International Trips: Packing Tips


Traveling internationally can be one of the best experiences you will ever have. You get to see the places you learned about in school, meet new people, and try new foods. Packing for these trips can be stressful and is often one of the worst parts of the trip for people. Here are some things that you can do in order to make packing a little less stressful and faster. 

Roll your clothes - This is a tip that I am sure everyone has heard, but it is one of the best, thus it has been included on this list. Rolling your clothes saves a ton of space, which is great for enabling people to only use carry on luggage for trips. It also helps keep your clothes wrinkle free. 

Dryer Sheets - Suitcases can have odd smells or maybe you just want to keep your clothes smelling fresh for your trip. When packing throw one to three dryer sheets in with your clothes to help keep them smelling good. 

Pack Less - If you are going to a country where you might need a sweatshirt, but you might not, don't pack one. Although this may depend on exactly where you are going and your personal preference, I look at it as a chance to buy myself a nice souvenir sweatshirt for my trip, and also means it's one less thing I need to pack a the beginning of the trip. (Make sure you will have access to stores selling the item before you decide not to pack it)

Travel Size - A tip, and also an advisory, make sure you follow the TSA guidelines for packing liquids and gels for your trip if you are only using carry on luggage. You don't want to have a new bottle of shampoo thrown out because you didn't follow the guidelines. Many stores like CVS and Rite-Aide sell travel sizes of shampoo and body wash. Pick a few up and you will be good to go!

Empty Water Bottle - Pack an empty water bottle for your trip. This is a great way to save money at the airport during the time you are there. Once you get past security, prices rise and water bottles are not cheap. Pack an empty water bottle and fill it at a water fountain once you have passed security. I have paid as much as $5 for a regular 12oz bottle of water at an airport. 

Memory Cards and Batteries - I like to pack extra memory cards and batteries for my cameras. Extra batteries and memory cards take up a relatively small amount of space within your luggage so they are easy to pack. Although you may never need them you won't regret packing them when you do. It may also save you from paying an outrageous price at the local monument when you happen to have no battery or memory left, since that is always when it happens. 

Have a packing list - Packing lists can save you a lot of headache when packing for long trips. If you have a list of what you know you will need, it can help save time and headaches while you pack.  

Travel Adapter - Bringing a rechargeable camera, iPhone, iPad, laptop, or other electronics with you? You may need an adapter for your plug! Wall plugs from the United States and Europe, for example, are different, and it may depend where you are in a country. Plan ahead and get an adapter so you are able to charge all your devices! 

Joseph Hallgren

Boston, MA

Full time student, adrenaline junkie, and traveller.