What Clothes to Pack for your Caribbean Vacation

Where are you going? Not all islands in the Caribbean are identical! Some of them get quite cool at night. Others are more up-scale and therefore have a casual smart dress code. Some of them allow naturalist bathing; others expect you to be more demure and covered up. Some will have restaurants that expect you to turn up for your dinner reservation in a jacket/cocktail style dress, others are happy for you to arrive in whatever you wore at the beach. Read up a little in advance see what kind of attitude to dress your island has. If you can’t find any information, then take a cautious approach and take a little of botMontego Bay Jamaicah!

Don’t assume that one bathing suit is all you need. You can wash and dry it, but the sultry weather on some islands may mean that it isn’t completely dry the next morning when you put it on again. Take at least two so that you can wash and wear in comfort. Also, make sure you pack one of them in your on-flight luggage. It won’t take up much room and if your checked-in luggage doesn’t arrive at your Jamaican destination on the same plane as you, at least you’ll have something to wear and can get on with your holiday instead of waiting for your bags to arrive.

Even in the Caribbean it can get cold at night. Ocean breezes while refreshing can feel more “bracing” once the sun goes down. Take a light sweater or jacket to wear for those outdoor cocktails or midnight walks along the beach.

Even if you’re not going to a destination that requires you to get dressed up, you should take at least one smart outfit. You’re on holiday; you never know what might happen!

Comfortable shoes are a must. Ladies, take your heels if you must but you’ll probably only wear them around the hotel and restaurants. If you’re doing any kind of walking you’ll need sturdy shoes that will support your feet on dusty terrain.

Remember that much of the Caribbean is rainforest area. Even out of hurricane season there’s a possibility for tropical downpours. Pack a raincoat that you can fold up into your beach bag or day hiking backpack so that you’re covered should an unexpected downpour occur.

When it comes to accessories, there are two things you must remember to pack for your Caribbean vacation: a pair of sunglasses (or two) for that brilliant sunshine, and a hat. Whether you go for the floppy feminine type, or a more hip baseball cap, you need to protect your head from the heat of the sun if you’re to avoid sunstroke.

As with all vacations, packing for your Caribbean vacation is best done a couple of days before you travel so that you’ve got time to buy last minute items that you hadn’t realized you needed. If you’re less hurried, you’ll also be able to make a list of the items you’re packing (and take photos of anything valuable) so that if a bag goes missing in transit, or an item is lost/stolen once you arrive, and you need to claim for it on your insurance, you have a record of what you took.

Take the time to pack essential items before your holiday begins and you’ll find that this pays off once you get there because you’ll have the right kind of clothing to cope with any kind of situation you find yourself in.

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