This is a guest contribution by Megan.
The internet is filled with packing advice for every type of trip imaginable. Skilled at packing light, there are those who bring only what they need. They know how to prevent taking excess items that they’ll never end up using during their trip.
I am not one of these people.
No matter how many packing lists or advice articles I read, I always end up overpacking.
My hope is that writing about my packing faux pas might help you all to avoid making the same mistakes I do. And maybe, as a result of writing about it, my packing skills will improve as well.
Last month, my husband and I went on a brief honeymoon trip to Palm Springs. We stayed three nights. The temperature while we were there averaged around ninety degrees during the day time, and seventy at night. Here’s what I packed:
- 2 crop tops
- 3 tank tops (for layering)
- 1 casual white dress (for a nice dinner or other nicer occasion)
- 2 light, flowy cardigans (for covering up in bright sun)
- 3 pairs shorts
- 1 casual t-shirt (for lounging in the room or patio)
- 1 pair gym shorts (also for lounging)
- 1 pair jeans
- 3 pairs socks
- 4 bras
- 4 pairs underwear
- 2 bathing suits (a bikini and a one-piece)
- make-up removing wipes
- BB cream make-up with SPF 45
- translucent powder with SPF 15
- waterproof mascara
- sunscreen SPF 60
- Nikon film camera
- 3 rolls 35mm film
- joby arm
- 2 spare media cards (for my DSLR)
Three pairs of shoes
- wedge heels
- flip flops
- small backpack
- duffel bag
Not too bad. Everything fit easily into my duffel bag.
All the clothes I brought were perfect for the weather. I was glad to have brought the jeans and long-sleeved, light cardigans for our day trip to San Jacinto State Park. The weather was a good deal cooler on the mountain.
I did bring some things that I could have left at home.
The white dress: Unless you have something planned that requires a dress, don’t bother. I didn’t wear mine once. Palm Springs is super laid back, and dressing up didn’t seem common amongst the people we saw there.
Socks: I could have done with just two pairs rather than three. I definitely needed a pair on our hike, and then I wore them when we walked around downtown Palm Springs. Socks don’t take up much space, though, so having spares isn’t such a big deal.
Bras: For some reason, I brought four bras with me, and I only wore two. I was in one of my swimsuits most of the time I was there, so I definitely wasn’t thinking when I packed this many bras.
Extra 35mm film: I always overpack camera gear. This time I brought two cameras, one film camera and one DSLR. While I took several analog photos on the film camera, I primarily used my DSLR, so the extra film wasn’t necessary.
Extra media cards: I didn’t even need these. I mainly took photos during our hike, and I had more than enough space on the card in my camera for all the photos that I took there. Always good to have a spare, though, just in case something happens to your main card.
Kindle: I definitely wasn’t spending much time reading. I might have read by the pool, but I didn’t feel comfortable taking it out there as I didn’t want to leave it unattended to swim. I would have been better to bring a cheap paperback.
Joby Arm: I always bring this thing and I rarely use it. It’s only useful when you can find a sturdy railing to attach your camera to. In the forest it’s a little difficult to find good locations to use it. It stayed in my bag the whole time.
Besides all these items that I shouldn’t have packed, there was one item that I purchased during our trip: a sun hat. I definitely recommend you pack your own when traveling to this sunny city.
I’d give myself a B- this time around. Not a total failure on the packing front, but I definitely hope I do a little better on my next trip!