Pack Like a Pro: The Only Checklist You Need for Traveling Abroad

Pack like a pro

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As a travel guru and agent, I have helped countless clients plan their trips abroad. One of the most important aspects of travel planning is packing. It can be overwhelming to figure out what to bring with you on a trip, especially when traveling to a foreign country. That’s why I’ve put together this pack like a pro checklist for my clients to refer to when packing for their next adventure.

Passport | Visa | ID

This is a no-brainer, but make sure you have your passport or visa (if necessary) and a form of identification. Keep them in a secure and easily accessible place. Do not forget to make copies of all passports, visas’ and IDs’. In the case that your passport gets lost or stolen, replacing it will be much easier with copies.


Money | Credit Cards

Bring a mix of cash in the local currency, credit cards (check out our most recommended travel credit card – Chase Sapphire Reserve), and a debit card. It’s a good idea to have a mix of payment options in case of an emergency. Prior to departing on your adventure, you can go to your bank and order some local currency to have on hand. Make sure to contact your bank and let them know when and where you will be traveling. This way you can avoid your card being flagged for fraud and running the risk of it being turned off while abroad. Also, ask your bank about foreign withdraw and transaction fees so you can eliminate any surprise charges while traveling.

Money when traveling

Travel Adapter

Make sure you have the right travel adapter for the country you’re visiting. It’s easy to overlook this, but it’s essential if you want to charge your electronic devices. Over the years, we have used many different brands.

travel adaptor

Portable Phone Charger

Once upon a time I was traveling around Japan taking in all the beautiful sites! I was taking pictures, videos and using my navigation apps. I quickly realized my phone was dying way quicker than normal. I started to panic. Without a phone, not only could I not take pictures, but I also could not navigate myself back to the hotel. In the middle of my panic I remembered I had packed a portable phone charger. After digging in my purse and plugging it up, I realized my portable charger was just as dead as my phone. I frantically tried to find a café where I could charge my phone, but unfortunately, I had left my travel adaptor at the hotel. Moral of the story – Always have a fully charged portable charger when traveling!

portable charger

Travel Documents

Bring copies of your travel itinerary, hotel reservations, and any other important travel documents. It’s also a good idea to email copies to yourself or keep them in the cloud in case you lose the physical copies.

Travel documents

Comfortable Shoes

Picture this: You’re on a dream vacation in a foreign country, exploring all the amazing sights and sounds it has to offer. You’re feeling adventurous and decide to walk around the city all day, taking in the local culture and cuisine. You’re having the time of your life…until you realize that your feet are about to fall off.

Wearing uncomfortable shoes while traveling is a recipe for disaster. Trust me, I’ve been there. I once wore a pair of brand new wedges while exploring a new city and ended up hobbling back to my hotel like a wounded animal.

Remember, a vacation should be about enjoying yourself and creating lifelong memories, not suffering through blisters and sore feet. So, throw on those sneakers, slip into those sandals, or rock those flats. Your feet (and your vacation) will be all the better for it.

comfortable shoes when traveling


Bring any medications you may need, prescription or over the counter. For prescription, Make sure you do the math on how much you will need while traveling. You may run into a case where you will need to contact your doctor, prior to leaving, to release a refill before the actual refill date since you will be gone for a long period of time. This takes time and you don’t want to be running around the day before departure trying to figure out how to get all your medication refilled (not that I would know anything about that.) Also, It’s a good idea to pack them in your carry-on bag in case your checked luggage gets lost.

Pro Tip: Always check the countries list of banned medications before traveling with medicine to avoid any issues at security.



We’ve all been there. You’re packing for your big trip abroad and you just can’t decide what to bring. So you start throwing things in your suitcase all willy-nilly, thinking that you might need that extra pair of shoes or that fancy dress you never wear.

Overpacking is a recipe for disaster. Not only will you be lugging around a heavy suitcase, but you’ll also be struggling to find what you actually need in that sea of clothes. And let’s be real, are you really going to wear that ball gown while hiking the Swiss Alps? Probably not.

You are going to be shocked at how much walking will need to be done with luggage in hand. Just don’t do it. check the weather and pack a few mix and match outfits. You can and will wear something more than once. No one cares if you were the same outfit 2-3 times. Literally no one.

And if you’re still not convinced, just think about all the amazing souvenirs you’ll be able to bring back if you don’t have a suitcase full of clothes taking up all the space. Trust me, that handmade Italian pottery will look much better in your home than that pair of heels you never wear.


Carry-on Bag | Suitcase

Traveling abroad is an adventure, but it’s always important to be prepared for the unexpected. One of the worst possible scenarios for any traveler is lost luggage. While airlines do their best to reunite travelers with their belongings, sometimes luggage gets lost and it can take a few days to track down. That’s why it’s important to pack a few essentials in your carry-on bag, just in case your luggage goes missing.

My rule of thumb is to bring 3 days worth of items you need on a daily basis in your carry-on. This includes outfits, undergarments, medications, all products (face wash / moisturizer / hair products), medication, contacts, lightweight blanket or sweater and copies of all travel documents.

While losing your luggage is never fun, being prepared can help alleviate some of the stress. Packing these essentials in your carry-on will ensure that you’re ready for anything and can still enjoy your travels, even if your luggage takes a little longer to arrive.


Copy of Emergency Contact Info

It’s a good idea to make copies of all your emergency contacts back home and place in your luggage and keep on you at all times. Also, make extra copies of your itinerary and give to loved ones back home so they know where you are supposed to be and when.

Emergency contact information

Hand Sanitizer

Always keep a bottle of hand sanitizer with you at all times. In a time where we are all a little more conscious of spreading germs, it’s a good idea to have an on the go way of always cleaning your hands.

hand sanitizer

TSA Approved Locks

Not only are these locks good for securing your suitcase while in transit, they can also be used for numerous amounts of other things that I’m sure you have never thought of.

When leaving the hotel, you may want to secure some items in a bag to avoid theft. While dining out, you may want to secure your purse to your chair to avoid being a victim of theft or pick pocketers. These locks are beneficial and have multiple uses. These are our favorite TSA approved locks.

Reusable Water Bottle

Traveling can be thirsty work, especially if you’re exploring a new city or hiking through beautiful landscapes. And while it’s tempting to buy bottled water whenever you’re thirsty, it’s important to consider the impact of all those plastic bottles on the environment.

That’s why I always carry a reusable water bottle with me when I travel. Not only is it better for the planet, but it’s also a great way to save money and stay hydrated.

Think about it. If you’re buying bottled water every time you’re thirsty, those costs can really add up over the course of your trip. But if you bring your own bottle, you can fill it up at a water fountain or your hotel’s tap, saving you money and reducing waste.

And let’s not forget about the environmental impact. Plastic bottles take hundreds of years to decompose, and many end up in our oceans and waterways, harming marine life and polluting our planet. By using a reusable water bottle, you’re doing your part to reduce plastic waste and protect the environment.

But the benefits don’t stop there. Carrying a reusable water bottle also ensures that you always have access to water, even in places where bottled water might not be readily available. And staying hydrated is crucial when traveling, especially in hot climates or at high altitudes.

Before leaving for your travels, do the proper research to ensure the tap water is safe to drink. If it is, a regular water bottle is fine. However, in places where the tap water is not safe to drink, I always take my life straw water bottle with a built in filter.

reusable water bottle

Grocery | Reusable Bags

Ok, hear me out. Maybe it sounds weird, but when we are traveling we are always needing an extra bag for wet items from the shower, when packing shoes or even just as a catch all / miscellaneous bag. They don’t take up much space and you can even take reusable ones as we do.

Traveling internationally can be a thrilling and rewarding experience, but it requires careful preparation and packing. By taking the time to gather all the necessary essentials, you can ensure that your trip will be comfortable and enjoyable. Remember to pack light, but don’t forget any important items that will make your journey easier, such as a travel adapter, a passport, and appropriate clothing. By following these tips and tricks, you’ll be well on your way to an unforgettable adventure abroad. Bon voyage!