Everybody wants their trips to be relaxing, fun and hiccup free. One way to ensure a smooth trip is to plan ahead. Here are some packing tips to avoid a crisis while you travel.
Snacks - Being hungry may not seem like a crisis, but when you’re hungry at the wrong time - say, on the plane when the only food available is a $10 box of crackers, or at the top of the Eiffel Tower when you really want to stay to watch the sunset but your stomach is growling - it can derail both your budget and your schedule. Have snacks on hand at all times.
Passport / ID photocopy - In the unlikely event that your passport gets lost or stolen, you’ll be thankful for that passport photocopy buried in the bottom of your suitcase to fast-track the paperwork to get you home.
Essentials in your carry-on - Even in this day and age, luggage gets lost. Pack the things in your carry-on that you can’t do without: a change of underwear/clothes, your phone charger, a toothbrush...anything you’ll absolutely need on the first night should be in your carry-on, if possible. That way, lost luggage doesn’t completely derail your plans.
Baby powder - The key to keeping your belongings (like wet sneakers) from smelling gross!
Plastic bags - Besides the obvious function of protecting the contents of your suitcase should any liquid containers leak, plastic bags can be useful in all kinds of ways: packing a picnic, collecting trash, containing leaks, keeping laundry separate, preventing water damage to electronics and papers in your backpack during an unexpected thunderstorm. The list goes on.
Labels - Put your name and contact info on anything that you’d hate to lose: namely, your phone. You can even stick a post-it note inside the case with your email address and another phone number. If you leave it somewhere, it’s much more likely to return to you if your name is on it.
An extra layer - Besides the obvious reason that layers allow you to adjust to changing temperatures easily (keep in mind that museums are often very cool, even if it’s hot outside), religious sites often require shoulders covered as a prerequisite for entry. For that reason (and many others, including spills, stains, tears, makeshift pillows, etc.) it’s a good idea to carry one extra layer in your pack at all times.
Wrap valuable items in clothes - If you’re packing fragile items, avoid the disappointment of unpacking to find something broken by wrapping the items heavily in sweatshirts or other clothing. Same goes for your day pack: don’t leave your valuables exposed at the top of your bag (makes it harder for a pickpocketer to get to your wallet without you noticing).
First aid - Band aids, Advil/Tylenol, Neosporin, and some anti-itch cream are almost always useful. Beyond that, customize your first aid kid based on your destination: medical tape if you’re going hiking or prone to sprains, aloe if you tend to get sunburnt, hand-sanitizer if you won’t have access to soap.
Multiple credit cards - Sometimes (even if you call ahead) a credit card will be suspended when you travel abroad because they think the activity looks suspicious. Bring a few credit cards (or cash and a card) so you have options.
In case you missed it check out Part I: 10 Packing tips to save you money. Also stay tuned next week for part III. Packing tips to save time...
Posted by the team at Planit Travel