Packing for a trip is always considered to be an onerous chore, but done correctly, with time and thought, it can make a lot of difference to the outcome of your journey, be it for business or pleasure. It’s not until you discover that you’ve left certain things behind that you realize how much of a hassle it can cause. So, getting it right in the first place can you save you an awful lot of grief later.
1) Planning ahead- Whether you’re a frequent traveler or not, it always a good idea when packing for a trip to plan your packing carefully. Start off by creating a basic check list. There are two advantages. Firstly, you are thinking in advance (not in panic at the last minute) so you can consider what you will need more carefully. Secondly, your check list can also act as a packing list that you can tick off each time you pack an item, making sure nothing you need gets left behind.
2) Documents – Documents are always a concern. The number of times people end up double check and triple checking to make sure they’ve got airline tickets or passports or whatever, is amazing. There’s nothing worse than realizing an hour after leaving home on your way to the airport that you’ve left your passport behind. Once again, when packing for a trip, planning is the key. Write yourself that all important check list well in advance. Remember that documents can vary depending on the country of destination (e.g. a Visa). Typically your check list should include: Passports, Drivers licenses, Travel tickets, Boarding passes (if checked in online), Visas, Vaccination certificates, Travel insurance certificate, Traveler’s checks or foreign currency, Bookings confirmations, Maps, and Guidebook/Phrasebook. It’s always handy to have a pen and some writing paper too.
3) Cleanliness and health – If you are flying, and carrying any liquids/creams, check the restrictions on such items with your airline. You may need to “decant” these into smaller containers to be able to take them on board. If flying to warmer countries you can take: Malaria tablets, Insect repellant, Sun Lotion, Sun glasses, Condoms (or whatever your preferred method contraception is), Toiletries, Hairbrush/comb, any medications you may be taking, first aid kit (including diarrhea tablets), Water purification tablets, and if appropriate, travel sickness pills.
4) Clothing – Clothing is obviously a very personalized affair. Ensure you take plenty of underwear (especially if you are not going to be doing any washing). Take something warm for the cooler evenings, and some sort or waterproof should it rain. It always a good idea to have casual shoes (trainers etc) as well as something smarter for nice restaurants etc. If you’re going somewhere cold, pack some thermals and thick socks
5) Electronics and others -These are not essentials, but you may consider: Electric razor, Heated hair rollers, Portable hair dryer, Mobile phone, Phone Charger, Mains adaptors, Corkscrew, Can opener, and Penknife (not in hand luggage),