Getting ready for a new trip is always exciting. Although we think we mastered the art (and science) of packing to perfection, every trip teaches us a new valuable lesson. We now have checklists with travel essentials for men and women - so we are both covered. The checklist helps us stay organised and ensure we don't forget our most important items.
Having said that, we continue to learn new tips to make our travelling preparation easier. It often happens that we discover a new product which becomes a fantastic addition to our essentials. So what do you actually need to pack for a long trip? How can you make packing easy and fun?
Here is our guide with all our travel essentials which will make your travelling life easier. It contains vital information on how to survive long hauls and awesome tips to make your long trip feel great irrespective of your destination.
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Our packing essentials for men and women
We organise our items based on categories. The most important thing to pack in advance is the carry-on luggage. That's because it will contain the most valuable things, like your camera and laptop, as well as the items you should bring for comfort during a long flight.
We recently added a new addition to our toiletry bag. About a month ago we discovered the FOREO LUNA Mini 2 and fell in love with it. When you fly a lot, your skin needs a lot of extra attention after the dry and dusty air on planes. Our FOREO was a lifesaver as it leaves your skin fresh and clean, it's super small and we can use it on the go.
Beauty essentials for men and women
Start with packing your toothbrush and your toothpaste. Add a small bottle filled with mouthwash and don't forget the dental floss.
Pro Tip: during your long haul, we recommend having two small bamboo toothbrushes handy - while they are light, they help cut down on plastic pollution. Some great airlines provide you with these essentials, but it's good to have them with you either way.
For our skin, we never leave without sensitive face cream and our lip balm. We use Bioderma face creams and Burt's Bees lippy. We also pack a small version of our Bioderma sensitive facewash which we use with our FOREO LUNA Mini 2.
We have two FOREOs, a mint coloured one for me and a black one for my husband. We both use it twice a day, in the morning and in the evening before bed. If you don't have sensitive skin (lucky you!) you can use your FOREO with any face soap. We don't travel with the chargers for our FOREO as the battery lasts for up to seven months.
Shaving & Make-up
My husband adds his shaver and his contact lenses to the toiletry bag. That's the time when I add my make up. I don't travel with a lot of make-up, just enough for day and evening events. I tend to use a concealer from Dior, eye shadow palette from Urban Decay, face blush, my Isehan - Kiss Me Heroine eyeliner and my mascara which is usually from L'Oreal.
Shampoo & Conditioner
We don't normally pack shampoo and conditioner in our bag as it takes up too much space. We usually purchase these essentials at the airport or in a shop at our destination. However, Lush has this incredible solid shampoo which is actually pretty magical and it takes up very little space. All you need to do is add conditioner. Both my husband and I use the Lush solid shampoo.
Medicine & Miscellaneous
Don't forget your important medicines, like any painkillers or prescription medication. As a tip, always double check that your prescription is permitted when entering a new country. Some countries are peculiar about certain ingredients which may be illegal.
Our beauty bag also contains tweezers, small scissors (only in checked-in luggage) and a nail filer.
Pro Tips: For long trips, pack a small, electric thermometer. If we travel to a cold country we buy heat patches to stay warm. Pack a small sewing kit as you never know when that may come in handy.
Electronics essentials for men and women
I know that the type of electronics you put on your packing list highly depends on the type of travel. As we primarily travel for work, our electronics bag is big and heavy.
We have our camera, camera lenses, a GoPro, our DJI Mavic Air drone, gimbal, laptops and lots and lots of cables and spare batteries.
For a relaxing holiday, we recommend travelling with your camera, a spare battery, a memory card and chargers. Sometimes we like to travel with our external hard drives as well, so we can back up our pictures and videos immediately.
Pro Tip: To organise your cables better, we recommend getting a packing cube with small compartments. Place the cables in one and you will never lose them again.
For both women and men, we believe the most essential items in your carry-on should be a pair of noise-cancelling headphones. We've been travelling for quite some time now, and we still believe that our Bose headphones were the best investment ever. You won't be disturbed by aeroplane noise anymore. Crank up the music and you won't hear any passengers or crying babies. They are also pretty epic for when you need to sleep. Put some relaxing music on and you are good to go.
Clever essentials for your carry-on
Here are a few clever essentials items to help you during your travels. Have a vitamin C before you board the plane and make sure to pack a small box of vitamin C in your carry-on. I used to get sick after a long plane ride but not anymore. Turns out, something as simple as a quick vitamin can help your immune system fight off any nasty infection.
Make sure to pack a reusable water bottle so you can fill it up at the airport. For example, we always pack some trail mix with nuts and dried fruit. Water and healthy snacks can really help during a long flight to stay energetic and hydrated, reducing the effects of jetlag.
Having a sleeping mask on a long flight can help you fall asleep easier. A face mask with your noise cancelling headphones and a great travel pillow will make you more comfortable for sure.
As already mentioned, we never leave home without our FOREOs. We recommend having them handy in your carry-on and using them to clean your skin once you land. On a plane, your skin gets oily and dull, so keeping it clean and nice is essential. Besides, who doesn't love looking fresh and glorious after a 15-hour flight?
Pack a comfortable neck pillow. We recommend trialling several items to find the one that suits you the most. For instance, I recently found that a memory foam travel pillow is the best thing for me. My husband also prefers the memory foam for his neck and back.
Outfits and clothing essentials for men and women
I'm not going to lie, I sometimes feel like an outfit addict. Despite my need to keep my luggage light, I always fall for that really cute extra dress which I must bring with me, just in case. My husband is a lot better at packing than I am. He loves keeping it simple, packing just the strict essentials.
To make it easier for ourselves, we both found (through trial and error) the one brand of shoes which we always wear and works with pretty much any outfit. We both have a collection of New Balance shoes and we only bring one with us during travels. Sometimes, we pack hiking boots or sandals as an extra, depending on the destination. However, for general travels (especially city) we rely on our one pair of trainers.
As a rule, I pack two pairs of jeans, my sport leggings, a few cotton t-shirts, a couple of delicate blouses, two shirts and three or four dresses. I sometimes add a couple of skirts to the mix so I have more outfits to play with. As a jacket, I only bring one and I tend to wear it on a plane either way as it gets really cold. I also add a couple of sweaters to my luggage or a cardigan or blazer.
My husband brings a t-shirt for every day we are away, a couple of day shirts, a couple of evening shirts, two blazers, a pair of jeans, two chinos and a couple of sweaters if needed.
We found that the trick to keeping our luggage light but enjoy an array of outfits is to purchase simple, neutral colours. This way we can mix and match a lot of items. For example, a black skirt will go with a multitude of uni-coloured tops.
Pro Tip: Remeber to roll your clothes instead of folding them. Use packing cubes to keep items separate and wrinkle-free.
Travel Documents & Other Items
Our life was made easier when we purchased sturdy luggage from Samsonite. We've been using a hard shell for about three years now and it's been bliss. We also invested in packing cubes so we can stay organised and keep our clothes separate and crease free. If you love to have all your electronics with you, invest in a good bag from Thule. This has been a life changer for us as we can transport everything with ease.
Before travelling, ensure you find your accommodation and book it as soon as possible. Popular destinations can book up pretty fast. We use booking.com to find the best accommodation wherever we travel.
Ready to go?
Did you pack everything? It is a good idea to take a few moments and think about all the things you are planning on doing during your holiday. Did you miss anything? No? Great!
You are now ready to go! Ready, steady, enjoy your holiday!
Thank you FOREO for sponsoring this post. We love our FOREO products and you can read our full review here.