What to Pack for 5 Days in New York City

What to Pack for 5 Days in New York City Packing Light List | What to Pack for New York City | Packing Light | Packing List | Travel Light | Travel Wardrobe | Travel Capsule | Capsule | Capsule Wardrobe | Travel | Travel tips | What to Pack | New York City | Livelovesara

Cher T-shirt | Polka Dot Blouse | Black Shirt | Colourful Sweater | Striped Sweater | Blue Denim | Grey Denim | Dark Scarf | Floral Print Scarf | Dress | Green Coat | Fedora | Sunglasses | Circle Purse | Blue Purse | Boots | Sneakers | Weekender Bag |


About two and a half years ago I made my first New York City packing list, and to this day it is one of my most popular posts to date still getting a ton of daily visits. Since New York is one  of the top vacation destinations in the world and I get frequent requests for it I figured it was time to update it.

New York is one of the fashion capitals of the world, but it is also one of those anything goes cities. You can pretty much get away with wearing whatever the hell you want there and no one will look twice, (well, they may but it won’t shock them).

For 5 days you don’t really need that much honestly:

  • 3 shirts
  • 3 sweaters
  • 1 pair of jeans
  • 1 pair of dark jeans (or another style of pants like these)
  • A dress that can be dressed up or down,
  • Jacket
  • Accessories like a couple of scarves for accessories (make at least one a print/colourful and one neutral), a hat, and sunnies.
  • 1-2 purses
  • 2 pairs of shoes. A casual, comfortable pair, and a dressier style (maybe a dressy flat, or flat boot). I like and can walk absolutely fine in a kitten heel though, and I am totally a non heel person. Plus, the heel will look good with the dress.

That should be more than enough, so these pieces plus bras, socks, underwear, and pyjamas will easily fit into a weekender bag because you will be wearing some of the above pieces for travel. As for weekender bags I have this one in grey that I like, and fits a lot of stuff. There are some more styles I like below.

The outfit options for this list can be found in this post.

Do you have a favourite weekender bag? 

If you like this post you can find more packing lists and outfit options in my:
Packing Light Series 
What to Wear Options

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  1. Hi Sara. I am now packing for 5 Days in NYC! I’m a frequent NY visitor, and I have a couple of thoughts. First, it’s raining there now, and it rains a lot in February and March, and it’s cold. The wool coat will be heavy and uncomfortable in wet weather. I’m thinking of down jacket + raincoat combo. Also, neither purse is big enough. When you are out, you are out for the day, and nearly everyone carries a big purse or tote bag, or small purse & backpack. I have a 20 year old canvas messenger back that is practical, but I can’t decide if it’s too dowdy. I love the ideas, and will pack most of the suggested pieces! Thanks.

    • Hi Barbara! Yes! Do whatever works for you and your style, this is just a basic guideline. I’d love a rain slicker, but I don’t have one, and I tend to not carry large purses because they hurt my back/shoulders but if a messenger bag suits your needs then by all means that is what you need to bring. I live in Toronto so my weather generally follows the same pattern as New York and if you are going within the next week/week and a half let it be noted that we are getting temps that are quite a bit above seasonal starting today so a down might be way too hot if your trip falls during this time. Have a good time!


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