With summer vacations around the corner and as a special reader request, we show you what to pack for Hawaii vacations with a 10 piece packing list.
For this Hawaii Packing List, I interviewed fashionista Erika Hollweg who attended university in Honolulu and Sheila Beal from GoVisitHawaii.com – a Hawaii vacation enthusiast that shares award-winning travel advice.
Sheila’s a North Carolina native and resident that travels to Hawaii two to four times per year to stay up to date on all the latest trends and news that Hawaii vacationers want to know. Erika studied in Hawaii for 4 years and is originally from LA.
Both of these women love these beautiful islands – here are a few of their tips making it easy to help you plan what to pack for Hawaii on your next vacation.
What to Pack for Hawaii: Packing List for Vacation
Hawaii Travel Essentials
When planning what to pack for Hawaii, don’t leave home without your sunglasses, preferably polarized to cut out some of the glare on the ocean. Beach essentials include 2 swimsuits, a cover-up, and flip flops. For adventures, a good hiking sandal works great for the trails and crossing small streams. It’s always a good idea to bring at least one pair of long trousers for activities like horseback riding and all-terrain vehicle tours. Hats are also a great accessory for adventures and hanging out at the beach.
Check out the perfect pants for Hawaii!
Sunscreen, sunscreen, sunscreen! Hawaii’s proximity to the equator makes the sun particularly strong. You can conveniently buy Aloe Vera gel if you get burned as I did when on my Hawaii vacation but it’s better to avoid this altogether.
When you’re planning what to wear in Hawaii, choose clothing that is very casual and comfortable.
The islands invite you to relax. That attitude spills over into clothing for both locals and visitors. Flip flops are a staple in this chilled out paradise.
Check out my favorite “flip-flop” style sandals!
What not to Wear in Hawaii
Avoid getting overly dressy with clothing such as sequined dresses on your Hawaii vacations – you’ll stick out like a sore thumb. Relax, and get into the island vibe!
Don’t wear dresses or skirts on boat tours. Once you’re on the water, the wind picks up and can easily lift a skirt or dress.In general, short, flow-y skirts and dresses are not a good idea to wear as the tradewinds are almost constantly blowing. Unfortunately, I can confirm this as my own knee length flowy skirt flew up and over while walking seaside. Oops.
Shopping for the Necessities
If you forget to add an item to your packing list for Hawaii, you can find Walmart and Costco on each of the four major islands to purchase anything you’re missing or if you want to stock up on some essentials.
What to Pack for Hawaii
The great thing about planning what to pack for Hawaii vacations is that the weather doesn’t fluctuate significantly from season to season but it can vary depending on elevation level and what island you’re on so pack according to your activities. At the highest elevation in on some of the islands can get extremely cold so do your research and if you’re heading that way, bring some layers! It’s wonderfully warm year round – not cold and not too hot. Daytime highs typically average from the mid-70’s to the mid-80’s. Throughout the year, don’t be surprised if it rains a bit – it is a tropical island after all. Breathable fabrics and fabrics with cotton tend to be the most comfortable to wear in the somewhat-humid environment of Hawaii.
Find out how to choose the best fabrics for travel to Hawaii.
Winter evenings can sometimes have a tiny bit of a chill with average temperatures dipping down to an average of 65 degrees. So, a light jacket or sweater is useful to bring any time you travel. The rainy season is October-April during Winter so pack your umbrella and a patient smile. Event though it rains, the weather stays warm so not many people wear rain jackets and boots. You’ll still see flip flops all around.
When planning your packing list for Hawaii, choose breezy tops and casual shorts or capris. Swimsuits with cover-ups are perfectly fine for daytime wear beachside.
For dinner or luaus in the evenings wear capri pants, casual skirts, or dresses. Trade your basic t-shirt for a nice blouse.
Pack these thong sandals for a casual and chic look!
Hawaii Capsule Wardrobe
1. Striped Top 2. Boho Top 3. Off Shoulder Top 4. Printed Shirt 5. Sleeveless Shirt 6. Floral Skater Dress 7. Floral Romper 8. Ripped Shorts 9. Denim Short 10. Chino Pants 11. Crewneck Cardigan 12. Striped Cover Up 13. Sandals Flip Flops 14. Flat Shoes 15. Straw Tote 16. Polarized Sunglasses 17. Straw Hat 18. Swimwear 19. Travel Umbrella 20. Printed Scarf
Whether you’re planning a trip in the Winter or Summer, this packing list for Hawaii should help you plan year round! For more international packing guides, check out TFG’s destination packing lists.To learn more about customizing TFG’s Packing Lists to meet your needs, please read this guide.
What are your packing tips for Hawaii? Comment below!
Suggested Luggage for Hawaii:
- Weekender Bags – Fly in Style
- Top 20 Suitcase Recommendations from the Experts
- 10 Cute Travel Accessories for Women Shop our Favorite Toiletry Bags
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