11 Great Beach Items to Buy Before Your Summer Vacation

Discover essential gadgets and gizmos to elevate your next trip.

With Memorial Day weekend on the horizon, one place that's sure to be busy is the beach. Whether you're planning to fill the gas tank and pack your trunk with fun items to make a road trip more enjoyable or you want to fly to a sunny locale, there are many portable products that are sure to make your trip more fun, relaxing and stress-free. Here are 11 must-have items for your summer beach getaway.

Quest Folding Utility Beach Wagon

If you're planning to head to a sandy locale located within driving distance, consider investing in DICK'S Sporting Goods' Quest Folding Utility Beach Wagon ($99.99) to haul your family's chairs, umbrellas, towels, coolers and more to the beach this summer. With its strong steel frame and large wheels, this wagon rolls easily over sand and uneven ground to eliminate the hassle of juggling your family's gear down to the beach. What's more, the wagon's collapsible design and ability to fold for convenient storage is a must-have for large groups looking to consolidate space.

S-Box Bluetooth speakers

For long days at the beach, a portable waterproof speaker is a must-have accessory, especially for music lovers. S-Box's Premium Portable Bluetooth Smart Speaker is powerful and equipped with an eight- to 12-hour battery life as well as a built-in microphone, so you can even answer calls hand-free while you're laying out by the pool or beach to enjoy your favorite tunes. What's more, the sound quality is clear, the buttons on the unit are user-friendly and the speaker comes with a clip to hook on a gear bag or belt.

My Cabana Boy sunscreen

When it comes to packing for a summer beach getaway, there may be no item as important as sunscreen. The My Cabana Boy, a sunscreen gun for $13.99, helps you properly apply sunscreen to your back and all hard-to-reach spots. The device is a brightly colored plastic sprayer that holds any standard spray sunscreen can. This allows you to extend your reach by inches so you can spray sunscreen without needing to bend and twist.

Bokos sandals

Colorful sandals add a whimsical element to any beach day. Bokos' sandals are constructed out of a one-piece, non-porous rubber mold, which makes them comfortable, easy to clean, anti-slip and waterproof. Offered in a variety of unique color options for men and women, Bokos ($18) are the perfect summer beach footwear. What's more, the sandals are lightweight, so throwing your pair of Bokos in your carry-on bag is a cinch.

ROAM ROPES earphones

If you're looking for clear sound quality, ROAM ROPES' new wearable, Bluetooth-enabled earphones ($199) are the ideal tech accessory for you. Whether you want to enjoy an audiobook while relaxing on the beach, listen to music during morning walks or take calls poolside, the technology's Bluetooth connection allows your phone or tablet to stay safely tucked inside your beach bag -- away from sand and water. Plus, the unique, customizable sound equalization app, ROAM EQ, makes ROPES some of the best earphones for listening to chart-topping songs of the summer.

Ditto by Simple Matters

How many times have you dropped your phone in the sand or covered your smartphone screen in greasy sunblock? Ditto, a tiny wearable waterproof device ($29.99), helps you dodge this common annoyance by enabling you to tuck your phone away while not missing out on what's important. Ditto can also be slipped into a jean pocket, clipped on a strap (even a swimsuit strap thanks to its waterproof material) or worn on a band. The device will vibrate when all texts, calls, emails and other notifications come through. Plus, it will alert you if you're about to leave your smartphone behind, say at the beach or on the counter of the swim-up bar. Ditto also works for Uber and social media notifications, ensuring that you won't miss rides to dinner or the airport or likes on posts on social platforms.

The Tillow

Laying on a beach towel can sometimes be a recipe for a sore neck later on. That's where the Tillow ($35.99), a large beach towel with a removable orthopedic foam pillow, comes in. With a touchscreen pocket for your smartphone, you can easily listen to music and send messages without risk of damage, plus you can rely on camouflaged water-resistant storage space to keep your belongings safe from sand, water and strangers.

Cape Cod Beach Chair Company's Surfside Recliner

If you're planning to drive to a beach, durable beach chairs can make all the difference. Cape Cod Beach Chair Company's Surfside Recliner (prices start at $145) comes in a variety of solid colors as well as stripes, mesh and sail-cloth limited editions. The chairs are weather-resistant, lightweight and built with a shoulder strap for convenient transport from the car to the beach. Plus, the chairs offer five recline positions and cup holders.

AquaVault Portable Safe

A common concern on the beach is where to place your valuables when going for a swim. Instead of a finding a designated watchperson, AquaVault, a portable safe, aims to solve the problem. The safe ($39.95) gives travelers a secure place to store valuables almost anywhere. Thanks to a programmable rental grade lock and slash-resistant plastic, the safe can easily be attached to beach chairs and other furniture. So, go for that swim without worrying about your money, watches, sunglasses and smartphone.

Dentz Denim + Design Turkish beach towel

Dentz Denim + Design, a lifestyle and apparel company, sells monogrammed Turkish beach towels (starting at $35.00) that are an ideal choice for those seeking both a stylish blanket or practical beach towel. They're incredibly soft and lightweight, as well as plenty durable for a day at the beach. Aside from their cotton material, the towels come in unique monogram design options, different colors and various prints. Plus, they're a bit longer than your standard beach towel, which provides an even larger barrier between you and the sand. Best of all, they fold up and pack easily.

Consider purchasing travel insurance.

While most local trips do not require travel insurance, more expensive trips might warrant purchasing a travel insurance policy, says Michael Thrasher, a research analyst with ValuePenguin, a research firm and personal finance site that offers insight and analysis on a wide range of topics. "Policies cover things such as trip cancellations, medical expenses, emergency evacuation, lost baggage, rental car damage and other unforeseeable losses," Thrasher says. "In the event someone needs to cancel their trip, loses their baggage, etc., and the reason for the mishap is covered by a travel insurance policy in force, they would file a claim and be reimbursed for their financial loss," he adds.

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