Packing Tips for Traveling Abroad
Obviously, you’ll need… Clothes:
Okay, there are a couple of different schools of thought on what clothing to bring with you. There are those that want to take their entire wardrobe with them, to make sure they have the perfect outfit for every occasion. If that’s your style, far be it from me to tell you change. You are probably used to traveling domestically like that, so it might not bother you. But just a word of advice: you are going to spend a LOT of time with your luggage! More than likely, you’re going to be checking in and out of several hotels, catching trains, getting on puddle jumper flights, not to mention checking those bags for at least two international flights, and hauling them around with you, going in and out of customs.
Then there are the minimalists. Two shirts, two pairs of pants, a couple changes of undies and socks, and that’s it. That’s okay if you A: don’t mind waring dirty, stinky clothes, or B: you don’t mind washing your clothes in your hotel room every night. (Confession: I’ve tried that, and it’s a pain!)
I find myself in the happy medium between the two. I typically bring enough clothes to last me half way through the trip. (This includes 3 pair of lightweight pants that can unzip into shorts, a lightweight rain jacket, light sweater, five or six shirts, and the same amount of underwear and socks.) And at that halfway point, I drop off my dirty clothes at a local laundry service in the morning, and pick up the clean clothes that evening upon my return.
Travel size toiletries packed in a clear pouch with all liquids in 3 oz. clear bottles to comply with TSA regulations. If you don’t do this, you’re likely to get pulled aside at airport security check points, which not only is inconvenient, but if you’re running late to catch a flight… might waste valuable time.
Day pack to carry stuff while sight-seeing. In my pack, I carry the rain jacket, sweater, guidebook, water bottle, if needed an umbrella (purchased there if raining), and any other miscellaneous items.
Travel wallet. This is where I keep my passport, insurance information, debit card, and the majority of my cash. I’ll keep spending money for the day in my front pocket (which is zippered for added security). I’ve found the best are the ones that go around your neck, and hang underneath your shirt to be the most convenient and user-friendly ones. Money belts that you wear low on your hips, are just plain inconvenient if you have to get at it in a public place.
Many women, who are attached to their purses, might want to purchase a travel purse that are “slash proof” which means that would-be thieves can’t cut the strap off, or slice through the purse with a knife to get at your belongings.
Miscellaneous items: power adapters. digital camera, inflatable travel pillows really help on the plane trip over, MP3 player or smart phone, ear buds, any medication you need, like allergy pills (if you even occasionally experience seasonal allergies, take something with you that you know works for you, instead of playing the guessing game with foreign medications.)