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Which are the essentials things to carry while traveling ?

Travel Forums Travel Gear Which are the essentials things to carry while traveling ?

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1. Posted by mindyscore (First Time Poster 1 posts) 2y Star this if you like it!

Please let me know the essentials things that one should carry while travelling.

2. Posted by berner256 (Moderator 861 posts) 2y Star this if you like it!

It depends on you; and when and where you will be traveling. Some people need more clothes than others, particularly if they decide not to wash their own.

I draw up a packing list for each trip, tailoring it to conditions that I anticipate I will encounter on that trip. For example, I'm packing sandals for my next trip (in addition to flip-flops) because I expect to jump in and out of boats into water that's knee-deep or waist high (the flip-flops would float away; and the river beds and ocean bottoms are more likely to be rocky rather than sandy).

What's really essential for me are two changes of clothes, a rain coat, one light-or mid-weight fleece, an LED flashlight, flip-flops; and a hat. I build from there.

3. Posted by CheersT (Inactive 2578 posts) 2y Star this if you like it!

Ditto Berner. Everyone's needs are different. Nothing is "essential" except your Passport, documentation and money. I suppose the only things that I always have no matter where I'm going is a super small headlamp, prescription glasses and sunglasses, clothing, personal hygiene and camera gear.

I travel independently for indefinite periods (several months at a time) via hotels/hostels through 3 climates with a carry-on size 46 litre backpack with LOTS of room left over - all the cinch straps are yanked to their tightest dimensions so the backpack is really only about 35 litres.

That's including a set of nice clothes to crash an Embassy party or high-end club, normal day-to-day casual and hiking wear, beach clothes, personal hygiene products and everything else you need to be safe/comfortable plus a laptop, digital still/video package and all the peripherals.

I have a separate daypack that fits inside the main backpack. I use it to carry all my essentials when the main backpack is in an overhead bin, etc.

Going light makes sense to me because it allows me to keep my backpack with me (almost) all the time - it's carry-on size for aircraft, it doesn't need to be checked into the baggage space under the bus where it's out of my sight and out of my control - and it's obviously way easier/faster to navigate a crowded train aisle, keep with me inside the taxi, stow in a small boat, fit into a tuk-tuk, onto the back of a motorcycle and a million other situations which are crucial for travel in off-the-beaten-path situations.

Travelling that light is not everyone's cup of tea though. When I see other travellers - especially smaller women - struggle with 60-70-80 litre backpacks (usually with additional daypacks!) it's insane to me, but maybe they look at me wearing the same one or two sets of clothing all the time and doing a wash every every couple of days as equally silly.

Good luck figuring out your style.


4. Posted by Angelina01 (Budding Member 8 posts) 2y Star this if you like it!

Yeah, I agree, the only "real" essentials when travelling is your passport, money and documentation (which you have copies of and have backed up online as well, just in case).
But apart from that, Terry is right, it depends on where you are going and your own style.

5. Posted by NicoleStanley (Budding Member 2 posts) 2y Star this if you like it!

There are very essential things which one should carry with itself while traveling:
Pack clothes which comforts you
When traveling, important documents must not be forgotten to bring and pack in your bags.
Always have some cash and ATM or credit card
If you are going to any specific destination then carry the map of the place
Keep other accessories like camera, books, first aid box(safety reasons) with you

6. Posted by Anil_traveller (Budding Member 5 posts) 2y Star this if you like it!

Aside from your individual needs, I would say basic medication. I never travel anywhere without basic meds like panadol, ORS and charcoal pills. Learnt it the hard way backpacking solo in Krabi during the low season and I came down with a high fever. I was in a remote area so no one spoke English and I had to walk out in the Thai heat to go and look for meds. Not the most pleasant experience to say the least, so yea, carry some basics meds. :)

7. Posted by berner256 (Moderator 861 posts) 2y Star this if you like it!

I agree that you should carry medication from home since the exact ones you use might not be available. Formulations also might be different; as well as the names.

A frequent complaint among travelers is an upset stomach. Many people blame tainted food or water. But it also could be that the food was too oily or too spicy. An antacid might help. But if I suspect that my upset was bacterial, I use an antibiotic, Xifaxan (rifaximin), prescribed by my doctor. It resolves the problem quickly.

I find that a probiotic, Culturelle, also recommended by my doctor, helps as well. So I take it daily while traveling.

An antihistamine ointment is great for insect bites, as is a small tube of petroleum jelly for cuts and scrapes. A small bottle of saline nasal spray helps when you have a cold, or those around you have colds (in which case I use it as a preventative). It also keeps my nose from bleeding when the air is very dry.

Tailor your medicine bag to your needs. It will add some weight to your backpack, but you'll feel better -- if and when you need it.

8. Posted by katzgar (Inactive 220 posts) 2y Star this if you like it!

a few basic clothes
DEET...for tropical areas

[ Edit: Edited on 09-Jul-2015, at 17:50 by katzgar ]

9. Posted by karazyal (Travel Guru 1853 posts) 2y Star this if you like it!

There is what you can carry on the plane and what you can carry in your check in bag.

Some people who only travel with a single bag or pack and never have a check in bag. They may be comfortable with very few clean clothes to change into or maybe even shower less. Most countries you visit do have laundry facilities of some sort. Southeast Asia is not too expensive for laundries and you can even wash socks or underwear at your hotel. No problem finding washing powder on the road.

Being older I will not fly in shorts, t-shirts and flip flops, I always have long pants and a long sleeve shirt and socks and walking shoes. In my carry on bag I have a spare pair of pants and a spare shirt because in the past 20 years I have had coffee and other fluids spilled on my travel clothes and needed a change. I have spare underwear and socks in my carry on bag too because I have been on flights that have broke down or for some reason could not continue and I needed a change of clothing for a long layover. (Other travelers are comfortable wearing the same grubby clothes for two or three days because maybe this is just like they do back home.) I have my razor, toothpaste, aftershave and other allowed toiletries within proper allowed amounts. I always have paperbacks to read during long flights. (Don't like reading off an electronic doo-hicky!)

I always have a check in bag. Since I don't have to pay for this service there are some things I like having available. I have a pair of cheap sneakers in my check in bag. This is good if your regular shoes get wet or fall apart. I have big feet and in Asia sometimes big shoes - size 12 US and above - are not cheap if you can even find them! I like to have some flip flops (shower shoes) because I don't like to step barefoot on some floors, especially in showers. The time of year I leave home determines if I have more clothing for cold weather or not. (Sweater or sweat shirt, light jacket and cheap plastic poncho for long walks back to my house when I return late at night.)

One thing you can bring in a check in bag is a Swiss Army Knife. They can be very helpful. I have a multi-knife with pliers and screw drivers, etc. Sometimes you have to fix things! Can openers are helpful. (You can't bring a Swiss Army Knife in your carry on bag.) Larger containers of your favorite sun block, toothpaste, deodorant, shampoo, etc. you can have in your check in bag. Although you can buy this stuff overseas sometimes your favorite "stuff" might be quite a bit more expensive! I always have some paperbacks to read and later trade or give away. (In my hometown I can get them used for cheap money from flea markets, yard sales and thrift shops.) More spare underwear and socks in the check-in bag. I have a fold up umbrella for rainy season.

Have copies of your passport info pages and any visa pages. Any meds you bring on the plane make sure they are in the original containers. Any prescription drugs must be in the original containers with pharmacy and prescribing doctor clearly indicated. No baggie of miscellaneous pills making you look like a drug dealer! Quantities of prescription drugs should be an amount to see you through your time overseas and not look like you are going to sell them.

Look over the rules for what "fluid" items you can bring on a plane. It has been over 10 years since security rules came in for what is allowed on a plane in the carry on bag. Even now you still see what the security people confiscate from passengers. Big bottles of booze, big containers (usually expensive) of cologne, perfume and fancy skin creams taken away! Not to mention chains, knifes, clubs, swords, etc.

For long flights, on a plane I like to have my ear plugs, sleep mask and sometimes I break out a blow up pillow.

[ Edit: Edited on 10-Jul-2015, at 13:53 by karazyal ]

10. Posted by Andyf (Moderator 837 posts) 2y Star this if you like it!

Thanks for the assumption that those of us who travel light don't shower very often!