Essentials To Never Forget When Travelling
So you’ve followed the 5,4,3,2,1 packing guide to a tee, have all your in-flight essentials in your hand bag, arrive at the airport gate and suddenly realise you’ve left your phone charger on the dining table! Yeah, been there. And while it’s not the be-all and end-all of any holiday to forget a charger, making your trip as stress free and seamless as possible often starts with remembering to take the essentials. I’m off to Spain tonight and am busily packing my bags, man I hate that last minute panic! In our second collaboration with Australia Post all about travel essentials, we decided it was high time I put together a checklist of essentials you should never forget to pack when going on a holiday – the things you shouldn’t or won’t be able to buy at your destination. You can download a printable version of the checklist here, and read on for more details of our travel essentials.
Having a small amount of cash on-hand in the local currency when you arrive is key (to avoid situations like being stuck in Newark Airport at 3am with no money), but it’s never a good idea to have lots of cash on you – which is where having the right cards are essential. A system that’s worked well for me over the years is not putting all my eggs in one basket and always carry a mixture of cash and card. To avoid being at the mercy of ever fluctuating exchange rates and international transaction fees though, the best option is to grab a travel money card like this Multi-currency Cash Passport from Australia Post. Travel cards can be pre-loaded with whatever currency you need and are accepted by most ATMs worldwide. There is also the added security of locking your card should it be lost or stolen, something that can’t be done if all your money is kept as cash.
It goes without saying that when travelling overseas the one thing you should never forget is your passport and any relevant visas. I’ve always been one to double check, and then triple check that I have my passport with me all the way to the airport. When it comes to visas, check if you need one well in advance of your travel, while you can get visas on arrival in some countries, it’s not the most efficient or timely option.. It’s also a good idea to keep a printed or scanned copy of your passport and visa on you, in your email inbox or with a friend or family member that you can have access to in an emergency. Also having a printed copy of your flight and hotel information (especially having the address written in the country’s language) is something I’ve found invaluable when asking for directions or directing taxi drivers to the right hotel.
A close second to remembering to bring your passport is remembering to bring your phone. It’s also a good idea to prepare a travel SIM that is ready to go the moment you land (like this Australia Post Prepaid TravelSIM®+) because racking up a $649431 phone bill on data-roaming is not really my idea of a souvenir. Just make sure to bring the SIM card ejector pin with you if you have an iPhone because finding a paper clip or a pen nib small enough to fit can be harder than you think. Oh, and I know this may sound old fashioned, but always bring a pen because airports also mean forms, forms, forms.
It goes without saying that bringing all your phone, camera and computer tech is pointless unless you have a way to charge them when they’ve run out of juice. That said, because practically every device requires a
different charger and a different cord, it’s always easy to forget something. One solution is to create a charger bag (with its own sub-checklist of course) so that everything is in one place and bringing a portable
power pack also means you can charge devices on the go. Another pet peeve of mine is researching which power plug each country uses because there are too many different types to keep track of. I’ve found that rather than owning a million different convertors, having one universal convertor means everything is in one place and it’s easier to remember to always pack it.
This post is in collaboration with Australia Post. Illustration by Annie Huang.