As your Turks & Caicos vacation draws nearer, deciding what to take with you might lead to some apprehension - especially if you’ve never been to a Caribbean island before and have no idea what to pack! Your Turks & Caicos vacation is likely to involve lots of pool time, trips to the incredible beaches of this region, tours, and maybe even some fine dining if you’ll be staying at an all-inclusive resort! With so much to experience during your stay, you’ll need to think carefully about what to bring along.
The key to packing for any vacation in the Caribbean is to stick to the theme of ‘light, casual and fun’ - perhaps with a bit of elegance thrown in for special occasions if there are any. There are lots of other things to think about as well, and we’ve detailed them all in this Turks & Caicos ultimate packing list. If you’ll be traveling to The Turks & Caicos for vacation with family, as a couple or with friends, here’s where it all begins:
There are some things you’ll need to keep in mind when packing for your Turks & Caicos vacation. Here are some of the most important:
Your choice of accommodations is an important factor to consider because it can affect how many items you need to bring. Staying at an all-inclusive resort, for example, may allow you to pack a lot lighter as these types of resorts usually include some of the items you’d otherwise travel with. Take a look at what will be provided with your room, so you’ll know what you need, and what you don’t.
What you’ll pack will vary depending on who you’ll be traveling with to the Turks & Caicos Islands. If you’ll be making a solo trip, you only need to think about yourself, but if you’ll be traveling as a couple, in a group, or with family, it helps to think about how you can pack what you need while saving space.
When traveling with children, your packing list will be more extensive because you’ll need to think about the things they’ll need too. Even in instances where the kids have their own luggage to carry their clothing, shoes, and essentials, you might find yourself throwing a few ‘just in case’ items into your own suitcase (and hopefully not at the last minute)!
The time of year you’ll be traveling is also an important consideration for a trip to Turks & Caicos. Though this is one of those destinations where the weather tends to be fabulous year-round, the time of year you’ll be traveling will still determine whether or not you need to pack certain items. For example, you may need to pack a light jacket during the rainy season and ‘winter’ or you may need warm weather essentials like extra sunscreen for the hotter months. Overall, the best time to visit Turks & Caicos is during the high season, which is between the months of Mid-December to Mid-April.
Knowing what you plan to do once you get to the Turks & Caicos Islands can help make your packing easier. What is your tour schedule like? How many excursions do you plan on going on? Will you be spending most of your time at the resort, or exploring areas around town? It can also help to have an idea of whether or not you’ll be attending any formal events or dinners.
If you envision lots of glorious, sunny days on the beach, or perhaps staying at an exciting Caribbean resort with a waterpark, you might need to bring some extra shorts and swimsuits along. Comfortable sneakers come in handy as well if you plan on doing lots of tours, hikes, or going on long walks once you get to the islands.
Now that we’ve covered the basic considerations that will be informing your decisions, here are some of the non-negotiable items you’ll want to keep in your carry-on for a trip to the Turks & Caicos Islands.
Do you need a passport to go to Turks & Caicos? If you’re headed there by plane, the answer is yes! As a U.S. citizen, you will need a passport with at least 6 months of validity left for your Turks & Caicos vacation. Make sure there are at least two blank pages in everyone’s passports as well. This is a priority item to place in your carry-on.
● Travel tickets
Flight tickets are another item you’ll want to keep in your carry-on when traveling. You’ll need to show your ticket when boarding, so keeping it in your carry-on helps to ensure that it remains close at hand. If you’ll be traveling with kids, you can keep their tickets in your carry-on as well, so nothing gets misplaced.
Good to know: In addition to tickets, make sure to keep the address of your accommodation somewhere that you can easily reference. You will need to provide this information to the Immigration Officer at the airport.
● Travel Insurance Documents
Travel insurance is important when traveling overseas. Most insurance policies for travel may cover things like flight cancellations, lost or stolen luggage, and unexpected medical expenses. It is usually better to be prepared because you never know when you will need it most, so keep your travel insurance details in your carry-on as well.
● Health/Life Insurance Cards
For the sake of convenience and in case an emergency situation comes up, it is a good idea to travel with your health and life insurance cards. Keep these in a safe place in your carry-on.
● Change of clothes
Sometimes the unexpected can happen while you’re traveling, and having your luggage delayed is not uncommon! It’s always a good idea to pack a change of clothes in your carry-on, so you can start your vacation right away, even if your bags haven’t arrived yet. Ensure that everyone in your travel group has an extra set of clothes, especially if you’ll be traveling with children. You should also throw a swimsuit in your carry-on, just in case!
● Blue or black ink pen
To avoid having to ask anyone to borrow a pen while on the plane or at the airport, pack your own into your carry-on. This will come in handy when you have to fill out Turks & Caicos arrival forms. Black or blue ink pens are recommended.
● 3-4 swimsuits or bikinis.
● 2-3 pairs of casual shorts or skirts.
● 5-6 t-shirts, polo shirts, or casual tops.
● Underwear (enough to last the duration of your trip).
● 2 beach tops or cover-ups.
● 2 summer dresses (if you have beach or day dresses that you can dress up, you can pack a few more and have them double as restaurant evening wear!).
● 2 pairs of PJs.
● 1-2 pairs of flip flops or beach sandals.
● 1 pair of long pants and a button-down shirt (for men) or a formal dress (for women). The finer restaurants at resorts in Turks & Caicos usually have dress codes, so make sure you have some suitable options if you plan to dine at any of them.
● 1 pair of closed-toe shoes or dressy sandals.
● 1 belt that matches everything.
● 1 pair of sneakers (if you’re planning on hiking, working out, or walking long distances).
● A cardigan or light jacket for the evenings - this will come in handy once the sun has gone down. Things may get a little breezy/chilly.
● Toiletries such as a comb, makeup, deodorant, lotion, toothbrush, and toothpaste.
Good to know: Some all-inclusive resorts such as Beaches Resorts will also include an amenity kit in your room for your convenience. These can include toiletries like shampoo, conditioner, bar soap, shower gel, and body lotion, so you may want to check with your resort before you pack!
● 3-4 swimwear sets - or more if they’re likely to want to spend a lot of time in the water.
● 3-4 pairs of casual shorts or skirts.
● 6+ t-shirts or casual tops - if your child is likely to get these wet or spill anything, pack a few more, just in case.
● Underwear (enough to last the duration of your trip).
● 2 pairs of PJs.
● 1-2 pairs of flip flops or sandals.
● 1 pair of sneakers (for running around, playing or walking longer distances).
● 1 pair of nice pants and a shirt, or a summer dress for your children to wear if you’re planning on taking them to a more formal restaurant.
● Water shoes.
● Rash vest for the beach.
● Sun hat and sunglasses.
● A sweater or light jacket (for older children who are likely to still be up and wandering around in the evenings).
● Toys or games that kids can enjoy on the plane, at the beach, or at the resort.
If you’ll be traveling with a baby or toddler to The Turks & Caicos Islands, you’re probably already thinking about how many diapers and swim diapers you’ll have to bring along. This is something that varies between children. The best way to decide how many diapers you can reasonably bring is to figure out how many your child uses daily, or weekly, and then add a few extras to be safe. You’ll likely be able to purchase more diapers when you get there, so an alternative plan would be to pack just enough to last until you can get to a store. For swim diapers, bring one for every beach or pool day on your schedule.
When traveling with young kids, you might need to pay a little extra attention to the type of sunscreen you purchase. Make sure the SPF is high enough (SPF 30 or higher is recommended!), and that the sunscreen you buy is suitable for the age group that you will be purchasing it for. Keep in mind that, depending on the brand and type of sunscreen you buy, reapplications may be necessary, especially if you’re spending time in the water. Waterproof sunscreen is always a win!
Whenever you’re traveling with children, it’s always a good idea to bring more clothing than you think they’ll need. With younger children, you can easily pack these little extras yourself, not forgetting items like sleepsuits. Extra clothing will come in handy if your kids are messier than usual, spend more time at the pool or in any wet zone than you anticipated, or in case anything unexpected happens.
Getting sunburnt while on vacation isn’t anyone’s idea of a good time. That’s why it is essential to pack sunscreen for a trip to the Turks & Caicos Islands. As Turks & Caicos has consistently sunny temperatures, wearing sunscreen will help prevent sunburn for you and anyone else you might be traveling with. Waterproof sunscreen can come in handy if you’ll be spending a lot of time at the pool or beach. Reapply as often as you need to!
You definitely won’t want to leave for a vacation in the Caribbean without your electronic gadgets! This includes items like mobile phones, tablets, and e-readers, which most people consider to be travel essentials. Parents traveling with children may have these items even higher on their priority lists. Electronic gadgets can help to keep kids entertained on the flight and e-readers provide a relaxing activity that works well with lounging by the pool or sunbathing on the beach.
Good to know: Turks & Caicos uses the same kinds of electrical outlets as the U.S., so you won’t need to worry about bringing plug adaptors for your chargers along.
There’s a lot to do, for both kids and parents, in the Turks & Caicos Islands, but it’s still a good idea to bring along some games, books, and toys if children will be traveling with you. You’ll definitely need a couple of these in your carry-on for toddlers and kids to use during the flight and at the airport. You can also consider bringing along some of the favorite items that will help your children to wind down at bedtime or keep themselves entertained when you have downtime. Toys to play with on the beach may be useful too. If you’re traveling as a couple or single, some really great books will be fun to have, just in case you feel like relaxing with a good read.
A big beach bag is a must-have for a beach vacation whether you’ll be traveling with kids, your loved one, or a group of friends. You’ll be able to pack everything you need for your beach day into your bag, including sunscreen, towels, sunglasses, water, beach blankets, and toys (if kids are in the mix).
It’s important to keep hydrated while soaking in the Turks & Caicos sunshine. Make sure you have plenty of drinking water available whether you’re poolside, on the beach, or out exploring. Reusable bottles or sippy cups help you to avoid having to find a store to get water when you’d rather be having fun or relaxing. With smaller children, it’ll be easier for them to drink out of sippy cups, so you won’t want to leave these behind.
Love snorkeling and want to explore some beautiful dive sites in the Caribbean? The Turks & Caicos Islands are just the place for you! If you want to bring your own snorkeling gear along, you can. However, you can pack lighter and leave your snorkeling equipment at home if you’ll be staying at some of the all-inclusive family resorts in Turks & Caicos because snorkeling gear is likely to be included for guests.
An underwater camera is an essential tool for your trip to the Turks & Caicos Islands! This type of camera comes in handy if you plan on having snorkeling or scuba diving adventures or if you just want to take some really cool underwater photos that you can show off once you return home.
Good to know: Diving is one of the amazing things Turks & Caicos is known for, so you won’t want to miss out on capturing great underwater mementos in these exotic islands!
Waterproof bags or pouches are great items to pack if you’re headed on a beach vacation. You’ll likely be spending lots of time in or near the water, and these items can help keep your phones, electronics, and other valuables safe and dry. You can also use them to store small amounts of cash if needed. Waterproof pouches are especially awesome for when you go out on excursions.
Luggage tags are useful for travelers of all varieties. They make it a whole lot easier to find your suitcases in the sea of luggage at the baggage claim. Packing cubes, on the other hand, are essential when traveling with family or a bigger group. Packing cubes are essentially pouches that help compress your clothing when you place it into the cube, allowing you to pack more and make the most of your luggage space. You can also use them to help sort out items like clothing or toiletries if there’s a mix of personal belongings in different suitcases.
The Turks & Caicos Islands promise fun times for everyone. They are known for baby-friendly vacations, but also for being a romantic retreat with excellent resorts for couples. Solo travelers and groups can also have a great time in Turks & Caicos indulging in the abundance of things to do, beach hopping, and even the unique and inspiring Turks & Caicos food.
If you’re looking to pack as little as possible, your best bets are all-inclusive vacations. You can stay at one of the all-inclusive resorts in Turks & Caicos where some of the items you’ll need (such as toiletries, scuba, and dive equipment) will be provided at no additional cost! Not only will you be able to pack lighter when staying at a resort in Turks and Caicos, but you can also have the additional benefits of unlimited food, drinks, and anytime snack, up to 21 gourmet on-property restaurants, a waterpark, and an amazing beach!
We hope that this packing list makes it so much easier for you to decide what to pack for your trip to the Turks & Caicos Islands. Turks & Caicos is absolutely worth it!