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What to Pack for an All Inclusive Resort Vacation at Christmas

Merry Christmas – it’s time to pack for your Caribbean all inclusive resort vacation! Whether you’re going to Cuba or Costa Rica, Jamaica or St Bart’s — there are a few essentials to pack for your all inclusive holiday.

These packing tips range from reusable ice cubes to yoga mats, and are perfect for trips to the Caribbean at Christmas.

Here’s a tip from a reader:

“Pack your own re-useable ice,” says Jeremy, who created a Stainless Steel Coffee Mugs site. “Some ice cubes are little plastic bags or stones. Use this with your travel mugs and you’ve got your own ice and cup! Most bars won’t mind putting the mixed drink in your cup for you — and you’re not drinking the water.”

This is a fantastic idea — it keeps your drink tasty! The Teraforma Whisky Stones keep your drinks icy cold without watering them down. This is an urgent matter for us beach-cocktail-sippers.

And, here are several more packing tips for a Caribbean all inclusive resort vacation at Christmas…

What to Pack for an All Inclusive Resort Vacation at Christmas

If Christmas hasn’t come and gone yet, you should put these items on your Christmas wish list! Your friends and family members may not know what to get you for Christmas; you can make it easy for them.

These are the things I wish I would’ve packed when my husband and I went to an all inclusive resort in Costa Rica. It wasn’t Christmas – it was in February. Christmas, we spend in Alberta (brrr).

Are you dreaming about a resort vacation this Christmas? Here are 12 ways to save money for the best Christmas gift for yourself: a holiday in the tropics!

iPad, Kindle, or other electronic reader

I’m a huge fan of print books — I can’t stand the thought of reading on an e-reader. But, I also can’t stand the thought of being weighed down by tons ‘o beach books, so…I choose the lesser of two evils. Packing an iPad, Kindle, or some type of e-reader may be one of the smartest packing tips you’ll get.

Digital readers aren’t too expensive, and they’re one of the best things to pack for a Caribbean all inclusive resort vacation at Christmas! Check out the Kindle 3G Wireless Reading Device and the Apple iPad Tablet on Amazon. Wifi access is good to have (but not necessary, according to my husband).

A “Sweetheart’s Bag” for couples

Every time my husband and I go on vacation – whether we go to an all inclusive resort vacation at Christmas or a weekend in Whistler, BC – he packs our “love bag.” It contains massage oil, candles, matches, lingerie, and a few other things that juice us up for nights ‘o tropical lovin’.

P.S. If you want to get romantic on your Caribbean Christmas vacation, make sure you don’t get sunburned, because there’s nothing worse than lobster skin when you want to be sexy!

Hand sanitizer

Easy to forget, crucial to have! Always wash your hands or use a hand sanitizer after playing in the sand – because children and adults who build castles and dig in the sand at the beach are at greater risk of developing gastrointestinal diseases and diarrhea than people who only walk on the shore or swim in the surf, according to research from the University of North Carolina and the Environmental Protection Agency.

Grab a couple travel bottles of hand sanitizer — the Bath & Body Works White Citrus Cleansing Hand Gel smells gorgeous — and put them in all your beach bags.  This is essential, even for the poshest Caribbean all inclusive resort.

Travel mug – stainless steel

When we went to an all inclusive resort in Costa Rica, my husband suggested we pack travel mugs. I shrugged him off — and regretted it the whole trip! Insulated travel mugs keep your mai tais and diet Cokes icy cold, and your morning coffee hot and fresh. You can take them to the beach or pool, and enjoy larger serving sizes.

This packing tip seems counter-intuitive (since “everything” is included on an all-inclusive holiday), but it’s a great idea. Also, as far as toxins go, stainless steel travel mugs are better than plastic.  This is another good thing to put on your “Christmas wish list for my Caribbean all inclusive resort vacation”!

Old clothes, to leave behind

I always bring old clothes on my vacations, whether I go to an all inclusive resort vacation at Christmas or a camping trip in the Rocky Mountains in the summer. After I wear those old clothes, I leave them in the hotel room for the cleaning staff to use however they like…and I have space in my suitcase for new clothes and souvenirs! This packing tip may not work if you care how you look on your holidays…but I’d prefer to look a little “shabbier” and have more room in my luggage to bring great stuff home.

Knowing what to pack on holidays involves knowing what you want to bring home. Souvenirs!

Pilates or Yoga mat

The Allegro Papagayo Resort in Costa Rica offered stretch classes, which I loved. But no matter where I am — an all-inclusive resort or my own gym at home — I’m not a big fan of exercise mats that other people have sweated on. If you think you’ll be exercising on vacation (don’t knock it!), pack your Pilates or Yoga mat. Or, use your hand sanitizer to wipe down the mat at the resort (still grosses me out, though).

Nail polish and manicure set — his and hers

Our all-inclusive resort had a spa, but the manicure, pedicure, and massage prices were too rich for my blood. Whenever I go on holidays — all inclusive resorts or not — I always bring my own spa supplies. I love painting my nails by the pool, especially since I never have time to do it before I go on vacation (there are so many other things to take care of!).

If you want to pack light, read tips for packing a carry on bag for air travel.

What have I missed – what would you pack for an all inclusive resort vacation at Christmas? Comments welcome below…

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