Empty beach on Puerto Rico.
PACKING

What to Pack for Five Nights in Puerto Rico

Hello from Puerto Rico! R, C and I are enjoying a nice visit to this tropical island in the Caribbean. It is a nice change of pace from our usual routine and although our time here is short, it is full of fun and different adventures. Since I appreciate reading about what other fellow travelers pack when they go on their adventures, I figured I would share with you my women’s packing list for Puerto Rico. See what I put in my bag for our five-night stay here in the Caribbean. If you have any questions about the items I packed, or have a suggestion for next time, please let us know.

Empty beach women's packing list for Puerto Rico
Puerto Rico is beautiful!

Trip details

We are in Puerto Rico for five nights. Essentially, we have two days of travel and four days of exploration. We are staying in three different locations around the island but since we rented a car, transporting our luggage is not a problem. Still, packing light is the name of the game and we stuck to our usual carry-on sized backpacks.

Activities

Some of our activities we planned ahead of time, like kayaking, exploring Old San Juan and sitting on the beach. But some, like caving, were more tentative. However, all activities had to be accounted for putting together my women’s packing list for Puerto Rico.

Weather

The other major consideration when it came to packing: the weather. It is hurricane season here in Puerto Rico. We did opt to buy travel insurance for this trip but luckily, there were no hurricanes to ruin our plans and cause us to use said travel insurance. (Hurricane Matthew blew through the Caribbean just before our trip began, although its path was quite a ways east of Puerto Rico.) However, the rain is another story. And let us not forget about the usual humidity. Our clothing choices needed reflect both hot and wet (read this post about packing for hot climates).

Screen shot hurricane tracker women's packing list for Puerto Rico
Staying on top of the hurricane situation thanks to the internet.

Number of outfits

Speaking of clothes, the three of us discussed our plan of attack for packing for this trip. We determined that by wearing the same ensemble on our two travel days, we would only need to pack clothes for our four days of exploration. C pointed out that if we wanted to rewear our other outfits, then we would only have to pack two outfits in the backpack. We also discussed the need to bring rain gear and at least one swimsuit, preferably two given the likelihood of multiple days at the beach. At the last minute I changed my mind and only packed one swimsuit. But I did pack enough underwear for the entire trip. Sometimes I just take a few pairs and wash them as I go. Given how short this trip is, it just seemed easier to pack for all six days.

Women’s packing list for Puerto Rico

I used an app called PackPoint to put my list together and help me keep track. We have spoken before about the importance of a packing list when it comes to packing light. It really does not matter if you use a pre-printed list, an app or your own chicken scratch. Just make sure to use a packing list! Here is what went on my women’s packing list for Puerto Rico:

  • Backpack
  • Day pack/purse

Clothing:

  • Shirts/tops (3)
  • Pants (1)
  • Shorts (1)
  • Skirt (1)
  • Light jacket or sweater (1)
  • Swimsuit
  • Underwear (6 pairs)
  • Bra (3)
  • Pajamas
  • Sandals

Hygiene Products:

  • Sunscreen
  • Face moisturizer
  • Lip gloss
  • Pain pills
  • Makeup
  • Toothbrush
  • Toothpaste
  • Floss
  • Hairbrush
  • Deodorant
  • Shampoo
  • Face wash
  • Body wash
  • Razor
  • Insect repellent
  • Menstrual cup
  • Nail clippers
  • Tweezers

Miscellaneous Products:

  • Hat
  • Towel
  • Wallet
  • Identification
  • Cash
  • Credit Cards
  • Sunglasses
  • Head lamp
  • Rain jacket
  • Umbrella
  • Watch
  • Jewelry
  • House key
  • Ear plugs
  • Eye mask
  • Book
  • Cell phone and charger
  • Music player and charger
  • Head phones
  • Water bottle
  • Battery pack
  • Journal and pen
  • Snacks
Screen shot packing app women's packing list for Puerto Rico
A screen shot from my packing list app.

Actual packing

Although this is a shorter trip, I still had to be conscious of what I packed and how I packed it. Remember our post about tips and tricks to packing light? Well I implemented just about every tip on that list including packing versatile pieces of clothing, leaving room for souvenirs and rolling my clothes.

Shoes

I opted to pack only one pair of shoes for this trip: my Chaco sandals. They are perfect for walking, hiking and exploring. Even with the rain, the temperatures here are warm. I knew I would not have to worry about my feet getting cold. (Sometimes they can get a little cold on the plane, so I packed a pair of warm socks. That seemed like a better idea than packing another pair of shoes just in case my toes got cold.) Since the shoes I packed are blue, black and white, I tried to choose pieces of clothing that matched that color scheme. Mostly I try not to clash—which is hit or miss depending on the trip.

Packing cubes, towels and rain gear

I only ended up needing one packing cube since all my clothes fit in just the one. I packed my Turkish towel (which triples as a towel, swimsuit cover up and scarf on the plane) and beach hat, neither of which are much use on this particular trip thanks to all of the rain. However, the raincoat and umbrella I packed are both coming in handy. I normally just pack one or the other. But since the forecast called for rain and a lot of it, it seemed safer to pack both in this case.

Bits and pieces

Some of the items in my list were crucial to pack, like my identification and money! Others were very important, like insect repellent and a rain jacket. And some were just because I prefer to have them on hand, like nail clippers and an eye mask. Regardless of which category the items above fell into, they were all “weighed” to determine their worthiness. When you are packing light, each item must be carefully considered. There is not a lot of room in the old backpack for “what if?” Plus, I wanted to make sure I left room for the souvenirs I knew I would be purchasing.

women's packing list for Puerto Rico
Everything I need for five nights in Puerto Rico.

Once you are out on the road, the time for consideration is over. Hopefully, your planning and your women’s packing list for Puerto Rico is spot on. If you forgot something (which, fingers crossed, has not happened on this trip yet), there are plenty of stores willing and ready to sell you what you need. But if you have done your research, you should be fine.

So far, all is well down here in the Caribbean. We are having a wonderful time and we cannot wait to tell you all about it when we get home!

Three red carry-on backpacks women's packing list for Puerto Rico
Getting everything into a backpack can be challenging, but it’s always worth it!

Conclusion

Packing always requires some consideration and research. Some trips are easier than others to pack for. Overall, my women’s packing list for Puerto Rico was fairly easy to prepare. Really, you just make sure to pack your sunscreen and swimsuit and you will be fine.

women's packing list for Puerto Rico
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