A guide to help you pack for a vacation, group tour, or other travel experience. This checklist features advice for general supplies and tips for airline travel.
What to Pack List (suggested items to bring):
- One (1) piece of luggage. Make sure you can recognize your belongings from others as you will be responsible for your own luggage and bags when you transfer from the airport to the bus, to the cruise ship, to the hotel, etc.
- One (1) carry-on bag
Carry-on bag items:
- Photo Identification (typically, passport or driver’s license).
- If participating in international or cruise ship travel, you will need a U.S. passport. Due to a surge in passport applications, you should apply several months in advance, especially if visas are needed. Travelers should make sure their passport is valid at least six months after returning home and has two or more blank pages, or some countries may not let them enter. Note that passports for children under 16 are valid five years and adult passports 10 years, so check expiration dates carefully. We recommend all cruise ship passengers have their passport with them in case of emergency, even if not required.
- Glasses, contacts & solution, and sunglasses. Take along an extra pair of prescription glasses (and/or contacts), just in case the original gets lost or damaged.
- Be sure medications are in their original containers – plus, pack photocopies of any current prescriptions. Discuss these with the group leader in advance.
- Limited spending money. Essentially all costs are covered in Educational Tours’ tour price; although you could enjoy a little spending money. We recommend cash, an ATM card, traveler’s checks, or credit cards with limited amounts on them.
- Disposable camera, digital camera, or a cell phone camera.
- Inexpensive cell phone that can be used to contact others, browse the web, act as a GPS, and take pictures. Don’t forget to bring your charger!
- One change of clothes.
- Cheap accessories. Opt for a watch that’s waterproof – and definitely skip pricey, valuable jewelry. Simply put, expensive items can make you a target for thieves. We never expect any such problems on any of our tours, but it’s best to err on the side of caution.
- Travel entertainment. Whether by airplane, bus, or train, traveling can get long and tedious. Be sure to pack a fully charged mp3 player (don’t forget the headphones), a book, homework, or anything else that you may like or need to do while transferring from place to place.
- Writing utensils. Stash a lightweight journal and a couple pens or pencils so you can jot down memories and experiences.
- Tour itinerary (you will receive 2 copies). Leave one at home for your family and take one with you.
- Coat/jacket, rain jacket, dress in layers (please check weather forecast).
- Toothbrush and toothpaste.
- Hair brush, comb, and/or hair dryer.
Large luggage items:
- The usual items (underwear, jeans, socks, shirts, belts, etc.) If applicable, please follow your schools dress code regulations.
- Extra days’ worth of clothes, in case of bad weather spillage, etc.
- Walking shoes.
- Shampoo and deodorant.
- Optional dress-up clothes for theatre, cruise, etc. (if applicable).
- Proper swim wear, beach towel for swimming, and athletic clothing for rec center (if applicable).
- Small Travel Umbrella.
- 3-1-1 rule. This applies to liquids, aerosols, and gels in carry-ons: 3-ounce (or less) bottles; must fit in 1 quart-sized, clear, plastic, zip-top big; and 1 bag is allowed per passenger, to be placed in the screening bin. Pack this toward the top of your carry-on, so it’s easy to pull out. (Read more about the 3-1-1 rule for carry-ons.)
- Unlock luggage. Unless you use a TSA-recognized baggage lock, don’t lock your luggage or carry-on. It must be accessible for inspection.
- Discrete ID. Label all luggage with your name and address but use covered tags so strangers can’t easily spot the information. You may find it helpful to use the complementary Educational Tours luggage tags that your tour director should have given you.
- Metal-free. Don’t wear accessories that contain metal – on the trek out and return – to make the screening process quicker and to avoid losing items.
- Be early. As your group organizers will surely tell you, arrive well in advance of your departure time. Airport security measures can cause delays.
Enjoy your tour!