international packing tips.

Before I get into Italy recap posts, I thought it would make sense to start from the beginning - packing! I've rounded up all of my travel essentials for an international trip: 

-Start with a great carry-on bag with room for storage. I love my Lo & Son's OMG bag - it has a lot of pockets and zippers to keep valuable safe. I store all of my important papers, jewelry and snacks in this when we travel (in case something happens to my luggage).

-Comfy shoes. seriously. Walking around a city is the BEST way to discover new areas. So don't pack heels and sandals without support if you plan on walking all day, every day. I alternated my croc sexi flip sandals and kandee ballet flats. They are great for traveling because they are lightweight, easy to clean and they don't take up too much room in your suitcase (save the space for souvenirs!)

Bring tennis shoes if you're visiting Cinque Terre and you plan on hiking on the trails that connect the villages. I made the mistake of wearing sandals and it was NOT fun.

-Cardigans or a scarf. Bring them along even in the hot summer months so you can be sure to be respectful to other cultures and religions. Cover your shoulders in churches and cover your hair with a scarf in mosques.

-A slim, lightweight, cross-body bag. Leave your big bag behind and pack something that is lightweight and easy to clean. I love my Ellington Mia crossbody purse (similar), it has enough room to hold a water bottle (or two) and a small umbrella. It also has a LOT of zippers and pockets- including an inside pocket (perfect for your passport and cash) and an outside pocket (for Euro coins or maps). The bag is made out of nylon twill fabric which is easy to clean with water (great for coffee spills).

-Neutrogena makeup remover cleansing towelettes. This is the easiest way to cut down on extra bottles of moisturizer, face wash and makeup remover.

-Gatorade or Propel drink mix packets. These are a lifesaver if you're walking in the sun all day or drinking at night. I like to have one before i go to bed and i feel great the next morning.

-International power adapter. You can find really affordable ones online, pack two just in case one breaks. You'll want to be able to charge your phone (instagram pics!) and camera battery.

-Plastic grocery bags. I bring a few every time we travel - use one or two to store dirty clothes, save another for groceries (European grocery stores charge you for plastic bags) and it's also helpful to carry one or two in your purse if there is a chance of rain and you want to protect your paparazzi camera. h doesn't like to carry around the camera bag (he claims it looks like a man purse).

-Blister band-aids. These things are the BEST, they are waterproof and usually last a few days.

-Luggage or bag lock. If you are traveling by train, lock up your stuff!

-Hand sanitizer! This comes in handy on dirty trains or after an outdoor picnic in the park.

What are your packing essentials? 
Is there anything you ALWAYS pack on an international trip?

pssst: Check out more travel tip posts: traveling on a budget part 1 and part 2


  1. Love all of these tips! An adaptor and trash bags are two of the most important... and also seem to be things that I always forget. Can't wait for the Italy recaps to commence :) xxx

  2. I don't think a lot of Americans realize how much hiking is involved in places like Pompeii and Palatine Hill, etc. The fact that you're there with a map and camera makes you look like a tourist, so wearing the right shoes is not going to make people laugh at you. The lady wearing 4 inch wedge sandals while hopping from one ancient cobblestone to another is the one who looks ridiculous.

    Just avoid logos, khaki, and workout wear, and you'll blend right in with the Brits!

  3. Such a great roundup of essentials for traveling. The adapter is a big one but is always one that is hard to remember!

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  5. In addition to the hand sanitizer, I always bring packages of tissues. You never know when a bathroom is not going to supply toilet paper...


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