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What you decide to take on a round-the-world trip ultimately depends on the activities you plan on partaking in and the places you plan on visiting.

Packing for a long term trip around the world can be a challenge. The contents of your backpack should get you through a variety of climates, sustain you economically, be culturally sensitive, and should support a variety of physical activities without weighing you down.

Here are some items I’ve found to be indispensable during my travels.

1. Fleece and Jacket

A fleece and a wind/waterproof shell worn together or separately give you versatile options which provide protection from a variety of weather.

Jacket Price: $88.83 – $119.00 | BUY | Fleece Top Price: $39.50 | BUY

2. Bank Card

ATMs are becoming more available globally, making it easier than ever to get money in local currency while on the road. Try to have a couple cards for different bank accounts (in case one doesn’t work).

Be sure to investigate how much you will be charged by your bank for international withdrawals.

3. Rain Poncho

A compact yet sturdy rain poncho not only keeps you dry, but can also protect your day pack from moisture. It makes a useful tarp or waterproof mat for sitting on wet surfaces.

Price: $3.95 | BUY

4. Hat/Cap

A soft sun hat made from foldable fabric protects you from the sun and is easy to store. The Horizon Mosquito Cap below includes a concealable mosquito net.

Price: $29.94 | BUY

5. Flip flops

Wear them in grungy hotel showers or during tropical rainstorms when the streets are flooded. Use them as beach wear or for killing bugs. Flip flops work indoors when you are visiting countries where people remove outdoor shoes before entering homes.

Price: $12.99 | BUY

6. Sleeping Bag Liner or Sheet Sack

Even if you don’t carry a sleeping bag, bring a liner. This can be a light-weight silk sleeping bag liner or an old bed sheet, folded and sewn into a sack. Use as a blanket on cold bus rides, a layer between your body and beds of dubious cleanliness, or for its original purpose (since it is easier to clean than a sleeping bag.)

Price: $39.00 | BUY

7. Headscarf or Large Bandanna

Choose a bandanna made of sturdy lightweight material. For women, this may be necessary when visiting places like mosques, Russian Orthodox churches, and more conservative Middle Eastern countries. It also can be used as a bag (tie the corners together), a neck scarf, a way to keep hair out of your face, protection from sand and dust (wrapped around nose and mouth), a window shade (for sunny car rides), and as a halter top.

Price: $1.98 | BUY

8. Waterproof Bags

Useful for protecting important documents that you are not carrying on your person. They can also protect electronic equipment, keep small pieces of clothing dry, or keep potentially leaky items (shampoo, lotion) from getting all over your luggage.

Price: $9.39 – $17.99 | BUY

9. Digital Camera

If you’re traveling around the world, chances are you want to document your travels. Be sure to pack extra memory, and a memory reader so you can occasionally burn photos onto CD/DVD and send an extra copy back home (or upload to online storage space such as Flickr). You can also use a digital camera to store information, such as maps, documents, and other files.

Price: $229.88 | BUY

10. Elastic Clothesline with Hooks

An elastic clothesline makes it easy to hang up and dry laundry anywhere. It is also useful for strapping or tying objects together. Some lines come with suction cups which don’t work as well so make sure you get one with hooks or loops.

Price: $9.94 | BUY

11. Small Flashlight

I carry a Maglite in my day pack because one never knows when the electricity will go out or you’ll find yourself walking down a dark, potholed street.

Editor’s Note – An alternative to flashlights are headlamps which serve the same purpose while freeing up your hands.

Price: $26.64 | BUY.

12. Day Pack

You are going to be carrying a day pack with you most of the time so make sure it has plenty of pockets (both internal and external), is strong, and provides comfortable straps. Consider getting one that can be folded up and stuffed into your regular backpack.

Price: $44.99 | BUY

13. The Keeper (for women only)

Definitely not for everyone but this little cup will minimize the amount of pads you need. Great in countries where access to tampons is a lot more difficult. It reduces the amount of trash you generate, the weight in your bag, money spent on feminine products, and emergency runs to the store.

Price: $35.00 | BUY

14. Swiss Army Knife

The Spartan model includes 2 knives, a pair of scissors, a can opener, a bottle opener, toothpick, tweezers, awl, and corkscrew – sufficient tools while traveling.

Price: $28.89 | BUY

15. Money Belt

A money belt keeps cash, cards, and passports safely concealed. You may want a second storage belt such as a neck pouch to keep smaller amounts of cash for daily purchases.

Price: $11.95 – $12.00 | BUY

16. Thermal Underwear

Long thermal underwear provides much needed warmth when traveling in colder climates. I use a combination of black midweight bottoms and a midweight top. The bottoms double as comfortable leggings for lounging around, stockings underneath a skirt, and pajama bottoms. The top can be used as a sweatshirt as well.

Price: $6.80 – $23.00 | BUY

Price: $14.74 – $23.00 | BUY

17. Sewing Supplies

Sure you can buy these anywhere but sewing supplies are good to have on hand. Make sure your pack includes needles, thread, and some dental floss. Repair heavier items (leather, backpacks) with dental floss. A needle can be used to remove splinters, as well.

18. Sarong or Travel Towel

On my round-the-world trip, I took a regular towel and deeply regret it. An absorbent, fast drying travel towel will suit your needs. A sarong has the advantage of drying quickly while doubling up as clothing.

Price: $12.50 – $33.95 | BUY

Choose quality items that will last your whole trip and don’t underestimate the importance of light-weight items. Backpacks get heavier as you travel so you will be happy that you spent a little extra upfront investing in lightweight, multipurpose gear.

Sports + AdventureApparel


About The Author

Tamia Dowlatabadi

Tamia Dowlatabadiis currently traveling around the world. She has written for Boots 'N All, and Transitions Abroad. Her blogs include: The Little Black Fish: Off to See the World and Istanbul Diary.

  • Soultravelers3

    Great list! We are going on our third year of an open ended world tour as a family and found most of these items very useful. We have not needed the headscarf,keeper or sheet sack and preferred the headlamp.We like silk long underwear as well as regular long underwear.The silk really takes up no space and adds a lot. I happen to have both tops on now as I am outside and it gets chilly at night here in France. It was even handier in northern climates earlier.

  • Jenny

    Don't forget the chapstick. I can't live without it. Chapped lips are bad news.

  • Robin

    the diva cup is a better alternative to the keeper. it's made of medical grade silicone, and can be boiled to be cleaned (although it's not necessary) meaning it's super sanitary! (plus you can use it for 12 hours at a time, great for travel!)

  • Terri

    This is a great thread! Thanks for all the suggestions!

  • Tourist

    Rain Pancho???? hmmm pushing it…. Great list though

  • Robotter the Globetrotter

    Don’t forget a decent pocket knife for your fruit and anything else you may need to cut up. It comes in handy to enjoy what you get at the street markets like locals do.

    A high quality pair of shoes as well as high quality gear commonly sold in Western countries. It’s though to find a decent quality new pair of shoes abroad in many countries as it’s mostly cheap junk, particularly in Asia and maybe India and Africa too. I know in Asia it’s tough to find high quality gear unless visiting an upscale mall in one of the largest cities such as Tokyo, Seoul, Bangkok, Hongkong, etc.

    Another essential item is an open mind to being uncomfortable, physical strength challenged, or even scared at times and other times, simply amazed to the point of surreal alternative altered realities. Some of the treks test you and it makes a better man or woman out of you as long as you’re careful, smart, lucky, and wise in your decisions. Just don’t jump off a beeping cliff and hit a rock like some young drunk and high travelers do in the name of having the time of their life.

  • Chris

    Very good list, other important item is a very good first aid kit.
    Iodine for clean drinking water and cleaning cuts and abrasions
    To stop Diorreha tablets
    To loosen bowels tablets
    Pain killers
    Insect repellent
    Sun screen
    and any other items I missed, all should be eco friendly as in bio degradable if they happen to be drained into water or on land.

  • Powered by Tofu

    I’d skip the poncho, you can pick them up along the way, if needed! I’d add a universal plugin adapter too.

    Here’s my packing list:

  • eileen

    I’m not sure about the rinsing out of a divacup or keeper in questionable water situations or where there’s no running water. Maybe combine that with the more familiar equipment? Plus a test run at home is an essential. They’re not for everyone!

    ditto headlamp, great stuff, and with the new tiny LED ones they weigh next to nothing. Good for early morning takeoffs at the hostel as well.

  • TrueEyes


  • Mitigate Global

    Here’s my list!

    First Aid Kit
    Global Positioning Satellite System
    Universal plug adaptor
    Mobile phone re-charger
    Multipurpose tool (screwdriver, knife, can opener, bottle opener)
    Folding scissors
    Compass – cheap and inexpensive
    Wedge – type rubber doorstop (see below)
    Inflatable travel pillow
    Spork (see picture below)
    Sewing Kit
    Ziploc platic bags / garbage bags
    Drawstring bag for shoes
    Liquid hand wash
    Chemical or Mechanical water Purifier
    Collapsible Water Bottle and Cup
    Small roll of duct tape
    Extra shoelaces
    Ear Plugs
    Eye Mask
    Pens / Pencil
    Small Notebook
    Key Contact Numbers (home and international) – Doctor, Travel Agent, Travel Insurance, Hospital, Police, Embassy, Hotel)
    Phrase Dictionary
    Kwikpoint International Translators (see below)
    Extra Visa / Passport Photos (in case you decide to cross borders, lose your passport) and are unable to obtain new photographs

  • Dave and Deb

    I like the the rain poncho. It is great because it covers your pack as well in a sudden downpour. We always bring them. Great list.
    This is a silly one, but I always bring peppermint oil, it helps in those rooms that smell terrible, and it soothes aching muscles, helps with allergies and stuffy noses. Just my little luxury item.

  • Nepal expedition

    all above list so important things when we travel. thans for making a this very nice bilog including all necessary thing when travel but i would like to add some more thing. we need umbrella because if we take umbrella then it work raining and for sun also. second thing is take cheaper mobile because now days if we have mobile then we can buy sim card any where so we can communicate with family where ever we travel. also bring one strong stick with you. it help to walk and some time it save our life too

    any way thanks for making this nice article

  • Nit Picker

    Hey, what’s the rubber door stop for???

  • Steve

    Currently on an 8-month world tour, I think having a rain shell AND poncho is a bit excessive. Would recommend rechargeable batteries and charger, a netbook (or at minimum one of those mini-hard drives) to store pictures and check email, and an unlocked GSM cell phone.

    My biggest recommendation: Travel as light as possible. It’s cheaper to buy stuff on the road instead of paying the extra weight charges every airline in the world is charging nowadays.


    Some really great ideas for things to bring on travels.

    One idea I really like is to e-mail yourself a copy of important page(s) of your passport, visas and entry pages. Lose the passport and you can retrieve all necessary information for the embassy to issue another passport.

  • Joanne Murphy

    Some great ideas. What size plastic bags?

    I will be living in Paris and would like to know if I can purchase a lot of the personal care items there reasonably. Do they carry American brands or should I take this opportunity to broaden my horizons?

    • joseph

      hey there joanne. i just left paris after 4 1/2 years. good times. at monoprix you could find quite a few american brands, but you’d be surprised at how many of them are actually made from french companies. yet, there are some things that i couldn’t find at all… like my favorite aquafresh flavor. i suggest broadening; it’s always fun to be a consumer zombie in another country and buy whatever the ad says to. :)

      enjoy! i miss it with all my heart.

  • Sam Golden

    thanks so much for this, I’m preparing for another trip and ill make sure to carry this stuff, you can read about how being unprepared left me last year on my european tour

  • Poroka

    One other useful thing to do with elastic clothesline with hooks, you mentioned in post – you can use it as a skipping rope at the end of the day (if you are not tired after whole day of backpacking and if you are a bit of fitness junkie:))
    Anyway – great list! Thanks.

  • Jess

    EXCELLENT LIST! i brought every single item on my trip. I would suggest Head lamp instead of flashlgith however. :)

  • GeekOne

    I agree with Tourist on the rain poncho. I use a waterproof jacket that comes with its own fleece from Columbia which wont cost you that much. But it does save space and can obviously be worn to save space in the bag if need be or it can be draped over the day pack on hotter days.

  • IsabellesTravel

    I’m glad my list is similar :) I agree with Jenny, can’t live without lipbalm! Especially on the plane.Thanks for sharing!

  • Yvonne Ashmore

    Good for you that you are traveling the world! Want to see a different way to see the world?

    You could take advantage of this FREE way to coast around the world and not have to worry about luggage or packing!

    Look Up and see it. It will really be fun. Come on along, while you can! Its free.

  • Jeff Brandt

    Hi all,

    While traveling in Argentina for the last 3 months I came up with an idea to keep all of my travel info in one place, my iPhone.

    Check out or on the AppStore

    Happy travels


  • Jeff Brandt

    I read this article when I was living in Argentina this summer and it inspired me to develop an iPhone app for travel. Check it out, store everything securely, itinerary, medication, immunizations, flights…

    Jeff Brandt your travel partner for the iPhone

    • Jeff Brandt

      Sorry I did it twice, I did not mean to SPAM Need more coffee on the Oregon coast.

  • Pingback: 18 essential items for a RTW trip | Travel Gear Review

  • Clark

    I disagree with not being able to find quality gear in Asia. It’s the same gear you buy in the States without the illusion of an over-priced brand name.

    I find an iPod touch pretty indispensable. I can write all my email off-line and when I eventually find an open wifi access point I can send them all at once.

    One other item I take everywhere is a Buff bandanna. I use it to catch sweat, as a cloth, a hat, scarf, sun guard and dust screen.

  • Michela

    Thanks for sharing these useful tips. I like the idea of the buff bandanna. One item I always take with me is a silk sarong and lavanda oil: a few drops of it on the pillow is a great help with falling asleep.

  • Legal Nomads

    Great list, but I haven’t used a cap once (I did, however, use a neoprene running hat for cold weather) and I second SoulTravelers3 about the headlamp. My Petzl has gotten more use than I ever thought possible, and it’s at the top of the “must pack” list for my 18 month RTW. Thanks for posting!

  • Courtney C.

    Awesome list… as I traveled around the world last spring, a lot of these items were necessary. I would recommend a few other items:
    Chapstick (carmax), lock for your bag, scarf (to use for warmth & to cover yourself up in strict countries) and some form to write about your travels.
    I spent 4 months traveling the world, as a young college girl, and I never once felt the need for a cell phone. I wouldn’t recommend bringing a cel phone because I think it takes away from your traveling experiences AND it is a total hassle!

  • William Wallace

    One thing that is more important than everything you mentioned on your list, is to have plenty of money on your bank cards. Travelling without money is such a bore and fun killer. Also never go anywhere without condoms, you never know when you are going to get lucky.

  • krizd

    Swiss Army Knife NOT!!!
    Well not in China,or else they will take it at the airport.

  • joyjoy

    I agree about that Swiss Army knife comment above. I had to give up my super-handy credit-card-shaped Swiss Army knife/scissors/tweezers/screwdriver kit at the airport, so decided that if I travel again with no check-through I will just buy a knife at my destination and then give it away before I come home.

  • Terrin Haley

    My honeymoon 30 years ago was an around-the-world backpacking trip. We had all the items you mentioned in your excellent list. I would add some essential medical stuff: Neosporin, Loperamide (Immodium), tea tree oil. I also recommend taking a prescribed antibiotic, such as Cipro or a Z-Pac and learn what symptoms indicate you do need a broad spectrum or other antibiotic.

  • coleman tent

    Around The World Trips Can’t pick just one vacation destination? Try them all! An around the world trip could be a once in a life time experience. The enchantment of an around the world trip for many vacationers is to experience as many different cultures and countries as possible.

  • Natasha

    Door stop is my number 1 item too. If the hostel/hotel/area is a bit dodgy and you’re travelling on your own you just shove it under the door on your side, thus stopping anyone from barging their way into your room in the middle of the night. Just makes me feel that bit safer.

    Another idea I like is to take a fit-all plug for the sink so you can wash your stuff. Lots of hostels don’t have them. Sadly I’ve never managed to find one that works.

    If anyone still uses film camera, the plastic cases the rolls come are secure enough to use for carrying shampoo and other liquids. Just be sure to label them so you know what’s what.

  • Ishelle

    Eileen made a good call on the Keeper/Diva cup. They are definitely a great thing to have on most trips, but unsafe if you are traveling in a place with no sanitation/running water. For those who use the cup regularly, it may seem like a hassle to bring loads of tampons on your trip to the jungle, but it’ll be much better than getting parasites or infections.

  • Gina

    Our family traveled around S. America for a year with 1 suitcase/backpack per person. The fleece/shell combo served us well, as did the headlamp. We used small packing cubes to keep clothes organized, and allowed us to separate clean from dirty in laundry-droughts. The bag of small plastic clothes pins were handy for laundry, snack clips, etc. Loved our small UV Steripen, which purifies water up to 1 liter at a time. We also brought a Kindle Electronic Reading device. We are avid readers, and this allowed us access to English books anywhere we had computer access (which was pretty much everywhere we went). I wouldn’t leave home without my Kindle! We had a regular sized laptop, but if I had to do it over, I would second the idea of a small portable laptop. A small medical kit is essential including bandaids, antibiotic ointment and anti-itch cream, pain reliever, anti-diarhhea tabs, pepto-bismol tabs, Bendryl (both for allergies and sleep aid), sudafed/cold meds, plus prescription antibiotics and SUNSCREEN (you can find it almost everywhere, but it is expensive). We used every single of these items. Plus don’t forget a roll of toilet paper for your backpack, as most public restrooms, including those on long bus rides either don’t have TP or they run out.

  • Gina

    For women who wear bras, I would also recommend the Norm Thompson built-in underwire bra cami. I had 1 white, 1 black and 1 red, which I lived in for 1 year. They were great as tank tops in tropical areas, and were perfect for layering under everything else when more modesty or warmth was called for, and could double as a pajama top, if needed. These camis are $35 on-line at Norm Thompson’s website (, or you can call one of two Norm Thompson Outlet stores in Oregon (Troutdale and Lake Oswego) and they can charge/ship them at $9.99 each plus $5 shipping – you order by bra size. There are multiple colors and styles available on-line, the outlets usually only stock the “favorite” style in white, black, beige or tan, and random clearance colors, in either cotton or microfiber.

  • Luray va accomodations

    These are all the most important items we should use in while we are going to pack out our luggage and preparing our traveling bags and all these necessary travel items must be put inside our travel luggage and not to forget these important stuffs for sure.

  • katie stone

    The super absorbent towel is something I wish I had here in Thailand. SO important. I use sarongs, which work great for several different purposes: clothing, towel, beach towel, and blanket for when it gets chilly at night.

  • Chase

    Why do these lists always suggest money belts? I think they’re a terrible idea. I concentrates all of your money and identification in one easy to steal container. I’ve seen pickpockets in Paris and Barcelona effortlessly lift these belts right off of people in subways. I imagine this would be even easier in somewhere more crowded like Brazil or Asia. I always distribute things between several zipped and or buttoned pockets across my body. I’ve had three people try to pick my pocket while traveling, and all have failed.

    The money belts scream “I’m a mark.”

  • Mariellen Ward

    Thanks for the list, I am just packing now for three months in India — and yes, a Petzl head light is essential. I wrote a packing list specifically for India on my blog. You can find it here:

  • Melissa

    I recommend sewing money into your bra’s, some have compartments for extra padding. Who can pickpocket that? And even with your bra off, noone would suspect that money is stashed in the cups.

  • African sands

    Great list. I would definitely recommend adding in a first aid kit. At least then if you do fall ill you know what drugs you are taking as opposed to trying to buy something from the local pharmacy when they sometimes don’t speak English and you have to try and sign language what you want. Include suncream, aftersun lotion and lip balm in this.
    If you do take a swiss army knife always make sure it is checked in and not with you in your hand luggage otherwise it will be taken away from you.

  • Kevin Cancun

    These are some good tips even if you are just visiting one place!

  • Travelin’ Guy

    Some v. good ideas. I’d add:
    -small notebook. I use one that’s about 3″ x 5″, with a coil binding on the top. I’ve procured a small pencil (3″ long, w. eraser) that slips into the coil binding – it’s always there! Fits into my back pocket. BTW if you get one with a side coil, even tho’ you can insert a longer pencil, it breaks when you sit down! I write down the happening every day, and use back pages for lists, etc.
    -can’t live without my Swiss Army knife. Mine has a wood sawing blade; amazingly useful. Two *sharp* blades, corkscrew, bottle opener, can opener (can double as eyeglass screwdriver. Worst thing EVER is that I now have to check it – we used to travel with only carry-on, and were already in the taxi while the rest of the plane is being hypnotized at the luggage carousel.
    -if we’ll be moving around a lot, I pack pretty much everything in freezer-sized ziploc bags. Fold your stuff (shirts, socks, undies,etc), place in bag, partially close the zip, then squeeze out all the air, and complete the zip. I often will roll it, while kneeling on it; you get a vacuum then. I don’t know why, but things never seem to wrinkle this way (‘course, you shouldn’t have wrinkly stuff while traveling). This method will even let you load your suitcase/pack from across the room! And when you pull out, say, a shirt, the rest of the bag is undisturbed. Bring extra ziplocs – invaluable for wet/dirty items, “extra” rolls from the food bar, etc.
    -small ziploc with first aid stuff: alcohol swabs, a mending kit, dental floss (great thread for buttons, torn items, etc) a few safety pins, bandaids, Ozonol, maybe moleskin, Tylenol, Benadryl, etc.
    -small flashlight. Not sure about a headlamp – it leaves your hands free, but I can’t talk to wearers – every time I speak, they look up and blind me!
    -personally, I think a money belt positively screams “TOURIST”. You can’t easily and unobtrusively get access to it, and lets face it: it’s pretty apparent that you’re wearing one. And if you’re wearing one, it’s pretty apparent you’re a tourist. And that you have enough cash to warrant a moneybelt. How many of your friends and acquaintances wear a money belt in day-to-day circumstances in your own towns (which can certainly be dangerous!) Use common sense, carry little cash, and rely on bank or credit cards.
    - for longer trips (3 weeks or more) I’ll bring a small bottle or pouch, if it’s available that way, of laundry detergent (shampoo works in a pinch). You can wash out small items like socks & undies in the sink, and hang them on the long (10 foot or so) piece of strong cord that you brought, with the 1/2 dozen or so clothespegs you so thoughtfully included. (Alternatively, I’ll bring along several pairs of socks that are on their last legs as it were, then discard them over there. For those of you who might say “why would you bring YOUR garbage to THEIR country, you wasteful, polluting monster!”, I say lighten up! It’s only a couple of pairs of socks! If you’re really troubled, maybe leave them in a park for their homeless folks! Now, go back home, and get a life!)
    -the single most important item is a sense of adventure. Try the local foods. Go to the local supermarkets, as well as the local farmers’ markets. Window shop, away from the tourist zones. These are quite probably the best days of your life!

  • Allana

    haha. Very interesting. I have to say that this list was pretty thorough, however another ABSOLUTE must is an empty cotton Pillowcase. This was my lifesaver in Europe, as you just fold and pop in all your extra clothes at night (bandana, jacket, scarf, etc) till you have a comfy pillow. One less thing to cart around!
    Also, wide cotton belt scarfs can be better than bandana’s as you get all the use of a bandana PLUS a belt, AND you can use it to wrap fragile items, hang things, etc. :)

  • Vertical Adventures

    Nice tips for the travelers.
    Thanks indeed for sharing. Keep it up!

  • Dewa Bhatara Ubud

    Don’t forget to bring some snacks, matches, ballpoint. Small utility but sometime we need them.

  • Kaylin

    See, I think a money belt is very useful. I’m not sure how a thief could lift it off you… if you’re doing it right. it’s supposed to go UNDER your clothes, where it is hidden and can’t be seen. Perhaps the poster above was thinking of a fanny pack/bum bag worn on the outside of clothes?? You only keep really important things you don’t need to access constantly in your money belt, like your passport, emergency credit card and phone numbers, etc. Your debit card can go in there after you use it first thing in the morning to take out a day’s worth of cash. This cash does NOT go in there, it goes in your wallet/pocket/etc, where you have easy access to it. If you have any EXTRA cash, however, (perhaps you took out a significant amount to avoid ATM fees) this should go in the money belt for safe keeping. The point is: you should not be digging in your money belt all day to get stuff, it should ONLY be there to hide important things you don’t need constant access to.

  • Sara C

    I use a money belt to hold extremely important things like my passport, credit card, emergency cash in home currency, etc. I only ever wear the belt (UNDER my clothes) during a time that I’m going to need items inside – and when I need to access something from it, I do so in a private place, like a bathroom stall. For the rest of the time, the belt and its contents are in a hidden pocket deep inside my daypack, or divided up between various hiding spots in my main luggage.

    You’re right that it’s not an absolute essential – it works mostly to keep important valuables together and conspicuous so you can’t accidentally lose anything, not so much as a security measure. A passport wallet or small envelope would be just as useful and probably more attractive and less conspicuous.

    • Sarah F

      I went on a trip to Ukraine and never used the money belt I packed. I hate having anything around my waist. Second trip, I just carried a purse with no problems. From what I’ve learned, in Ukraine they’re opportunistic but not violent. They’ll take stuff you leave lying around, but they’re generally not going to attack you for it.

      And nice note about wearing it UNDER clothing. There was a lady on my trip who wore her money belt like a fanny pack, on top of her clothing. I didn’t say anything to her, but seriously, way to scream to the world that you’re carrying valuables. The whole point of the money belt is invisibility. She might as well have stuck a sign to her head that said, “Carrying US currency, passport, and credit cards!” (As an aside: for other reasons besides this, she was really not the type of person that should travel internationally.)

  • peecup

    What about condoms? Duh.

  • Kirsten

    I have to speak up here and say the Keeper (or Diva Cup, the brand I have that does exactly the same thing) is RIDICULOUSLY amazingly useful! It is a LIFESAVER for women! For some reason so many of us feel very uncomfortable getting anywhere near our parts or our “time of the month” stuff, but I cannot stress enough how incredible it was to have on two separate 2+month-long backpacking trips. They saved me lots of money, tons of space in my backpack, hugely decreased the amount of unrecyclable waste I created (the packaging, box it comes in, and pad/tampon itself creates a huge amount of plastic and bleached-fabric waste every month for nearly every woman around)…not to mention, in places like the Pampas in Bolivia and 10-hour bus rides, it’s incredibly comforting to never have to worry about a single leak (of course it takes a few tries to get used to it, but it’s SO WORTH IT), I can ignore it for 10 or 12 hours…I literally am only aware of my period twice or three times a day when I change it.

    Sorry to go off on a tangent but GET IT, GET IT, GET IT!!!

  • Vjera

    I just came back from a RTW trip and have never had a single problem finding tampons anywhere, but I can understand the logic behind the Keeper/Diva cup. Microfibre towels are the best and so are thermal layers. You should buy those before you leave the comfort of your home. Everything else I found you can get cheaper at the destination. Even places such as Laos and Bolivia, both poor and under-developed places. So you can pack light and just go.
    My tip would be to buy a couple of sarongs in SE Asia – they were very, very useful for me – they can be a towel, a scarf, an extra layer, a bedsheet, a blanket etc etc.

  • Liz Harrod

    Pretty good tips here. Money belt? Not really necessary, but I totally agree with the previous comment that it is great to have all important stuff in one location, for me my passport wallet. That way I can just spot it and know that bank cards, tickets, etc. are all accounted for.

    The big yes yes yes for me is the keeper. I actually use the Diva Cup, and let me tell you, it is AWESOME – invaluable. Always on hand in case I lose track of what time of the month it is, a one time cost for the year (heaps less than buying box after box of tampons), more environmentally friendly, and actually more health conscious.

    I totally recommend!

  • paco

    money belts will ruin your passport (unless you have another secure plastic pouch to put it in, inside the money belt). Mine bled blue ink all over the belt, and faded my pages. Looks like i washed it in the washer! Had to get a new one while overseas. 

  • Carly Mitchie

    awesome list helps me a lot.

  • Annabelle Landongan

    good idea thanks.

  • Annabelle Landongan

    great for adventure thanks.

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