I love getting away for a quick break, but I’m not a quick, or a light packer. What to pack for a weekend away, and what to pack for a 3-day trip is fairly similar, and this post will make sure that you take enough but not too much. The basics you need to pack are; tops, pants, shorts, sweatshirt, shoes, jacket, hat, underwear, toiletries and prescription medicines.
Of course travelling needs vary person to person, and what to pack for a summer vacation will be different to what to pack for a cabin weekend, or what to pack for glamping or what to pack for international travel.
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I believe the packing list below will cover you for a 3 day trip over a weekend, for whatever type of vacation you’re preparing for.
Table of Contents
What to pack for a 3 day trip checklist
- 2 t-shirts for casual wear and walking.
- 2 pairs of shorts (in winter switch the shorts for long lightweight pants/trousers) for walking.
- Swimsuit and sarong if you’re going to be by the sea or a swimming pool.
- 1 lightweight fleecy for walking, or for wearing around a camp fire at night.
- 1 pair of cut-off trousers (if it’s going to be hot in the daytime).
- 1 pair of jeans – or treggings – or jeggings – or ponte pants (whichever you prefer).
- 1 smart casual top to go with jeans.
- 1 bolero cardigan, or a sweatshirt that go with jeans and cut-offs.
- 1 raincoat or jacket.
- 1 no-iron dress (if you’re going out for lunch or dinner).
- 1 smart jacket to go with jeans and dress (winter).
- 1 sun hat.
- 3 pairs of shoes (walking shoes, comfy flats and going out shoes) I may throw some thongs in if it’s beach weather.
- Pyjamas x 1.
- Underwear – including leak proof underwear (buy here)
- Small travel hairdryer.
- Prescription medicines.
- Anti histamine tablet/paracetemol/ibuprofen. Plasters, antibacterial cream, anti-itch cream for mosquito bites.
- Sunscreen (always) Mosquito repellent (if necessary).
- Toothbrush, hairbrush, make-up, moisturizer, soap, hair shampoo + conditioner.
- Waterbottle (and nuts, sweeties and chocolate for road trips, or if you’re going to be walking!)
- Book to read, notepad and pen.
- Phone, iPad, camera and chargers.
- And a Day Pack for walking – this could be swapped for a fanny pack. You just want something other than your handbag. Something big enough to carry the essentials for a walk; you’ll probably need your phone, a credit card, some cash, and perhaps a small notepad and pen for short walks. If you’re doing a longer hike then a day pack is more suitable so that you can add a waterbottle, snacks, a small towel, tissues and perhaps some paracetemol or anti histamine tablets if you are inclined to get bitten by mosquitoes.
Stuff to pack for a trip
Someone once told me that it should only take about 20 mins to pack for a weekend away. I don’t know what type of person they are, but I’m certainly not one of them. More’s the pity! It takes me ages to pack and the only way I can do it is pack for every eventuality and then whittle it down.
A friend said to me the stuff she packs for a trip just gets thrown into a holdall in 10 minutes and away she goes because she couldn’t give a fig about how she looks.
Dave, on the other hand, puts a few things into a stuff bag with minimal fuss and manages to look handsome all the time.
Me not so much! I’m a worrier and I like to have every eventuality covered.
Accessories to pack for a weekend away
Shoes – ahh yesssss. I love shoes! If I’m going on a hotel weekend away then I’ll generally start with shoes and work outfits around what I decide to take! Probably not a good idea.
I always take walking shoes, going out shoes, maybe a pair of ankle boots in winter and a pair of sandals in summer.
I pack a couple of scarves if I’m going away for the weekend, which must match blouses, and blouses must all match up with the trousers and sweatshirts I take.
Jewellery I try to keep to the minimum – perhaps a long silver chain with a heart pendant, silver earrings and silver bracelets. This seems to go with most outfits.
I’ll always take an ‘extra something’ to wear just in case my clothes get dirty or sweaty.
Yep, I can make a right meal of packing!
I agonise over what to take and invariably either take the wrong things or end up forgetting something. Sound familiar?
But sticking to my what to pack for a 3-day trip checklist above should definitely help you pack the essentials, yet not too many to go ridiculously overboard.
What Not to Forget for a Weekend Away
I’m the sort of person who like Kevin’s Mum in Home Alone, would in a last minute dash to get to the airport forget about a child left in the house, and only remember when I’m wondering if I turned the iron off as I sit on the plane reading the inflight magazine.
So the best thing for me to do is to make a list and stick to it, otherwise I’m likely to end up with 10 pairs of shoes, and a whole load of clothes that I haven’t worn for three years and most definitely wouldn’t wear on holiday anyway.
I asked some friends what they just couldn’t live without on a weekend away and had to chuckle at their responses:-
- Ancient teddy bear
- Ugg Boots
I’d definitely pack a dress like the one below (it’s a few seasons old now) because it’s crinkle cut and doesn’t need ironing.
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