How to Prepare for International Travel

All seasoned travellers know the importance of having a good packing checklist. For inexperienced travellers, it can be a difficult task to refrain from over-packing and if you travel frequently there’s always the temptation to pack too light. To help you figure out what to pack for vacation, Here is the ultimate guide to crafting the perfect international packing checklist.

General essentials before you travel

  • Prepare a day-to-day itinerary.
  • Check your passport expiry date.
  • Apply for visas if applicable.
  • Book your flights.
  • Buy travel insurance.
  • Print your tickets and insurance.
  • Carry your photo ID proof and a copy.
  • Book your accommodation.
  • Check-in online for your flight.
  • Buy an international SIM card or activate international roaming.
  • If you are going to drive in another country, get an international license.
  • Mail yourself the soft copies of all important documents.
  • Prepare a list of emergency phone numbers and carry in your wallet.
  • Research a bit about the Indian Embassy and its location in the country you are visiting in case you need it during a natural or man-made disaster.


  • Keep cash in the local currency handy
  • Keep a few US dollars accessible in countries where it is accepted apart from the local currency.
  • Carry international credit cards and international debit cards
  • Save Indian currency for travel to and from the airport.
  • If you are getting back some foreign currency home, make sure you convert all notes into coins as notes wear out over the time.


  • Get a basic health check before you leave if it is a longish trip.
  • Stock up regular medication.
  • Carry other basic medicines such as painkillers, paracetamol tablets, antacids, diarrhoea medicine and so on.
  • Pack an insect repellent, sunscreen, hand sanitiser, nail cutter, and lip balm.
  • Carry sickness bags if you or anyone travelling with you has motion sickness.
  • If it’s a trip where getting clean water will be difficult, carry water purification tablets.


  • Carry shampoo sachets and travel soaps to save space.
  • If you are carrying face wash or body wash, pack it in smaller bottles and carry.
  • Carry a moisturiser, especially if you are off to a cold place.
  • Pack wet wipes and tissues.
  • Pack make up and make up remover.
  • Carry a deodorant and perfume.
  • Pack a tiny shaving kit.
  • Carry a hair comb and hair serum.


  • Charge all your electric equipment before you leave.
  • Carry charged power banks (but do not pack them in the check-in luggage as per the new rule)
  • Carry power adapters.
  • Pack chargers for camera, phone, e-reader, laptop and tablet.
  • If you are carrying a DSLR, check if you want to carry an extra lens.
  • Carry memory cards.


  • Carry a money belt which assures to keep your money discreet and safe.
  • If it is a beach vacation, carry a fun, foldable beach bag.
  • Carry a small sling bag where you could store your important documents.
  • Take a backpack which you can use during day trips.


While the type of clothes you have to pack will depend on the destination you are visiting, here is a basic list of items you will need on a vacation. Add or delete items as per your need.

  • Shorts/skirts
  • Casual t-shirts
  • Jeans/cotton pants
  • Casual dresses
  • Semi-formal dresses
  • Socks and stockings
  • Handkerchief
  • Underwear
  • Sleepwear
  • Thermal wear
  • Swimwear – swimsuits, trunks, bikinis, sarongs, etc.
  • Rainwear


  • Carry a pair of reliable flip flops
  • Sport shoes – travel wearing them to save space
  • Pack a smart, semi-formal pair for any special dinners.


You might have all the right clothes, but to pump up the overall look, you will need these accessories:

  • Belt
  • Artificial jewellery
  • Hats/caps
  • Sunglasses
  • Scarves
  • Ear muffs
  • Eye masks

Adarsh Vengarathodi

Adarsh Vengarathodi is a serial entrepreneur and the CEO and founder of MistLayer, Inc. MistLayer is an ICT Company headquartered in San Francisco offering a full range of technology products, solutions, and services. MistLayer delivers innovative products that augment the lives of thousands of people around the world.

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