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Travel essentials: how and what to pack

Traveling and going on a holiday are fascinating times in our lives. With great happiness comes the unfortunate task of packing all the things you will need for your travels. Invariably, there are always a few items that we forget in our haste to leave. Whenever you’re packing for a trip, it’s a good habit to have a handy checklist of essential and non-essential items that you might need.

Despite this, many people forget crucial things, like the rechargeable batteries for the camera, or makeup remover and cotton pads, and so on. These are regular everyday things that we take for granted in our homes. Some men forget to carry extra blades for their safety razors, and women forget to bring extra sanitary napkins. These things happen very often, but it is an additional chore to find a store or outlet in the country or your travel destination.

Consider this list a friendly reminder to plan, organize, and systematically pack all your critical things (with a little help from us!).

Select your luggage:

This is by far the most crucial element of your trip. It’s not the stuff you carry, but what you carry it in. Often, people miscalculate the capacity of the luggage they will require. Select baggage that is versatile, big enough to store all your things, and is lightweight. Another thing to consider before you finalize your luggage is the warranty on your bag. Ensure you are not stuck with a broken wheel or handle with a good warranty on your luggage.

There are several types that you can consider – 4 wheels, rolling luggage, wheeled backpacks, duffel bags, carry-ons, and travel backpacks. Choose your bag and size by the place and the weather you are visiting. If you are expecting rain, then a waterproof bag is a good option, if it’s going to be rocky terrain, then duffel bags would be a better bet.

Basic Organizing:

If you are planning a family holiday, you will have to pack for children and senior citizens also. If you’re attending a wedding or function, you would require meticulous planning and organizing (imagine if you were the best man and forgot the wedding rings!). Keep your suitcase structured to find things once you reach your final destination quickly.

These are a few essentials while traveling on holiday:

  • Long-sleeved shirts/tops/dresses
  • Lightweight clothing that may be worn in multiple layers
  • Sweaters/ jackets
  • Pants/shorts
  • Belts/stirrups
  • Socks and walking shoes (for sightseeing)
  • Sleepwear
  • Innerwear
  • Hats/ caps/ sun visors/ sunglasses/ scarves
  • Swimwear with water goggles and a water cap
  • Lightweight towels
  • Cell phone and charger with universal adapter
  • Language and direction Apps on your phone/ tablet
  • Portable wifi connection
  • Passport with additional photocopies
  • Medical and travel insurance
  • Hotel reservations and itineraries with contact details of concerned people
  • Transportation tickets (airplane/ bus/ car/ train)
  • Emergency contact details

Toiletry bag:

In all possibilities, the resort or hotel you will stay in will probably have a stock of regular toiletries. However, if you are prone to skin allergies or react to different products, it is best to have an inventory of your toiletries with you. Carry smaller tubes or bottles to help reduce your weight, but ensure you carry your toiletries in waterproof bags in the case of spills and leaks.

Some of the things you should keep in your toiletry bag:

  • Toothbrush/ toothpaste/ tongue cleaner/ floss/ mouthwash
  • Combs/ hairbrushes/ hair ties/ bobby pins
  • Shampoo and conditioner
  • Deodorant/ perfume
  • Sunscreen with SPF 30 or higher
  • Acne face wash and face cream
  • Lip balm
  • Feminine hygiene/ sanitary products
  • Contact lens cases with the solution
  • Eye-glasses with prescription
  • Sewing kit
  • Shaving kit
  • Toilet paper/ roll/ tissues/ baby wipes
  • Nail clippers/ scissors/ tweezers

Medicine Kit:

When traveling to another country, always check to see which vaccines are required. Get your vaccinations done at least two months before your departure date and carry the documentation for proof at customs. Carry the prescriptions for your medications with you to ensure you can refill them in case of emergencies.

Some tips to fill your medicine pouch:

  • Bandages/ gauze/ adhesive/ disinfectant and band-aids
  • Prescription copies
  • Painkillers/ muscle relaxants/ flu antivirals like Tamiflu
  • Cough syrup/ laxative/ anti-inflammatory medicines
  • Allergy medication
  • Motion sickness pills/ altitude sickness pills
  • Multivitamins
  • Insect and mosquito repellant/ fabric roll-ons
  • Eye drops
  • Hand sanitizers/ wet wipes
  • Antibacterial and anti-inflammatory cream/gel/ointment
  • Moleskin
  • Thermometer

Carry-on bag:

Carry-on bags are used to keep your essentials on you at all times. In your carry-on bag, always keep spare copies of your passport and travel documents, mobile chargers, and headphones, a camera with rechargeable batteries, universal adapters, and additional cash and forex cards.

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