Top 10 Destination Wedding Travel Essentials Every Bride Needs

Feeling like you’re getting something when packing for your destination wedding? Don’t worry – I’ve got you covered!

Preparing for your destination wedding is such an exciting time! There’s a ton going in the weeks leading up to before heading to the airport for your wedding, it’s easy to forget a few important items to pack for your destination wedding.

This is why I’ve put together this list of travel essentials for destination weddings – based on the thoughts of over 7000 destination wedding brides! These are tried-and-true items that have really come in handy and have saved the day for countless brides. 

Here are the top travel must-haves for destination wedding brides!

punta cana destination wedding

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1. Document holder

In the chaos of travel and wedding stress, you’ll want to make sure all your important documents are organized in one spot. A travel document holder keeps your passport, tickets, hotel info, and really all-things-travel related together in one convenient zippered pouch. This saves you from fumbling around for all sorts of paperwork when you need it.

This includes spots for your passport, boarding documents (if paper-issued), transfer information for the airport, hotel reservations, wedding coordinator contact info, etc. You want everything easily accessible and in one easy-to-find spot.

You will also want to bring your ID, travel insurance info (important!), and a credit card. If you plan to rent a car, you will also need your driver’s license).

2. Garment Bag

If there’s one thing you remember: never, ever check your wedding dress! The only time I would say it’s ok to do so is when you’re coming home and you’re less stressed about it making it to where you need to go!

With that being said, you will need to figure out a way to travel with your wedding dress. Many brides invest in a garment bag which doubles as a carry-on or personal item (be sure to check with your airline). 

These garment bags can fit a ton in them. You can buy the popular Wallybags garment bag, or the dupe travel garment bag for much less.

Budget brides like myself used the garment bag from the bridal store, but there’s not much else you can fit inside but your dress and doesn’t offer as much protection.

3. Toiletry & Makeup bag

One thing you’ll want to be is organized when you travel. This best-selling toiletry bag has enough compartments for all your toiletries and makeup, and it hangs on the door for easier access to everything you need. 

This toiletry bag is water-resistant, compact, and has numerous different sealed pouches with a chiq design – plus it comes in a variety of colours!

destination wedding packing

4. Travel jewellery case

A travel jewellery case is a great addition to any destination wedding bride’s packing list. They also make great bridesmaid gifts! 

Keep all your jewellery organized in one compact case so nothing gets lost or tangled. Just be sure to pack it in your carry-on with you for safe keeping.

5. Portable steamer

Let’s be real – our clothing can get pretty wrinkled when we travel. Even if your wedding package includes garment steaming, a portable steamer can be a game changer for your outfits (and not just for your wedding)!

Portable steamers travel easily because they’re compact but so effective. 

Budget tip: If you really don’t want to add another expense to your wedding budget, you can remove the wrinkles from your clothing by hanging them in the bathroom while you take a hot shower, or hang them in your closet as soon as you arrive. The humidity works wonders taking out any wrinkles!

6. Sunscreen and Aloe Vera

Learn from my past mistakes: be sure to wear sunscreen every time you’re exposed to the sun! The last thing you want in your wedding photos is a painful sunburn! 

Tanlines and sunburns are common with destination weddings but you still want to try to avoid it if you can – sunburns are no fun for anyone! This also includes wearing lip balm with SPF

I wear a daily moisturizer with SPF in it. I personally prefer the spray type of sunscreen since I get better coverage and it’s easier to apply, but I always bring a bottle of sunscreen as backup.

Pack aloe vera too – it’s expensive if you need to buy it from the gift shop at your resort! If you don’t want to pack a huge bottle, you can get those reusable toiletry travel bottles and fill as needed.

Eco-Friendly tip: Planning to go snorkelling or diving? Plan on bringing reef-safe sunscreen with you to help protect the marine environment!

7. Anti-frizz serum

My hair is known to become ultra-frizzy with humidity, and that can be difficult to manage when it comes to all the events surrounding your destination wedding.

Anti-frizz serum helps keep your hair more manageable for styling, and will tame it down for all those photos!

destination wedding travel must haves

8. Chub Rub Stick

If you suffer from the uncomfortable thigh chafing, do yourself a favour and get the chub rub stick. It’s a life saver! Your thighs will thank you. 

Irritating chafing isn’t fun and can leave you with sore inner thighs. This anti-chafing stick helps keep your thighs friction-free, which believe me, will seriously improve your mood.

During evenings I usually recommend brides wear butter-soft bike shorts under their dresses for even more comfort -and no one will ever know!

9. Blister pads or KT Tape

If you’re like me and don’t often wear heels, or if you’re wearing shoes you’re not used to, there may be a good chance you end up with blisters right before your wedding.

One way to avoid that is by catching it early and wearing blister pads or KT tape (or bandaids, in a pinch!). 

I prefer KT tape as long as you don’t already have an open sore, because it prevents chafing and it won’t come loose like bandaids. You can also cut to what you need if you just need a small amount.

10. Sewing kit

Sewing kits come in handy when you least expect it. They’re one of those things you look at in hotel rooms but ignore until you really need them. And sometimes,  you might actually need to use it for your wedding!

While you’re at it, throw in a pair of scissors too, if your kit doesn’t have them.

I remember cutting my niece’s flower-girl dress 5 minutes before the ceremony because it was too long – thankfully I had scissors I threw in my suitcase at the last minute. You never know when they’ll come in handy!

Destination Wedding Packing Tips

  • Make sure all your valuables go on the plane with you in your carry-on. Don’t pack any valuables away in a checked bag!
  • Check your airline policies for carry-on baggage and personal item allowance to maximize your packing abilities. If needed, see if family members or friends can bring anything important with them on-board if you run out of space.
  • Triple check your packing. I think I repacked 5 times to make sure I didn’t forget anything! Check out my free destination wedding packing list!
  • This goes without saying, but as long as you have your passport, dress, and significant other, you’re golden, and everything else is a bonus!

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