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10 Essential Items for Female Travelers

by Linda Martin Nov 18, 2008
A few extra items female travelers should bring along.

You’re heading off on the trip of a lifetime. You’ve been shopping for everything you need – you’ve bought your pack, your travel clothes and your earplugs, so you’re all set.

But chicks have slightly different needs than guys. Have you packed these small essentials?

1. Pocket Knife

An absolute essential for any traveler, especially women.

Hostel kitchens aren’t always well-stocked in the knife department, and you never want to get caught without a bottle opener.

In fact, you’ll probably win friends by being the one who can open the beer without having to use teeth. Plus the tweezers and toothpicks are highly useful for grooming.

The Victorinox Picnicker is a great choice – the blade is long enough to actually be useful, and it doesn’t have any useless extras.

2. Tissues or Toilet Paper

Sadly, not all toilets are as well-stocked as the one at your house. Toilet paper isn’t used universally, and if you’re not ready to rinse rather than wipe, having your own supply is essential.

It also comes in handy if you catch a cold or are out in the middle of nowhere when you need to go.

3. Sanitary Pack

You’re a woman so you know how important it is to have the equipment you need for that time of the month.

Prepare a zip-lock bag of pads and tampons, enough to get you through your whole period, and keep an emergency pad in your jacket pocket or daypack.

Traveling can upset your rhythm and you don’t want to get caught short.

4. Plastic Bags

It’s not exactly breaking the budget to throw five or six plastic bags into your pack, but you’ll be amazed at how useful they are.

Keep one in your daypack for rubbish, and you’ll get through the rest of them as waterproofing, or as a place to store your dirty shoes or laundry.

5. Hand Sanitizer

Women tend to be a little more concerned about hygiene than men do. A small container of hand sanitizer will take the place of soap an water after a visit to a less than salubrious public toilet, or before meals in the middle of nowhere.

6. Extra Hair/Head Ties

Don’t underestimate the value of a head tie if you have long hair. Make sure you have three or four extras in your toiletries kit in case of breakages – being able to tie back your hair is important. Plus they can double as elastic bands; use them to tie up bags and keep small items together.

7. Nail Clippers

This is an item men are notorious for forgetting, and as they aren’t something you’ll use every day, many women leave them behind as well.

But it’s no fun trying to cut your toenails with your pocket knife or someone’s kitchen scissors, so chuck a set in with your toothbrush.

8. Sarong

Ah, the all-purpose garment. Being, basically, just a large rectangle of material, a sarong can be used in many ways. As a skirt, a dress, a bedspread, a scarf – the list goes on.

Lighten your load by packing a small towel (a travel towel or handtowel) for drying yourself after showers and swimming, and use your sarong as a beach blanket.

9. Spray-on Deodorant

I’m sure you appreciate the value of hygiene on the road, but spray-on deodorant can also be used as form of self defense. Keep a small container in your pocket if you’re walking alone through dodgy areas, and aim for the eyes if anyone bothers you.

10. A Wedding Ring

You don’t have to actually get married, but invest in a cheap gold band and wear it on your ring finger.

Having a “husband” should deter any unwanted admirers. It might also be helpful to learn to say “I’m married” in the language of the country you’re visiting.

So, before you go, stock up on these ten essential items for female travelers – they’ll ease the way when you’re on the road.

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