Real talk: wedding planning is mentally taxing enough, so by the time you’ve exchanged your vows and “I do’s,” the last thing you want to think about is packing for your honeymoon. In fact, if you had it your way, you would flash forward to sipping sangria in a beach hammock and skip the suitcase strategizing altogether.
Under-packing means you may not be prepared for every situation on your trip — we’ve all mourned leaving behind that life-saving shapewear or favorite pair of flats — and overpacking means you’ll be toting around much heavier luggage than necessary. Luckily, it is indeed possible to find a middle ground.
That’s why we compiled a honeymoon packing list that covers all the essentials. Obviously, you’ll need your airline ticket, passport, credit card and driver’s license, plus any prescription medications and contact info for your doctors, house sitters, pet sitters, etc. You’ll also want to leave crucial information with family or friends, like the information for your hotel, and your itinerary. And reading material — whether trashy gossip mags or a new thriller novel — is typically a good idea.
But beyond those practical basics, there are some other pieces you’ll definitely want to consider, no matter your destination. Make sure to include these must-haves in your packing list and you’ll be able to bask in your newlywed bliss stress-free.
- Packing Cubes- There’s hardly anything more distressing than rifling through your belongings for that one daytime T-shirt dress at the bottom of your suitcase — only to discover that it’s wrinkled. Packing cubes can help you avoid these pesky scenarios on your honeymoon. Not only will they allow you to keep different types of garments separate, but they’ll also prevent such snafus as a bra hook getting caught on a sweater, a kitten heel snagging your slip or a travel size bottle of moisturizer spilling all over your swimsuit. Consider using different packing cubes for lingerie, basics, toiletries and special occasion pieces.
- A Light Layering Piece- Whether you’re jetting off to Iceland or Ibiza, you should definitely pack at least one light jacket, sweater or sweatshirt. Even in warmer climates, the temperature can drop at night, and you’ll be glad to have a layer to throw on for that romantic evening stroll along the beach or late dinner al fresco under the stars.
- A Head-Turning Dress (or two)- Chances are, you’ll have at least one special dinner with the hubby on your honeymoon. So be sure to bring along one drop-dead dress — or skirt or romper or whatever strikes your fancy — that’s sure to leave your new spouse speechless. Don’t forget to pack a few accessories to take things up a notch, like a clutch, some killer shoes and perhaps some statement earrings or a necklace.
- Some Luxe Lingerie- Speaking of looking stunning, you’ll also want some luxe honeymoon lingerie to surprise your partner with — perhaps on the first night you arrive. Naturally, your choice of lingerie will depend on your personal style and preferences. It could be a strappy Y-back triangle bra and a high-waist lace culotte, an all-lace teddy with a satin ribbon closure or a longline bralette with an itty-bitty sheer tie thong. Whatever you pack, make sure it’s something that makes you feel like the best, most confident version of yourself in — and prepare to see your partner’s jaw drop.
While you’re at it, don’t forget to bring along the basics, too. Beyond those special pieces, you’ll need a few of those everyday go-tos, like T-shirt bras, demi-cup bras and perhaps one convertible or strapless to give you max flexibility in terms of fashion. As for panties, you’ll need one pair per day that you’re there — unless you plan to do laundry — and consider bringing at least one that’s seamless so you can avoid the dreaded VPL under form-fitting ensembles.
- At Least 3 Bathing Suits- Particularly if you’re going somewhere warm, you’re likely wondering how many bathing suits you’ll need to get you through the trip. The answer depends on a couple things: how often you think you’ll be hitting the beach or pool and whether you think you’ll be able to wash them. Odds are, you probably won’t want to do laundry on your honeymoon, so you may want to bring along one for each day of your trip. Also, it’s important to consider what kinds of activities you and your partner will be participating in. If you just plan to park it in a lounge chair and sunbathe or take a quick dip, bikinis work beautifully. However, if water skiing, wake boarding or any other sports are on your itinerary, be sure to bring along a one-piece to be on the safe side.
- A Pair of Kicks- “But we’re not planning on hiking or playing any sports,” you say, while defiantly packing another unnecessary pair of stilettos. Regardless of what your itinerary looks like, it’s always a good idea to pack a pair of sneakers. You never know when spontaneity might strike on the honeymoon, and you’ll want to go sightseeing or take a walking tour of a historic village. On those occasions, some comfy shoes are a must — your feet will thank you. At the very least, you’ll be glad to have them for the flight home.
On your honeymoon, the only kinds of things you should be thinking about are where to grab pre-dinner cocktails, which spa to indulge in your couple’s massage at and whether to do tapas or seafood for dinner. Packing smart means you won’t have to deal with any style-related stress, which is ideal since this trip is all about connecting with your new spouse and setting a spectacular tone for this new chapter of your lives. Simply remember to pack these essentials — oh, and a positive attitude, sense of adventure and romantic sensibility, of course — and you’ll be golden.