Last Edited: 14 Jul, 2023
Author: Cristina Holm

What clothes should I pack for my summer holiday?

 Here’s my ‘go to’ summer suitcase capsule for a beach or pool holiday.

Unless you are taking your car on holiday, in which case you perhaps won’t need to worry about how much you pack, by using my tips for packing the perfect suitcase not only will it make things less stressful, but also for those flying, save you time and money by carrying everything in your carry-on luggage.

Carry-on weights and rules appear to change quite often, so here’s a helpful link updated by Skyscanner.

Just click on individual airline name to link to the latest status on rules like bag dimensions and fees associated with travel baggage.

Look relaxed and stylish on your beach holiday

At time of writing, the carry-on allowance weights are 15kg with EasyJet and British Airways, and 10kg with Ryanair.

Of course if you are going away for a fortnight or are packing for the children as well, you will probably have to check-in a suitcase or two, which will need to go in the hold.

Even so, once you learn the tricks of my summer holiday capsule, I bet you will use it every time you go away.

Remember, luggage weight restrictions include both contents and your suitcase so definitely check this before you head to the airport. You can buy luggage scales for under £10.

“Remember your passport, driving license if relevant, cash (in local currency) and credit cards.  Don’t forget to check you have travel insurance.”

Most airlines also permit a handbag / laptop / additional carry on.

Be savvy and maximise this allowance (without breaking the rules) as this can give you a few kilos extra free of charge!

Similarly, if you’re struggling to keep to the limits, wear your heavier clothing and footwear on the aircraft.

Here is what I recommend you pack for your 10-15 kg holiday bag. Perfect for a one week beach or pool holiday.

Don’t worry, I will be writing another blog about the capsule suitcase for an active or winter holiday in due course.

The key to creating a great capsule for your beach holiday that fits in a carry-on suitcase starts by thinking about how many outfits you can make by mixing and matching all the garments you are taking.

The way I do this is by sticking to using two main colours.

I also count accessories within this rule, i.e. shoes, bags, jewellery, sunhat.

If they can’t be worn with all or most of the other items in my case I don’t include them.

“Remember – you can swap an item (or two) depending on your style personality and personal preferences.  For example swap a swimsuit for another bikini or swap shorts for another skirt or a shirt for another top.”

My list can of course be adapted depending upon your style personality and personal preferences.

For example, swap a bikini for a swimsuit, a skirt for a pair of shorts, a blouse for a top, etc. As this is for a ‘beach / pool’ type holiday, all the items I take are lightweight.

Start by laying all the garments on your bed and then individually pick each one up and ask yourself:

“What can I wear this with?”

Clothing Checklist

  • 2x bikinis
  • 1x swimsuit
  • 2x beach wraps / kaftans
  • 1x shorts / trousers
  • 1x skirt
  • 3x dresses
  • 2x tops
  • 1x shirt / blouse
  • 2x cardigan / bolero / shawl
  • 1x PJ / nightshirt (often forgotten!)
  • 4x underwear


  • 1x trainer / ballerina shoe
  • 1x sandal / wedge
  • 1x flip flop
  • 1x sun hat
  • 1x sunglasses
  • 1x beach bag
  • 1x cross bag / handbag

My other tips

  • Footwear is heavy, so don’t make a common mistake of taking too many.
  • Pay attention to evening temperatures.  This helps you decide whether or not you need that cardigan!
  • Lotions, creams and makeup can quickly add weight to your case.  Remember you can buy these at the airport or even your destination.
  • Most airports have a Boots. They sell ‘travel size’ liquids suitable for aircraft hand luggage.  Handy… literally!
  • Remember a small emergency pack of plasters, as our feet swell in the heat and along with sand, can easily trigger a blister.
  • Washing powder is perfect for cleaning a few items on your stay, like underwear.  So you can travel with less.
  • Finally, check what’s provided where you are staying.  They may provide heavier items like hair dryers and irons.
Pack for your holiday by following these tips. For a bonne voyage.

Packing smartly

I’ve spent so many years working in stores that I’m pretty good at folding clothes so they don’t need ironing.

Rolling is often better than folding however I always unpack at my destination.

Why waste time ironing when you could be enjoying cocktails… so hang your garments as soon as you arrive so any creases have time to fall out.

Woman trying to close suitcase

About Cristina Holm

Cristina Holm is one of the UK’s leading personal stylists. Cristina is based and operates from her studio in Warfield, Berkshire (United Kingdom).  She serves clients locally and internationally.

Cristina is also the founder of My Secret Stylist, the UK’s best kept clothes shopping secret.  For only £35.99 per year, you can find and ‘see in seconds’ clothes which complement your body shape across all the popular brands.  For more information, go to