Knowing what to bring on your first international adventure can be challenging. You're not really sure what to expect, so how can you know what to bring? Fortunately, packing smart isn't rocket science. I've made a list of several essentials that I bring with me no matter where I'm going. Just like my tips on planning and preparing for your first international trip, these travel tips are travel-tested.
Disclaimer: Some of the links included in this post are affiliate links. By purchasing products using these links, you can support a Cajun in Cali at NO cost to you. Getting the goods you want while showing support is the best of both worlds!
My First International Travel Experience
I can vividly remember how nervous I was to board my first international flight. My dream destination, Paris, was my destination. For weeks before we left, I found myself wondering what I was going to do/see/experience.
Unsure of what to expect, I packed everything that came to my mind. Ten days later, I returned home with my mountain of luggage, a sore lower back, chaffed legs, and blistered feet.
Needless to say, that trip changed a lot about my life and the way I travel. I learned you don't have to bring EVERYTHING you own to enjoy your vacation.
While I still struggle with over-packing from time to time, I'm getting better with each trip. I learned the hard way that it's never fun to wrestle with bags while boarding public transportation, hustling down cobblestone streets, or squeezing into small lifts.
Learn From My Mistakes
Frequent travelers know that what you bring is less important than having a good trip. Use the following tips to prepare for your an international trip you'll never forget. Focus more on creating an experience filled with love and adventure, not luggage.
Find mix-and-match pieces that can work together to create multiple looks. Doing this will help cut down on the amount of clothing & shoes you need to bring. Check out my favorite styles for more travel inpsiration!
Bring multi-purpose shoes.
Shoes are heavy and bulky, so bringing multiple pairs can add to the weight and size of your luggage. Bring shoes that can work for multiple settings and environments. Here are a few of my picks for stylish & comfortable travel shoes.
Use packing cubes.
These amazing little packing tools can help you keep your suitcase organized (bonus) and save tons of room for all the amazing things you'll find abroad.
Roll your clothes.
This little tip has helped tons of travelers pack more in less space. Plus, it helps prevent creases from folds! Simply lay out your clothes and tightly roll as if you're rolling a burrito.
One Week in a Carry-on!
Use a Packing List to Help Prepare
After my first international travel experience, I made a packing list that I still use today. Now you can use the same checklist to pack for your first international travel trip. This list includes basics for your checked luggage and carry-on bag. Follow this basic checklist to plan for your best trip abroad ever!
Want a printable version of my packing list?
Enter your info below for instant access to a PDF version!
Remember to Consider Your Destination
Obviously, there are so many more things we could add to this list depending on your destination. If you're beach bound, then don't forget your snorkel gear. Bringing your own will save you the high cost of renting at the resort. Spending time in the great outdoors? Then don't forget extra wicking socks and hiking boots. And if you're city, don't forget your favorite cross-body bag!
Need help deciding where to go? Whether you're planning a trip to the US or a European adventure, I've got several travel guides specifically for new travelers! Dive deep into my archives with these links.
Plan & Prepare
By doing a little research and planning, you'll be sure to know what to bring. Just be careful not to overpack. Always consider what you can get when you arrive. For more first-time travel tips, check out the posts below!
Going abroad for the first time can be both exciting and frightening. Successful international travel requires that you travel smart. So, who do you trust for travel tips? Why, experienced travelers, of course. Use this guide to going abroad for the first time to prepare for your first international trip! Disclaimer: Some of the links…Read More
My first-time trip abroad, and I was going to Paris. Finally. It was the Spring of 2009 when I found myself first wondering how to plan for the best first-time trip abroad. I’d never left the country and had only seldom left my home state of Louisiana. Yet I was facing my first-ever international…Read More
Let's Stay in Touch
Are there things you would add to these lists? Something you'd never leave home without not mentioned here? Comment below and let me know.
If you like this post then be sure to sign-up for my newsletter. You'll stay up-to-date on all my latest articles & partnerships, plus get a behind-the-scenes look at my blog.
Thanks for all your support. It means the world to me. Until next time my friends!