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15 things to pack for your city break

December 26, 2014
Alex

We asked you guys what your packing essentials are for a trip: what should first-time travellers remember? What’s that lesser known must-have you’ve learnt to add to your list? What space-saving trick do you swear by?

Here are your answers, informed by countless miles and mishaps.

comfort

1. A sarong to use as a towel and a curtain; dries fast and takes very little space.”Betty Heck.

2. “Some duct tape wrapped around a pencil so you don’t have to pack the whole roll.” Why duct tape? “Because it holds the whole universe together.”Andy Aguirre.

Well, it’s handy for bandaging up exploded luggage, anyway.

3. “A pack of cards” Bex.

The very best dorm icebreaker: sets off an evening, instigates backpacker bonding and a bit of healthy competition.

essentials

4. “Anti-bacterial hand gel” – Laura.

5. “Safety pinsHI team.

Nifty little item: clasp the zippers of your backpack together to deter thieves, pin that shirt together in place of a lost button, and plenty of other wardrobe malfunctions.

         6. “Condoms”James McCrone.

Safety first.

7. “Zip-lock bags and compression bags” – Lara Reddin.

It might sound as juvenile as sewing your name into your clothes, but trust us – order yourself some Eagle Creek Pack-it Half Cubes to separate clothes items to keep your stuff in check. Freezer bags are cheap and useful for everything from storing your chargers, to keeping your phone dry in the rain.

toiletries

8. “A plastic coffee thermos” – Alex.

A plastic cup functions as a sunglasses case (I’ve crushed my Raybans whilst travelling, which in turn crushed my heart), a delicate souvenir transporter, an eco-friendly to-go cup, or a decoy for stashing valuables.

9. “A money-belt” – Roylene Everett.

 Yeah. The money-belt is back.

      10. “A day bag that doesn’t hurt to lug around all day, fits everything you need and looks nice – I’m yet to find one that fits the mould. #help” – Ash McConnell.

What about a satchel? Plenty of space, looks good in any given situation and available in backpack form, just in case those straps rub:

leatherbag

      11. “Offline maps saved on my phone” – Jesse Kimmerling.

Hostels are great bases to set you up with local knowledge and directions, but if you’re not planning on racking up the roaming charges, use the hostel WiFi and printscreen some maps before you head off to explore.

      12. “Paw Paw ointment” – Sage Hammer.

A multi-purpose balm you can’t travel without: lip balm, skin balm, nail balm, heel balm for those sore city-stomping feet.

13. “Adhesive: once travelling in Germany my shoe sole came up… also a couple of plastic bags.”- Mohan Kumar G

electronics

14. “My two cents is an eye mask – you can never predict when someone’s going to turn the lights on in a hostel dorm!” – Julian.

15. “An open mind and a flexible schedule” Jen Prion.

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7 Comments. Leave new

My wife, daughter, grandson and myself are going to hit germany and a few other northern europe locations at the end of March. I have been there through the military, but years ago and frankly I’m a bit scared. Looking to save, so public transportation and hostels are a must. Looking for all help. Thanks.

Hi Bill, it’s normal to be a bit scared but that also sounds like an exciting adventure! You might find a few helpful pointers in our Germany Tripbooks:

https://www.hihostels.com/search/tripbooks?type=hi&q=germany&d=&page=1

These might be useful city-wise but also to get a general feel for what to expect. We have plenty of similar guides for other European countries, so have a browse for those too.

Now is also a great time to book hostels in Northern Europe too since we’re holding a promotion in that area until 15th February. If you book in Hamburg, Munich and Berlin, there’s no booking fee and you get free eMembership for yourself, your wife and grandchildren:

https://www.hihostels.com/tripbooks/wake-up-somewhere-new-northern-europe-216453?utm_source=advert&utm_medium=web&utm_campaign=wakeup15&linkid=984000&linksubid=wakeup15

I hope this helps, and have a wonderful trip.

Alex

Thanks for these. I’m adding a bunch of paperclips to my travel-go-bag right away. The sarong is also useful as a scarf. Here’s my tip: Dr. Bronner’s liquid soap. Cleans bike grease off hands, so it’ll clean anything.

An essential for travelling is a little LED flashlight, even better if it is attached to a headband for hands-free operation. Useful as a private reading light for hostels, and for reading maps at night or for those occasions when the power goes out.

Great one we missed! Thanks Pauline.

Eyeglass repair kit should you wear glasses,
Small sewing kit
WashEze detergent sheets for laundry
First aid kit including bandaids, antihistamine, decongestant, painkillers, and antibiotic cream
Earplugs
Folding fan that can clipped to your wrist or purse, especially in warm weather.

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to read articles or reviews, except this blog offers quality based writing.

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