8 things I can't travel without

 1. A pen

This is an incredibly boring choice but also an incredibly useful one. It's surprising the amount of people who ask to borrow my pen at the airport. There are only a few pens (if any) near the custom forms so having your own saves waiting around to use one. Although, you will end up waiting around, regardless, for the people you lent your pen too! A pen is also handy for filling in your travel journal.

2. My scarf

I always travel with a scarf I bought in Indonesia. It's lightweight so can be stored easily but also big enough to use as a blanket (it's great for an extra blanket on planes). I normally use it on train or bus journeys especially when the air con (if there is any!) gets a bit too chilly. 

I not only use my scarf as a blanket but as a cover up for when I visit temples. It can be made into a makeshift sarong if my knees need covering or to cover my shoulders. I get very hot so being able to wear a vest top and then the scarf over my shoulders helps me stay a bit cooler in places where I must cover up. 

3. My travel pillow!

My travel pillow is bright with fluffy ends. People do stare when I rock up with it ready for an 8 hour bus journey or when it's just chilling on my backpack. While it's very bright and a bit ugly it's saved me from many uncomfortable journeys.

Most people have the neck travel pillows but squishy (as I like to call it) is bigger and more like an actual pillow. This means it's not the most travel friendly but it's small enough to attach to my backpack. Like I said it's main use is for journeys from one destination to another or as an extra pillow on flights. Because, let's be honest the pillows you get on most flights are pretty rubbish. It's also great to have a pillow for when the hostel ones as too flat or rock hard.

4. A portable charger

I honestly don't know how I managed without one of these for so long. They are so useful! Especially when you only have one plug socket in your hostel room and three devices to charge. Mine is pretty bulky but lasts ages before it has to be charged itself. You can get slimmer ones that are the same capacity. If you don't already have one then go and get one! It's a life saver! It's also great for festivals or day trips or when you need to leave the house but your phone's not charged.

5. A reusable bag

I had to buy a shopper bag whilst in Sri Lanka and have no idea why I'd never packed one before. It can be used to keep things separate in your main backpack, used as a beach/day bag or used as extra storage when travelling to your next destination. I ended up using mine to carry around all the clothes I bought at a market in Kandy, Sri Lanka. In all honest,  I shouldn't have bought so many clothes but it was one of those think about the consequences later moments. The consequence being me having g
to carry an extra bag for the rest of the trip! We ended up asking my friends boyfriend to bring a holdall over with him so we could put them all in there. Lesson learnt. Don't over buy when travelling. But who can say no to a 20p top?!

The bag also saved me in my interrail trip where I fell in love with a pair of boots and had no room in my rucksack for them. Obviously, I hadn't learnt my lesson. They did come in extra handy though when the weather started to get colder!

The best thing is it folds up really small for the rare times you don't need to use it to carry your excess baggage!

6. My camera

I guess this one might seem obvious but on my first backpacking trip I only took my phone. I then invested in a smaller, more travel friendly camera. The blogger favourite: Olympus pen. I've never looked back. I bought the 42mm - 150mm lens to go with it. It's rather hefty but great for snapping detailed pictures. It was also great when I went on safari in Sri Lanka, we were lucky enough to see not just one leopard but two adults and a baby! Our driver loved my camera and lens and managed to get me some very good shots!

7. My travel towel

Since taking a travel towel with me on my travels I wonder how I managed with a normal towel. They save so much space. I'm surprised I managed to fit anything else in my rucksack when I took a normal towel. Ok, that's an exaggeration but honestly they save so much room. Did I mention how much room travel towels save? Yep I did. Although, maybe get an extra large one because the one I have is a *tad* short. This is fine until I have to do a dash from the bathroom to bedroom in a hostel. Let's just say if anyone was sitting down when I did my dash they'd see a lot more than I wanted them to.

8. Flip flops 

These are obviously great for the beach but I use them for day to day exploring and walking around hostels/ hotels. Just make sure you take comfy ones, especially if you're going to wear them all day. I tend not to wear them for outings anymore as I invested in some Teva sandals which I lived in whilst in India and Sri Lanka. I still take flip flops for hostels though. I'm not one of these people who is particularly fussy about gross bathrooms but sometimes flips flops are necessary for a toilet/ shower trip in a hostel. Especially in the middle of the night!


After looking over my 8 choices I realise they're all pretty boring but I honestly wouldn't travel without any of these things. I guess it's better to be boring and realistic. You've probably got/ travel with all of these things already but if there's any missing from your own packing list then head out and get them. Or whip out your laptop and place an order because it's rather cold outside and shops are a *tad* busier than usual with it being Christmas on Sunday. What are your travel essentials? Let me know in the comments.


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1 comment

  1. A pen and paper is definitely on my list too - you never know when inspiration for a blog post will strike! My travel pillow has saved me from many uncomfortable bus journeys too!


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