Packing for a trip, whether for personal or business purposes, can be a huge hassle. It is easy to forget some things if you don’t plan well. One of the mistakes people make when packing a suitcase is not having a packing list.
Therefore, whether you are an avid planner or are just looking for a way to ensure that you do not forget anything for your trip, following these guidelines will help you create the ultimate packing list.
Why a Packing List is Important
Though you can easily find a packing list to print and use, curating a list suitable for you or your family will simplify the packing process for you. A packing list will:
- Help you choose the right luggage. Knowing what you need to carry will inform you what luggage you should use and what to get if you are looking to buy luggage.
- Saves you time. Having a packing list avoids the constant back and forth of opening your suitcase when you realize something you have forgotten to carry.
- Saves you money. Since a packing list ensures you have everything you need for the trip, it will help you avoid spending money on essentials you left in the house.
- Gives you peace. A packing list streamlines the whole packing process and makes the work easier.
How to Create a Packing List
Before you start working on your list, there are certain things you should do to ensure that your list has everything you need for your trip.
- Research on the destination. Do your research on the weather, the culture, and what you will need to have a comfortable trip.
- Research on the airline. Confirm with the airline you have chosen what the luggage requirements are. This will help you know what to put in your carry-on luggage and what should go in your suitcase. You can either check on the airline’s website or call them directly.
- Get your documents in order. Find out which documents you will need for travel, for example, whether you need a Visa or passport to travel, and make sure you have them beforehand.
- Confirm your travel duration. Ensure you know how many days and nights you will spend on your trip.
- Check your itinerary. This will let you know if there are any events you will need to go for and pack accordingly. For example, if there is a dinner in the itinerary, you will need to pack the appropriate clothes.
Packing List Main Categories
Once you have all the necessary details for the trip, start on your packing list. Experts recommend making your list as early as possible and reviewing it at least twice. Your packing list categories should include:
- Documents. Your travel documents are very important as they can determine whether or not you will enter your destination, especially if you are traveling to a foreign country. They also include your tickets and ID.
- Money. It is not advisable to travel without money. You will probably need to purchase a few things on your way. There could also be extra travel costs that you’re forgetting about. If you are going to a foreign country, you may need to carry the currency of that country with you.
- Clothes. The destination and duration of your trip should inform how many and what type of clothes you need to pack. Add clothes according to your activities and the weather. Additionally, ensure that you have an extra set of clothes in your carry-on just in case your checked-in luggage is delayed.
- Shoes. Avoid carrying a lot of shoes, as they can make your luggage bulkier. Carry only what is necessary, and remember to include shoes tied to an event or activity, such as hiking boots.
- Accessories. Your accessories include belts, earrings, and sunglasses, among others.
- Toiletries. You will probably find toiletries such as toothbrushes, soap, and shampoo at the hotel or buy them at your destination. However, packing your own toiletries is better because you never know whether you will find what you like or need there.
- Medication. If you are on any drugs, make sure that you include them in the list. There are also certain drugs you may need, such as painkillers or antihistamines. You could also add bandaids and a basic antibiotic ointment.
- Electronics. Though you may not forget your laptop or phone, you can easily forget chargers or earphones. These should be added to the list. If you are traveling to a different country, check what plugs are used to confirm if you may need to purchase one before you travel.
- Comfort. These are things that make travel easier for you. They may include a neck pillow, magazines, toys for the kids, gum, or a shawl.
Now that you know what your list should include, you can go ahead and populate it with what you need for your trip.