Consumer Reports

These summer essentials can make your vacation better

NBC Universal, Inc.

A day at the beach or pool can go from fun to fabulous with just a little bit of planning. That’s where the experts at Consumer Reports come in, with these top-tested summer essentials.

A good day starts and ends without a sunburn, so you’ll need a good sunscreen! Top in Consumer Reports tests is Coppertone Water Babies Lotion SPF 50. Make sure to reapply every two hours or after swimming! And no, it’s not just for babies. Adults can use it, too.

You can keep the good times rolling with the right tunes and a portable speaker! Consumer Reports recommends the Bose SoundLink Color II. It’s good for sound, very easy to use, and it’s got decent versatility.

And if you want to serve more than snacks, you’ll need a cooler. Check out the $20 Coleman Chiller Cooler. With about one inch of insulation, it was great at maintaining a cool temperature in Consumer Reports lab tests.

And a Consumer Reports food safety expert says that’s especially important this time of year. Bacteria love hot and humid summer weather, making it the perfect time of year for harmful bacteria to quickly multiply on food.

To keep your food cold, pack your cooler full. Try not to leave any open space, and put new ice or frozen ice packs on top.

And when it is time to go home, be aware that many national, state, and local parks are “carry in, carry out,” so plan to bring your trash and recycling home with you.

Consumer Reports says if you’ll be driving far, try to keep the cooler in the air-conditioned part of your car. Then when you get where you’re going, stash it in a shady spot. It’s important you not leave food out of the cooler for more than two hours—or one hour if the temperature is over 90 degrees.

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