We have been to CSA five times and the first couple of times I packed two large suitcases. I didn't come close to wearing everything. On the third trip I decided to get my scuba certification because Ken is a diver and I didn't want to get left behind. Ken purchased my scuba gear for me. There was no backing out! On that third trip I watched Ken pack all of his clothes, shoes, etc. in a small carry on bag and decided I would try to do it too (we still have one large bag each packed with our scuba gear). To my surprise I did get everything in the carry on and I still didn't wear everything I took. I pack my toiletries, that are more than my allowable ones in my carry on, in my large bag with my scuba gear. I always put them in zip lock bags, just in case.
You really do not need that much. You will live in your swimsuit all day and you will need a cover up to go with it. Shorts or capris and blouse or tee shirt for times when you do not want to have your swimsuit on (which will not be many). A couple of skirts or dresses along with your capris will be fine for evenings. You can wear things more than once. I always take a small bottle of laundry detergent with me to rinse out things that need it. I get Mrs. Meyer's Lavender scented laundry soap and the plus side to that is that every time I use it when I get home, it reminds me of our beloved Jamaica. Love to wash my sheets in it!
Pack more swim suits and cover ups than you think you will need because thats what you will be in for the majorit of your trip. Pack less "evening" clothes than you think you will need because you never wear them all. Anyone who has been to Couples says to pack and then take half of it out because you will not wear it all!
Hi, I travel a lot for business and on holiday. Always try and go with the intent of not bringing anything back un-worn. Packing for 10 or 14 days is not much different than packing for 5. You just wear your evening things a few more times. I would say 2-3 swimsuits, one to wear, one to be drying, and one for sports where a bikini may not be suitable (waterskiing, etc). Evening outfits only get worn for a few hours daily, so don't really get "dirty" unless you spill. I would take two dresses, and two skirts with interchangeable tops. One wrap/cardigan that goes with all. No more than two evening shoes, beach sandals, walking sandals and athletic footwear if required (wear one of these in transit). Two shorts/capris with two interchangeable tops for day trips. These can also pass for casual evenings, and ideally all tops go with all bottoms. Two cover-ups (one to dry, one to wear). I plan on rinsing out undies every 5 days or so. Take sports kit if you plan on working out, this can also be rinsed as needed. I *always* take a sports bra regardless of plans: jeep trips, horse riding, etc, are high-impact. A compact umbrella or pack-away rain jacket is helpful in case of evening showers. If I have room, I take a thin beach towel to easily identify my chair (if you take a really cheap one, can leave it behind if you are short of packing space on the return). SUNBLOCK!! (I take the once-a-day waterproof kind: P20 is a favourite.) A hat is a good idea too, to prevent scalp burn. Sunglasses (I take 2 in case one goes missing.) Travel size toiletries, meds, a few band aids. Plus, you aren't going to an uncivillised place so can simply replace any minor forgotten items. :-)
My biggest issue our first couple of trips were taking shoes to go with every evening outfit. At first not a problem, but now that we have to so cognizant of the weight restrictions, this doesn't work. So I take a white pair of dressier sandals and black pair of dressy sandals, saves weight and space and go with what I take. Then I wear my athletic shoes and pack a pair of beach sandals. I do take something different for each evening as I don't get much of chance to dress up for the hubby, so this is a special time for us. I also pack a light shawl for the evenings. I wear shorts and t-shirt for trip that I plan to wear home also. To rinse things, I take Woolite or Delicare. These are made for hand washing and rinse out of clothes easier. I pack a couple of swimsuits and a couple of coverups. My coverups are sundresses that I can wear if we go on a tour or off resort shopping. As stated you won't need much.
I'm the minority here. Re-wearing clothes is not an option for me as I like clean, crisp shirts...not something easy to manage in 90% relative humidity and 90* weather. We also venture out a LOT, so "you'll wear trunks all day" doesn't speak to us.
Pack for what YOU want to do, not what others do with their time.
Just to be awkward....we go for two weeks so need to check in luggage. So on that basis (& we have a two suitcase allowance) we don't travel light. If we might need it we take it, my carry on is filled with cameras Ipods Ipad books etc.
The first time we went to CN we packed at the last minute. My hubby forgot to pack almost all his clothes. He packed two t-shirts (and one of them I hated) and one dress shirt. A couple pairs of swim trunks and a pair of dress pants. That was it. For a 9 day trip. It actually worked out just fine, even though he has the same shirt on in most of our pics. Needless to say, you need a lot less than you think.
I try and I do mean TRY to pack just two skirts, four nice tops, two pairs of nice shorts, several bathing suits and a few cover ups. You will find that you can mix and match throughout the week. My hubby likes a nice crisp shirt for each evening, but does pack only one pair of dress pants, two pairs of shorts and swim trunks. He also brings several tee shirts for casual & beach wear. You will find that most of the time you will have on a swim suit & cover up. A pair of thongs, sandals and gym shoes are a must. It is so darn hard not to over pack....but you can do it (I have learned, ha!). Have fun!
P.s. I noticed in the FAQ section (for CSA anyhow) that there IS a laundry service available at a "nominal charge". Says that there are laundry bags/price sheets in the rooms. So that may be helpful for those looking to save packing weight.
Would also suggest carrying a swimsuit, cover-up, and one "tropical" outfit in your carry-on with tiny toiletries. If your luggage doesn't get on the same plane as you do, this will make your first day a LOT more enjoyable. Or, if your room is not immediately available, you can then go to the gym and change more easily. (CSA has lockers available, per another review I read on Trip Advisor. Just advise the gym staff that you are waiting on your room and they can provide a locker key.) Reverse could apply if you had to check out, but were not flying home 'till later in the day.
I found a note that I had written last April when we came back from CN. It says: "pack for 2012 - 2 dresses, 2 pairs of shorts, 4 tops, 2 coverups, 3 bathing suits". I looked at the note and said oh no that can't be right, but it must be, I know that I overpacked last year. Still can't figure out why I said 3 bathing suits, since I spent everyday at the AN beach. But trust me, you don't need much.
I wear a bathing suit & cover up for 2 days each. So, usually 4 suits & 4 coverups. 4 suits for my husband too (+ dive trunks for him). He brings exercise shirts to wear w/ his trunks (cooler for him & they weigh less than regular cotton t-shirts).
I bring a shirt for every night (light weight, summery, so they don't take up much weight). I bring 3 or 4 bottoms & re-wear.
I bring 2 pairs of dressy sandals (both black, but 1 dressy & 1 more casual) (+ flip flops for the beach).
My husband brings a shirt for each night. He brings 1 pair of dress pants & maybe 4 pairs of dressy shorts & re-wears.
Also, we often will get the clothes that we wore down on the plane laundered at the resort & then wear the same outfits home (to save space & weight in our luggage).
We've used the laundry service before (I think at all the Couples, but can't remember at this point) & they do a good job. If you call early enough (usually before 8 or 9, I think) they usually have it back that afternoon/evening.
I've found that the Downy Wrinkle Release spray does wonders to get out wrinkles AND to freshen up our already-worn clothes (it has a nice fresh scent). I get the travel size bottles at Target.
We go for 10 nights and work out every day at the lovely fitness facility at CSA. A few years ago, we started using the laundry service at CSA and packing 1/2 the workout gear. It really helps keep the weight down in the suitcases. I'll also launder any shorts or shirts that have gotten dirty or sweaty (but not my nice tops or dresses that need delicate wash). For $50 we can get all this done through the laundry service. It's not inexpensive, but since we are at the Passionate Love level, we use our resort credit for the service. Makes packing easier, too.
I like to wear a different outfit every night, and my husband likes two shirts a day. That is just us, and I think you should dress according to how you feel comfortable, and would dress up or down at home.