If you’ve never visited a tropical destination before, then preparing for your first getaway may seem a bit overwhelming. Lucky for you, we’ve laid out some packing essentials and preparatory steps you should take before going on your next adventure.

Safety first!

Check with your doctor regarding what potential vaccinations you should have before traveling. In specific parts of the world, it’s recommended that you take precautionary measures beforehand. The CDC provides a helpful resource for discovering whether or not your destination falls under this category: http://wwwnc.cdc.gov/travel/destinations/list.

Be prepared to use cash.

Especially when you’re coming to and from the airport, it’s important that you have cash on you to pay cab drivers. In many tropical and exotic destinations, you may be utilizing cabs to get you to and from the places you’d like to visit. Having cash on you will keep things moving quickly.

Proper clothing and footwear.

You’re headed somewhere warm, so there’s no question that you should bring the obvious – bathing suit, shorts, tank tops. But you should also prepare for the rain. In most tropical places, it may rain at least once a day. Bring an umbrella and a parka or rain slicker. Also, bring the correct shoes! Lots of walking might be in store for you, especially if you’re headed somewhere that has a lot of hiking and adventure options. So bring sneakers, not just sandals.

Bring sun protection.

It goes without saying that you should pack sunscreen with a high SPF when traveling to warmer climates – but the sun may be stronger than what you’re used to at home. Bring everything you might need to avoid sunburn or sun poisoning, as this can quickly ruin your vacation. In addition to your sunscreen, be sure to grab:

  • A hat that covers your face and neck
  • Sunglasses
  • Aloe vera
  • Lip balm or chapstick with SPF

And remember to reapply frequently!

Avoid dealing with pesky insects.

A lot of these tropical vacation getaways have high rainfalls – meaning bugs tend to flourish here as well. Bring bug spray with you to enjoy your vacation without the company of pests like mosquitoes.

Ziploc bags - the tropical destination must-have you never knew you needed.

When you’re traveling to an exotic location, there’s no doubt that you’ll be surrounded by sand and water. Unfortunately, the combination of these things can ruin electronics you bring. From cell phones to tablets to electronic books, it’s important that you keep these things safe while enjoying your time away. Throw them into ziploc bags when you’re done using them to keep them safe.

Keep these tips in mind while preparing and packing for your upcoming tropical vacation. You’ll get to enjoy your trip that much more!