Packing Light: The Key to a Great Trip

By Ingrid on 2/14/23

Just like scuba diving, packing light takes a strategy and plan to succeed. The five-part process below will help you get in everything you need for your trip!


  1. Write a list of all the items you think you’ll need. This should include everything from ChapStick, to the number of shirts, to your regulator. The trick is to start this process well before your trip and be as specific as possible. Try your best to figure out what you are doing each day of your trip so you can narrow it down. It can also be beneficial to do some research and find out if your resort does laundry as this can help you pack less.
  2. Once you’ve figured out what you need, see if you can make any of it lighter. Do you need those heels or would lightweight flip-flops work? Does your hotel provide shampoo, conditioner, and body wash so you don’t have to bring any? Instead of packing cotton shorts and shirts, opt for travel and activity-friendly materials. Most resorts have information on their websites, or you can look at Trip Advisor, to see what they may provide. Once you’ve looked at your clothing and toiletries, make sure to look at your dive gear. Is your BCD a bulky item compared to a travel compact BCD? Do you have older dive lights that take C or D cell batteries rather than rechargeable LED lights?  These two changes alone can save you several pounds and valuable packing space!
  3. Lay out all you want to bring with you before packing it, instead of putting items in a suitcase as you go. Do you truly need everything you are planning on bringing? I typically wind up taking out clothing pieces at this point, realizing that on my last trip, I only used 4 shirts in 7 days (on a dive trip you are in your bathing suit most of the time)!  Wait until you have everything on your list collected and looked over before you put it in a bag, or you will fall victim to overpacking by not realizing you already have what you need.
  4. Weigh your bag with a hand-held digital scale to determine where you are at, then edit more! By weighing your bag before heading to the airport, you can figure out what you may still need to opt out of taking with you, and how you can re-distribute items to meet baggage limitations. It helps to put the heavier (and more expensive items) in your carry-on. Not only can you stay under weight limits, but you will keep your valuables safe at your side and save money in the chance your checked bag gets lost.
  5. Take note of what you use on your trip this time for future packing! This helps you become a packing professional over time. By keeping track of what you actually use, you can learn how to pack lighter and more efficiently by homing in on what works best for you while traveling.

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