Here’s a question we bet you haven’t asked yourself in quite a few years – what do you pack for an overnight corporate retreat? You don’t want to be the person who shows up with a full-on checked luggage-style suitcase to a one or two-night retreat. But you also don’t want to be ill-prepared and wishing you hadn’t taken that extra t-shirt out of your bag 5 minutes before rushing out the door.
With things steadily getting back to normal after the global pandemic, company events like retreats and team-building trips are going to pick back up again… And soon. With that comes the age-old doubt about what you actually need to take with you, and what you can afford to leave behind.
1-2 outfit options per day
Chances are, your work retreat isn’t going to have a strict dress code. A good rule of thumb to stick to is that you should dress business casual. You don’t need to dress like you’re going to the office, but you’re also not going to Uncle Gerard’s Sunday barbecue pool party. A comfortable pair of chinos, some nice sneakers, and a sensible polo shirt or top will go a long way!
It’s also a good idea to bring something slightly dressier in case there is a planned dinner or a party. Again, you’re not going to the Met Gala so there’s no need to bring your highest heels or your snazziest tie. But you could be having dinner and drinks with colleagues, after all. Leave the Hawaiian shirt for another occasion.
Something warm in case it gets chilly
Depending on where your corporate retreat is being held, it could get a little chilly at night. Especially if you’re being whisked away to enjoy nature, or heading to a city in colder climates than you’re used to. Packing something small like a cardigan, blazer, or sweatshirt can save you from shivering through whatever evening event your colleagues have planned.
Don’t forget your toiletries
It may sound obvious and even a little silly, but there’s always that one person who didn’t bring their shampoo or toothpaste and needs to borrow from everyone else. But it’s not that difficult to avoid! You’re going on a company retreat, not to an all-inclusive resort. Remember to pack your essentials:
- tooth brush
- shower gel
Sports clothes (just in case)
Chances are that your company off-site is going to feature some kind of outdoor activity. Whether that’s hiking through the woods, looking for clues in a scavenger hunt, or playing dodgeball – you’re probably going to get sweaty. That’s why it’s always a good idea to bring something sporty with you.
Think about bringing a pair of sweat or yoga pants, a dry-fit t-shirt, or even a pair of jogging leggings. It’s always better to bring them and not have to use them than to be caught unawares.
A bathing suit – what if there’s a pool?
Realistically, you’ll probably know in advance if the place you’re going to has a pool or if it’s near a beach or a lake. That’s why it’s a great idea to check your company retreat agenda before your first day there!
If you are one of the lucky ones and will get to enjoy a pool or a spa at your off-site, then don’t miss out on that opportunity by forgetting your swimsuit! It’s also a good idea to bring a pair of flip flops with you – hotels and other accommodations don’t normally tend to provide them.
Sunscreen… no matter where you’re going
Whether it’s a nature getaway with the company or a city escape, you’ll probably be spending a lot of time outdoors. Team off-sites normally take place throughout the warmer months and the risk of you getting a sunburn can be quite high. Sunburns can get pretty uncomfortable, so why take your chances when prevention is so easy?
So there you have it, a quick list of some of the bare necessities you’ll need to take with you on a company off-site. Always remember to double-check whatever communication your events team has shared with you, just in case there are any special requirements or recommendations laid out within. Have a great time and happy packing!