Sunshine, sightseeing, delicious food – there are so many reasons to travel in the summer. Whether you’re headed to the beach, the mountains, or exploring a big city, there are a couple of things you want to keep in mind when planning your next summer vacation.

Get your vacation started on the right track with these five tips.

1. Pack Smart

Some people are notorious for overpacking. Three-day weekend getaway? They’ll pack eight outfits. But less is more. Create a packing checklist ahead of time that you can check off as you are packing up your suitcase. This way you’ll have exactly what you need and nothing you don’t! Here are some must-have summer travel items that you should include in your packing checklist:

  • Sunscreen
  • Hat
  • First aid kit
  • Water bottle
  • Jacket
  • Flip flops
  • Comfortable shoes

2. Do your research

Don’t just pick the first travel deal you see! There are a lot of sites out there that will help you get a great deal no matter where you are going. Look out for extra savings when you bundle your airfare and hotel. Take the time to find the deal that’s right for your budget and your ideal vacation.

3. Plan out activities

You don’t want to show up on the first day of your vacation and spend hours wandering around looking for something to do. Pick a couple of activities and sights you’d like to see while you’re on vacation. If you’re traveling with family or friends, create a spreadsheet where everyone can share their ideas and you can all vote on the top spots you want to check out.

4. Be flexible

While planning out everything will go a long way for easing stress, you don’t want to plan too much. You can end up with too many activities planned and you’ll end up needing a vacation from your vacation. Or you’ll miss out on some spontaneous fun because you’re too busy trying to move from activity to activity. Make sure to leave some downtime each day so you’re able to take a moment to relax and enjoy your surroundings.

5. Enjoy the local culture

Like the saying goes, when in Rome, do as the Romans do. No matter where you are visiting, immerse yourself in the local culture. Venture out beyond the resort and typical tourist spots to try local restaurants, check out local businesses and learn about the local culture. Guaranteed you’ll remember and enjoy the local restaurant more than the generic room service at the hotel.

Follow these tips for a fun vacation. Have a great summer!