ts)
  • You cannot step out without a pair of cool looking, inexpensive sunglasses. (Guaranteed to make you look good in every photo!)


This section includes things you may want to run to the store to buy last minute, or things that you might just want to bring with you. This includes:

  • iPod
  • Camera and camera charger (or batteries)
  • Phone and phone charger
  • Electrical adapter
  • Passport
  • Tickets
  • Bug spray (I suggest DEET. You can find it at your local drugstore.)
  • A neck pillow for the trip
  • Hand sanitizer
  • Makeup
  • A book (Not a textbook. I repeat, not a textbook.)


This section is a list of things you definitely don’t want to do or forget:

  • Don’t forget your passport!
  • Don’t overdo it with the clothing! Remember you’re going to want to shop and you’ll need room for new clothes and souvenirs.
  • Don’t forget to pay any approaching bills before you leave! You don’t want to come home to an eviction notice and an overdue cellphone bill.
  • Don’t forget your headphones! There’s nothing more annoying than packing an iPod without any headphones.
  • Don’t pack large liquids into your carry-on.
  • Don’t forget to turn your phone on Airplane Mode. Keep Airplane Mode on for the duration of your trip to avoid any annoying roaming charges, and just connect to WiFi.
  • Don’t forget to double, triple, and quadruple check that you have everything on your list before you leave.

Enjoy your spring break! Don’t bring too much baggage with you – literally & figuratively! – and have fun and stress-free week.

And if you haven’t planned your trip yet, it’s not too late! Check out our guides to the best spring break destinations – beach getaways, city escapes, and outdoor adventures – then book your ticket on or by downloading the Wanderu app!


About the author: Brianne James is a university student from Toronto, Canada. Majoring in the Creative Industries, Brianne specializes in fashion, journalism, and digital media. Brianne enjoys singing, drinking too much tea, conversations about nothing, and making people smile.

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About the author
Kate Sedrowski

Kate Sedrowski

Kate Sedrowski is on a mission to spread delight while inspiring and encouraging people to travel. Her favorite travel companion is her teddy bear, and her favorite souvenir is the scar from the broken nose she got in a snowball fight in Québec City.

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