Spring break can run from mid-February to late-April in some cases, so if you still have a getaway (or maybe a “stay”-cation situation) planned, we’ve got a list of essentials that you definitely don’t want to forget to take with you.
So that you’re well equipped and not spending your precious time looking for a convenience store or pharmacy, check out DTY’s must-haves for spring break.
1. Bug (and bed bug) repellant: Bed bugs are a major problem across the country, and neither hotels nor Air B&Bs are exempt. You don’t want to bring these things back into your home. Bed bugs are rampant in every major city, DC not excluded. So even if you’re staying in a 5 Star hotel, don’t forget to check for bed bugs, and remember to bring your spray with you for extra protection.
Just being outdoors, especially when the weather is warm, can leave you susceptible to bites and stings, and if you’re hiking or exploring nature more intimately, this can open up a whole different can of worms—no pun intended.
Tick repellant is essential for helping ward off Lyme disease. Mosquitoes spray can help keep you and your babies from more than just itchy bumps. Mosquitos carry diseases like Zika and Yellow fever. Also, wear light clothes since they are most attracted to darker colors.
There are many ways to make your own homemade spray to keep irritating bugs away. Wellness Mama has a few great recipes for how you can keep your family safe from bugs and chemicals.
2. Aloe Vera: Whether it’s the unfamiliar environment or the change of schedule, everyone is familiar with vacation constipation. It sounds harmless, but it can result in discomfort throughout your trip and actually make you more susceptible to illness. And with DC’s fickle weather, you never know what you’re going to get as far as temps go, so keep some Aloe Vera on hand because it’s great for many things.
Sometimes cuts, scrapes, and sores are inevitable. Applying Aloe can help speed up the healing process.
And Aloe can help relieve sunburn as well. Not to mention, if you drink it, it can be quite hydrating, especially if you’re doing a lot of physical activities.
3. First aid kit: First aid kits are a must-have, especially for road trips or situations where you may not have access to a store when needed. But what essentials should you keep in a travel-kit?
Of course, you want a few Band-aids in various sizes in case you get an unexpected cut or sore, and also Neosporin ointment (antibiotic cream) to guard against infection, and don’t forget hand-sanitizing wipes, scissors, tweezers, gauze, and surgical tape.
You never know if you might have an allergic reaction to a food or bug bite, so pack a few antihistamine pills and creams, such as Benadryl, also pain relief medication, and a Loperamide (Imodium) for stopping diarrhea.
Bonus addition: Add some tea tree oil to your first aid kit. This powerful essential oil is good for just about everything. Add a little bottle of this powerful essential oil to your first aid kit. It has both antiviral and antibacterial properties that you should keep on hand, whether you’re taking a trip or staying home.
Tea tree oil can guard against fungus and fungal infections, especially like jock itch, athlete’s foot, and toenail fungus. You can also use it to treat itchy bug bites, head lice, cold sores, and ear infections, all of which could rare its ugly head unexpectedly during your time away.
- Sunscreen: Early spring can bring very unexpected weather swings, especially here in DC. Make sure to keep sunscreen with SPF of at least 15 on hand. If you burn easily or know that you’re going to a hot, sunny place, plan accordingly and bring a high SPF with you.
With kids, you want to apply it about 30 minutes before letting them out into the sun, and then apply again every two hours thereafter.
5. Medications: This may be a no-brainer, but the last thing you want to forget is your or your family’s prescription medications, especially if you’re headed someplace where access to convenience stores might be limited.
With technology, there are a few things you can do help yourself remember medication, like setting your phone alarm or adding it to your calendar’s “To do” list. And then there are appslike Pill & Med Reminder, which help you with notifications and trackers so that it’s virtually hard to forget to bring them or take them.
And old-school method never fails. Get a pill box and keep it in your carry-on or purse, or you can just tell a loved one to remind you to bring it.
Spring break is supposed to be a time for fun, but like anything, if you fail to plan then you must be planning to fail. Print this list and use it while you’re packing. You’ll thank us later!
Portable charger: Who wants to hang around the outlet at the airport or train station? Now, many suitcases and bags come equipped with portable chargers, but you can buy them for a reasonable price to keep in your purse or fanny pack. You don’t want to be stuck without juice before you get to your destination, so don’t forget your mobile charging station.