15 Easy-to-Pack Items You Need for a Weekend Beach Getaway

Travel lightly with these spring break essentials

Updated 03/14/19
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Photo by Lauren and Abby Ross

Spring is technically right around the corner, but those lingering winds and that mild chill in the air makes it feel way more than just days away. When those in-between-season blues are getting you down, there's no better antidote than hopping on a plane to someplace warm with a swimsuit—and these other lightweight packable essentials—in tow for a weekend beach vacation.

Whether you're heading to a chill beachfront cabana in Tulum or a sleek hotel in Miami Beach, chances are that you'll be traveling by air and won't be able to bring along all the heavier items you might pack if you were in a car. In general, packing light is the way to go for off-season beach vacations (this is not the time to bring that extra-large inflatable ice cream cone), especially if it's just a long weekend in the sun.

You might want to leave your favorite (yet totally bulky) straw tote bag that you usually take to the beach, and swap it out for a more packable version. Layers like lightweight shawls and sarongs are great for both sun protection and evening beach walks. And compact organizing bags and pouches for both clothing and tech will make sure you can keep everything packed and within reach in your carry-on bag.

Below, see some of our favorite totally packable items for your weekend beach vacation.

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Capri Fouta Beach Towel

Courtesy of Serena and Lily

This lightweight cotton terry towel functions as a beach blanket, towel, and wrap. Plus, it takes up only a small amount of real estate in your luggage.

SHOP NOW: Serena and Lily, $48

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Calpak Ambeur Rolling Spinner Carry-On

Courtesy of Nordstrom

Roll effortlessly through the airport with this streamlined suitcase that features an expansion sleeve to fit in any extra souvenirs you may pick up on your trip.

SHOP NOW: Nordstrom, $135

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Packable Mesa Straw Hat

Courtesy of Madewell

Keep your face protected from the sun with this flexible hat that won't get crushed in your hand luggage on the way to your destination.

SHOP NOW: Madewell, $38

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Kos Resort Printed Sarong

Courtesy of Shopbop

With a bright, tropical pattern, this floaty fabric wrap is the perfect beach- (or pool-) side accessory.

SHOP NOW: Shopbop, $80

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Eagle Creek Specter Pack-It Cubes

Courtesy of Container Store

Keep items wrinkle-free (and make packing a breeze) with this trio of bright zippered cases.

SHOP NOW: Container Store, starting at $14

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Luz Collection Las Rayas Tote

Courtesy of Nordstrom

This cheerful tote is woven of lightweight cotton and is perfect for transporting your lip balm, sunscreen, and beach reads to your lounge chair.

SHOP NOW: Nordstrom, $46

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Le Labo Travel Set

Courtesy of Nordstrom

When you're on vacay, you're still going to want to spritz on some perfume (especially before a hot date with your S.O.). But you're probably not going to want to deal with lugging around a large bottle in your suitcase. These petite versions of Le Labo's cult-favorite perfumes are the perfect size for your clutch or toiletries bag.

SHOP NOW: Nordstrom, $95

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Super Goop! Glow Stick Sunscreen SPF 50

Courtesy of Sephora

A good portable sunscreen is super important when you're out at the beach or by the pool. This dry oil stick is both hydrating and protective of your skin when you're on the go.

SHOP NOW: Sephora, $25

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Mini Jewelry Case

Courtesy of Cuyana

This small-scale version of Cuyana's best-selling jewelry case is the perfect container to protect your favorite pieces while you're on the road.

SHOP NOW: Cuyana, $105

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Bose Wireless Headphones

Courtesy of Amazon

Sleek and easy to transport, these bluetooth headphones are key to getting caught up on that long list of audiobooks you've been meaning to get to.

SHOP NOW: Amazon, $349

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Leather Tech Envelope

Courtesy of Mark & Graham

Keep all your cords, cables, and devices organized for your trip with this handy leather case. (You can even monogram it to add your own personal touch!)

SHOP NOW: Mark & Graham, starting at 139

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Striped + Tasseled Caftan

Courtesy of Anthropologie

An unstructured beach coverup is a must-have for those lazy days in the sun.

SHOP NOW: Anthropologie, $78

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Ouai Mini Wave Spray

Courtesy of Urban Outfitters

Beach vacations are all about a laid back look and a relaxed vibe—and your hair is no exception. Get soft, touchable waves with this travel-sized version of a customer fave.

SHOP NOW: Urban Outfitters, $12

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Everlane Packable Backpack

Courtesy of Everlane

It's a good idea to bring along a small foldable backpack on any trip. You never know when you'll get an opportunity to hike in the jungle, or if you'll need some extra space to pack items you picked up on your trip.

SHOP NOW: Everlane, $35

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Pinch Provisions Out of Office Travel Kit

Courtesy of Pinch Provisions

This little pouch holds petite versions of everything you might need while you're traveling, from facial towelettes to earbuds and an eye mask.

SHOP NOW: Revolve, $24

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