Whether it’s a romantic holiday with your significant other or a family camping trip, sometimes it’s great to take a weekend away from home. Less great is the amount of time it takes to think about, and pack for, a weekend away. If packing anxiety keeps you from taking spontaneous weekend trips, this guide to packing for a weekend away will be the perfect way to jumpstart your trip. Grab your favorite tote bag and follow this list, and you’ll be ready to go in no time at all!
Toiletries are among the easiest items to forget to pack for a weekend trip, so we like to pack them first. If you like to travel, we recommend keeping a packed toiletry bag under your sink, that way you can just grab it and stick it in your tote bag when you’re ready to go. At a minimum, here’s what you need to grab for a weekend away from home:
- Body Wash
- Shaving Supplies
- Daily Medicine
Travel-sized items are your friend when traveling, as you don’t want to weigh your bag down. Though the above list is a minimum list, there are other items, such as make-up, that you may or may not choose to pack depending on where you’re going. “Sometimes” first-aid items, including inhalers, allergy medicine, ibuprofen, and Band-Aids, may also be a good choice, especially if you’re going to be in an unfamiliar environment. And if you’ll be spending a lot of time outdoors, you’ll want to add sunscreen and bug spray to your list.
Packing clothes can be one of the trickiest parts of going away for a weekend. No one wants to over-pack, but you also don’t want to spill a drink on yourself night one and be stuck in the same stained, odorous t-shirt for the rest of the weekend. We recommend packing one extra “just in case” outfit for this reason. Here’s what we recommend for a typical 2-day weekend away:
- 3 Pairs of Socks
- 3 Sets of Underwear
- 3 Tops
- 2 Bottoms
- 1 Sweatshirt
- 1 Pair of Sweatpants or PJ Bottoms
- 1 Lightweight Jacket (in case it rains)
To keep from having to pack too much, make sure all items thrown in your bag can mix and match with each other. That way, if one outfit—or one part of one outfit—does get soiled, you have other options. Optional clothes, depending on where you’re going, may include a bathing suit and a nice outfit or two if you plan to go out to a fancy dinner.
The entertainment you pack for a weekend away will be different depending on where you’re going, who you’re going with, and how you’re getting there. For example, entertainment for a road trip may include CDs for the car and road trip games for the kids, while entertainment for a camping trip may include card games and hiking gear. Take some time to consider where you’re going and how much down-time you anticipate having. Most of the time you’re at least going to want your phone and charger, and you may decide on additional items, such as:
- A Notebook and Pencil
- Music and Movies
Always remember to pack any accessories that go with your entertainment items, such as headphones if you’re packing a portable DVD player or a charger if you’re packing your kindle.
Though no packing list will be all-inclusive, as packing needs will vary depending on where you’re going and who you’re going with, this guide to packing for a weekend away should get you off to a great jump-start as you plan your weekend getaway.