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  • Writer's pictureChelsea Susan Bednar

What’s in my Suitcase: 10 Must-Have Items for Spring Break!

With Spring Break right around the corner, now it the time to make those travel plans! Escape the cold and come visit us in sunny Florida! We have two properties in the sunshine state, Sunset Inn & Cottages in Treasure Island and Marrero’s Guest Mansion in Key West. Planning and packing the essentials may come easy, but thinking of all the conveniences for the trip may slip your mind. That’s why we’ve curated some of our favorite items to pack for the super fun (and prepared) spring breaker. Disclaimer: This is not a sponsored/affiliate linked post. We genuinely find these items useful and wanted to share our genuine recommendations.

1. You’ve packed your suitcase to the brim with all your things for a beach vaycay - but when you arrive, there are so many cool shops! Of course you’ll go on a little shopping spree, and you’ll need a way to bring back all your goodies. Rather than buying a new suitcase or shipping back new purchases, plan for it! Pack this Orshawer Large Capacity Folding Travel Bag into your suitcase. It’s waterproof and comes with a strap on the back to easily slide over your suitcase handle.

2. Whether going out for a day on the beach or hopping in between bars, this 80's Jelly Bag is the go-to handbag. We love this one from Los Angeles Party. It comes in so many fun colors, has a customizable monogram/name feature, and best of all - breaks down flat to fit into your suitcase!

3. We love these compact Quick Dry Towels. They pack down nicely into a little travel pouch and are sustainably made to be sand-repelent & quick drying. That way when you're done in the sun, this convenient towel can simply be thrown into your bag. Both of our properties provide complementary, plush beach towels to all of our guests, we just liked including this travel towel in case you wanted something a little more portable.

4. When it comes to beach essentials, protecting your skin is a must. Buying sunscreen when you get to your destination can be cumbersome and expensive. That’s why we’ve curated a bundle from one of our favorite travel-friendly brands, Raw Elements Face + Body SPF 30 Sunscreen Tin (3 oz.) and Raw Elements SPF Face Stick. You can order this online before your trip, or pick one up at one of the local surf shops. This product is quality, long lasting, and eco friendly (safe for the ocean & coral). The travel friendly tins allow you to use while on vacation and to bring with you when you leave (instead of leaving half full bottles of sunscreen at the hotel). That being said, in case you forgot your SPF - the hotels do occasionally have sunscreen that previous guests have left behind for others usage... just ask the manager!

Florida evenings can get a bit buggy if you're traveling in the right season for it. In case you're planning on excursions to somewhere like Jungle Prada or walking near the water on a warm evening, having some type of bug spray is great to have on hand! Since aeresols can't travel on flights, we liked this portable Bug Away Roll-On by Rocky Mountain Oils. It's sustainably produced and can easily packed into your clutch.

5. Pack everything from your snacks to skincare in a Stasher Bag - these bags are made of durable, food-grade platinum silicone. They are waterproof, dishwasher safe, microwavable, and freezer safe. There are a lot of dupes out there that are also good, but there is a guaranteed quality when you go with the Stasher brand. You can buy pouches individually, or invest in one of their bundle deals like the On The Go 5 Pack or Starter Kit 7 Pack. They come in so many aesthetic colors and pattens, and really last a lifetime.

6. Whether you’re soaking up the sun, swimming, or exploring, there’s always a party on the beach! Bring your tunes to the beach with one of these portable speakers. The JBL Go 3 Portable Speaker is a waterproof, budget friendly option that doesn’t compromise on quality. Caution taking it into the water because this one does sink! This speaker comes with a hook to attach to you backpack when taking it on the go. If you want to pack a speaker that can play while you float on a tube for a couple hours, then the Bluefree Shower Speaker is for you! This small speaker is completely waterproof - it even floats on the water! It has a light-up feature that has an option to change colors, so you can bring it out to the water even when it's dark. Perfect for evening pool parties.

7. There are a lot of exciting water activities to partake in at both properties. You can plan a trip to the beach, swim in the private pool (at Marrero’s), or book an excursion like snorkeling or dolphin-site seeing cruises. In any scenario, you’ll want to protect your phone. This Waterproof Phone Case is well reviewed - it seals in the phone securely so much so that you can even bring it underwater to take videos & photos! The plastic doesn't even fog up, so you’ll still be able to text/take pictures as normal. I personally have this case, and let me tell you, it's a travel game changer!

8. The easiest thing to forget - a portable phone charger!! You may already have one of these in which case, this is your friendly reminder to pack it! If you’re looking to purchase a new one, we recommend this Wallet Sized Portable Charger. It’s so compact - like the size of a thick credit card, and the battery life is really good!

9. Get creative and pack a travel journal! There are so many varieties when it comes to journaling. We love this vintage-inspired journal by Bespoke Bindery that’s filled to the brim with travel inspired papers and envelopes. You may be thinking, “I’m not an artist!” No worries. For the writer/thought jotter who loves everything to have more than one function, this Journal Slip Cover by Midori is just the thing. Fill the side with A6 notebook inserts and tuck a card and your phone into the side pocket. There's even a loop for a pen, so you’ll always have one on hand! Traveling with curious kids? Gift them this Travel Journal for Kids by a Little Bit Adrift. There are interactive pages with writing and drawing prompts and fun illustrations to color. What a fun way to document a trip!

10. Okay, we’re planning for Spring Break here. If you’re traveling solo, with friends, or with the fam, these emergency kits can come in handy. You can opt for something universal and simple like the Welly Human Repair Kit, that comes with bandaids and individual pouches of simple aid products. Both properties are equipped with first aid kits, but these travel packs could be a good idea to take with you on day trips.

If you already have some care-items and would like a dedicated bag to refill on your own, this handmade Hiker First Aid Kit Pouch is adorable and so affordable (and comes with a mini-first aid kit with purchase).

If a “Friends Getaway” is more your spring break vibe, then packing in these cute Hangover Kits would be a useful party favor. There are so many options for these kits and are very DIY-able. We’ve linked one that we liked for the items associated with beach parties, but you really have your pick on Etsy.

We hope these recommendations relieve a bit of the stress you may be feeling about your upcoming vaycay, and inspire a few new fun items to travel with. Happy Spring Break!

Thanks for reading - we look forward to hosting you at Marrero’s Guest Mansion

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