Essential Passport, yellow health card, driver’s licence, cash, credit cards, debit cards.

Boots and sandals if you take a larger size (almost impossible to get in the developing world).

Your glasses prescriptions and a doctor’s description of any medical conditions I live with.

Good to have (Not essential all of this you can buy on the road) . Cloths are either cotton (cool and cheap) or micro fibre (cool and expensive), all coordinate and often darkish colours

  • 2 or 3 bottoms: trousers, skirt, shorts depending on climate and culture of countries
  • 3 or 4 tops: 1 T-shirt to sleep in, others usually shirts as they are cooler and more adaptable
  • about 4 sets of underwear
  • sarong: can be a skirt, dress, robe, top sheet, curtain, towel, picnic spread, shawl, head covering
  • swim suit – the right one can double as underwear (guys) or top (girls)
  • sun hat
  • Teva type sandals, indestructible
  • Comfortable, broken in walking shoes
  • shoulder holster style money belt
  • tooth brush
  • deodorant

The following you can share between travelling companions:

  • shower gel (doubles as soap and laundry powder)
  • travel clothesline
  • travel universal sink plug
  • swiss army knife type device
  • sun tan lotion and strong insect repellent (can be expensive in the developing countries)
  • combination padlocks for any packs with zips that can be secured (so you cant loose the key).
  • alarm clock or watch
  • Panadol or similar
  • antihistamine (helps with seasickness and itchy bites as well as colds!)
  • cough lozenges
  • anti-inflammatory like Voltaren – for when I’ve walked too far
  • zip lock bags
  • guide books
  • fiction books
  • paper useful for notes sometimes I take a spiral bound notebook which can have pages ripped out easily.
Sometimes I take If I am going to cooler climates I will either take or buy along the way:

  • lightweight merino, or similar, sweater
  • thermal top and bottom
  • hat / gloves (only occasionally – usually buy locally)
  • heavier boots than I would normally carry and heavier socks to suit
  • sleeping bag – but only if I am going to cold developing countries which will not provide adequate bedding and allow their use.
  • cotton or silk sleeping bag liner – useful if you are unsure of the quality of the bed linen! I usually use a sarong for this now.

If I want to go to some fancy restaurants, theatres or dances:

  • dressy shoes
  • dress which will roll into a ball and still look good.

Depends on the location:

  • goat chain (buy locally) and padlock (combination) to secure packs on train’s luggage racks particularly
  • torch – wonderful for countries with poor street lighting, also useful if you want to read in bed and the light in the room is too weak to see by (it happens quite a lot!)
Don’t even think about it
  • Jeans, they are heavy, hard to wash and can’t be dressed up
  • Any item you are sentimentally attached to.
  • Any item “just in case”
  • Mosquito net, if the accommodation is too cheap to provide one you either a) don’t need one or b) will have more wildlife to deal with than mosquitoes!
  • Pac safe – screams steal me, and heavy to carry too.

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