Home | Dominican Republic | Write a Review | Blog | Advertise

Have you changed your way of packing from the 1st time

I got thinking of how we packed the first time we went to Cuba, not really knowing what to expect. Before that trip, we had only been to DR for our honeymoon. When we went to DR, I packed dress shoes, dress jacket and all that. I did that the first trip to Cuba! :o

Now, every trip we say; why did we pack so much? That’s after scaling down from the trip before. I’m getting to the point where I think I could almost live out of my carry-on…almost. Of course that depends on if we have the 5kg or 10kg carry-on limit. But if it’s the 10kg, I really think I could. The only problem is the amount of suntan lotion and the blasted 100ml liquid limit.

So, how about you? How has your packing changed from the first time? Or have you always packed the same?

My packing has evolved over the years. As well as changing somewhat the items I bring, I have also learned the technique of rolling clothes, and discovered “space bags”. I always pack my snorkel gear in a backpack in my suitcase, and work around that. Next trip I am planning to try checking the snorkel gear in its own bag, and downsizing to a smaller bag for my checked luggage. My carry on is generally filled with electronic gear and “must haves”, and a basic allotment of clothes in case the checked goes missing.

I have our packing list on our computer. It has evolved a lot over the years. And not everything on the list goes, but the stress release of “oh did you remember?!?” while driving around is gone. It goes on the list and we relax. Recently added items include clothes pegs, small coin purse to hold cuc’s… and after they started doing thermography at the airport …for you ladies of age in one of our passports has a note,

[font size=“2”][font color=“a8392a”]I am not ill or sick nor have a fever. I am going through menopause and this is
a ‘hotflash’.
No estoy enferma ni tengo fiebre. Estoy pasando por la menopausia y esto es un 'hotflash’.

Yes …there have been a few looks, and one or 2 smile if they read it… Some of the things are “to do’s” also…after one ‘interesting’ trip to DR where there was horrible rains every day starting at 3:00 pm on the list went to remember to request a 2nd floor room.

LOVE our packing list!!![/font][/font]

I too have a computer list, that is amended as needed. My sister-in-law provided it many years ago but it also included a lot of children needs, that we didn’t need so I erased those. Added a few of my own, and have whittled it down considerably. HINT: you might a sectioned list easy to follow: One for carry on only (money, passport, meds, emerg clothing, electronics, etc; Second section for carry on - that is the easiest to whittle down over time. With the weight restrictions do you really a 500ml bottle of shampoo? Or 5 bars of Irish Spring soap. Or 14 pair of underwear, 14 pair of socks, 4 pair dress pants, - you get the picture. If you do forget something, you can either buy it there, or ask a staff member for the little stuff and they always come through for you. I love staff at our favourite resorts for this, so generous and expect so little in return.

I also have a packing list, Canucks, and thanks for the reminder about clothes pins, which I forget every time :slight_smile:

What has changed the most since our first trip is the amount of regalos vs the amount of personal space. On our first trip I brought a small bag containing nail polish, Dollar-store first aid stuff, aspirin and baby Tempra. Since then… much to the chagrin of my hubby, one of two suitcases serves for gifts for our Cuban friends and the hotel workers. Items such as shoes, sneakers, bed linens and spare tires tend to take up wayyy more space! ::slight_smile:

Also, DH’s shoes have been replaced by dress sandals and we wear our evening wear more than once during the week.

My carry-on has also shrunk, from a large one to a mini Air Cda tote for 1 bathing suite+flipflops+cami, a book, some munchies, and space for a travel pillow and my windbreaker that rolls up into a tiny ball.

Yeah my packing has evolved quite a bit over 5 trips to Cuba… I too, have a list on my computer.

I’m a chronic over packer in every regard, so I cant say that its got much lighter, but I have a better sense of what I will wear vs what I wont wear/use.

I always put 1-2 outfits of mine in my husbands suitcase and vice versa, incase one of the suitcases doesn’t show up. Also, a bathing suit and a change of clothes in our carry on bags too. Would hate to want to go to the pool/beach and have nothing to wear because our bags didn’t show up!

My packing has become extremely streamlined. I know spend most of my days in a swimsuit coverup so need far fewer shorts and Tshirts-just a few dressier clothes for dinner and Buffet. Still take down gifts for friends, but the quantity has also been reduced over the years. I’m down to one small carry on with Sunwing and a smaller soft sided sport bag for rolled up clothes and gifts. Happy not to be lugging that extra suitcase.

I have honed a perfect list which I have since shared with other friends. It is so spelled out for me that I have the phone number of the airport limo, the VISA travel number (nothing worse than a credit card being denied because they think it is stolen), the licence plate of my friend who comes over to feed the cat, the whole schmeer. No thinking necessary, just obey.

In terms of packing, I take my own towel with a big CANADIAN beer on it (I like being a stereotype!), bathing suit, undies, and 2 oz personal care stuff in my carryon, my luggage is a couple of extra outfits and then a ton of donations. I wear a bathing suit and cover up in the day, unless I am doing a tour so I pack capris and t-shirt (or I wear them down; otherwise I wear yoga pants on the plane). One or two nice dresses. I am not a fancy person with regard to dressing up.

TL;DR - I pack very little compared to my original first few trips.

I’ve yet to put my list on computer only because my DW can’t use the computer to retrieve it.

As many of you, we pack a few things of each of ours in each others suitcase in case one doesn’t show. In case both suitcases don’t show, we also pack one of every item in our carry-ons; 1 bathing suite, 1 pair of long pants (sundress for DW), 1 dressier shirt, pair of flip flops, bubba, and kit bag. Not that it’s a larger item, but I even go as far as packing a spare pair of sunglasses. My eyes are very sensitive and I would be in agony without sunglasses. :sunglasses:

*forgot to add…I also wear light-wieght long pants down with zip-off legs, so I’m ready for the heat…

[quote=@gefm] Not that it’s a larger item, but I even go as far as packing a spare pair of sunglasses. My eyes are very sensitive and I would be in agony without sunglasses. :sunglasses:

forgot to add…I also wear light-wieght long pants down with zip-off legs, so I’m ready for the heat…[/quote]
I take an extra pair of prescription glasses, because as we all know, sh
t happens! And yes, the zip-off pants are handy, especially if you are arriving in the middle of the day. At night, not so much.

Our first family trip 14 years ago we took one 30" American Tourister suitcase for the 4 of us, in which we also put 2 childrens lifejackets. For the life of me I can’t figure out how we did that. Now that it’s just my husband and I we take 2 30" suitcases and they’re both full. Although last trip there was extra room even with snorkel gear and our own coffee maker. I am getting better at packing but I think I have a long way to go.

We are packing now and reading this thread, thank you all.
We have 300 lbs available but will be less than 200. We use two larger checked bags, one checked duffle bag, two back packs and a carry-on with the camera gear.
If we were going somewhere with a local church, we’d pack a second duffle bag with donations.
For CL, Turtle food is high on the list.

Spunky, please explain more about the turtle food.

How do I delete a duplicate post?

Click on the little gear symbol next to the “thumbs up” icon on the top right. Drop down menu, “delete post”.

There is a turtle hatchery/conservation project on Cayo Largo. It’s a major activity for a tiny island.
Visitors pay 1 CUC to tour the site and feed the turtles a few pellets. The project needs people to bring jars of turtle food for this and to supplement the food they have. At different times of the year you may release baby turtles to the sea. Check that off your Bucket List.
More info here:

Thanks Eeeefarm!

Spunky, what great idea, I will definitely do this if I get to Cayo Largo.

I seem to be packing more and more each time I go. Lots of books to read, binoculars, cameras, field guides, snorkeling equipment, first aid kit, small tool kit, crocs, sandals, running shoes, mug, thermos, laptop.

Cubaamiga, this is from Sol Cayo Largo, month of September, shot just as the sun was about rise. The turtle was just finishing up laying her eggs on the shore. It’s worth getting up early, before sunrise and going down to the beach. Never know what you will see.

[img width=“534” alt="" src=“http://i1286.photobucket.com/albums/a609/sssnakes_alive/Cayo%20Largo%20Cuba%20sept%202012/277_zpsdba368ce.jpg” style=“width:584px;height:418px;max-width:100%;” height=“385”]

That’s amazing sssnakes! Thank you so much for posting the photo. Is September the best time to go to possibly see this?

I’m not sure if it is the best. From what I have read breeding season is from June to September. I saw new turtle tracks and nests every day when I was there. I always got up early and checked out the tracks from the sea before people walked all over them.

There is a nursery near the beach buffet at Sol where they have relocated turtle eggs. When the eggs hatch they release them  in the afternoon:

[img width=“654” alt="" src=“http://i1286.photobucket.com/albums/a609/sssnakes_alive/Cayo%20Largo%20Cuba%20sept%202012/196_zps8303a029.jpg” style=“max-width:100%;” height=“517”]

[img width=“633” alt="" src=“http://i1286.photobucket.com/albums/a609/sssnakes_alive/Cayo%20Largo%20Cuba%20sept%202012/200_zpsbb4a4a34.jpg” style=“width:654px;height:510px;max-width:100%;” height=“494”]

When I was in Costa Rica, there were tracks on the sand in April.