Lonely Planet's tips for how to pack for any trip.


  • The capsule wardrobe comes into its own for a city break: one skirt or pair of trousers can be teamed with multiple tops in complementary colours.
  • A pair of trainers will be vital for covering acres of pavement over many hours. Make sure you stow a pair of killer heels or brogues in your bag to slip on when you’re just around the corner from that great restaurant.
  • Layers will regulate the chills or the heat when you’re on the street. Choose something that can look dressy amid those layers in case you need to spruce up at a moment’s notice. A collar peeping out amid the woollies, for example, can help you look smart.
  • Natural fibres will keep you more comfortable as you move between different temperatures, from gallery space to local park.
  • Come rain or shine, take your sunglasses for a touch of style.
  • A cross-body bag is a handy and secure item to use while exploring the city and will keep your belongings safe. Want to keep a tighter hold on them? Choose a clutch bag and, if it has a strap, wrap that around your wrist. Wear daypacks on your front, not your back – not a great look, but it will keep the pickpockets at bay.
  • Pop down to the local pound/dollar store to buy 100ml containers into which you can decant your favourite liquids, gels and creams. Try a roll-on perfume rather than risk smashing your favourite atomiser.
  • Don’t forget to weigh your suitcase before you leave home. Bust your cabin luggage allowance and you’ll be hit in the wallet or even have to dump some of your belongings in the nearest bin.

Winter Sports

  • Don’t forget your sunscreen. It may be cold, but that sun is fierce when reflected off bright white snow. Slap on some lip balm, too.
  • Pack a handy cloth for wiping your goggles – and brow – on the go.
  • Switch that Rolex for a cheap watch when you’re on the slopes.
  • Lightweight waterproof boots are a blessing for an après-ski bar crawl.
  • Touchscreen-capable inner gloves will keep you connected to your technology without freezing.
  • Don’t forget your swimwear in case your lodgings have a hot tub.
  • Invest in a helmet camera so you can impress (bore) your friends later with footage of your derring-do.
  • Purchase a ski or snowboard bag with wheels to take the strain – you’ll be especially thankful on the journey home.


  • Avoid struggling into your wetsuit by putting plastic bags on your hands and feet so you can slip it on more easily.
  • Do you really need to squeeze a beach towel in your suitcase? A sarong is just as good for drying as for wearing.
  • A telescopic umbrella is easy to carry and could provide relief from the sun on a deserted cove with little shade.
  • Forgot the bucket and spade? That takeaway coffee cup and spoon will keep your pint-size builders busy.
  • In-ear headphones are small, light and a less sweaty proposition under the burning sun. Get the sports variety that hook over your ear so they don’t drop out and fall in the sand.


  • Just the two of you going on a camping trip? For comfort, opt for a four-berth tent.
  • Pitch your tent at home before your trip – to sort out problems before you hit the road.
  • Women heading off the beaten track may rue the day they laughed at the idea of buying a Shewee…
  • Stand your muddy boots in a plastic bag so that you can keep them in your tent, away from the morning dew.
  • You’re unlikely to bump into a housekeeper with a fresh fluffy towel out in the wilds. Invest in a microfibre one – they’re lightweight and have an insatiable thirst for water.
  • Is it a little cold halfway up that mountain? Keep your batteries snug at the bottom of your sleeping bag to stop them draining.
  • Solar garden lights are useful for lighting the way at night.


  • Some items are easier bought (and left for the next family) at your destination, such as inflatable beach toys.
  • Pack a spare outfit for children in your hand luggage in readiness for those accidents.
  • A cheap new toy is a great diversion when produced at the start of a long-haul flight. Or wrap up a few inexpensive ones and drip-feed them to the kids over the interminable hours.
  • Want a stress-free holiday? Then don’t forget your little one’s favourite toy/fluffy animal/book.
  • Make sure you pack a camera for the kids – they’ll love it and you’ll love their quirky take on the world.
  • Consider packing an extension lead for charging all electronics (and avoiding arguments).
  • An e-reader with a backlight is a great thing for insomniacs sharing a hotel room with the whole brood.

Reproduced with permission from How to Pack for Any Trip © 2016 Lonely Planet (