This is what I consider to be necessary items for any traveler/backpacker. These are items which I have used in my history travels, and have serve me well.
The first clearest thing for any traveler to decide on is whether to use a backpack or a bag. through my first solo travel experience to Southeast Asia, Korea and Japan, I travelled with a pack. For fewer than 50 I bought a Euro hike 55 liter backpack with a rain cover, which came in handy through the monsoon season! The pack was top-opening, and didn’t really offer much by way of security. I therefore bought a special pack transit case which I put my backpack into and made it secure from theft, but also made it secure from airport conveyor belts. I had heard that the conveyors in airports at times broke clips from backpacks if they were not properly secured, and that some airlines didn’t even want to have backpacks on their airplane because they were a safety threat. I actually lost the backpack case in the course of my travels, and had to resort to packaging my backpack in black bin bags and tape in order to prevent the clips from contagious airport conveyors. The backpack was comfortable, with some very nice cushioned stuffing. However, I realized as my trip went on that the pack was a little too great. I had read on many unlike websites that the smaller and lighter your pack, the more comfortable your trip will be. This is so true. It is not just about how glow the pack is for you to carry, but also practical reasons like travelling on packed trains and subways with a massive wardrobe on your back. The backpack was very annoying whilst travelling on busy subways, as I didn’t know if, and how poorly, I was bump into people – but I am sure that I certainly was! However, it was great to have my hands free when I needed to pay for tickets and also carry bags and water bottles.
On my second trip to Japan, I resolute to ditch the backpack and travel with a medium sized bag. I was travelling for 3 weeks, and had planned to move around the country quite a bit. I was concerned about the condition of the suitcase’s wheels by the end of the trip, but altogether I preferred the comfort of a nice suitcase. The bag takes up the use of your arms, but it does relieve your back. I found time and once more that my backpack was flattering too heavy and cumbersome for longer walks; a bag, meanwhile, makes walking a pleasure. Trying to find your hotel in the humid and busy conditions of Bangkok with your huge backpack is not a pleasant skill. Though, going up stairs is a pain with a suitcase, but with a backpack it is a breeze. This may be vital to you as it is best to travel around a Japanese city (and many other Asian cities) via the subway scheme, and sometimes they have enormous staircase foremost to the platforms. The final clincher is that a suitcase makes you look more businesslike and professional; a backpack makes you easily particular as a traveler or tourist, and makes you stand out far more. If I entered a nice hotel with my rucksack, I wouldn’t be given the same service as if I travelled with a suitcase. I believe that backpackers have a bit of a bad name in some country, as backpackers tend to be younger people who are more prone to loutish behavior due to hire of some steam after last university.
I always take out travel cover as you never know what could happen through your trip. It is always better to be safe than sorry. Medical help abroad could cost you thousands if you do not have the correct insurance, so always read the insurance policy right. When I search for insurance I always turn to contrast sites, such as moneysupermarket.com. This way you can compare all the unlike companies offering cover and their relative policies.
Skype is a free check which allows you to call anyone in the world (who also has a Skype account) for free. The service is totally free when using the Skype-to-Skype service, and the prices are gung ho if you want to call mobile phones or landlines. You can use Skype on your iPod Touch, an actual Skype phone or on your laptop. If you are taking a laptop abroad, you can even use your webcam to make video calls, but if you are not attractive a laptop, I found that many internet cafes in Asia had Skype already install on their computer. Skype also allows you to send instant messages, play games and even transfer files. All in all, Skype is a great device which you should be makes use of whilst travelling.
First Aid Box
I like to take a mini first aid box when I travel. The boxes come in some very nice suitable sizes with all you could need for your trip. Items can include: plasters, clean cream, insect repellent, and various tablets for common travel sickness.
I will not speak at great length on clothing, as I believe this is a personal choice and reliant on different people’s needs. though, I will say that you should always pack light, and think about whether you will ACTUALLY need an item of clothes. Sometimes, I have fallen into the trap of stuffing far too much clothing ‘just in case’. Whilst travelling in Asia you can forever pick up cheap clothing, so there is no need to over pack. The minimum I would take for a month travelling is: 3-4 t-shirts, 2 shirts, trousers, two shorts, swimming shorts, 2 pairs of socks, trainers/sneakers (I would buy some that look formal but are as comfortable as trainers).
Travel Washing Line
I take a small wash line on my trips in case there are not sufficient places to dry my clothes. If you are packing light, you can just wash your clothes more often, and you will now and then need a washing line for extra space.
As a dandy backpacker I have a vast array of toiletries. My toiletry bag consists of: shavers, moisturizers, sun cream, nail shears, eyebrow tweezers, aftershaves (which I tend to buy from airport duty free), lip balm, deodorant and more!
Swiss Army Knife
I from time to time take this on my travels as it has various useful strategy: a bottle opener, scissors, toothpick, tweezers, screwdriver heads and numerous knives of unreliable shape and sizes.
I recommend taking a large travel towel. These can be folded into an very small size and take very little space in your bags. They also dry quicker than normal towels.
I really don’t know much about cameras but I definitely know that you will need one on your journey. It’s a way of recording experience that are not possible in any other way. I just buy an 8 megapixel camera in Bangkok – it has served me well.
You will need these for your camera, so make sure you take sufficient spares from your own country, which tend to be cheaper than even as abroad.
A mobile phone is now a needed gadget in all parts of life, and is very vital during your travels. It is a great device to keep in touch with other travelers, but is also a safety device if you befall lost or in danger. Remember to take you charger while, or it will become useless after a few days.
Backup Sims Card
Just in case you lose the first Sims card you can just take another Sim, which are usually free.
Backup Debit/Credit Card
I would take a backup card just in case I lost my main card. If I lost my key card I could just cancel it and then transfer the money from my main story into my backup account via internet banking.
Pens and Paper
You will rarely need to write things down, such as directions or contacts, and a pen and paper would be very helpful. I would always travel with a mini pen and small pad in my daypack so that it was easy to get to. You can always use your mobile phone or iPod Touch for this as well.
Travel adaptors are necessary if you want to charge your iPod or mobile phone. Once you know where you are leaving, you can find out what converter plug you will need. It will save you have to search around in your destination country. Some plugs are all-rounder’s and cover everywhere.