Essential Travel Items to Have on Every Vacation

Brown Leather Duffel Bag

Packing for a vacation can sometimes be a little stressful. You want to make sure you have everything you need for your trip, and make sure it all fits in your suitcase! Here, we provide you with the top essential travel items to have on any trip!

Luckily, in most destinations, you can buy anything you forgot to pack at the local store. However, that can be very inconvenient and throw a wrench in your travel plans!

Once you have all your items you will need, you might need some help packing it all up! We have you covered on that too, with some essential packing tips every traveler should know that we use all the time!

Here are some airline packing guidelines of what you can and cannot bring on the plane with you!

With this list, you won’t forget anything on your vacation! Continue reading for more on essential travel items to have for vacation!

Disclosure: Some of the links below are affiliate links, meaning, at no additional cost to you, I will earn a commission if you click through and make a purchase.

The Ultimate Packing Checklist for Any Vacation

Travel Packing Checklist Items


Brown Fedora Hat Beside White Sneakers and Blue Textile

When packing clothes for an upcoming trip, I suggest looking at your agenda and the weather for each day. Plan an outfit accordingly for each day. Here are some essential packing tips every traveler should know!

Additionally, I always pack 2-3 extra outfits, just in case the weather changes, I spill something, or just to have some options! This strategy will prevent you from overpacking, while also making sure you have all the clothing you need for the trip!

General clothing list:

  • Outfits for each day dependent on weather and occasion
  • Socks, undergarments, etc.
  • Pajamas/comfy clothes for hotel or downtime
  • Nice outfit in case you go out somewhere fancy
  • Gym clothes if working out, hiking, doing something active. Sneakers, leggings/shorts, sports bra, t shirt/tank
  • Scarf or outfit covering shoulders if going to a church or temple
  • Glasses if you need them
  • Belt
  • Jewelry
  • Shoes (2-3 pairs that are comfortable if you are doing a lot of walking!)
  • Cami/undershirt
  • Airplane outfit (comfy pants like leggings, a t shirt, and a sweatshirt)


Black Make Up Palette and Brush Set

When packing toiletries, especially liquids, less is more! Get a good liquids bag to store all your goodies, especially ones with small containers. I use this liquids bag, and I love it! I like that it has tiny containers if you just need to pack a little bit of something! 

General toiletry packing list:

  • Shampoo/conditioner (or just use the hotels to save space)
  • Body wash
  • Razor (can be packed in carry on)
  • Makeup and makeup brushes/sponges
  • Contacts (and a couple extra pairs just in case) & contact solution
  • I like to pack a mini loofa- you can find one at the Dollar Tree
  • Deodorant 
  • Medicines/vitamins (easily pack in a travel pill case)
  • Hand sanitizer
  • Bug repellent
  • Toothpaste and toothbrush
  • I always pack a zip loc of a few bandaids, q-tips, etc. just in case!
  • Dramamine if you get motion sick or are going on a boat. 
  • Tampons/pads if you will need them
  • Perfume (get a sample size if you can!)
  • Makeup remover and cotton pads
  • Hairbrush (I like these because they are so small!)
  • Hair dryer/straightener/curler (these cordless ones are great for traveling)
  • Face Wash
  • Face moisturizer
  • Sunscreen
  • Any other things you use daily: hair products, shave cream, lotion, tweezers, primer, etc.

Travel Necessities

Man Holding U.s Dollar Banknotes and Black Leather Bi-fold Wallet

There are some things you just CANNOT forget when you are traveling, making them a top priority our list of essential travel items to have for any vacation! Here are some packing tips that might help! 

  • Driver’s license or ID
  • Passport (if needed)
  • Credit cards
  • Cash (you may want to exchange money at your bank before leaving for your trip)
  • House & car keys
  •  Boarding passes (or have them on your phone)
  • Tickets to any events you will be attending (we like to keep tickets on our phone, and also print them out)
  • Itinerary (printed or on phone)
  • School ID (hey, you might get a discount!)
  • Medical insurance info, just in case

Beach/Pool Gear

Photo of Woman Sitting on Beach
Don't forget your pineapple... very important 😉

Any good vacation includes a beach, pool, or jacuzzi! Thats why we needed to include it on our essential travel items to have list!

You can check out our packing list for how to got to the beach in style

General Beach/Pool Packing List

  • Beach towel (or if you don’t have enough room, just use a hotel towel!)
  • Bathing suit (1-2 to let them dry in between wears)
  • Flip flops
  • Sunscreen (sample sized if taking in carry on)
  • Floppy hat (see essential packing tips every traveler should know to learn how to pack one!)
  • Bathing suit cover up
  • Sunglasses
  • Beach tote to hold all your things
  • Mini bluetooth speaker


Closed Up Photography of Two Iphones

Whether you are traveling for business or pleasure, chances are you will have some sort of electronic with you!

  • Cell phone & Charger
  • Outlet adapter, if needed (we have this 3 pack and they work great. Make sure to research what type you will need for your destination)
  • Portable charging bank (We have like 3 of these!)
  • Tripod selfie stick (because if you read my posts often, you know I love taking pictures on vacation!)
  • Laptop & charger, if needed
  • Headphones (don’t forget this one, because many planes have in flight entertainment. If you forget your headphones, it’s going to be a long ride if they don’t provide any!)
  • Camera
  • Ipad

Especially if you are on a long flight, you will want some things in your carry on! Check out our top carry on items !


Here are some other general packing list items that you might need on a vacation.

  • Mini umbrella
  • Pet supplies if you furry friend is joining you
  • Chapstick
  • Dryer sheets to put in your suitcase between clothes
  • Allergy meds (just in case!)
  • Travel journal

Thanks for reading our essential travel items to have for any trip! Did I forget anything? Let me know in the comments below, we would love to hear from you!


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    About the Author


    My name is Erica Sailor and I am the creator and developer of My World Sights! I love traveling the world with my husband and sharing what we learn along the way! Read More

    Erica Sailor