Packing for two weeks away in Europe would in hindsight seem like an easy task. We have gone for a suitcase rather than a backpack, ignored the sensible footwear rule and haven’t packed thermals. You could call it Glam-backpacking I suppose, as parts of our holiday revolves around heels and dresses, Mosh pits & being a little chilly. I have comprised a list of the pieces I have packed, the photographed items being being the essentials, the un-photographed being a mountain of jumpers, nice tops and too many pairs of socks! (You can never have enough socks in below freezing temperatures right?)
The Most Important Essentials
Printed documents (Train E-tickets, Hostel booking confirmation, Flight Boarding Passes, Insurance Documents)
EHIC Card (EU Health Insurance Card)
Driving License or another form of ID (allows you to leave your passport in the hostel safe)
Student Card (If you have one!)
Debit Card (the easiest form of accessing money when abroad)
Euros in Cash
Ipod and headphones
Guide Books: Budapest & Prague for us!
A book to keep your traveling dreams alive (Wild by Cheryl Strayed!)
An umbrella (let’s face it, Europe is rainy)
Let’s Get Technical
Spare Lenses (if you’re a Keen Bean Photography Queen like me!)
Chargers (Phone, Camera, Ipod)
A portable hairdyer
Portable Bluetooth Speakers (if you’re music crazy like we are!)
A padlock (to use on hostel lockers and your suitcase too)
10 x pairs of underwear (Better to have too many!)
5 x pairs of socks (To keep your toes warm in the freezing weather)
3 x Bras
3 x tights (thick and not so thick – layer up under leggings and jeans)
2 x PJ’s (even better if they can double up as a top and leggings on lazy days)
3 x Day tops (plain tops to go underneath jumpers too)
2 x Day/Going out tops (tops that can be dressed up or dressed down)
2 x thick jumpers
2 x cardigans & shirts
1 x hoodie
3 x leggings
1 x jeans
2 x dresses (going out in Austria is a must)
Extra Clothing for all of those crazy activities!
Swimsuit (The thermal baths in Budapest are calling!)
Sports bra, running leggings & running top (We gotta stay fit right!?)
Fluffy socks & Fluffy slippers (Having warm feet is essential)
Beanie or hat
Scarf & Gloves
A warm coat (A bonus if it is waterproof too)
A Travel Towel (Quick-dry/micro-fiber towels are the best)
Comfy walking shoes (A pair of Vans for me!)
Heeled boots (comfy & can be dressed up and dressed down)
Trainers (for running and walking long distances in)
Heels (These are not essential however when partying in Austria it’s a must-have)
Flip-Flops (Save your feet from icky bathroom floors in hostels)
Travel size shampoo
Travel size conditioner
Travel size shower gel
Toothbrush & Toothpaste
Perfume (Ghost Deep Night is a great day and night fragrance!)
Make up remover & pads (Coconut Oil & cotton wool pads are great!)
Hairbrush (Compact one is great if you’re hair is easy to maintain)
A portable mirror
Painkillers & Tablets (Ibuprofen, Rennie tablets)
Vegan essentials & Extras
Some dried foods e.g couscous sachets (for packed lunches!)
Plastic cutlery and 2 x Tupperware (we plan on making packed lunches at the hostels)
You will be amazed that all of these items fitted very snugly inside a slightly larger than hand-luggage sized suitcase (60 x 50 x 30cm) equipped with four wheels to make the maneuvering process a little easier.
1) Keep spare cash in your bra
Many sports bras have inserts for the padding protection – an ideal place to keep money as a back up on a night out or as emergency cash. I have heard of cutting into the lining of your bra (not your favourite I’d say) and keep money stashed in there also.
2) Have photocopies of all your documents in more than one place
Photocopying duplicates of each document is essential. You can keep one copy in your suitcase and other in your handbag. This way you will always have a back up. If traveling with another person, make sure that you each have spare copies of their important documents too to put both of your minds at ease. If you want to push it the extra mile, laminate a copy of your passport that can be used as a form of ID in emergency situations, and if your passport is lost, will speed up the process of getting you home.
3) Save money on buying travel size toiletries this way
To save a little money, reusing small bottles for your travel toiletries could save you a few pennies. I came across half empty creams and shower gels at home, rinsed them out and reused them with my own shampoo and conditioner. In addition, as I use coconut oil as a make up remover product, instead of taking the whole jar, I found a small glass container (which once was a ketchup pot!) and poured in some coconut oil. This leaves more room in your suitcase for more important items such as Nakd bars & Heels!
4) If traveling with a friend, share share share!
In particular, traveling with another female really does come in handy when packing. If your suitcase is becoming short of space, look through items that can be shared between you. Toothpaste, Shampoo & Conditioner, Tissues etc are all items that can be shared. Furthermore, sharing is caring when it comes to suitcase space!
5) Have important contact numbers written down and stored in a safe place
There is nothing worse than not having the correct contact details when something goes wrong. Keeping a note of Insurance claim numbers, addresses and contact numbers of hostels and of course Emergency contact details. I always leave a pile of extra photocopies, important numbers and where I will be staying at home so that in case of an emergency my parents will know roughly where I am! Better safe than sorry eh?
So we are all packed, the excitement is bubbling away and the 15 hour car journey calls. Are we ready? Ready as we’ll ever be!