Disclaimer: Â All items on the below list are items I am currently using while traveling unless otherwise noted. Â All items were purchased for full retail price and are included on this list because I like them, so almost all of the reviews will be positive. Â Most of the linked items are affiliate sponsors (meaning I will get a % if you buy an item through those links) but the products were used by me before posting them here and they will only remain here as long as I use the items
REI Vagabond Travel Pack
First off, REI is an amazingly reliable company that is known for continuously releasingÂ quality products. Â TheÂ Vagabond Travel Pack is a perfect example of this reliability. Â I purchased the backpackÂ after a recommendation from a friend and have been nothing but impressed with the bag so far. Â It is a medium sized backpack that is perfect for getting all of your “mustÂ have” items packed while at the same time ensuring you don’t overpack as well.
Pacsafe Safety Belt
This lightweight belt fits comfortably underneath your clothes and has ample space to keep all of your important documents, cash, cards, and other valuables. The belt is slash proof and the buckle is tucked away into the fabric so that it can’t be easily undone by someone bumping into you.
The Pacsafe 55 is a must have for any traveler who considers their cargoÂ too valuable to lose. Â Although a pair of strong wire cutters could probably get through the Pacsafe, it is meant more for theÂ deterrence ofÂ casual thieves (like a nosey hostel mate). Â The Pacsafe 55 wraps a layer of protective wire around your backpack and can be fastened to any stationary object to ensure no one runs off with the whole pack.
The Rucksack Rain Cover serves a few purposes for travelers. Â First, the obvious, it prevents water from seeping into your backpack if you are forced to go out into the rain or if your bag is on the roof of a bus while it is raining. Â The second function, it makes your bag look like crap. Â And why would you want to do that? Â Well, consider this. Â If you are a thief, which backpack are you snagging off the bus when no one is looking? Â The expensive looking backpack or the backpack with a tarp wrapped over it? Â Exactly. Â The Rucksack comes in multiple sizes but a medium will suite the REI Vagabond quite well.
The Master Lock Luggage Lock is a TSA accepted travel lock to help secure your bag while it is in transit. Â The locks will also help deter casual theft in the close quarters of a hostel while you are out exploring the city.
I travel with a Macbook to keep in touch and keep up with the site. The small size and relative ease of use are what attracts me to the Macbook product line but you might have your own preference, so bring that! Buying a little travel insurance probably wouldn’t hurt.
The link above is actually to an XS2 which fits some 13″ laptops, but not mine. Â I have the XS3. Â This case provides a protective cover for your laptop and is made with waterproof nylon to ensure ultimate safety. Â Also available is the M3for the 15″ Macbook Pro.
This lock enables you to secure your laptop to a stationary item either while it is in use or while you leave it alone. Â I often secure my bag and laptop to the same object and then place the laptop within the bag. Once again, this is to prevent spur of the moment petty thieves who won’t be willing to go the extra mile.
This point and shoot camera is a high quality camera that can fit in the palm of your hand. Â Some travelers may prefer the professional quality of SLR cameras but for a beginning photographer like myself, the SD 1400 IS is the perfect match.
Although I am simply using a hand me down camera case for my camera this seems like a reasonable substitute if you aren’t able to get your hands on a used one. Â This posting lacks a review so there are of course many other similar camera cases out there that will do the job.
You never know when you are going to have a solid power source so I bring two extra batteries for my Powershot to ensure I am always able to take pictures. The photo op of a lifetime may be just around the corner.
Sandisk is a highly reliable brand for memory cards but you don’t need to go all out with the top of the line if you are only using a point and shoot camera like a Powershot. The higher priced cards are used for SLR cameras that can record at a much faster rate then a Powershot.
The Kodak Zi8 is a small handheld HD camera that can fit in your pocket if needed. Â The video quality that this thing is capable of is insane (see video above) and the only thing it lacks is a quality internal microphone which can be fixed with one of the external mics I’ve got listed below.
I couldn’t find a hand me down here so I bought this case. Â It serves its purpose but I’m sure there are better cases out there if look hard enough. The only complaint I have is that the pocket on the inside of the case does not zip or velcro or anything like that so sometimes when you open the case whatever you put in there is out in the main compartment.
This little thing will add all of 2 ounces to your page but will make life a lot easier when you are trying to shoot a hands free video. It has a fairly far range but I am not exactly sure how far it can go.
This mic is good for video footage that requires narration and commentary but at the same time it does a fairly good job at picking up surrounding conversation as well considering its proximity to the person using it.
This mic is better for picking up group conversation or the sounds in your immediate surrounding area. If your camera is set to a sensitivity level for another mic you will probably have to lower it for this mic as it has a tendency to feedback if the sensitivity is too high.
So I missed out on this deal… I bought a Kodak brand battery for about 5 times more but luckily when searching for it again found this steal! Maximal Power is the same brand as my backup Powershot Batteries and seem to be of great quality.
This tripod stands only 6″ tall but is flexible and can be placed in many positions an ordinary tripod can’t be. Its small size makes it perfect for travel and at the same time allows you to do almost everything a normal tripod can do.
These memory cards are of a higher quality then the Ultra II cards and are suited for high quality video recording. Once again though, they are made by Sandisk which is considered by most to be an extremely reliable brand.
All Neccessary Cables for Charging Electronics
In addition to all of the electronics mentioned above I have to carry the necessary chargers for each item. Â It may sounds like a lot, but besides the Macbook charger, they are all relatively small.
This power strip is small and compact as it is made for travel and it carries all of the benefits of a normal power strip. They make it compact by staggering the outlets across both sides of the strip.
I keep all of my electronics and charger cables in these dry sacks to prevent water damage. I can actually even fit my lap top in its case in one as well but it is a tight fit. Follow the link and you can pick your size and color! I went with two medium black ones.
And now the exciting stuff….
5 T-shirts – I opt for good ol’ fashion light weight t-shirts because to be quite honest… I don’t like those wicking shirts one bit. Maybe I’ll end up regretting this decision once actually traveling.
2 Pairs of Shorts
1 Pair of Jeans – I don’t bring this on all trips, only when needed. (Summer in Central America… I probably can do without jeans)
1 Pair of flip flops
1 Pair of Tennis Shoes – I will probably eventually switch to Keen hiking sandals as they have rave reviews throughout the travel world but I haven’t had a chance to pick any up yet.
3 Pairs of Socks
5 Pairs of Underwear
2 Bathing Suits
1 Pair of Sunglasses
1 Lightweight Towel – I’m just using an old beach towel but many people use these
Blade Razor with Extra Blades – won’t always make it through security at the airport.
Lots of Chapstick – I’m addicted… Seriously…
*These last two items I carry in 3oz airport friendly contains you can get at Wal-Mart for $1
Usually Include a Malaria Prescription
Sleep Aid Medication – I’m a light sleeper so it’s either beer or this to get me down in a hostel.
Anti-Diarrhea Medication – shit happens…
Sunblock and Bug Repellent – usually buy these once I’ve arrived at my destination.
A “Dummy” Wallet – Keep your days cash in a wallet you don’t care about. In the off chance someone tries to rob you, you just hand them the wallet and you are only out a little bit of cash. Maybe even through in some old expired cards to really sell it.
Debit/Credit Card – make sure to set this to international use
Needed Legal Documents
Twist Ties for chords
1/2 roll of T.P. removed from the core and flattened – you know… just in case.
String and Clothespins for a makeshift laundry line.
Watch with Alarm
Underwater Disposable Cameras
Notebook and Writing Utensils