Your Spring Break Packing List, Solved

Even when you make a complete packing list, it's inevitable that there will be last-minute add-ons that will keep your suitcase from actually zipping shut. And even though vacation clothing tends to be small (shorts and bathing suits take up a lot less space than sweaters and pants), the need for options ends up undoing any mental editing and outfit-planning that happened while daydreaming in that last pre-vacation board meeting.

So, whether you're planning ahead for an upcoming trip or scrambling to get things together before you jet off tomorrow, we've broken down the spring traveling must-haves you simply cannot leave home without. The (major) key to packing smart and packing light is focusing on versatility; it's what makes packing a breeze. Click through to see exactly what we mean.
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A sleek, one-piece swimsuit works in the water and beyond. Wear it solo on the beach, and let it double as a bodysuit come evening when paired with skirts, shorts, and flowy pants.

Aerie Mesh One-piece Swimsuit, $44.95, available at American Eagle.
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Whether you're using it as a cover-up, dressing it up with a skirt, or wearing it on a daytime excursion, you'll be glad you packed a soft white shirt that goes with any look and occasion.

WILT
Sweat T, $107, available at WILT.
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A "dad hat" is a double-whammy: It protects your face from the sun and solves any bad-beach-hair woes.

New York Yankees Adult Clean Up Adjustable Hat, $20, available at Modell's Sporting Goods.
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Sunscreen: check. Magazines: check. Towel and clean clothes: check. A bag that holds all your needs is a must, so might as well go for a version that's bold and colorful.

Antonello Liscia Tote, $365, available at Shopbdop.
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A moody-patterned, ruffled bikini is a no-brainer for a beach day, but we love a swim top that can also be styled under a jumpsuit or atop high-waisted trousers for a post-sunset ensemble.

Primark Monochrome Floral Bikini Top, $10, available at Primark; Primark Monochrome Floral Bikini Briefs, $6, available at Primark.
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With walking tours, outdoor activities, and shopping-filled afternoons on your agenda, your feet will definitely thank you for opting for a comfortable pair of kicks over flip-flops.

adidas by Stella McCartney
Atani Bounce, $160, available at KITH.
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A sporty pair of color-blocked shorts makes for an unconventional cover-up.

ME x Reebok Mesh Short, $70, available at Melody Eshani.
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It's tempting to want to bring a handful of different sunglasses with you, but you're better off banking on one that's sure to go with everything.

RFLKT Eyewear Shadow Striped Mint Sunglasses, $70, available at Eye Buy Direct.
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A loose, breathable pair of jeans works for plane travel just as well as it does for a night on the town.

Rachel Comey Blue Carrot Leg Elkin Jean, $380, available at Avenue32.
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Since it's still early spring, chilly nights may be in store. An on-trend hoodie is ideal for hanging out.

VFILES Basics Hoodie, $60, available at VFILES.
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For those envy-inducing beach shots, you'll need a towel that's as Instagram-worthy as the scenery itself.

Drye Hunee Bath Towel, $68, available at Drye.
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A throw-on-and-go muscle tank can double as your headrest on the beach.

Callahan Stripe Muscle Tee, $88, available at Need Supply.
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A low, thick-heeled sandal is the key to dressing up while still feeling casual.

Frances Valentine Lauren Patent Leather Sandals, $395, available at Frances Valentine.
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A beachy dress you can also wear out on the town? Two-in-one situations are the key to making packing a breeze.

Reformation Feliz Dress, $98, available at Reformation.
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Ditch your flip-flops completely (if you dare!) in exchange for a more put-together option, like slip-ons with a fringed detail.

Loeffler Randall Kiki Flat Slide, $350, available at Loeffler Randall.
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A flattering wrap skirt doubles as a sarong — throw it in your beach bag to wear for those middle-of-the-day errands.

Mango Midi Wrap Skirt, $59.99, available at Mango.
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You probably don't want to lug your massive beach bag when it's not necessary. That's where a crossbody comes in: It's hands-free, but still a good enough size to fit all the essentials.

Minor History Full Moon, $155, available at Minor History.
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A scarf doubles as a cute and functional accessory that can be worn in so many ways: Wrap it around your neck to finish off your shorts-and-a tank outfit, wear it as a headband, or tie it on the strap of your bag for an additional pop of color.

Alana Hadid x Lou & Grey Sissy Bandana, $32, available at Lou & Grey.
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We love our over-ear headphones, but for travel, rad metallic earbuds just make so much more sense (it's all about precious carry-on real estate).

Happy Plugs Rose Gold In-ear Headphones, $48, available at Selfridges.
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Keep your phone safe and sound in your bag with a water-resistant watch that matches the sea-and-sand color palette.

The Horse The Classic, $189, available at The Horse.
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Leave your expensive jewelry at home and just pack a cool choker that you can keep on from day to night without worrying that it'll get lost or ruined.

The Break Vintage Ellis Choker, $15, available at The Break Vintage.
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