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How to Pack for Any Trip

Whether it’s a safari adventure or a beachside escape, here are a few tips for how to pack appropriately.

We’ve all been there: Opening up your perfectly packed suitcase after arriving at the destination only to find that you forgot something at home. It’s quite possibly one of the worst feelings as a traveler! To ensure you’re covering all your bases, we’ve rounded up a few best practices for packing for any type of adventure. 

For a Safari:

  1. Ditch the hard-shell suitcases in lieu of a soft-sided bag. Due to limited luggage space in most safari vehicles, suitcases are often unsuitable for these types of trips. We recommend luggage packed in inexpensive barrel/sausage bags or soft-sided bags not exceeding 15 kg (about 11 lbs) and 65×46 cm (about 25.5×18 inches). 
  2. Pack comfortable clothing, walking shoes, a sun hat, and, of course, SPF!
  3. Don’t forget binoculars and a camera! They’re must-haves when exploring scenic areas.

For the Beach:

  1. A can’t-forget item for these types of getaways: a bathing suit. 
  2. You’ll be kicking yourself if you forget your hat, sunscreen, or beach bag! 
  3. If you’re the reading type, be sure to back 1-2 books, depending on the length of your trip. Otherwise, be sure to bring along a portable speaker and headphones to listen to some tunes while you soak up the sunshine.

For Glamping:

  1. Though glamping offers many luxurious amenities, you won’t want to forget some non-electronic entertainment if your destination doesn’t have Wi-Fi. In that case, board games, a deck of cards, or books should do the trick!
  2. Even if it’s fancy, it’s still camping, so be sure to secure outdoor gear such as sunscreen, insect repellant, a water bottle, and an umbrella (just in case!).
  3. To clean up after enjoying the outdoors, pack some bath and shower supplies if your destination doesn’t offer any. 

For Hiking:

  1. First things first: A first aid kit is a must! With many hiking trails bumpy, curvy, or steep, it’s important to be prepared in case of any small or big accident. 
  2. Depending on the climate where you’re hiking, wear or pack layers of clothing, so you can add more if it’s chillier at the higher elevations, or remove layers if you’re working up a sweat. The last thing you want to happen is to be miserable in your outfit of choice if you didn’t bring options!
  3. Don’t forget your backpack, a signature when hiking. Fill it with plenty of food and water to last the duration of your hike (and plan for a little longer, just in case), navigation tools such as a compass or map should your smartphone lose connection, and a backup battery charger for your phone! You wouldn’t want it to be at 0% when you finally make it to the top.    

For Everyday Travel:

  1. Whether you’re traveling domestic or international, you’ll want to be sure you have your passport and/or government-issued photo ID card in your wallet—which should also have some small bills inside for tipping at hotels and such. (AMEX cardholders should consider traveling with a Visa or MasterCard as well for merchants or vendors that may not accept AMEX at your destination.)
  2. Double-check that you brought your travel documents, including printing and carrying a hard copy of your final e-travel documents, travel protection policies, travel authorizations, and COVID-19 testing results or proof of vaccination records. 
  3. Don’t leave home without ensuring you have all any necessary medical prescriptions or medicines! Transferring them from pharmacy to pharmacy is never fun for anyone.

And, of course, pack your patience! Traveling is different now. With all the additional safety protocols and advanced cleaning standards that hotels and resorts now have to adhere to, it can slow down the check-in process among many other factors. Exercise patience with the resort if your room is not ready at the standard check-in time, or if extra steps are required on your end to ensure everyone’s safety.