Although I’m a bit of a regular when it comes to overnight stays and one-nighters, in the last couple of months I’ve become a bit of a veteran when it comes to long haul packing.
Having ticked off a ski trip to Canada, a safari in Kenya and a jaunt to Australia it was only in the last month after a three day trip to L.A, flight back to London, and then off again for two weeks in New Zealand that I think I truly mastered the art of long haul packing- be it for carry on and for the trip itself. I’ve always been a bit of a nervous traveller (and flyer in particular), so preparation and pre organisation is pretty much key for me- laying things out the night before and making sure everything is charged, backed up and ready.
So, seeing as it’s ‘holiday season’ coming up- I thought I’d share both my carry on list and a quick summary list of my trip lists, after having written out almost identical ones time and time again. Obviously these can be tweaked accordingly, but these are the things I find myself writing down again and again- regardless of location and find they’re always pretty precise without being excessive. It also seems that I’ve successfully managed to bypass the New Zealand and L.A jet lag too, so maybe there’s another post for that too…
The Carry On List
Passport / Travel Insurance Documents (if not on phone) / ESTA/VISA (if needed) / Debit/Credit Card / Phone / Phone Charger / Laptop (charged) / Laptop Charger / Camera / Memory Card / Camera Charger / Socks / Hat / Tablets (for headaches/sleeping/etc)/ Glasses / Diary / Book (or magazine) / Headphones / In terms of liquids: A small can of dry shampoo (if you can find one under 100ml) / Deodorant / Cleansing Wipes / 8 Hour Cream/Lip Balm / Eye Cream / Hydrating Mask (sheet optional) / Hand Sanitiser / Rescue Remedy / Potentially a change of clothes (if you have a long connection/flight) / Small Hair Brush / Eye Mask / Neck Pillow / Chunky Scarf or jumper (in case it’s chilly)
This is definitely a list for the ones that like to overcompensate, but sometimes if you’re flying across the world and across different time zones, it’s nice to make sure you have everything with you that’ll keep you comfortable. When our flights to New Zealand were confirmed I instantly went into panic mode about how I’d spent the 24 hours, how I’d sleep when I needed to and stay awake when I was meant to be avoiding jet lag. Obviously, as soon as I sat down and started browsing the film selection none of this mattered, but I did realise I utilised nearly everything I’d packed which can only be a good thing. My carry on is the ‘bigger carry on’ from AWAY– which I pretty much couldn’t love more. It has a removable portable charger, is such a great size (even for smaller airlines) and has travelled with me from everywhere from Scotland to Auckland. In terms of books too, if you’ve got a flight where one leg would suggest you stay awake for as long as possible- I can absolutely recommend a thriller or who-dunnit (I loved The Couple Next Door, which had me awake for a solid 5 hours on the way home from Canada). I also love a good pair of bed socks for the flight and an emergency hat (or beret if you’re me) for when you inevitably land with greasy hair at the other side- a hat is a true miracle worker!
The Checked In
Pyjamas / Underwear / Return Travel Outfit / Outfits (Day and Night if needed) / Hairspray / Skincare / Make Up / Make Up Brushes / Straighteners (or curlers, dependant) / Contact Lenses (if needed) / A Small Bag/Backpack/Tote (for day and evenings out, totes are handy for dirty washing too) / Shoes (trainers, flats and an insurance pair of heels) / Adapters / Toothbrush / Toothpaste / Hairbands / Swimwear / Sunglasses / Pads & Tampons (if needed) / Thermals, Hat & Gloves (location dependant) / Sun protection
Again, this is a pretty accurate version of what I normally write out before jetting off for a trip four days or longer. Obviously it’s totally location dependant (although arguably thermals and sun protection can overlap) and can be adjusted to the amount of time you’re away for. I like to think I’m a pretty low maintenance traveller, but I’d love to know if there’s anything you make sure to always pack- and if you have any tips too (apart from ALWAYS ROLL YOUR CLOTHES)!
Also, let me know if you’d like this in PDF too- sometimes printing these things makes packing all the more satisfying too!