I wrote a post a while ago (and by a while, I mean October 2016!) all about what I bring with me when exploring new places. I’ve visited a lot more places since then and have learned a few more things that I need to pack since and thought I would share my updated travel essentials.
If you’re traveling to Europe, here are some things you might forget to pack but will be super helpful.
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A Universal Travel Converter is probably the number one thing you should bring with you when traveling to Europe. Obviously, the outlets are different over here and this way you can still use your favorite products from home. I still use my American computer, so my travel converter gets daily use. I have not had one issue with our’s in the last year and a half.
*A note about converters and hair products, do not use a converter for your straightener. It will blow it up! Same goes for hair dryers. Use the hotel hair dryer, bring some product that’s perfect for air drying, or buy a travel straightener. I don’t have one, but this one on Amazon got great reviews.
Scarves are your best friend. I absolutely love scarves and Europeans love them, too. They are not only a great fashion statement, but will come in handy if you’re visiting a church and need to cover your shoulders. I remember when I was studying abroad over a summer in college, I was wearing a tank top into a church in Venice and had to pay to have my shoulders covered. If I’d had a scarf, I could have draped it over myself. I now travel with at least one scarf, just in case. And, they are perfect for keeping you warm on the airplane.
Medicine. This may seem like a strange thing to bring, especially if you don’t normally get sick, but, trust me, you want to have some medicine with you. You never know when something will happen and you don’t want to be wandering the streets of a new city late at night in search of medicine for an upset stomach. A lot of European countries also have lower dosage ibuprofen over the counter, so definitely bring some Advil with you. Some kind of stomach medicine, allergy meds and eye drops make it into my suitcase always.
A portable phone charger is a must. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been snapping pictures or looking up directions on my phone only to realize that I have about 20% battery left and it’s 3 ‘o clock in the afternoon with no plans to stop by the hotel. A power bank keeps your phone charged while you’re on the go and will be a total lifesaver. Gotta get all the photos you can of the Eiffel Tower, right?
Similar to the charger, extra batteries are also things that you will need and when you least expect it. When we went to Munich, I snapped three pictures and then my batteries died in my camera. We had to run to the convenience store to get batteries, which took way longer than it should have to find them and caused quite a bit of stress. Now I always carry extra batteries in my camera case and have seriously used needed them several times.
Comfortable shoes are obvious, but it’s really hard to find cute shoes that you can wear all day. I usually pack some Sperry’s, Nikes and sandals if it’s summer and boots if it’s winter. After too many trips with having sore feet at the end of the day, I have totally switched over to focusing on comfort. I even stopped bringing wedges with me because I never wear them after a long day of walking everywhere.
Cross-body bags are the best purses to bring because they keep your belongings safe and will keep your hands free for taking pictures, eating gelato or shopping. I have several Kate Spade ones and they are big enough to hold my wallet and phone while staying relatively light.
Of course, bringing clothes and toiletries need to make it into your suitcase, but the above things are sometimes an after thought but bringing them will make for a happier vacation.
What do you always pack on vacation?