I had a few guidelines in mind when it came to packing for Florida that made it different from packing for other trips I’ve taken:
- I was going to DisneyBound.
- I was going to be wearing summer clothes quite a bit earlier than I thought I would.
(The average high in Fort Lauderdale for April is about 82°F/27.7°C.)
- I needed to bring some things for camping.
- Everything needed to fit in a backpack.
This was my first time booking with a budget airline rather than the one I frequently fly with, so fitting everything into a personal item is not something I’m used to. However, since it’s a short trip and warm-weather clothes don’t take up much room, this didn’t turn out to be too much of a problem. (We’ll see what I say as far as fitting souvenirs in on my return trip!)
No real need to things like my laptop so we’re keeping things around primarily for documenting.
- Phone + charger + portable power bank
- Camera + extra battery + extra SD card + battery charger
One of my power banks also doubles as a flashlight, and I will be bringing a small keychain flashlight also.
Pirate cruise outfit
The theme of this cruise was pirates, but as I had inspired my friends to DisneyBound for this outing, it wouldn’t be right if I didn’t draw some inspiration from Disney myself! I was originally going to do Captain Hook to match my friends’ Smee and Rufio, but checking the weather forecast in Fort Lauderdale told me that long black pants, long black boots, and a red blazer weren’t going to fly. So, I decided to finally do a Pirates of the Caribbean outfit, as I have long wanted a little cursed Aztec gold necklace of my own. I decided to channel Elizabeth’s look in the red/burgundy dress Barbossa gives her in the first film, so here is what I pulled together for a more casual, summery take:
The corset is a tricky item but the look isn’t quite complete without it. So I made sure to repurpose it later in the trip, as it takes up a finite amount of space; I can’t compress it in my suitcase because of the boning along the sides, and I couldn’t wear it down because it would set off metal detectors. (Also it’s not the comfiest accessory I own.)
Disney World outfit
I finally pulled together a blue dress Ariel outfit, after years of trying:
- Pale blue T-shirt
- Black corset
- Blue skirt
- Black flats
- Blue hair bow
This feels like a lazy Disneybound, but I like that I’m able to repurpose the corset and finally attempt this look.
So I guess I can’t run around looking like Elizabeth Swann or Ariel all day during my trip, can I? (… or can I?) Also, it’ll probably be good for me to wear shorts at some point rather than be running around in a dress/skirt the whole trip. But I’m going to be rewearing some things because, you know what, it’s a vacation and I have limited space in my bag. If I could, I’d just wear the same thing the whole weekend through, if not for how smelly everything will be by then.
- Swimsuit (bringing 2 bottoms because I don’t know how I feel about my newer one yet)
- Denim shorts
- Faux knee-high stockings (in case I am not comfortable baring my legs and it’s not too hot that I’m forced to)
- Mickey Mouse T-shirt (as a cover-up/PJs/if I need another shirt)
- Fleece-lined leggings (in case it gets cold when camping)
- Wide-brimmed straw hat?
Keeping my toiletries TSA compliant comes pretty naturally to me, at this point. I am not terribly high maintenance (…right?) and having a lot of samples of items makes packing for trips a super breeze. Always keep your samples, folks! And any gifts with purchase! Those are so great when it comes to travel:
- Toothbrush + toothpaste
- Cleanser + moisturizer + konjac sponge (for face washing)
- Facial sunscreen +
- Shampoo + conditioner + sea salt spray (travel sizes courtesy of Influenster)
- Shampoo + body wash
Items that I will need to buy when I land — due to them not being TSA-friendly — are:
- Big bottle of sunscreen for body (minimum SPF 50, I don’t play games with my sun protection)
- Insect repellent (I am a renowned mozzie magnet)
This includes gear for camping (our friend, Tim, has graciously taken the burden of bringing almost all the camping stuff like tents and sleeping bags down himself), miscellaneous accessories, and other travel necessities I like to have:
- Beach towels
- First aid items (painkillers, bandaids)
- Lady trouble items
- Hand sanitizer
And of course, I’ll have things like my wallet, my keys, cash, lip balm, for carrying about on a regular basis in a clutch and a larger bag, probably a small backpack as I couldn’t find a good crossbody.
Onto the plane, I’ll be wearing the pirate cruise dress, safety shorts, scarf, leggings, and a hoodie so that I can stay warm on the plane and at night when camping if I need to.
Everything fits, and I have room for souvenirs! Let’s hope I can say the same coming back.