Vacation Travel Checklist

Ever have that sinking feeling when you forget something while on vacation? Especially if that something is super important, like your phone charger. Well, one of the best ways to avoid such a scenario is to have a travel checklist.

A travel checklist forces you to plan your vacation ahead of time so you’ll know everything you’ll need to bring. Writing it down also helps you unload some of the mental stress of trying to remember everything.

Not sure how to make your own travel checklist? Well, here’s a lowdown on what to pack for vacation so you won’t forget anything ever again!

Pack the necessities

Whenever you begin preparing your travel packing list, it’s best to start with the essentials. These are things that you’ll need to actually travel safe and sound, so these shouldn’t be missed! On the day, we often triple and quadruple check just to be sure!

Essential travel documents are obviously at the top of that vacation packing list. This includes your tickets and boarding pass. If you’re headed for an international destination, passports and visas are also crucial. You should also have supporting documents like travel insurance, copies of your IDs like driver’s license, and student card (if traveling underage).

You should also plan for bringing just the right amount of cash on your travel checklist, including emergency money properly stowed away. It’s also best to get foreign currency in your home country if possible (currency exchanges in airports are known for ripping you off). 

Smartphones are now also essential for communicating, researching, and navigating during a trip. Don’t forget to bring extra batteries and chargers! Also, figure out what type of plug your destination uses (or better yet, buy a universal adaptor).

What will you wear?

Clothes are probably the area in a vacation checklist that takes the most time to plan and pack. Carefully planning out what you’ll wear every day on your trip is the key. You don't want to end up with extra outfits you never wear, but at the same time, you don't want to be caught without a coat when you need one! To start, you’ll want to count the days and bring the appropriate amount of socks and underwear.

We recommend planning out your itinerary in advance to figure out if you’ll need to include specific clothes in your vacation packing checklist. For example, if you have some outdoor activities planned, you might want to pack some athleisure or sportswear pieces. Going adventuring? Men's cargo shorts are a solid option. Need something to get dirty in? Clearance sale clothes will be perfect for you.

Of course, you should plan for any eventualities, so it’s also worthwhile to make room for an extra set of clothes or two in your packing checklist for vacation

Oh, and no matter what the weather forecast says, always plan for the worst! You won’t regret having a few jackets and windbreakers in your packing list for vacation when the rain comes pouring down.

Your daily routine

Your daily routine doesn’t end when you go on a trip (at least most of them), so be sure to plan for them when thinking of things to take on vacation.

Toiletries are the basics that everyone needs. Even if you’re staying at a hotel, it’s worth it to bring in some of your own to prepare for any situation. That includes everything from toothbrushes to shampoo. Cosmetics and hygiene products are also not generally provided by accommodations, so go over your morning routine in your mind and recreate the process in what you put in your suitcase.

If you’re worried about your luggage space, remember that you can usually get travel-sized versions of most toiletries. And don't forget the sunscreen!

Medication is also a crucial part of your travel checklist, especially if you have an underlying medical condition. You should also bring any prescriptions; in case you need to buy some medicine in your destination.


Long trips are an unavoidable part of traveling. Sitting down for hours inside a car or plane can be very tedious for some people, especially young kids. So why not plan for a little entertainment in your travel checklist?

Books and magazines are a classic, especially since you can bring them anywhere and they don’t run out of batteries. You can also rely on digital entertainment like movies and games on your tablet or laptop. Just be sure to download them so you can still watch without an internet connection.

Kids also need their entertainment, or else they will become very uncontrollable on long flights. Bring one or two of their favorite toys. For older kids, puzzles or coloring books are great time-wasters on long trips.

Destination-specific needs

What you’ll include on a weekend trip packing list to the local lake will be drastically different if you’re off to a skip trip. You’ll usually need to pack things that are specific to the destination you’re headed to.

One crucial consideration is to pack for the climate and weather of your trip destination. For colder places like ski resorts or winter countries, bring lots of jackets. Stable footwear like spiked shoes and boots are also vital so you can safely walk on slippery snow.

If you’re headed to a tropical location, pack in lots of sunscreen to protect your skin from harmful UV radiation. You'll also likely want bug spray. Plan to wear lots of shorts as well, as jeans are just impractical in scorching weather.

So, are you done with your travel checklist yet? Next would be to plan your actual outfits for each day of your trip! For trip OOTD ideas, browse our shorts for women, womens tops, and more online today.