When it comes to packing for a vacation, holiday or adventure, there is always going to be something you’re going to forget. I hope it’s nothing important, but, at the end of the day, there are always going to be shops and markets where you can buy whatever it is you’ve forgotten.

Plus, forgetting something and having to explore the area to find what you need is part of the fun of the adventure! A lot of generic items are also a lot cheaper than what you would find in the western world.

If you really do fret about what it is you’re going to pack, here’s a comprehensive list of what you’ll need for any trip.

Travel Documents:

THESE ARE VERY IMPORTANT. You can buy more clothes, find some sun cream and even get health supplies in any country, but it is so much more difficult to get official documents if you lose them or forget them. These are the very first things you should pack and check for.

  • Passport
  • Visas
  • Travel insurance documents
  • Flight tickets
  • Photocopies
  • Driving license

Personal Health:

Some of you may see some of these as a luxury, but I think everything here is a necessity. Depending on your own personal health needs, you may want to add or take away some things from this part of the ultimate list.

  • First aid kit
  • Personal medication
  • Prescription glasses
  • Contact lenses and solution
  • Sunscreen
  • Lip balm
  • Sunglasses
  • Insect repellent
  • Antihistamine/insect bite cream
  • Antibacterial gel/wipes
  • After-sun moisturiser
  • Anti-malaria pills
  • Paracetamol


If you value your beauty sleep, the make sure you have all the things in this section of the list! These are going to make your life so much easier if you are staying in shared accommodation, traveling to a different time zone or just have a difficult person to share with.

  • Eye mask
  • Earplugs
  • Pajamas
  • Mosquito net (optional)


Where would you be without clothes? You’d be one very naked traveler! Obviously, you’re going to pack clothes, but you’d be surprised how often people forget very basic items of clothing! Take a look through this list before you start packing and lay everything out before it goes in the suitcase so you can check it off.

  • Anorak/Raincoat
  • Sweater/fleece/hoody
  • Long sleeved top
  • Long trousers (zip-off trousers are very versatile)
  • Jeans/trousers/shorts
  • T-Shirts/cotton shirts
  • Socks/underwear
  • Sun hat
  • Warm hat (in the winter only)
  • Swimming gear
  • Swimming towel
  • Comfortable walking shoes/hiking boots or trainers with a good grip
  • Sandals/flip-flops


  • Camera
  • Film or memory cards
  • Spare batteries/charger
  • Dustproof camera bag
  • Small laptop/tablet

Travel Accessories:

These are things which make traveling a lot easier, sure you can get along just fine without them, but if you DO have them, then you’re in for a treat. These are mainly great for if you are traveling as a young person in a group, or if you are going somewhere off the beaten track or doing something unusual.

  • Comfortable daypack to carry your personal needs during the day
  • Music player
  • Smartphone
  • Padlock
  • Reading material
  • Water bottle
  • Pen/paper/notepad
  • Multi-tool device (scissors, bottle opener, clippers, etc)
  • Torch/flashlight/head torch
  • Electrical adapter for the country you are traveling to

Personal Items:

These are just the last little bits, mainly health and beauty based which are going to make your trip just that little bit more luxurious (not super luxurious!), they are just things that aren’t 100% necessary but are still very useful to have. Pack these last as they are not high priority and you don’t want to sacrifice anything above just so you have these! Worst comes to worst, most, if not all, of these items which likely be able to be purchased from a shop at your destination.

  • Toiletries
  • Tissues
  • Razors
  • Bath towel
  • Small mirror
  • Money
  • Money belt or pouch