Use This Handy Travel Checklist When Packing for Your Next Getaway
Signing up for credit cards through partner links earns us a commission. Terms apply to the offers listed on this page. Here’s our full advertising policy: How we make money.
Update: One or more card offers in this post are no longer available. Check our Hot Deals for the latest offers.
Preparing for a trip can be stressful, especially if you’re leaving for more than a few days. I put together a travel checklist you can use, so you don’t forget anything important!
Using a checklist can save you time and possibly even money. Because certain items, like electronics chargers and medicines, can be expensive in foreign countries. And you don’t want to spend your precious vacation time searching for an item you could have brought from home. 😉
Let’s take a look at the list!
My Travel Checklist
Use this handy checklist to make sure you don’t forget anything important when you take off on your next adventure!
1. Things to Do Before You Leave
- Make copies of important travel documents – It’s nice to make a copy of your ID so you can carry the copy around and leave the real one somewhere safe in your hotel room.
- Alert credit cards and banks of travel – Charges or ATM withdrawals can be declined if the bank doesn’t know you’re traveling.
- Download maps and entertainment – This is important if you won’t have internet in-flight or when you land.
- Send flights and accommodation information to a trusted person – This is helpful in case something happens to you.
- Prepare your home – Throw out the trash, wash dirty dishes, hold newspaper delivery and mail, etc.
2. Items to Bring
- ID (passport, driver’s license, student ID, etc.) – You’ll need a passport for international travel and a driver’s license if you plan to rent a car. It’s also important to check your passport’s expiration date, because some countries require a certain number of months of validity past your date of travel. And some spots offer student discounts!
- Tickets – Don’t forget your plane, train, or bus tickets! Or your entry tickets for an event or museum if you printed or received them at home.
- Credit cards and cash – Make sure you’ve figured out how you’ll pay for things once you land. This is especially important in more remote locations, like Cuba.
- Health insurance cards – It’s important to understand what your insurance does and does NOT cover while abroad. In case you need extra coverage.
- Letter of consent for children traveling without both parents – If you’re traveling abroad with a child under 19 years old, you’ll need a letter of consent if one or both parents aren’t present. You can find more information about a parental consent letter here.
- Power adapters – Make sure you know which type of adapter you’ll need to charge things like phones and computers. This chart from REI can be useful in figuring that out!
- Comfort items for your flight – Don’t forget those “must haves” during your time in the air. Million Mile Secrets team member Scott brings moist towelettes on long flight to combat face dryness. And lots of folks bring items like pillows, face masks, slippers, and more.
- Technology – Double check to make sure you bring along your cell phone, laptop, tablet, or whatever other devices you plan on using. And don’t forget your camera either! Plus an extra memory card, charger, and tripod or selfie stick if you need it.
- Headphones – Noise cancelling headphones can be a lifesaver!
- Medicines and toiletries – I always recommend carrying any important medicines in your carry-on. Consider toiletries like contact solution, mouthwash, and lotion for longer flights. And anti-itch cream if you’re going to a bug prone area.
- Loyalty cards and lounge passes – Don’t forget to bring your Global Entry card, Priority Pass card, or lounge passes if you have them.
- Guide books and reservation information – If you won’t have an internet connection when you land, it’s important to write down things like reservation confirmation numbers and hotel addresses. And you can’t go wrong with a great guide book!
- Change of clothes – After a long flight it’s nice to be able to put on a clean shirt. This is likely a MUST if you’re traveling with kids (a set for you and them)!
You can use this handy travel checklist every time you’re packing for a trip to ensure you don’t forget any important items!
Because you wouldn’t want to be stuck on a long flight without your favorite neck pillow. 😉 And you don’t want to spend your vacation searching for items you could have brought from home.
What are your “must haves” for longer trips?
Editorial Note: We're the Million Mile Secrets team. And we're proud of our content, opinions and analysis, and of our reader's comments. These haven’t been reviewed, approved or endorsed by any of the airlines, hotels, or credit card issuers which we often write about. And that’s just how we like it! :)