If you’re anything like me, you have a list of what to pack for your next world-wide adventure before your plane ticket is even purchased. I always find myself double-checking my dental floss and extra underwear only to arrive kicking myself for forgetting woolen socks. Although you can often buy forgotten items overseas, and the first rule of packing is LESS IS MORE, there is no point in spending your traveling precious cash on items you have lying around at home.
Remember: When you’re living in a hostel, you won’t have instant access to everything you’re used to having at home. Simple items are often the most coveted.
Here are my Top Ten Important Items you DO NOT want to forget:
- Headlamp – Avoid pissing off your dorm roommates by keeping the main light off and your hands free to dig through your bag when you arrive (or leave) at 3am.
- Tape—It’s funny how handy and necessary it is to have a roll of tape with you – for baggage tears, small cuts, and packing,
- Quick-dry Towel— These fantastic cloths can be found at any camping store. They are generally small and can dry in under 10 minutes. Fair warning – they tend to get smelly quickly.
- Soap— To wash your towel, clothes, and hands. Hostels don’t always provide soap in bathrooms (and they rarely ever provide towels). If you wear contacts and are headed somewhere that water is not sanitary, bring hand sanitizer to keep bugs out of your eyes.
- Nail Clippers— Yet another household item we all take for granted. Finger nails grow at an average rate of 3mm/month. Even a week-long trip requires some scissors.
- Tupperware— When you cook dinner in your hostel, make a little extra and save it in a container to take along for lunch the next day.
- Spork— To eat your delicious leftover’s on the go.
- Universal Adaptor—While you can buy small, individual adapters, this big boy will have you covered RTW – just in case you end up in a different country then originally intended. Remember: An adapter is for fitting the plug-ins; a converter is for converting wattage If you want to use a hair dryer or flat iron, you’ll need both. For laptops and most electronics, you’re good with just an adapter.
- Lock— To secure all of your important belongings in the dorm-room’s handy lockers.
- Waterbottle with a Clip— To strap onto your purse/backpack and carry with you everywhere. Clean water will keep you healthy and hydrated!
I hope this list is helpful—it has certainly been an aid to me! Your packing list will depend on where you’re going, how long you’ll be gone, and – of course – what you want to accomplish there.
While packing, also consider including some playing cards, a bottle opener, and a lanyard.
I always bring a mug with photographs and letters from loved ones along. I like to take a little bit of home with me everywhere I go.
Please mention any other items you consider a necessity. And, as always, happy travels!