Packing for Your Trip

I live to travel. Over the years, as most people have, I have suffered the consequences of forgetting some crucial item, or forgetting to do something critical. This can put a damper on any vacation, so after years of holidays, I have compiled a master packing list.

Whenever I’m about to take a trip, I pull up this list on my computer, make a copy of it, and delete those items that don’t apply to this particular adventure. Then I can be sure I have everything I need.

So, without further ado, here’s my master packing list, for your future convenience.

Master Packing List


  • Note: Capital One credit cards are the only one as of 2009 that do not charge foreign exchange fees.
  • Always plan to arrive at the airport at least 2 hours ahead of flight.
  • Call overseas Immunization to find out what shots are needed, and get Diarrhea Prescription.
  • Call credit cards and notify them that you’ll be making charges out of town.
  • Give people info on how to contact us in an emergency.
  • Upon return, pack souvenirs separately for customs.
  • Get Gas for Vehicle, top off fluids, & Check air in tires.
  • Obtain a small amount of foreign currency, Int’l Drivers License, Int’l Student ID, and Visas.
  • Think of irreplaceable items (Medicine, Camera, Eyeglass Prescription, gum for plane, etc.) that you need to pack on your carry on, and pack accordingly.
  • Confirm PIN numbers for credit cards and bankcard.
  • Get books and books on tape from library.
  • Arrange for Dog Sitter.
  • Many international airports have a Cooks, where you can exchange money.
  • Put temporary hold on mail. Confirmation # _______________


  • Flip-flops
  • Walking shoes
  • Socks
  • Hats
  • Sweat pants
  • Sweatshirts
  • Eye mask for sleeping on plane
  • Shirts
  • Gloves
  • Coat/Jacket
  • Tank Top/Boxers
  • Undershirts
  • Underwear/Bras/Slips
  • Pants
  • Shorts
  • Sunglasses
  • Swim Suits
  • 1 Change of Clothingfor Carry On luggage
  • Skirts


  • Razors
  • Sleep Aids
  • Hair Brush
  • Cosmetics
  • Antibiotic Ointment
  • Band-Aids
  • Soap
  • Talcum Powder
  • Wash Cloth
  • TP
  • Sun Tan Lotion
  • Shampoo/Conditioner
  • Bubble Bath
  • Ear Plugs
  • Nail Clippers
  • Sawyer Controlled Release DEET Formula  (Best anti-malaria)
  • Prescriptions
  • Toothpaste
  • Tooth Brush
  • Floss
  • Diarrhea Meds
  • Sinus Meds
  • Eyeglass Prescription
  • Towel
  • Detergent


  • Blankets
  • Compass
  • Sleeping bags
  • Cheese cloth
  • Pillows
  • Tent
  • Portable Shower
  • Binoculars
  • Garbage Bags
  • Directions
  • House Key
  • Maps
  • Candles
  • Highlighter for Maps
  • Calculator
  • Sheets
  • Valuables Receipt from US Customs
  • Neck Pillow
  • Guidebook
  • Language Dictionary
  • Fanny Packs
  • Pens
  • Passport
  • Itinerary
  • Tickets
  • Reservations printouts
  • Cash in Small Denominations
  • Digital camera with cord, batteries and chargers.
  • Cell phone/Charger
  • AC Adapter
  • Photocopy of Passport
  • Credit Cards W/Pin
  • AAA Card
  • Small Notebook
  • Back Pack
  • Batteries
  • Flash light
  • Snacks
  • Gift List
  • Scissors
  • Health Insurance Cards
  • Bank Card & Pin
  • License
  • Wallet
  • International DriversLicense
  • Auto Insurance
  • Student ID’sI
  • n Case of EmergencyCards
  • Ledger:  (Write down things we saw, money spent and by whom, things charged and by whom.

Travel with Dogs

  • Dog food
  • Crate
  • Dog Bowls
  • Vet Records
  • Harnesses
  • Dog coats
  • Leashes
  • Water
  • Nail clipper
  • Meds and Peanut Butter
  • Brushes
  • Dental stuff
  • “No Chew”
  • Toys
  • Carpet Cleaner


  • Puzzles
  • Stamps
  • Bird book
  • Playing Cards
  • Books on Tape
  • Books
  • Tape Recorder
  • Crafts
  • Writing ideas & Paper
  • Friends Addresses, Phone Numbers, Email
  • Laptop/plug

 Kitchen Stuff when Cabin/Camping

  • Knives
  • Forks
  • Ziploc Bags
  • Spoons
  • Thermos for Car
  • Can Opener
  • Dish Washing Liquid
  • Plates
  • Bowls
  • Cups
  • Dutch Oven
  • Strainer
  • Fry Pan
  • Pots
  • Cooler
  • Spatula
  • Dish Scrubber
  • Aluminum Foil
  • Plastic Storage Container
  • Matches
  • Camp stove and fuel
  • Charcoal

Last Minute Stuff:

  •  Double check for Tickets, Passports, Credit Cards, ID, Cash, and License.
  • Pack Deodorant, Alarm Clock, Pillow, Blanket, Toothbrush, and Cell Phone with charger.
  • Make sure that there is nothing in your luggage that would disturb airport security.
  • Pill and feed dogs.
  • Put water in thermos, and water for dogs.
  • Remove perishables from fridge.
  • Get ice for cooler.
  • Change Phone Message.
  • Leave Money, Key, Vet Records, contact info, and Instructions for Dog Sitter.  Also change sheets and put out fresh towels. Leave lights on for dog sitter. Confirm receipt of key and arrival time.
  • Dispose of any trash or recycles.
  • Adjust Thermostat, and make sure burners are off and faucets aren’t dripping.  If no one is going to stay at the house, shut off as many breakers as possible. Unplug things.

luggage full and ready to travel

[Image credit:]

8 thoughts on “Packing for Your Trip

  1. Carole

    Wow, now all I need is a place to go. If I ever won the LOTTO, which I never play, (too much like little rides and gumball machines, which if I hadn’t popped quarters in for four children and seven grandchildren,) I could travel the world. Hubby never wants to leave, but I have had wanderlust since about age six. So keep posting Dear, I’ll see it through your eyes and enjoy.

    Happy Trails to You,

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