How to Pack Really (Really) Light for a Warm Weather Vacation

I am proud to announce I recently went on a 5 day warm-weather vacation and came back with clean clothes in my suitcase I did not even wear. The reason I am so proud is I managed to get everything in one tiny carry-on bag and one tote bag. Here is how to pack light for vacation.

The destination was Naples, Florida and we stayed at my fiancé’s aunt and uncle’s condo. I have been to Florida in the past and knew that the majority of the time we would be at the beach or the pool. I thought we we may do some sight-seeing and that we would eat out quite a bit and maybe walk on the beach or work out.

When it came to packing, as usual I did not have much time. I was in a panic! So I took a quick look at what I packed the last time I traveled to a warm climate and also thought about what I usually bring when I visit a beach house for the weekend. The combination of the two destinations were a good guide for me to follow for my Florida vacation.


* indicates required

The fact that we were going to stay at a condo gave me a bit of relief because I could wash clothes if need be, and also leave my hair blow dryer behind. (I figured if they did not have a blow dryer, it would be a nice house gift). I also did not have to worry about bringing a beach towel.

How to Pack Light for Vacation

Here is the list I compiled. For the travel days day 1 and 5 I planned to wear the heaviest clothing – my jeans and layers of jackets. We flew out of Chicago and the weather was still cool and I’m always cold on the plane and in air conditioning so I knew I needed jackets.


  • Blue Denim Jeans
  • White Pants
  • Camouflage Joggers
  • Black Joggers


  • White T-shirt
  • Black T-shirt
  • Black Tank
  • Long Sleeve Print T-shirt
  • White Long Sleeve Shirt


  • Black Bomber Jacket
  • Grey Hoodie Jacket


  • Black Jersey Midi Dress
  • Print Cotton Sun Dress
  • Tropical Print Oblong Pareo


  • 2 Swim Suits


  • White Adidas Sneakers
  • Black Pool Slides


  • Pants and Top Set


  • Sports Bra
  • Black Bra
  • Nude Color Bra
  • 7 Pairs of Panties
  • 2 Pairs of Socks (instead of slippers)


Suntan lotion, cleansers, lotion, toothpaste, toothbrush, hairbrush, etc. all fit in one Ziplock Freezer Bag
1 Small Makeup Bag of makeup


  • Flight Regulation Carry on Bag
  • Tote Bag (doubled as a beach bag and I fit my laptop computer inside)


  • A small cross-body bag (containing my phone, sunglasses and a tiny wallet)

pack light plane outfit fountainof30

The Plane Ride Outfit

For the plane ride to (and from) Florida I was able wear a lot of clothing (so I did not need to pack it!) This gave me extra space in my carry-on suitcase. On the way back I wore a clean tee-shirt.

Blue Denim Jeans

White T-shirt

Black Bomber Jacket over the Grey Hoodie Jacket

White Adidas Sneakers

Tote Bag

Carry-On Suitcase


pack light beach or pool vacation outfit fountainof30

Beach / Pool Outfit

Most days I wore a dress over my swimsuit. We hung out at the pool and went to the beach. My oblong pareo was handy to wear as scarf or coverup.

Black Jersey Midi Dress over Swimsuit

Tropical Print Oblong Pareo

Tote Bag as Beach Bag

Black Pool Slides


daytime vacation outfit fountainof30

Daytime Vacation Outfit

I also wore lightweight joggers with a t-shirt and slide sandals to breakfast or shopping. For exercise I wore joggers with a sports bra and sneakers. For eating out, I wore the white pants and a tee, the black joggers with slides with a colorful t-shirt, or one of the dresses with slides and a jacket.

Black Tank

Black Joggers

Grey Hoodie

Pool slides

Crossbody Bag

Packing light makes your vacation easy and enjoyable. It was freeing to have limited options. Who wants to make decisions on vacation?  I was able to mix and match all the items since I kept it very basic with black and white pieces I could layer on. As you can see, I wore a lot of black, but you can punch up your outfits and bring a bright colored tote, pool slides, crossbody or tee.

I didn’t even need to wash any clothes, except rinse out my swimsuit, which I wore every day except for the travel days.

And as I said, I came home with unworn pieces! I did not wear the white shirt, the extra bathing suit, and a few pairs of underwear! But there was one important item I forgot and needed to borrow: a sun hat! Now I know what to pack and what to take out of my suitcase for next time.

Are you planning a warm weather vacation? What will you pack in your bag?

Carol Calacci

You may also like to read Why You Will Love The Wide Leg Pants Trend: Splurge vs Steal and The Most Essential Black Button Down Shirt: Splurge Or Steal.

This post contains affiliate links which may give us a commission at no additional cost to you.

Are you following Fountain Of 30 on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest? We’ve got lots going on, so join in on the fun! Subscribe to our newsletter here.  You don’t want to miss a post and promise not to bug you to death. We also started a Facebook Group called Growing Younger for women to discuss everything good and bad about being over 40. Additionally Lauren now hosts a podcast called Beauty is a Bitch! and a weekly Instagram Live series called “Growing Younger Gabfest with Lauren.”

Please pin!

pack light for vacation fountainof30


5 thoughts on “How to Pack Really (Really) Light for a Warm Weather Vacation”

Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.