With my backpack purchase last week I’ve begun thinking about what else I will need to take with me to Europe. I gave plenty of research to my backpack and rightly so but the remaining items have been left by the way side.
Conscious of not wanting to pack like I did on my first overseas trip (not that my backpack will fit that much in it), I’ve started compiling a list of things to take.
Clothing is an obvious item but I’ve mainly been focusing on the other things I may require for now. What I mean by this is say you find yourself having to wash your clothes in the hostel sink only to find there is no plug, or your dorm room door doesn’t lock and your not to keen on the rowdy bunch of guys coming back late and dragging you out of your bed.
The following is my current list of items I am thinking of taking excluding clothing, it will come in a later post.
- Deuter Quantum 55L Backpack with attached 10L Daypack
- Messenger Bag
- Travel Towel
- Contact Lense Prescription & Additional Lenses
- Laundry Soap – Bar or Liquid?
- Nail Clippers
- Portable Clothes Line
- Pain Killers
- Multi Vitamins
- First Aid Kit
- Sink Plug
- Combination Padlocks
- Pocket Knife/Multi Tool
- Door Jam
- Torch – Head Torch?
- Duct Tape
- Clear Zip Lock Bags
- Hat – Hide my Bald Head
- Universal Power Adapter
- Panasonic Digital Camera with Additional Memory Cards
- Flip or Kodak Portable Video Camera – Need to Capture those first Vegemite moments
- iPod Nano
- External Hard Drive
- Money Belt
- Multiple Credit/ATM Cards
- Personal ID Card’s like Drivers Licence
- Multiple Passport Photos
- Copies of all Important Travel Documents – ie Passport
- Travel Guides
Now it’s rather easy for me to make a list without trying to fit it all in my backpack. After all when its written down on paper I can fold the list into my pocket and its nice and tiny. What I’d like is you great reader folk (I know your out there Google Analytics told me your visiting) to help me fill in the rest of the list. If you travel often or if you are travelling with an older person who has the risk of getting a heart attack. You will have to learn how to do a CPR here at coast2coast. Learning this skill can be a life changing for many people and help many people during an emergency situation.
Let me know if my contact lenses are not worth taking (I know you’d love to see me attempt Europe half blind just for a laugh) or if I should be adding something else to the list like an umbrella.
Once you’ve all had your say I’ll make up a final list and convert it to a downloadable pdf document so that others might benefit from it.
I’d also just like to say a quick thanks to the following people for posting some great articles and twitter responses that helped me start my list.
Runaway Jane’s Backpack Basics and What I Carry In Mine
Vagabond Roots Pre Trip Planning Tips for Backpacking Around The World
Michael from The Mobile Lawyer
Dustin from Skinny Backpacker
Erin from Kerala India Travel
I love packing lists! They are beyond exciting as nerdy as that may sound. Not sure if this was included in your toiletries category, but I always find it helpful on long trips to pack travel sized toiletries along with your regular stuff. That way if you take weekend trips from a home base city, you are good to go. YES! Bring contacts and contact cleaner! ha For some reason I always found contact solution to be more expensive in Europe than at home.
.-= Suzy´s last blog ..The Saints of Travel Drive Three-Wheeled Carts =-.
Hey Suzy, hehe do you want do you want to finish mine they go grab all the stuff i’ll hand the credit card over 🙂 I love to hate them I think.
Its exciting to buy all the stuff but nerve racking ensuring I’m getting the right stuff but not going overboard at the same time.
yes all toiletries will be travel sick I need to keep size/weight down and can always buy more I’m sure europe uses them too.
I will be grabbing a supply of contact lenses before leaving as I need to get my prescription checked. Thanks for the tips.
You ABSOLUTELY need to take extra contacts. I travel with as many as I would use at home (about a pair/2months). They’re small, they don’t take much room and you will want them. Take them out of the box and label each one as L or R and put ’em in a baggie. Promise you won’t regret it.
As far as laundry detergent is concerned, there are these little sheets (http://www.purex.com/purex-3-in-1/product) that don’t take up much room. If you can’t find something like that around where you are, in my opinion, laundry detergent is unnecessary waste of space. Every laundromat you visit will have a dispenser for detergent and some hostels stock up pretty well, so you can always just borrow.
.-= Abbey Hesser´s last blog ..Getting Fishy in the Tsukiji Fish Market 築地市場 =-.
Hi Abbey. I normally wear a monthly pair of lenses for 2-3 months so will stock up and get as much wear out of them as possible, expensive things they are.
I’m lucky in the fact both my eyes are the same strength so when I get home drunk at night it won’t matter which ones goes in which side of the holder 🙂
Thx for the tip on laundry detergent. I was hoping to use hostel machines etc and really I can always buy something at the local store if I got desperate.
I hope to wash the the socks and boxers in the shower to prolong the time between washes.
Pretty solid list! However, I would change a couple of things….I would only carry one credit card and one atm card for security reasons. Also, I would make a copy of my travel docs, scan then email it to myself so that I could always get my hands on it. I would buy toiletries on the road as needed.
I would add a laptop sleeve so that I could make sure that my computer was cushioned because the messenger bag will only do so much. There are also versions for iphones/ipods and the like. When you say head torch….do you mean something like this: http://www.sportsmansguide.com/net/cb/2-new-5-led-headlamps.aspx?a=250472
Overall, I think you’ve been quite thorough…thanks for the info!
Hi Renee thanks for the comment. The reason behind the multiple credit cards is that one is a fee free card saving me on international currency conversion fees and the other is my main card linked to my frequent flyer account.
The aim is to only use the frequent flyer card for major purchases and keep the fee free card for everything else. I also like the security that if one gets stolen from me the other will be safe. They also double as my ATM card.
I will be uploading a copy of my documents yes its just too easy these days. I will also have a copy on my iphone.
I already have a sleeve for my macbook I grabbed it from foofpod.com. I also have one for my iphone helps to hide its value slightly I think.
yeah that’s the exact sort of torch I’m thinking of. I’d prefer a small maglite torch but everybody seems to recommend that style of torch even if your going to look goofy 🙂
Thanks heaps for the suggestions.
No on the umbrella. If you’re bringing a jacket make sure it is water/weatherproof.
One of the best thing I brought on my round the world trip: Ziploc/freezer bags. Great for containing things like lotion or toothpaste that make a mess when they spill, keeping coins organized when you’re passing thru airport security, and holding small items organized that would get lost in a 55L bag.
.-= brian | No Debt World Travel´s last blog ..Help a New Solo Traveler on her trip to Spain =-.
Wow thx for the comment Brian.
I haven’t finalized my clothes list that will be this weekends job but thanks for the tip.
I think I actually got the ziplock bag idea from reading your blog from memory. Great to hold all sorts of things especially liquid as you said.
I would bring a travel alarm clock too. Very useful when you are in the hostels and you need to wake up early to catch a train.
.-= Joya´s last blog ..Three Travel Bites of the Week =-.
An alarm is good but almost every mobile phone has one so is probably not something you need to take if you are trying to cut down on luggage. 🙂
Thx for the suggestion Joya and Jane. I will be using my iphone as an alarm its served me well the last 2 years as my main alarm clock.
As you said Jane it saves on traveling with an extra item that doesn’t have multiple uses.
Make sure to also bring some glasses. I used to just travel with contact lenses but finally began to just use my glasses for a mix of reasons. And if you can, consider getting some prescription sunglasses. I loved having these when I traveled even before I switched to just wearing glasses.
Hope this helps, and bon voyage!
Hi Linda. As much as I hate my glasses yes they will be coming. Without them I’m as blind as a bat 🙂 At the moment the only time I wear them is between my bed and the bathroom in the morning and then the reverse at night time. Rest of the time I have contacts in.
I am glad that the glasses I have are titanium so can be bent in all shapes and not break 🙂 Has saved me from new frames twice so far.
I really don’t like prescription sunglasses. Always having to carry 2 pairs glasses. Its why I love my contacts. The only downside is swimming with contacts is not a good idea 🙂
You’re going to have the BEST time! Sounds like you have all of the essentials listed. And I’m sure if you forget something you can easily buy it. Buen viaje!!!
.-= Andi´s last blog ..Brasil: Casa 32 =-.
Hey Andi, I so can’t wait. Each blog post brings me that little bit closer and its getting so exciting.
God only knows I’ll probably be jumping out of my skin freaking out come the day I leave.
Make sure you get a tough and small external hard drive! Ours is still going but it’s getting glitchy and I’m terrified we’ll lose about a million travel photos and video. That’s why I invested in getting a pro flickr account, I use it as a back-up photo storage.
Getting exciting isn’t it!?!
.-= Aly´s last blog ..You’ve Been Traveling Around, Now What? =-.
Hi Aly. The joy of working in the IT industry allows me to buy all sorts of gadgets like that.
Just ordered a new hard drive for my macbook with plenty of space to store some movies before I go and also to hold pictures and video I film while traveling.
My external drive will be used as a backup. So basically a mirror of my macbook drive. That way I have 2 copies of everything should something fail. It can also be fitted to my macbook to get me back up and going instantly no need for a re-install.
If I have learn’t just one thing over the last 6 years working in computers. Don’t ever have a single fail point. If I were you I’d get those pictures onto a second drive because one there gone they are GONE!!
Oh and yes I really need to get around to getting that pro flickr account. Another thing for my list.
Hmm, I’d probably add some clothing to the list 😉
Some things I’ve taken that haves been useful are a tiny thumb drive to store backups of travel documents and a few important files (make sure you format it so Windows can read it). It’s small and fits nicely in a money belt. Worth it for the peace of mind if everything else goes missing.
Also a lock for the Macbook, mine may have already saved it from being stolen.
.-= Catia | Vagabond Roots´s last blog ..Pre Trip Planning Tips for Backpacking Around The World =-.
Hey Catia, clothes are coming on my next list this is just my everything else list 🙂
Going to store my important files on my iphone, macbook, dropbox storage and saved on my blog. I will probably take a small memory stick so I can swap pictures and files with other people I meet also.
I thought about a lock for my macbook but wasn’t sure it was worth the trouble. I might re-think the idea as i had planned either lock it in a locker, have it with me or get it stored with the hostel staff.
Oops, I forgot to write what I originally meant to, Thanks for the mention! I’m glad my list helped a bit. 🙂
Hi Chris, put my packing list online
What can I say I like my gadgets!!
Good luck with planning, Was so busy I never got to enjoy it this time.
I depart Friday…just got to get work finished up.
Hi Kevin. Good list mate think I want to get one of the leatherman knives also.
I’ve read that sink plugs aren’t really need and if all else fails and you do need one a towel will work just as well. What is the door jam and torch for or is that just how Aussies party?
I think for the size of a sink plug compared to a soaking wet towel afterwards I’ll just go with the plug. If I don’t need it I know its not taking up much space.
Where as a wet towel will need to dry and given I’m only taking one towel that could be more of a problem come shower time.
Torch is for finding things in my pack at night and the like. Turning on the light when people are trying to sleep isn’t a nice thing to do.
Door jam/stopper was more if I find myself in a dodgy hostel and the door won’t stay shut than anything else. I could always wedge something under it of course.
1) Forget the door jam
2) Liquid laundry soap
3) Since you have a macbook, you can probably safely get the Kodak zi8 portable video camera, but I MADE A MISTAKE. I got one, and it is TOO FREAKING POWERFUL for my netbook in the high quality 1080p version (requires 2.8gh processor to play back correctly in Windows OS – 2.8!).
4) Head torch – you can read in bed
5) Shower “thongs” (might be on your clothing list) – do not use hostel showers w/o them (tinea much?)
.-= Brooke vs. the World´s last blog ..An Australian Montage =-.
Thanks for the info Brooke really appreciate it. Definitely taking the macbook, after selling/working on netbooks at work they just aren’t cut out for the work I want to do on them.
Do you like the Kodak camera? I’m 50/50 on it or getting a flip.
Yeah thongs are on the clothes list that’s coming. Is it worth having 2 pairs as I was planning to just take one pair.
I like the kodak, but it really is just about the same – I’d say whichever u can find cheaper.
As for thongs, it depends on what kind you get. If you have a cloth pair, then they will stay wet after taking a shower for a bit… Also, i don’t mess around with hostel showers so I keep my shower thongs separate completely – like the cheapest smallest all rubber type u can get. I traveled with a pair of converse, a pair of chaco sandals and shower thongs.
.-= Brooke vs. the World´s last blog ..Yesterday Was My Anniversary =-.
What’s a guy gotta do to get a HOSTEL DOG SHIRT ON THIS LIST!!!!!