What do I pack when I’m travelling overseas – Checklist

Traveling Overseas - Checklist

For many people holidaying abroad for the first time, the initial question they ask is “What do I pack when I’m travelling overseas?” Well, I have the ultimate checklist for you!

When it comes to travelling, less is definitely more. My number one tip is to take two bags only… One carry on bag, and one suitcase (which will be checked baggage on your plane flight).

These checklist tips helped me pack lightly and efficiently for trips to the UK, Europe, Dubai, Bali and the USA.


What do I pack when I'm travelling overseas - Checklist





What do I pack when I’m travelling overseas?


Carry On Bag

Everyone has a preference when it comes to carrying around a day bag. Some people prefer a backpack, some a shoulder bag, others a hard case. My choice for international travel is a tote bag. Whatever your decision, be sure to check out your airline’s policy when it comes to standard sizes and weight restriction for carry on baggage.

Also check out the Australian Government’s website for advice on what items cannot be taken onboard an aircraft (as they have the potential to be used to harm others – prohibited items include dangerous goods powders, liquids, aerosols and gels).




What to pack in your carry on?

Travel wallet to hold your passport, itinerary, travel cards and a small amount of destination currency.

Travel pillow – I’d highly recommend a u-shaped, microbead pillow – it’s my choice for ultimate comfort.

• A clear bag (a sandwich bag will do the trick) with travel size deodorant, paracetamol, hand sanitiser and any body creams you might need packed inside. When you go through customs, you’ll have to take this out of your bag and pop it in the luggage container. You are not allowed anything over 100ml, so don’t pack expensive make up or beauty products/perfume in your carry on, because they’ll be confiscated.

• Warm socks. There’s nothing worse than cold feet, so a pair of cosy socks can make your travel experience much more comfortable. Compression socks/stockings may also be an option for you, I’d suggest you heed advice from a medical professional or check out the discussion boards on Tripadvisor for more information.

• Spare underwear and a tee, in case your luggage is delayed and you want to change into something fresh.

• Something to read, a book and a magazine (or two). Only what you’ll read on that flight though, the rest can go in your suitcase, so that your carry bag is not too heavy.

• Accessories like sunglasses, an eye mask and headphones. Any products which you have a personal preference on wearing during the flight and to/from the airport.

• Phone, camera, laptop, kindle and any other tech devices. Also a usb cable, as some flights will have facilities for you to charge your devices on-board (or in the airport during transit).


CHECKLIST: What do I pack when I'm travelling overseas



Suitcase (Check-in Luggage)

Similar to your carry on bag, you should always refer to your booked airline guide for specific baggage allowances and size restrictions when travelling overseas. Be sure to avoid packing any breakables or valuables in your check-in luggage as (sadly sometimes) items may get lost or damaged.

My suitcase of choice is a hard case, which are durable and therefore offer the best protection of the items inside, as well as being waterproof from the outside if carried on luggage carts in the elements. The case itself should be lightweight, ideally with four wheels (the number and type of wheels on your suitcase definitely matters). Ensure you pick a bag that is durable, to ultimately last you multiple global trips and also withstand some not-so-ideal manoeuvring by airport staff.



What to pack in your suitcase

Know your travel location – the weather, the culture, the religious beliefs, the government laws. You’ll need to pack appropriately.

Besides your clothes and toiletries in your suitcase, I’d just suggest some laundry soap (or body wash), which you can use to wash your underwear/clothes in the shower if you need too. Generally there are no washing facilities when you are travelling abroad, or if you only spend a night or two in the one location, you won’t have time to visit a coin laundry or wait for hotel laundering services.

Also ladies, don’t forget to pack sanitary products if you are due to get your period while you are away (it’s easy to forget about in the lead up, but you’ll be better off being prepared, rather than needing to urgently buy when you’re in a foreign country – especially in remote locations).

• A photocopy of your passport, itinerary and smart traveller registration.

• Clothes, beauty products and toiletries.

• A compact shoulder strap bag or belt bag (ie. an everyday bag) that is secure and practical to carry around in the cities you visit (you might be able to fit this bag in your carry on? Up to you. I just got mine out after we checked into each hotel).

Remember – Always take your passport, cash, travel documents, tech products and medications with you in your carry-on luggage.






Travel Inspiration

My Passport Adventures


6 Best Places to Visit in Italy – Bucket List Travel Itinerary


15 things to do in London in 4 days



CHECKLIST - What to pack when you travel Overseas



Emily Collie is Founder and Editor of well-known Australian travel blog, Melbourne Girl. Emily has written travel articles for Expedia, eHarmony, Amex Shop Small Blogger Series and Racing.com, and has been featured on many Australian websites including Mimco Mimzine and Bonds Australia Blog, and was invited on behalf of the VRC and Myer, to judge the Myer Fashions on the Field competition on Emirates Melbourne Cup Day.

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