It’s finally that time of year where college students migrate down south for a week full of debauchery and hazy memories: spring, not sprang, break. Because, more often than not, these trips leave young travelers high and dry (quite literally), it’s necessary to come prepared to conquer the beach, darties, and all-night shenanigans that tag along with this early-twenties rite of passage. Thankfully, as knowledgeable college students ourselves, we’ve got you covered here at Simply Thriving. Below are five must-haves for surviving Fort Lauderdale, South Padre, Miami, and beyond. These equally double up as festival season essentials, so make sure to return to this post when you’re loading up your car and heading to The Farm or The Forest.
- Bluetooth & Waterproof Speaker →
- Nothing gets the party started quite like some bangers. That last sentence definitely sounds like a Spotify Premium ad, but seriously, music is essential for a good time. A Bluetooth speaker is necessary when outlets aren’t available (say, on the beach) and make it waterproof just in case you fellow party-goers get too… sloppy. Any product from JBL gets my nod of approval.
- SPF Flasks →
- Okay, so real SPF is probably a good idea too. However, these flasks are perhaps an even bigger must-have when heading to the beach since alcohol is usually “restricted,” or whatever. I’ve used these multiple times at festivals throughout the years and I’ve never been caught at security. Sure it’s slightly embarrassing when people think you’re sipping on Banana Boat, but who cares about your reputation when you’re drinking for cheap? Not me, evidently.
- Inflatable Beach Chair →
- From my own spring break experience, I can say it’s annoyingly expensive to rent beach chairs/cabanas in more popular destinations. Therefore, because no one wants to shell out their hard-earned cash to lay on a plastic lounger for mere hours, I’d highly recommend buying one of these FatBoy(s). They’re lightweight, can fit into a small backpack when folded up, and can comfortably seat up to two individuals. While all of your peers are standing on the crowded beach hoping to schmooze and booze, you can lay back and still enjoy the action.
- Round Beach Blanket →
- I got my first taste of this (now) vacation essential a few years back at a festival in Detroit. Due to its unique shape and pattern, it was easy to locate my spot in a crowd of boring ole rectangular blankets, therefore making it ideal for trips to jam-packed beaches or concerts. These circular babies have become so popular over the past few years that New York Magazine even wrote an article that was equal parts tribute and where-to-buy list. Because the author says it better than I do, read it here to find the best one for your style.
- Cheap Sunglasses →
- Sure Amazon has free two-day shipping, but even better than this expedited delivery perk is its array of cheap sunglasses. I’m constantly tossing my sunnies around when I’m at the beach or a concert, so I’ve never seen the point in dropping big bucks on something I’ll probably lose within the weekend. I’ve been buying specs from Jeff (Bezos, that is) for years, so I’m basically a connoisseur at this point. My last two purchases were this pair and this pair, so follow my expertise and click that “Add to Cart” button.
I'm not sure that these five items will entirely save you from Alien (AKA, James Franco), but I can promise that they'll help. Party on.