Did you forget something? Packing has always been a challenge, and it’s only gotten worse in recent years, with new gadgets, cables, chargers and airline rules.
Here’s the ultimate guide to packing, broken down by tech, clothes, toiletries and documents. Then we’ll list some handy travel items that might make your life easier and finish up with some packing tips. Happy trails!
How much tech you want to bring on holiday is up to you, so feel free to add to or subtract from this list. Similarly, some travellers like to leave their laptop behind, so they won’t be tempted to check work emails or ongoing projects.
- Tablet – plus charger!
- Phone – plus charger!
- Kindle – plus charger!
- Headphones – plus charger!
- Adapter plugs
- Headphones (noise cancelling, if budget and space allows)
- Camera (memory stick if necessary) – plus charger!
- Laptop – plus charger
Naturally, this will depend on the duration of your stay, where you go and the time of year. So, add and subtract accordingly.
- Smart-casual shirts or dresses
- Shorts (weather depending!)
- Scarves, hats, gloves (again, weather depending)
- Ties, belts
- Shoes, runners, sandals
- Jumper, hoody or cardigan
- Toothbrush, toothpaste, floss
- Makeup/makeup remover
- Razors, shaving cream, aftershave
- Feminine hygiene products
- Boarding pass
- Insurance information / cards
- Hotel information (contact number, address)
- Emergency contact numbers
- Driver’s licence
- Travel pillow
- Eye mask and ear plugs
Handy travel accessories
These accessories might not be essential for everyone, but for the right traveller, they can make life much easier…
Travel tech organiser – for keeping your chargers, leaders and small devices in one place. Lots of compartments!
International travel adapter – the modern ones have USB ports and are in the shape of a neat, packing-friendly cube.
Multi-USB charger – speaking of charging, if you want to charge numerous devices at once, this is the gadget for you. It’s especially handy for couples or families.
Money belt that looks like an ordinary belt – not everywhere accepts credit and debit cards, so carrying cash can be sometimes unavoidable. If you have to carry a lot of cash, we’d recommend doing so in a discrete money belt.
Headphone splitter – yes, many headphones are Bluetooth these days, but most can’t accommodate shared Bluetooth. A splitter allows multiple pairs of headphones to connect to a device. So, for instance, kids in the back of a car can watch something on a tablet with two pairs of headphones; or you and your partner can listen to a podcast together from the same phone when you’re on a plane or train.
- Keys (house and vehicle!)
Stricter travel rules and cheaper flights have changed our lives. It also means that we’ve all gotten a little smarter when it comes to packing and travel. Here are some of our favourite packing tips…
Backup paperwork and documents
Take pictures, get digital backups (like boarding passes and e-tickets, for instance) and, if you want to feel extra secure, email these documents to yourself and your travelling companion. This is advisable even if you use apps like Apple Wallet for your boarding pass.
There are also apps available that consolidate confirmation emails, such as TripIt.
Roll – Don’t Fold
Folded clothes look neater in that moment just before you close your case, but folded clothes are more compact and (consequently) are less likely to wrinkle.
Make a list
Travelling can be stressful, so it’s a good idea to outsource some of that stress (i.e., remembering things!) to a list.
Research who you’re travelling with
If you’re flying, check your airline’s website to see their baggage restrictions and costs. They’re eager to share with you any information or rules they have about baggage. You don’t want to be the one wrestling with a bag and a little container/cage at the checkout gate!
Take laundry into account
If you want to travel light, look into laundry facilities. Most major cities will have a public one, as will many hotels (including Maldron Hotels, incidentally). If you plan it right, you can really cut down on the volume of clothes you pack.
Remember how universal USB chargers are
It’s easy to forget how ubiquitous USB chargers are: there are charge points everywhere, from public transport (buses and trains) to cars (possibly the car you’re renting) and many TV sets.
What’s included in your hotel room
- Shower gel
- Ironing board