Travel Packing Essentials

Saturday, April 28, 2012 0 Comments

bowdywanders.com Singapore Travel Blog Philippines Photo :: Philippines :: Travel Packing Essentials

My recent trip to Myanmar made me realize that I’m getting good at travel-packing. *tribal applause* Well, I’m not a light-packer. I’m not a backpacker either. I’m just a mother… no, master packer? Now that’s a big difference, you see? HAHAHAHA Packing is an art, a science, and a whole lot of math all rolled into one big bag of travel. It looks fun and easy at first, but once you really understand the importance and relevance of efficient packing, you begin to see that you have to be artistic, logical, and well… you realize that you have to be capable to be able to maximize the packing process (and the packed stuff). By doing so, you save time, energy, and a few dollars in the process.

One of the most important preludes of a successful travel experience is to have a well-packed baggage. Whether you’re a backpacker, a business traveler, a travel neophyte, a well-packed baggage serves as your greatest weapon in charting the unknown realms of a new place. Everything inside your baggage should scream “comfort zone”.

Now, what to pack?

I’ve learned the hard way: had truck load of travel mistakes, that’s why every time I travel, I assure myself to have these things as part of my travel baggage. Aside from the bare essentials, I consider these things mandatory items.

Hand-carry bag 
It should be something light weight, “compartment”-heavy, ultra comfortable, low profile, and easy to move around with. It would be ineffective to buy something trendy or something expensive if it doesn’t fall under the mentioned criteria. At the end of the day, what’s important is the whole travel experience and not the potential “I-got-mugged-because-of-my-hand carry” moment.

Cheap coin purse 
Especially if you’re traveling in a foreign country, it’s very useful to have a separate coin purse, where you can put all your coins or loose change. Easy to transact if you’re on a different place, since it’s not eye candy for robbers. You also won’t be tempted to swipe your CCs so that’s also a good thing, right? There see: dollars saved.

Smallest bottled water 
For some reason, this is my least favorite mandatory item but would have to admit that it’s as important as everything else. Notice the word “smallest”? Meaning, you shouldn’t opt to bring one gallon or one bulky Coleman for you to enjoy your travel. It shouldn’t take up space in your baggage (or hand carry). Plus, it will only serve as an optional drink, you know, in case you’re on the road and there’s no store nearby.

Best mobile phone 
Come on, really. I never fully grasped this essential item, until I got my Apple phone. (whatsup iphone users! facetime facetime! HAHAHAHAHA) It should serve as your micro laptop, where you can surf, take pictures, listen to music, record videos, go facebook, check Google translate (?!), convert currencies, and of course, communicate. It’s one of the best inventions for avid travelers!

Mints 
You know - to keep you cool and fresh (…breath). It gives some sort of energy boost because it tricks your mind that you are refreshed. To some it can even trick your body to think that you’re no longer hungry! HAHAHAHA true story. Don’t forget to bring some of your favorite mints in your baggage so that it will keep you cool when the going gets tough.

Power strip 
Of course this one’s the funniest but I assure you, it’s the most practical. Most of the places I’ve been to do not provide enough sockets for me to charge all my gadgets – thus, the need to bring one. You can buy these at any hardware store. They call it power strips, extension block, power boards, plug boards, what have you. This comes in very useful if you want to charge all your electronics in one go. Of course, don’t forget to bring a travel adaptor first before having this, but this is one mandatory add-on to your electronic gadget list.

Duffel bag
Never really appreciated this item not until I had a ton of things to bring back home HAHAHAHA it’s like it’s not there, but it is. Because it can be rolled up or flat out or whatever shape you desire, it’s so convenient. Poof, you have an extra bag when you need it!  It's cheap and you can get it at any local department store. Duffel for the win!

Wet Wipes 
I don’t know if I should be ashamed or what but this is actually a rip off from my friend, who really cannot leave without having wet wipes inside his bag. Take note: he’s a GUY! Talk about vanity, err SANITY. No no no, don’t get me wrong: it’s for poop purposes that’s why HAHAHAHAHA well, and then I realized that this is indeed MORE convenient than bringing alcohol with you (liquid = bottle = bulky? I guess). This one, you can easily throw away once done, plus it’s more "light weight" than a bottle of alcohol. When you’re in a foreign land, you don’t know what kind of germ you will attract, so it’s best to fight it with wipes. It’s not 100% guaranteed that you’ll be clean as porcelain, but hey, you can only be 99.9% clean, right? HAHAHA big check.

Sure we all have our mandatories and optionals when it comes to our travel baggage, but at the end of the day, remember that we’re doing this for security, flexibility, and essentially, an ultimate travel experience.

So pack your bags and be ready to go! / click / click /


Bowdy is an amateur adventurer, a coffee sleepyhead, and a start-up rooter, with a penchant for classic-looking photos. At last count, he has visited some 54 countries, and is now living in Singapore. He's always in search of fascinating routines to exploit, within the edges of after-office hours and (un)limited holidays.

For collaboration ideas, email bowdywanders@gmail.com.

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