Hawaii packing list: What to pack for your perfect vacation in Hawaii?

About to head for Hawaii for a short vacation or a last-minute weekend getaway but don’t know what to bring? Check out this handy Hawaii packing list that we have planned for you to get the best experience during your trip.

Packing up can be pretty much of a daunting experience, especially when you have to relocate at the last minute and are unsure of what to bring with you. You may eventually find yourself forgetting to pack an essential item or leaving one behind unintentionally, only to realise it later.

To assist you with this problem, our staff has created a simple yet adequate Hawaii packing list for you to leave the house confidently and feel like a travel pro on your next vacation. You'll always have everything you need if you know what to pack in your luggage!

20 thing to pack for Hawaii vacation

Waterproof Bag

When you’re planning for a day at the beach in Hawaii, there are plenty of things that you might want to consider, but choosing the appropriate backpack should always come first. Regarding the semi-tropical weather in Hawaii, you may want to ensure that the material of your bag will adequately protect your valuables from sand and water. 

And to spare you time from searching for the ideal beach bag, we have selected our top pick, which would be wonderful to use on your upcoming vacation to Hawaii. Here at CabinZero, it is our priority to advocate for our clients with our versatile, minimalist and lightweight travel backpacks, so let's get started and finally solve the packing dilemma. Introducing the ADV Dry Waterproof Backpack 30L.

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If style is just as important to you as practicality then this ADV Dry backpack is perfect. Designed to keep all your belongings dry in the wettest conditions, the CabinZero ADV Dry backpack is made from a fabric shell with very high water-resistance coating exceeding 19,000mm so they are both durable and extremely light weight. 

Available in 30L size, this brilliant beach backpack also features a removable zip pouch with an RFID blocking pocket and lightweight shoulder straps with air flow system for comfort and convenience. Check out the latest prices and more details.


The first things you should have in your backpack include your ID, driver’s licence, a boarding pass and a valid passport. Without these necessities, you won’t be heading anywhere but home, so it’s crucial to organise important documents beforehand.

Cash and Cards

Providing the best rate on the foreign currency, debit cards and credit cards are both great options to get money for overseas travel, not to mention they are highly convenient and both universally acceptable transaction modes. 

If you'd rather not worry about finding an ATM as soon as you arrive in a foreign country, you may want to withdraw some cash at your local bank before you leave and use your cards as a backup. It is also important for travellers to have at least $100 in emergency cash at all times. Don’t spend this cash on anything unless it is a real emergency.

Travel adapter and multi charger

Universal adapter is a great choice for travelling as it allows you to charge from nearly any country in the world. It’s best to keep this at hand to prevent any inconvenience during your travel.


It’s easy to forget about your charger when you’re preparing your luggage, which is definitely a terrible mistake — especially when you see their price in airports and at some local stores when you want to buy an extra one. Therefore, it’s best to keep this item on the permanent packing list and never leave home without it. And make sure to regularly recharge your emergency battery so it's always available.


Headphones or earbuds, especially the noise-cancelling ones, are both excellent for not only remote working but also for sleeping and relaxing on planes. 

Travel aids and other medication essentials

A small bag with the most necessary pills and medicine is indispensable for every traveller. You wouldn’t want to find yourself suffering a migraine trigger, high-climate fever, upset stomach or all three of them running hand in hand during your journey. 

Toiletries bag

Be sure to prepare a toiletries bag and toss your essential hygiene products into your travel bag and make sure they are sufficient for any circumstance. Here’s the list:

  • Shampoo
  • Conditioner
  • Shower Gel and/or Soap
  • Deodorant
  • Toothpaste
  • Toothbrush
  • Dental floss
  • Cleanser
  • Moisturiser
  • Lip Balm
  • Razor
  • Nail Clippers & File
  • Tweezers
Hawaii checklist

Don’t forget your toiletries. Image from Unsplash

Travel towel

We suggest bringing your own towel in order to avoid the uncertainty and cost that may occur during the trip, but remember to avoid the heavy, fluffy ones that may eat up space in your bag. 

Eye care

Eye care essentials when travelling is of importance to avoid eye related problems while you’re on the road. Bring along eye drops, packets of lid cleansing wipes as well as a pair of sunglasses. 

Hand sanitizer

This one is a must-have item in your pack. It is easy to find a hand sanitizer under 100ml to bring on the plane or one that can be easily attached to your rucksack strap.

Comfortable clothes

Use our clothes packing checklist to travel like a pro next time and leave no stone unturned:

  • Underwear
  •  Socks
  •  Sleepwear
  •  Shirts, polos
  •  Jeans, trousers, shorts
  •  Dresses, skirts
  •  Jackets, coats


As mentioned in our clothes list on how to pack appropriately for your vacation, the same goes for our accessories list:

  • Hats
  • Sunglasses
  • Belts
  • Scarves
  • Purses


These set of shoes are ideal to cover you for most activities and scenarios:

  • Flip Flops
  • Sandals
  • Slippers
  • Heels
  • Trainers


It is definitely a must when it comes to tissues. Always travel with a tissue pack to prevent panicked search or any situation you may come across during your trip.


A good and portable flashlight should always be included on your list of essentials for each trip you take.

Books, e-books, magazines

If you’re in for a long trip experience delay at the airports, it’s best to entertain yourself by brushing up on some of the latest best selling hits or classical novels as reading will make the time go faster. As the saying goes, “a book a day keeps the boredom away” – so bring them on board!

Pens and paper

YES. Another seem-to-be pesky space-filler, yet you may find yourself looking for it later on. Who knows when you will come up with a new idea? Or, when you might need to jot down some important information quickly? Keeping these accessible at hand for more convenient travelling.

Snacks, drinks 

Whatever your reasons for travelling, consider bringing high-protein and nutrient-rich food as road trip snacks and avoid relying on foods with lots of added sugar when you’re on the go.


Regarding the weather in Hawaii, it’s best to bring a travel umbrella on your next vacation to avoid being soaked in a freak rainstorm or extremely scorched by the intense sunshine. A small, lightweight, and of good quality travel umbrella would pretty much be a better buddy than your rain jacket!

What NOT to Pack for Hawaii

A heavy, space-occupied towel

Comfy as it might seem, a heavy towel would pretty much be a burden in your bag, especially when it becomes sopping wet.

Hardcover books

Imagine bringing the latest hardcover book only to find them taking up valuable space and weight of other necessary things you want to include in your luggage? Why the burden? Just download the e-book version of it or opt for a lightweight paperback.

Unnecessary technology

Technology is no doubt an indispensable part of our life and it has made travel a lot easier. However, it is better to leave all your favourite yet unnecessary technological devices behind to avoid losing and also to enjoy your journey to the fullest

Your own hair dryer

It's only natural that you'd want to pack your hair dryer while on vacation, but we believe it would be best to leave it behind. Most hotels now have one in every room, and even though its version might not be the one you’re most comfortable with, it should save quite a lot of space in your bag.

A whole wardrobe

Be selective about which clothing to take and pack fewer yet extremely functional items according to the weather conditions. This does not only ensure an ideal and comfortable travel experience but also saves you a lot of space in your suitcase, especially when you plan to wear them more than once. Ask yourself: Do you really need all these clothes?

Your entire medicine cabinet

Obviously, all of your essential prescriptions will be making the trip. But apart from those, stashing a small bag of just-in-case items such as ibuprofen or aspirin in your handbag is not really a wise choice. Leave them behind this time, especially if they’re the type of medicine you can buy at a drugstore or pharmacy at your destination. No need to overdo it.

>> May be you also like: What to Bring to the Beach

Essential Hawaii Travel Documents

It’s crucial to organise important documents prior to a trip to avoid bad results such as not being able to attend your trip. Without these necessities, you won’t be heading anywhere but home:

  • Passport
  • Visa
  • Driving licence
  • Health insurance
  • Tickets for transportation
  • Other documents required by the airport

>> If you are planning to go to Hawaii for honeymoon you should switch to our packing list for Honeymoon trip.

Step by step for Hawaii Travel Packing

For those times when we don’t really know what to bring on our journey, here are seven simple steps that may help you curb packing problems and make wiser choices with your preparation.

Plan ahead

It may seem obvious and boring, yet it’s never a redundancy to learn about the place you would like to see or things you would like to buy in advance. When you fully make sure about the road plan and meeting information, you will find the gateway to a stress-free holiday. This kind of planning will save you plenty of time.

Prepare a grab-and-go toiletry bag

While in a rush and trying to get everything done as soon as possible, people tend to forget some of the essential items such as toothbrush, razor, deodorant or cotton pads, even those that should be obvious. To deal with that, we suggest you get a small bag designed for toiletries and fill it with all the essential things only as much as you’ll need for your trip and nothing more. It won't solve all your problems, but it crosses one major packing headache off the list.

Categorise your essentials

No matter where you go, there will always be so many things to remember. That’s why organising your essentials should be a must whenever you’re about to hit the road. This will lessen the hustle of thinking long and hard about what you need to bring with you and having to rearrange your entire bag every time

Check the weather forecast while packing clothes

Depending on where you’re going, checking weather forecasts in advance can really do you good by giving you the best idea of what weather to expect on your holiday. Look for the day before you fly and pack accordingly so your trip would be as smooth and cosy as possible.

Save bag space for all your holiday purchases

Keep everything at a minimum or use travel-size products to save extra luggage room for your trip back home.

Double check

Last but not least, double-check your hawaii packing list to make sure you have everything you need. Your travel checklist only does its job well when you check it carefully before you leave!

FAQs - Frequently Asked Questions

Got a question? We’re here to answer!

Here are the two top questions that we get asked the most from our beloved followers. If you don’t see your question here, drop us a line on our Contact Page.

What to wear in Hawaii?

Whether you’re going to visit the sunny shores or the sunny beach, you’re bound to come across the ultimate question: Which outfits should you bring?! — Don’t worry. We’re here to help you answer this question with style. 

Here’re a few tips you may want to take note right away to boost your beach wear wardrobe:

Be minimalistic 

A bikini swimsuit with a cover up set is the way to go as monochromatic looks are still on-trend and aren't going anywhere. 

Choose suitable clothes 

No matter where you go, there is always a level of awareness that you should exercise when going out because society looks at appearance.  While you’re packing, keep in mind where and how long you are going, as well as which activities and tours are scheduled. 

Comfort is a must 

It may sound obvious, but comfortable clothing helps you stay comfortable. This can be particularly helpful when you're about to move around a lot.

Multi-purpose clothes 

With limited clothing options, it’s important to maximise your travel wardrobe with items that have multiple uses. 

Mix and Match

There are so many different options for beach attire. Whether you prefer all-black to colour, a matchy-matchy look for the beach will turn heads for sure.

By following these helpful tips, we guarantee you’ll be the best dressed at the shore.

What should I avoid in Hawaii?

  • Do NOT take lava rocks home. It’s illegal. Google “Pele's Curse” if you need an incentive to stay on the straight and narrow.
  • Do NOT step on or move rocks as these are ancient, sacred sites to Native Hawaiians. It's considered as horribly rude and disrespectful to your hosts.
  • Do NOT make snide remarks about anything relating to Hawaiian culture. It’s okay to not know anything about local traditions - Hawai’i is very culturally diverse but by all means do not be dismissive of the traditions. If asked to do something such as taking off your shoes before entering someone’s house, just do so. Most likely you will find the people of Hawai’i to be among the most gracious and giving on the planet, so long as they are being respected.
  • Do NOT go out without a high SPF sunblock. Given its proximity to the Equator, you must be very careful of the sun to avoid getting sun poisoning. Second degree burns will ruin your vacation.

In general, just try to be a good guest and you'll have a great time. It's a beautiful place, and most people that live there are very nice and welcoming to tourists.

Travelling can be a life-altering experience and certain elements are required for everything to be smooth, and it all starts with having the right travel packing list. If you're still stressed about what to pack for Hawaii, the recommendations above are what we have found to be the most useful for travellers to lessen the hustle of or overthinking and overpacking, as well as to save you money in the long run.

Phuong Nguyen

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