Consider packing these overlooked items.
The more you travel, the more you learn what overlooked items you need to bring with you on vacation to make the most of your trip. If you are like us, it is a lesson learned the hard way – by NOT having what you need. Every trip without fail, we get to our destination and find ourselves saying: “I wish I had …….”
We get it. When it comes to packing for a trip, you want to bring as little as possible. If you are flying, there are luggage weight restrictions that you need to adhere to. Carting a lot of luggage around the airport, train station, or up to your hotel room is never fun. However, there are some things you may want to pack in your luggage to save you money, time, and just for your own convenience.
What to Pack for your Trip (overlooked items)
This list is a collection of various items we wished we had on many trips over the years. You may not think you need them, but many of these overlooked items will come in handy on many vacations. Trust us; we have learned a few things along the way – usually from where we went wrong.
This is a small backpack where you can pack all the items you will need for the day when you are out exploring away from your hotel, cruise ship, or tour bus. It is also great to have a go-bag for your hiking adventures.
Here you will be able to carry sunscreen, water bottles, tourist maps, snacks, and more.
For tips on what to put in your Go-Bag – click here.
• Passport protectors
Damage to your passport can lead to you not being provided entry (or re-entry) into a country. Have a plastic pouch cover to protect from water damage and on a lanyard that you can wear around your neck to protect from theft.
• Luggage cubes
Suitcase luggage cubes are a great way to separate your luggage into sections, keep things organized, and help prevent wrinkling, and help to save space. This last reason seems counterintuitive, but it does work. Luggage Cubes come in very handy for separating dirty clothes as well.
• Small bottle opener (key chain)
When you travel, you will often have drinks that are not all twist caps. Whether you are referring to sodas or alcohol, you will be the hero of your group if you have a simple bottle opener to crack a cold one when the need arises.
We have a very basic one on our key chain at all times, and it comes in handy more often than you might think. We like to drink a lot on vacation.
• Small notebook and pen
We love to write notes as we travel. We keep a journal of where we have been.
As travel bloggers, social media enthusiasts, and avid Tripadvisor reviewers, Roguetrippers always have a little notebook on hand whenever we travel. You will want to remember where you have been, what restaurants you ate at, and what experiences you had. Writing a quick note in your book will help you to remember more about your vacation when you return.
• Plastic bags (laundry) dirty or wet clothes
Travelling with dirty clothes can be stinky, and you don’t want that smell to transfer to your clean clothes. Having a plastic bag to put your clothing in after you have worn them will prevent smell transference.
Hotels and cruise ships usually have these in rooms, but typically only one. So pack a couple of extras.
• Small lint roller
This is a straightforward thing that you may see as unnecessary. However, if you plan on a night out at a nice restaurant or are having a formal night on your cruise, you will want to look your best. Small lint rollers do not take up a lot of space and can be purchased cheaply at a local dollar store.
Travel Tip: The paper lint rollers also come in very handy to check your dogs & yourself for Ticks after a hiking adventure.
• Memory foam or gel insoles for your shoes
You can’t underestimate the importance of suitable comfortable footwear. You will be walking around a lot more than you think. With all of the places you go, foot comfort will be crucial. Having an extra layer of comfort in your shoes will help eliminate aches and pains associated with too much walking, so you can continue to enjoy the rest of your trip.
• Portable Raingear
Ponchos, umbrellas, and a raincoat. These are the most overlooked items when we pack for a vacation. They don’t take a lot of room in your luggage, so pack them. You may not need them, but you will be glad you did if there is a change in the weather. Some locations like Alaska, Norway, and Iceland are very cold and wet. In these locations, an umbrella or poncho will come in handy.
Some locations like England and Seattle are notorious for their rainy weather.
Even hotter destinations like New Orleans have such high humidity that it can rain without clouds.
If you are visiting Niagara Falls – the spray causes a misting that will get you wet.
Money-saving tip: These are $1 – $2 at the dollar store but can run up to $5 -10 when you buy them in tourist areas or on cruise ships.
• Zip-up hoodie
Of all of the overlooked items when you pack for a trip – a sweatshirt or zip-up hoodie is one you will never regret having. The temperatures can get chilly even in warmer destinations, and having a zip-up hoodie will be a welcomed addition to your bag. I recommend zip-up instead of pull-over because you have more control over how warm you will get. Pullovers are all or nothing.
• Walking stick
I will admit that I never carry a walking stick, but I see the benefits of having one. If you like to hike, or if the destination is a little hilly or uneven (San Francisco, Sardinia, etc.), having one can be very helpful.
A walking stick can also be an added layer of safety in your hotel room. You can use this to prevent a door from being broken into.
• Portable alarm clock
A small slim, design, battery-operated (or wind up) alarm clock can be purchased at your local dollar store. It packs nicely in a suitcase without taking up a lot of room.
We still do not pack this, but someone we travel a lot with does. So far, our cell phones have done the trick without fail. Everybody has a cell phone that they can use as an alarm clock. However, if the battery dies or there is a power outage, this small, inexpensive alarm clock can make a difference in keeping you on schedule.
• Small flashlight (battery-operated)
You never know when you will need one, but it will be great to have a tiny LED flashlight when you do. We keep a small flashlight in our “Go-Bag” as well as in the glove compartment of our car – you never know when you need to explore a dark cave or do some UrbExing when on a road trip.
A little whistle necklace will give you peace of mind if you are threatened or attacked on vacation. You can never be too careful; having a few safety and protection items will help. There are also small personal alarm systems that you can get attached to your purse or bag. They will run you about $10-15 on Amazon.
• Rubber door stop
Go to your local dollar store and pick up an inexpensive rubber doorstop or a doorstop with an alarm just for travel. You can put this under the door of your hotel room or cruise stateroom on the inside to make it harder for anyone to break in. This small thing will help you feel safer when you travel.
For more tips on staying safe when you travel, check out our “Travel Safety Tips.”
• Paper Atlas & maps of the area
YES, I KNOW your car has GPS, and your phone has Google Maps. What if they aren’t working? Cell service can be sketchy (or non-existent) in some places, as can the satellite signals for the GPS. If your GPS or Phone does not have a signal, or if where you are going is off the grid, having an ‘old-school’ map will be a great idea.
Travelling with the bare essentials can be fun and relaxing for some, but most of us now like some of the comforts of home when we travel. We know you don’t want to fill your luggage with ‘stuff’, but these often overlooked items should be considered when you pack for your trip. You will be glad you have them when you need them. Plus, it will save you money if you need them while on vacation.
For more travel tips on what to pack for your vacation, don’t forget to check Roguetrippers’ articles on what to pack for a health & wellness kit, technology accessories, and what to pack for a road trip with your dog.
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