If you are going to the beach, the odds are good that you are planning to bring the entire family along. Anyone who has taken a family trip to the beach knows that there may be some things that crop up that can make the trip less enjoyable. That’s why we created these 13 foolproof beach tips which will make your time on the sand much more fun and eliminate some of the problems that families experience when they go to the beach. A great beach to enjoy is Daytona Beach and it can be a wonderful area, especially if you’re currently looking for a short stay at nice, cheap Daytona Beach hotels or anywhere at an oceanfront hotel along the east coast of Florida. If you’re looking for a cheap hotel in or around these areas, check out our current timeshare vacation packages to these locations and more. Either way, with the following tips you can have an even better trip to whatever beach you decide to visit. And the first is…
The first tip is to bring some sort of beach shelter. Most of the beaches in the area will allow you to set up a pop-up tent or overhead awning. One thing you probably don’t want to bring is a beach umbrella. Carrying a large umbrella that is big enough for the entire family to get shade under is going to be difficult and make it likely that you’ll have to make multiple trips to your car because carrying a heavy umbrella can be a solo job. Usually a beach tent comes in an easy to carry bag. Many people go to the beach without a shelter, but the fact is that it can get pretty hot and having your own shade can be really nice. Note that not all beaches in the area may allow you to set up shelters, especially if they take up a lot of space. One good thing about booking a Daytona Beach hotel is that you are able to drive along the beach in some areas, so it makes it a lot easier than having to lug your stuff back and forth.
Spread Out Equipment Assignments
Another thing that you might want to do is make sure that everything is packed into smaller containers rather than one large container. For example, bringing several small coolers can take the place of the big one, and the same goes with the rest of your equipment as well. The reason for this is that the parking may be a fairly long trek from the beach itself, especially if you have trouble finding a spot to set up. If you break your equipment down into smaller containers, then you can have everyone in your family carry something, even the younger kids. Otherwise you are stuck carrying heavy stuff yourself, and if you have few adults in the party, this may mean extra trips.
Bring Plastic Bags
Something else that you’ll definitely want to do is bring plastic bags with you. Many people do not bring grocery bags because they do not want to contribute to the trash on the beach or worry about the environment, but having a pocket full of plastic bags can be incredibly useful. Not only do they take up almost no room your pocket, nor do they add any weight to your load, they can be used for so many different things that you will probably be wishing you would have brought more, even if you do have a pocketful of them. You may also want to bring a few Ziploc style bags which you can use to pack up leftover food, hold a collection of shells or lots of other important tasks.
Get to the Beach Early
You definitely want to get to the beach early. If you get to the beach late, you may not be able to find a spot. Even if you find a spot, it could be a long walk from your car or it might not be in a prime location. But if you get to the beach early, then you are able to choose the spot yourself and you’ll have the pick of pretty much anywhere on the beach. This is especially true if you’re planning to stay at a Daytona Beach hotel, you will need to get there early if you foresee yourself taking advantage of the parking on the beach.
Set Up Next to the Lifeguard
Something else that you may want to consider doing when you go to the beach is setting up next to the lifeguard. Not only are your kids going to be safer getting in the water near the lifeguard, but the real benefit of this location is that everyone will be able to find your base camp easily. On a crowded beach, everyone’s beach towel looks the same from a distance, and that can mean kids running around trying to find the right place and going further and further down the coast accidentally. But if you are next to the lifeguard, then that’s where your kids will look for you first.
Be Aware of Sunscreen Guidelines
Another thing that you want to do is be aware of how much sunscreen you should be putting on, what kind of sunscreen should be using and how often you should be applying it. Sunscreen is important, especially in Florida, and people that are not used to the kind of sun that is there may not apply enough sunscreen and end up burned, which can be painful and can definitely ruin a trip. Sunscreen application differs depending upon age, skin type, and weather conditions. Look online and find out what the guidelines are before you go to the beach and make sure to read and follow the instructions on the bottle.
Plan for Backup Activities
Something else that you may want to do is plan backup activities for when everyone gets bored. This is especially true if you have kids. After a while, running along the coastline or getting in the water is going to get boring. While you may want to relax on the beach for longer, you may find yourself plagued by kids saying that they are bored. That’s why you should plan some backup activities to combat this eventuality. Bring a few different types of toys, football, soccer ball, sand castle molds, and other fun objects to keep them preoccupied.
Establish a Dry Zone
You also need to establish a dry zone. This dry zone should be in no touching zone for kids with wet hands. It includes things like important paperwork, phones, keys, other electronics and anything that is going to have the potential to get damaged if it gets wet. One of the best ways to do this is to use a beach chair zipper pocket and let everyone know that it’s an off limits zone. You also want to make sure that things like wallets and keys are secure and this is a great way to do that as well.
Pack Food Using Small Containers
You should also consider packing your food using very small containers. If you pack 12 sandwiches in a Tupperware container and someone accidentally dumps it out onto the sand, then you are going to be out 12 sandwiches. However if you have packed each sandwich individually, then you are only going to be out one sandwich. This holds true for all kinds of stuff and is especially useful when you have kids who aren’t always as careful as they should be. With many items, you can simply use sandwich bags or Ziploc bags and still pack everything into a large container.
Freeze Cooler Items
Instead of buying ice at the gas station or freezing a bunch of ice packs in advance, freeze the items that you are going to be putting in the cooler. Obviously, you cannot freeze everything (like lunchmeat), but you can freeze bottles of water, juice and lots of other items. This will keep everything else in the cooler cold, without you having to have room for ice. Just don’t try to freeze soda, because the carbonation will cause it to expand and explode while freezing.
Establish a Base Camp Watch
You should also make sure that someone is going to be at your shelter or base camp area at all times. This way, you can leave things like cell phones and wallets there with someone to watch them. Otherwise, you have to take your valuables with you if you leave. Going with several adults is a great idea for this reason. Some of the adults can be out watching the kids while others can be hanging out at base camp and keeping an eye on the food, the valuables and being there if anyone needs anything.
Prepare to Leave in Advance
You also want to prepare to leave well in advance. If you decide to leave all of a sudden, probably because you looked at your phone and realized what time it was, then you are going to have a really hard time getting everyone herded up and headed towards the car. This is especially true if they are having a good time. But if you decide when you’re going to leave and then start giving warnings an hour or 45 minutes before the time actually comes, as well as assigning small tasks like packing up food items or picking up trash, then everyone will be ready to go when the time comes.
Buy a Soft Bristle Broom for De-Sanding
If you keep a soft bristle brush in your car, you’re going to be able to save yourself a lot of cleaning later on. That’s because you can use this soft bristle brush to remove the sand from everyone’s bodies and clothing. When everyone gets back to the car, brush them off before they get in. This will prevent nearly all of the sand from getting into the car and allowing you to avoid dragging out the vacuum or going through a car wash with the detail area later on to remove the sand from your floorboards and seats. You can find these for a couple bucks at your local dollar store. Definitely a great investment!
Spending a day or weekend at the beach can be the perfect remedy for those that are overworked and looking to unwind, even if it’s just for a little while. Following these guidelines will help make your beach trip way less stressful and ensure that you have a good time. If you’re ready to start planning your Florida beach getaway we have great deals for Daytona Beach and New Smyrna Beach, 3 night stays starting as low as $79, at hotels directly on the beach, all in exchange for taking a short 2-hour tour! Exciting, affordable, and luxurious.