While most of us—at least those of us on the Northern Hemisphere—are stuck in the dregs of winter for the foreseeable future, there is hope on the horizon. A slew of holidays, three-day weekends and the collective slow start to the year all add up to one truth: vacation is coming. Over the next two months, before school or work kick into high gear, there is ample opportunity to take some well deserved time off. Obviously, where and when is up to you, though this time of year the options usually vary between the mountains and the beach. Regardless of which you decide, surprisingly the majority of what you will need to pack—coats and ski gear notwithstanding—are the same. Unfortunately, backing is a nightmare for even the most seasoned traveler. That’s where we come in.

From the right luggage to the perfect “going out” fit, below we break down exactly what you need to pack for your next vacation—no matter where the locale.

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