Summer Camp Essentials: What to Pack Before Heading Off

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The moment we’ve all been waiting for is swiftly approaching— the 2023 summer camp season is right around the corner!

Are you getting antsy about what to pack? Fear no more!

We've compiled a handy summer camp packing checklist so you can breathe easy and focus on more important having a BLAST at iD Tech day and overnight camps this summer. 

Note: If you have already signed up for camp at iD Tech, please consult the official packing list in your My Account. What follows are general suggestions and thus may not be comprehensive based on your specific camp, location, or specific program experience.

Please keep in mind that each iD Tech Camp location and program might vary in terms of their COVID-19 safety protocols and other practices and needs.  For the most up to date information, please contact the camp location or our Customer Support team! 

Summer Camp Essentials

The benefits of summer camp are far-reaching and - as we’ve seen time and time again - can make a long-term, positive impact on young people. We can’t wait for kids and teens to step back on campus this summer, and we want to make sure they’re prepared for an epic experience. 

To get all of those benefits, though, it’s important to be prepared with all of the essentials!

Day & Overnight campers should bring the following:

Reusable water bottle

Some summer camps provide them, some don't. Either way, hydration is still important! Be sure to check and make sure your kid or teen has water access.

Comfortable clothing and shoes (preferably tennis shoes)

No matter which of the many different types of summer camps your child is attending, comfort is a must. While it goes without saying at a sports camp, it even applies to computer camp (an experience that has been traditionally, albeit falsely, thought of to be devoid of physical activity).

Hand sanitizer & a face mask

If we’ve learned anything from the past three years, it’s that it’s best to be prepared to take extra safety precautions! Extra hand sanitizer is an excellent way to prevent the spread of germs, especially in shared spaces. 

Mask requirements may vary based on location, so make sure to consult local guidelines or contact Client Services at 1-888-709-8324. Having an extra on hand is a great way to be prepared!  

A jacket or sweatshirt

Weather is a funny thing, right? I mean, even the professionals get it wrong at times. But while weather professionals aren't as wrong as they're widely believed to be, incorrect forecasts pop up every now and then. Summers are for sunshine, yes, but it's best to always be prepared.


Sunscreen is an absolute must-have for daily outdoor activities, so make sure your camper has a bottle on hand. 

Spending money

It's always good for campers to have a little pocket spending money—good for purchasing vending machine snacks or souvenirs from the campus bookstore! $20-$40 per week is usually a good amount.

In addition, overnight campers should bring the following:

Alarm clock

Learning independence is just one of the many summer camp benefits. Waking up on time? One of those things your camper might take for granted, thanks to the help of mom and dad. Be sure to pack an alarm clock to help them out a bit.


Even if accommodations are equipped with air conditioning, campers are at the mercy of the operator. And, while a hot day will surely be met with the AC, an extra, controllable breeze is always nice.

Multiple sets of socks, undergarments, etc.

As a parent, you know. It's not easily explained, but for some reason, there is always a shortage here. Pack socks and undergarments, and pack extra! One of those things you really don't want to/can't be without.


Perhaps one of the most-forgotten items—pajamas or something comfortable to wear at night. We get so consumed with making sure kids are packed with comfortable day clothes and shoes, and that they have enough undergarments (per the above), that we forget about what they'll need when it's time for "lights out."

Extra pair of comfortable shoes

Shoes can easily get dirty, and worse, they can get wet. Hey, that can be evidence of kids having a great time!  So, an extra pair always helps.

Sleeping bag or extra sheets

While such items might be provided, it's always good to bring along a sleeping bag and extra sheets.


Many camp locations will likely have a pillow to provide for our students already, but it may be a good idea to bring one just in case! 

Bath towel

When packing, it's always helpful to mentally visualize a day in the life. Such an exercise helps you remember to pack things like bath towels, which might otherwise be forgotten.

Toiletries including toothbrush, toothpaste, soap, shampoo, deodorant, etc.

Or, the bathroom bag of independence. If kids needed a reminder to do all of the things they'll probably forget to do without prompting, this is that reminder. They should be able to open what they've packed and see all of these things staring at them in the face, and thus reminding them that they need to be used.


Part of the reason things aren't packed, even when remembered and thought about, is because it's believed that kids just won't have the capacity for all of these things all of the time. But, a backpack provides the option for transportation, and thus things like headphones, etc. now make more sense because they can be easily moved from one place to another.

2-week supply of medication per week

Of course, if applicable. Be sure to keep medication in original prescription bottles.

2-week supply of contact lens/back up glasses supplies per week

Again, if applicable. But, always pack extra contact lenses, as a supply can quickly be exhausted for unforeseen reasons.

What NOT to bring to camp/Prohibited Items:

Roller-blades, skateboards, or shoes with wheels. (Note: At iD Tech, these are not permitted unless they are a student's only mode of transportation to or from camp. In this case, items must be checked-in upon arrival and checked-out upon departure.)

Personal pets or animals. (Note: If a service animal is required, contact the camp ahead of time.)

Drones and hoverboards are not permitted under any circumstances.

Lighters, matches, cigarettes, illegal drugs or substances, and weapons are prohibited.

What you may want to leave at home:

While campers are not required to bring any electronic devices or accessories  to camp, we know they might want to bring along a smartphone, laptop, headphones/earbuds, iPad, or gaming console. 

We recommend keeping these items locked in dorms, or zipped up in backpacks, both for safety, and so campers can get the most out of camp! (iD Tech is not responsible for lost, damaged or stolen equipment or items.)

In fact, studies from the American Camp Association have shown that students who leave their electronic devices at home gain a greater sense of independence, and students often gain new life skills. And since they’ll have plenty of time to focus on all things tech, their time at camp might be a perfect time to unplug a little bit! 

If campers decide to leave devices at home, they can use the iD Tech computers to send messages to family. Our Camp Directors will notify parents of any emergencies or bouts of homesickness—nothing is more important than our students' safety and comfort.

We hope this helps with your summer planning, and we can’t wait to kick off the 2023 camp season! 

Got something to add to our checklist? Tell us in the comments!

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With over 20 years of experience and a track record of incredible student outcomes, iD Tech is an investment in your child's future. Whether they're 7, 19, or somewhere in between, we've perfected the system to guide them from total beginner to college-bound pro. 

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About iD Tech

iD Tech is the #1 tech camp on the planet, and world leader in youth STEM education, with programs held online and at 75+ global locations offering 50+ innovative tech courses: 

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We've bet our reputation on recruiting the top instructors in the country. Our small classes ensure customized learning, leading to "a-ha moments" and awesome outcomes. Programs include:

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