Have you ever used a travel packing checklist when traveling abroad? Me, I’m not organized enough to print one off and have it with me when I’m packing. However, I have found that if I made my own I am more likely to actually use it.
Every time, without fail, I leave for the airport I have the same negative thought running through my head. What did I forget this time? I check my pocket for the essentials like my wallet and passport multiple times before getting to the check-in counter. I run through a list in my head of the things I would definitely need for my trip. However, I always seem to forget something. Usually it is something small that I am okay without, but sooner or later it will be something big.
Therefore, I made it my goal to create a comprehensive travel packing checklist that will help me, and any traveler, while packing for the next trip. Having something in my hand that I can physically check of items one-by-one will help ease my mind.
This is the packing list for traveling abroad that will help make your packing as enjoyable as possible. Is packing even supposed to be enjoyable? Anyways, press play on your favorite album and get your bag ready to be packed. Here is the list of travel items needed for any trip. Some things are listed in broad categories, but are there to make you think about what you may need for that category as it will vary from person to person.
Travel Abroad Packing List
Clothes / Apparel
- Travel Bags
- Packing Cubes / Extra Bags
- Hat / Toque or Beanie
- Glasses / Contact Lenses – Case and Lens Solution
Check with your airline to see how many you are allowed, as well as the size and weight restrictions. If you want to travel faster and cheaper on most airlines, travel with only carry-on luggage. That way you are not waiting for your luggage coming off of the airplane to pick up and you likely will be paying less for your tickets.
How long are you traveling for? What is the weather like where you are going? Do you have access to a laundry machine while traveling? These are all questions you need to consider when packing your clothing. Roll up your clothes so they take the least amount of room possible in your bag. Or better yet…
You never know when a bag is going to come in handy. Pack one for sure for the dirty or damp laundry that will be returning on the way back home. Or use packing cubes to separate dirty from clean and to compress your clothing and fit more into your luggage.
Maybe you need them, maybe you do not. But if you are going to a beach or swimming during your trip maybe you should pack your favorite beach towel.
Will you be hiking? Will you be enjoying the beach? Will you be walking around town a lot and need the best walking shoes for travel? Pack your footwear accordingly.
Cover your head from the sun or the cold.
Not only stylish, but they also protect your eyes from the harsh UV rays of the sun.
If this is you, do not forget these or you will have a tough time seeing the wonderful sights.
Do you bring it with you or leave it at home? Do not forget to pack or unpack these from yourself before leaving. You would not want something precious to go missing or be stolen while you are traveling.
- Toothbrush and Toothpaste
- Soap and Shampoo
- Shaving Supplies
- Necessary Makeup
- Hair Styling Supplies and Products
- Aloe Vera Lotion
- Insect Repellent
Do not let those teeth go rotting on you.
I cannot go anywhere without these. Every time after I shower I need them to feel completely clean.
Be careful with liquids in bottles as sometimes they can leak all over your clothing and bags. Place them in a plastic bag and seal it tight to ensure you wont have this trouble.
Are you traveling long enough to be needing your shaving kit?
How much of your makeup do you need while you are out on the road?
Do you have room for your supplies and products that you use for your hair?
Do not let your skin be exposed to the sun for long periods of time. Make sure you lather up.
Just in case you get a sunburn, this will help alleviate some of the pain.
Good to have especially for if you are going camping.
- Prescribed Medicine
- Diarrhea Medication
Ever had some swelling or been hungover when you need to go on a long hike the next day? This will help to have some of this with you at all times.
Whether it is for sleeping, anxiety, or any other prescribed medicines you may have. Just make sure to include the prescription when you pack these. That means no slipping them into plastic baggies or unmarked containers.
Whether you need some Pepto or you have some traveler’s diarrhea medication, you may want to bring that with you should you need it.
Not to be packed, but you want to make sure you received all of the necessary vaccinations to go traveling to your specific destination.
- Laptop / Tablet
- Camera / Camcorder and Accessories
- Necessary Chargers
- Universal Power Adapter
Cannot go anywhere without your trusty smartphone.
If you are like us and want to do some work while on the road or transfer photos right away.
This is a major one for us, which includes a bag dedicated to this stuff.
Do not forget your chargers otherwise you will be out of luck once those batteries die.
If you are going somewhere else with different style outlets and energy sources you will need a power adapter.
- Wallet / Purse
- Converted Currency
- International Driver’s License
- Other Necessary Travel Documents
- Itinerary / Any Necessary Travel Printouts
- Flight Ticket Receipt
Do not forget your wallet or purse with some cash on hand in your home currency and the currency of where you are traveling to, a credit card, and your personal identification if necessary.
It is good to have some converted currency in advance if possible. Converting at the airport is always more expensive.
If required, make sure you have received your international driver’s license beforehand and that you have it packed with you.
Scan your passport and other forms of government ID. Send yourself an email with these photos attached. This will help you in the rare case that you lose your passport while traveling. Do not leave anywhere without doing this!
Visas are necessary for citizens to get from certain countries in order to travel to other countries. Make sure to do your research well in advance so that you have your visa ready.
If you have any other necessary travel documents that you need to travel with.
We always have a physical copy of our itinerary just in case we lose our phone or it is broken.
We also print this out to have a physical copy when checking in to our flight.
Now, take your bag to your scale. Step on your scale without the bag, note your weight, and step on the scale with your bag. Take the difference of the weights and that is how much your bag weighs. Does it go over the weight restrictions of the airline you are flying with? I hope not, but if so at least you found out now and not at the airport. Or to be more precise, you can use a luggage scale that you can get for cheap.
Hopefully this travel packing checklist takes some stress off of your mind the next time you are preparing for your next trip. We know that having something handy has really helped us to go through what we have packed and to know that we have everything necessary to enjoy our travels without worrying that we forgot something.
We would love to hear from you if you feel that we left something out! Please leave a comment below.
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