1. Do your research
Chances are that you scouted seasonal average temperatures when you booked your trip, but in many regions weather in the spring and fall can be pretty unpredictable. A day or two before you depart, check online for the latest updates—get the ten-day forecast from sites like the Weather Channel online. Be sure to take note of nighttime and daytime highs and lows. Coastal regions will have especially varying temperatures between day and night.
2. Get the right gear
Shoes are always a packing pain-point. When prepping for transitional weather, boots are a great choice for ladies when it comes to keeping dry and warm, and a nice pair will take you from daytime sightseeing to candlelit dinner in style.
Try a sturdy and stylish riding boot with a few upgrades: apply a leather protectant solution to keep them looking nice in any weather and slip in a couple of gel inserts to keep your feet supported while walking all day. Men might prefer a more functional option, like a hiking boot that looks good off the trail, too.
While it’s usually possible to purchase an umbrella at your destination, nothing beats already having a lightweight option (that you know won’t break) on hand just in case. Lastly? Be optimistic! Don’t forget your sunglasses and sunscreen.
3. Bring lots of layers
Prepping for potentially colder weather can be tough when you’re trying to pack light—especially if you also want to be prepared for the possibility of sunnier days. Bringing lots of coordinating layers is always a good idea when traveling, especially when you’re trying to cover a broader range of possible conditions.
Look for a variety fabric weights to give you the most flexibility and consider doing laundry mid-trip, so that you could get by with only two or three each of tanks, t-shirts and long-sleeved shirts. A packable, windproof jacket will keep you dry during spring showers and a lightweight cardigan in a dark neutral works great to add warmth underneath, or to slip on if the evening turns chilly.
Lastly, don’t forget the extra warmth a scarf, hat and gloves can deliver if the wind picks up—look for options that don’t scream winter, like a gauzy scarf or a pair of leather gloves. And remember, evenings in the spring and fall are usually the coolest time of day, so opt for warmer layers that are appropriate for nighttime if you’re someone who likes to enjoy evening shows, performances or dinners out.
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