Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Travelling Checklist

Most of us have experienced forgetting something when planning for a trip. It was a nightmare to forget some items. Once when travelling to Budapest, I forgot to bring sufficient underwears. Fine, I thought it was no big deal because I could always buy new ones in a foreign land. Unfortunately, after shopping around, new underwear cost a fortune for a budget traveller like me. The price of a pair of underwear in Budapest was equivalent to the price of a dozen pairs of underwears in Malaysia or Thailand.

Some people may have more items to bring. Some may be less. I personally love to travel light but I may return with a heavy luggage. Ever since the bad underwear experience in Budapest, I always feel a little bit of pressure when packing for any upcoming trips. Therefore, I have decided to create my own checklist below for reference:

  • T-shirts - I prefer old t-shirts that I feel comfortable wearing rather than new ones or precious ones that I may not feel very comfortable or scared of losing them (in case the luggage is lost).
  • Long pants - I normally only bring an extra long pants. I tend to avoid heavy jeans that is hard to dry, which tends to be a burden on the weight of a luggage. In a country with hot weather, sometimes I do not bring any extra long pants.
  • Shorts - Due to the fact that I travel more often to tropical countries in recent years. I normally bring 2-3 pairs of shorts unless in Thailand which I usually bought new ones.
  • Old rotten t-shirt - I normally bring along an old rotten old t-shirt that I could always throw away if my luggage is overweight. I use it as my pyjamas.
  • Old rotten short - Same reason as old rotten t-shirt.
  • Underwear - This is the most important item for me due to the past experience of lacking of them leading to recycling dirty ones. I would not like to do it again. So, I highlight it in red!
  • Sweater or jacket - if you are afraid of cold or sharing room with someone that turns the bedroom into winter, this will be handy.
  • Handkerchief - I usually pack about 2 extra ones.
  • Towel - Some budget hotel does not provide it. On the other hand, it is useful to wrap items that require additional protection.
  • Socks - I usually pack about 2 extra ones as well. Once I entered a jungle and got soaking wet full of mud in my socks. I was glad that I had extra pairs of socks.
  • MP3 player & earphone - As a music freak, I could not live without music. This is my sole entertainment if the I got bored during my journey especially when waiting for a flight or a train. Some may ask why MP3 player when a smartphone can be used for the same purpose. My answer is you ain't smart enough if you choose to depend on smartphone as it drains up the battery very fast. Don't forget an earphone, an MP3 player without an earphone is a white elephant.
  • MP3 player charging cable - I am glad that my old iPod does not require this but it serves as a reminder.
  • Smartphone - I use it mainly for communication as well as my tour guide. Yes, my tour guide is GPS.
  • Smartphone charger - You will be stupid without it if you own a smartphone.
  • Power bank -  This will be useful in case of any emergency when your device's battery is low.
  • Passport - You are basically doomed without it. Therefore, I highlight it in red.
  • Tickets - You are doomed without your flight tickets especially unless you wish to hit financial crisis at the airport. Don't forget any other tickets such as train tickets, concert tickets, etc.
  • Hotel booking vouchers -  You are not entirely doomed without these if you are willing to sleep on the street. It is not that pleasant if it rains or snows. So, I perceive this as very important too.
  • Basic language guide - I normally would learn some basic local language of the country I am travelling to. Words such as "thank you", "hello", "good bye", "toilet", "food", "water", etc are very handy. The problem is I may not remember everything, so I normally print out a list as reference.
  • Shampoo - Some budget hotels do not provide it. Therefore, I always have about 2 small bottles of shampoo (compliment of other hotels) with me.
  • Soap or body shampoo - Some budget hotels do not provide it as well. Sometimes I carry a bar of soap or 2 small bottles of body shampoo (compliment of other hotels again).
  • First aid kit - Not the entire first aid kit but I always carry some painkiller (i.e. Panadol), plasters and medication for diarrhoea.
  • Vitamin C - This is mainly for flu prevention for myself.
  • Pens - Always keep some pens with you especially at the immigration when you need to fill in a form. It is also useful as a communication tool when verbal communication fails - try drawing.
  • Paper - This is for taking notes as well as a communication tool - you need something to draw on with a pen. Even a three year-old kid knows it.
  • Tissue paper - For certain countries (i.e. Malaysia), the toilets do not have any toilet paper. This will be handy in case of any emergency.
  • Camera - Some people travel without a camera these days by replacing it with smartphone but I personally do not like to rely too much on one device in case it is stolen/lost.
  • Camera battery chargers - Don't forget your camera charger. It is obviously not cheap to buy a new one.
  • Extra camera battery - Always bring spare batteries when travelling. You definitely do not want to miss capturing a special moment or a beautiful scene when your camera battery runs out.
  • Multiplug or electrical extension cord -  This is to prevent fighting with your roommate for power supply.
  • Small backpack - This is useful as you walk around places. You will need somewhere to keep your bottle of water, sweater, pen, paper, etc.
  • Umbrella or raincoat - Always be prepared for rainy days.
  • Laptop - It could be handy sometimes. It depends on the purpose of my trip but I do not like to carry something expensive these days.
  • Comb - You are likely to need one unless you are bald.
  • Shaver - All guys need it I believe unless you intend to grow beard or you are a band member of ZZ Top.
  • Scissors - This is handy to cut anything. Example: Price tag of your new pants, your nose hair, etc.
  • Nail clipper - For cutting nails, removing skin that peels around fingernails and minor surgery (just kidding!)
  • Hair gel - I use this but some guys need hair cream. Some needs siliva! Some needs waxing!
  • Toothbrush - Some hotels do not provide it. I always feel more comfortable using the toothbrush I purchase rather than the one given by hotels anyway.
  • Toothpaste - Same as the case of toothbrush.
  • Clothes hangers - I prefer to bring about 2 hangers in case they are insufficient or not provided by the hotel.
  • Washing powder - I prefer to save cost by doing my own laundry. So, I need a small packet of washing powder. Depending on the country I am going, I can either buy it at the destination or bring it from home.
  • Plastic bags - This is for dirty laundry and wet towel. In some countries such as Malaysia and France, you need to purchase plastic bags at some shops/shopping complexes.
  • Store a photo of passport in smartphone - This is a precaution in case of losing the passport.
Here is a link containing some very useful tips for travelling: Useful Travelling Tips 

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