Traveling for a vacation entails a lot of planning, a comprehensive one, where each sector needs to be taken care of. Bookings for travel, deciding on the place to stay, local transport, renting a car if required, everything needs careful thought and meticulous planning. One of the most important things that people often overlook is the travel gear necessary to take along on a trip. Not every kind of clothes or shoes are appropriate everywhere, and you may well end up getting sick and injuring yourself if you don’t take proper travel gear.
What is travel gear– Travel gear includes but is not limited to clothes, shoes, accessories, anything and everything that might be necessary for traveling and staying at a place. For example travel insurance, electronics gear, photography gear, hygiene essentials, explorations, and safety essentials etc which help make a trip perfect.
Tips for taking travel gear
Choose according to your destination-Depending on where you are going, you need to choose your clothes and shoes. You can’t wade in ocean waters wearing heavy costumes and jewelry. Neither can you walk on the sand in high heels? Therefore, you need to take along swimming trunks and tops, or swimsuits, flat shoes that don’t get damaged like ketos or water proof ones or even slippers.
If you are going to the hills, depending on the weather conditions you need to take a light and a heavy winter wear, windcheaters, mufflers, caps, sunglasses, good climbing or walking shoes and socks, gloves, staff for trekking, hip flasks etc. according to the kind of activities you are going to undertake.
Do check our packing guide list to know what to carry for a particular place at a particular time of the year.
Travel packing guide for a trek
Travel packing guide when traveling with kids
Travel packing guide for a solo traveler
Travel packing guide for a beach destination
Travel packing guide for a jungle
Travel packing guide for a hill station
Travel light– In general, travel light, carry tops or shirts and bottoms that don’t need ironing and are light weight. Carrying a pair of jeans and a pair of leggings are more than enough for a 5-day trip. Take 2 or 3 tops at the most which can be of light weight material like chiffon or georgette, easily washable and you don’t need to iron every time. Use that beach shirt you have been piling up in your wardrobes, men.
Prioritize-If you are traveling with kids, you need to take more luggage and clothes for them, so pack your things wisely. Carry a pair of slipper or ketos that can double up as slippers, a pair of good walking shoes, and then if your luggage permits, you might tuck in that fancy shoe you might want to wear at dinner.
Use portable pouches-Carry small bottles of toiletries like liquid soap, shampoo, moisturizer, hand wash, face wash etc. in a small pouch that can be easily accessed and refilled. Always remember to carry handkerchiefs, wet wipes and at least one hand towel and sanitizer.
Pack for emergencies- For example First aid Medical kit, sunscreens, some mosquito repellent, security lock. While you pack for a family, ensure that your luggage is limited to at the most 2 bags/ trolleys and backpacks if possible. Carrying side bags would be cumbersome, especially if you have kids whom you need to carry. Buy good backpacks and travelers, and they would last you many a trip.
Best Travel Gear- List of some of the most useful and recommended in the category.
Traveling can be fun or can be a hassle, depends on your trip planning, your travel gear and packing. Let’s see what does it really mean to travel well and travel smart.
Packing – Luggage, Travel organizers and Pouches
Spending on good quality luggage is very important. Your luggage shouldn’t be short on function or durability.
Carry on bag with wheels – TravelPro Platinum Magna
This is for people who log within 25000 miles annually. The 22-inch Travelpro offers the best balance in terms of price, size, reliability, durability, and high-end details. If you are looking for something more durable, high end and for frequent flying check this product Briggs & Riley Baseline Domestic Carry-On Exp Spinner, Black, One Size
Hiking Backpack – Quechua Hiking Camping Water Repellent Backpack Rucksack Forclaz 60L
Quechua has been one of our favorite brands. This 60l backpack is sufficient for your high altitude treks. Come with easy storage: Pockets: 3 ext., 1 int., 1 belt. Pole-carrier. Bottom access and compartments. Efficiency: Compression straps. Chest strap. Load adjuster straps. Hand-rest
Carry on backpack – Osprey Packs Farpoint 55 Pack
This is an all purpose backpack. The Farpoint combines Osprey’s award-winning backpacking technology with convenient luggage for traveling by planes, trains, and automobiles. It features a stowaway suspension system, complete with padded shoulder straps, waist belt, and LightWire stays for rigid support. This comes with a detachable daypack that’s ideal for cruising crowded cities or taking to the trails for a quick hike away from the crowds. There are padded sleeves for laptops and tablets inside. If you’re a more adventurous spirit and prefer to sleep at the outskirts of society, Osprey installed removable sleeping bag straps. StraightJacket compression straps secure your load inside and out. Has very good reviews and is a great buy. Check the size requirement before buying.
Carry on Bag, backpack/ duffel hybrid- eBags TLS Mother Lode Weekender Convertible
Budget option in the world of wheelless carry-ons.. Has very good build quality and ergonomics for the price point. This eBags TLS Mother Lode Weekender Convertible was featured in the San Francisco Chronicle Travel section in December 2009: …Best-of-field award for design, materials and value.Loaded with smart features; If your laptop’s middle dimension (width is no more than 11.75, and the longest dimension (length is between 10.0 and 19.0, the Laptop Sling will adjust for a perfect fit, expandable compartment, contoured Airmesh backpack straps, travel organizer, fold down shelf, the list goes on and on – and at 3.7 lbs, it’s amazingly light weight.
Backpack especially designed for women -The North Face Women’s Jester Backpack
The completely redesigned women-specific 26-liter Jester backpack doesn’t play around when it comes to protecting and organizing your gear. Designed with two large zip compartments, the main compartment features a floating, padded 15″ laptop sleeve and the front compartment features an internal organization panel to stash smaller items. Lash additional layers or equipment to the bungee cords crisscrossing the front of the pack to keep them easily accessible. The women-specific FlexVent™ suspension system boasts compression-molded shoulder straps, a padded mesh back panel with a spine channel that’s specifically shaped for an ergonomic fit and a wicking lumbar panel for maximum support and ventilation. The women-specific shoulder straps are contoured to fit a woman’s smaller frame. Some women even prefer to use it as a diaper bag while traveling.
Compression sack or sleeping bag – Outdoor Research Ultralight Compression Sack
This lightweight compression sack reduces sleeping bags and other stuffables to a pack-friendly size. The silnyl fabric resists moisture and slides into your pack with ease. A pocket in the end cap keeps track of small items or can be used for self storage. It’s easier-to-use construction compared to other sacks makes it a good buy. You simply cinch up the opening, pull one cord to compress, and you’re done.Ideally for people into trekking and hiking but its also a nice bag to stuff clothes, underwears, socks when wrinkles is not your concern.
Duffle Bag – Love 41 Weekender Duffle Bag
The bag has made it to my list primarily for its looks. This handcrafted beauty is made from natural waxed cotton from Scotland (so you can be sure all of your contents stay dry) and full grain leather accents. Its made to last with double-stitched seams and heavy-duty antique brass hardware. Its multiple pockets make it ideal for any storage needs and the detachable pockets allow you to convert them into a pouch or purse.
Luggage organizer- Zoppen 8 Packing Cubes Set with Laundry Pouch and Shoe Bag
Lightweight & Durable – Made of Hight-qulity waterproof nylon fabric. Packing cube comes with a webbing handle for easy grabbing, carrying separately, or hanging.Get Organized –The packing cubes allow for neatly organizing both smaller and larger items with ease.Sort your items into different categories based on type or destination and Easy to store when not in use. Mesh Tops for Breathability and Visibility –Zoppen packing cubes feature breathable, mesh-top panels that offer not only important ventilation, the soft mesh won’t damage delicate fabrics, so you can arrive in style without having to worry.Machine Washable –To clean, simply zip the packing cubes closed and machine-wash in cold on gentle cycle. The packing cubes dry quickly.
Zip Pouches – Travelon Set of 7 Packing Envelopes, Assorted Sizes
To keep liquids, children syrups etc safe and out of mess, pouches are a must. With 7 assorted sizes, you’ll find a place for everything. Zippers keep contents secure and printed mesh PVC ensures you can see what’s inside. Perfect for organizing personal, household, travel and easy-to-lose items
Toiletry Organizer- Eagle Creek Pack-It Wallaby
The toiletry kit now comes with a removable 3-1-1 pouch for TSA checkpoint convenience. With plenty of pockets and compartments for all of your personal care items, and stow away swivel koom for hanging, this is defintely a good buy . Of all the products, because this one unfolds vertically, its three ample tiers of mesh storage makes everything fully visible and easily accessible when you hang it.
Shoe Organizer- WalterDrake Blue Shoe Storage Travel Bag
Shoe storage travel bag keeps every pair organized for traveling. A zipper on 3 sides lets the shoe storage travel case open to hang full length in a closet; folds flat to store. A shoe travel case means no need to wrap each pair; no more messing up a suitcase to find mates! Each shoe case holds 8 pair of women’s shoes or 4 men’s pair.
Electronic gear Organizer – Cladpigeon’s Travel Electronics Organizer
A Portable Case For Carrying Cords, Wires, Chargers, Adapters, Headphones, Gadgets and Small Accessories, 12 X 8 Inch (Black) – Unlike bags or cases, it is direct and simple to organize. Besides, its much lighter.
Luggage Tags Business Card Holder
These TUFFTAAG by Proudguy are best selling luggage tags that speed up airport travel with an easy to identify design guaranteed to stand out on the conveyor belt.Made from reinforced aluminum or stainless steel with a sturdy steel cable screw attachment, these distinctive tags are a proven leader over leather or plastic types that can become unreadable from moisture damage and easily detach during airport handling.
Safety & Security while traveling
This TSA padlock comes with a lifetime guarantee. The 100% zinc alloy body on this travel lock is tough enough to survive even the roughest trips. The Patented red indicator on our combination locks pops up if your luggage has been opened by a TSA agent. The red indicator on the lock will let you know if you’ve been inspected so you can double check to ensure all of your items are intact and present while you’re still at the airport. Easy to set 3 digit combination. Setting your combination literally takes seconds and with 1000 possible combinations to choose from you know that this combination lock is secure.
Home Security System – Wireless Security Camera, KAMTRON HD WiFi Security Surveillance IP Camera Home Monitor
If you’re going to be away for a while, a great home security system can offer a bit of peace of mind. With KAMTRON Cloud IP Camera, you can watch each room in your house and keep your family safe. No matter in the office or take a trip, just take out your cell phone and remote control the camera freely.
If you are ready to spend a little more, you could look at Live watch plug and protect which is the best in class for home security system
Clothing & Shoes
I love fashion however as a traveler, its important to be armed with smart travel clothes and shoes which are functional. Clothes/garments that pack well, wrinkle less, and perform all kinds of practical functions, from keeping bugs at bay to concealing money and valuables. And Shoesthat are comfortable, sturdy and apt for the roads/terrains.
As far as clothing and shoes are concerned, depending on the destination they would vary a lot. For normal weather conditions and places, most of us usually have walking shoes, track pants, T- shirts, flip flops etc however for hiking and trekking , you would need to be buy specific products. Down below are product recommendations for difficult terrains and high wear and tear.
Jacket- ReFire Gear Men Waterproof Outdoor Sport Military Style Tactical Soft Shell Jacket
The jacket is windproof, waterproof and breathable, it is good as the professional outdoor jacket.
Pants that convert into shorts- Men’s Convertible Cargo Hiking Pants Shorts
Made of premium material, this is multi functional and comfortble. Elastic waist with belt design for better fit and comfort. Features include a swivel key holder at left side, 10 cargo pockets with velcro closures, detachable zipper that allows pant to convert into a short. Perfect for all your outdoor activities.
Hiking Shoes – Merrell Men’s Moab Mid Waterproof Hiking Boot
The Merrell Moab Mid Boot has a vibram multi-sport plus sole that increases braking power at the heel while on more demanding terrains.Waterproof Dura leather and mesh upper provides ankle support Bellow tongue keeps sticks and stones out Synthetic leather toe cap and heel counter Heel counter (contoured cup) keeps your heel in back of boot Waterproof membrane is treated with aegis antimicrobial solution. Ortholite anatomical footbed Molded nylon arch shank Compression molded EVA footframe for additional cushioning Merrell air cushion throughout heel aborbs shock and adds stability 5mm sole lug dept Vibram multi-sport sole/tc5+ rubber
Quick dry socks –Men’s Bio Climbing DryCool Cushion Hiking/Performance Crew Socks
The fabric is anti-bacterial, odour proof and moisture wicking. No sticky from sweat. Arch support-elasticity : This minimizes friction and supports the arch of your foot. Compression top holds the sock securely on the calf. Ideal for outdoor sports-snowboard, Camping and hiking, skiing, climbing, trekking, outdoor trail, cycling, running, travel.
All purpose Scarf- Shemagh Tactical Desert Scarf Wrap
100% made of high quality cotton and can be simply worn in various styles to protect face and neck from sun, wind, sand and dust.It also works well as alternative winter head-wear, particularly in areas with snow and strong winds and is also great choice for hunting, shooting, hiking, climbing, motorcycle and paintball game.
Jacket – Helly Hansen Women’s Jacket
This waterproof, breathable jacket keeps one warm and dry. Fleece lined collar and pockets with the adjustable fit adds extra protection from the cold.
Convertible Pants – prAna Living Women’s Tall Inseam Monarch Convertible Pant
Abrasion resistant and water resistant Stretch Zion fabric provides amazing durability that shrugs off rain showers and rock scrapes. The convertible pants zip off to knickers when you emerge from the undergrowth and into a bouldering field.
Hiking shoes for women – Merrell Women’s Moab Mid Waterproof Hiking Boot
These women’s boots have waterproof construction and a leather-reinforced, breathable mesh upper to keep your feet comfortable and dry in hot and wet weather. Has multi-sport plus soles for great traction.
Quick Dry Socks for women – Women’s Multi Performance Cushion Hiking/Outdoor Crew Socks Year Round
Clinically-tested padded hiking socks, with padding uniquely designed and clinically shown to reduce pain, blisters, pressures and moisture. Moisture free that keep your feet dry. Arch support-elasticity : This minimizes friction and supports the arch of your foot. Compression top holds the sock securely on the calf. Ideal for outdoor sports-snowboard, Camping and hiking, skiing, climbing, trekking, outdoor trail etc
Sun Protection Cap – Ezyoutdoor UV Protection Quick-drying Hat with Removable Sun Shield & Mask, One Size Fit Most
One of the best buys to save yourself from Sun especially when trekking or hiking. Features include UV protection UPF 50+ , breathable and quick-dry material, 360 degrees protect your face, ear and neck . Breathable mesh mask, help breath easily and avoid dust enter into mouth. Free size, can be adjusted according to your head circumference .Removable Sun Shield and Mask, can be removed when you are not using
Hygiene & Sanitary needs when traveling
Female urination device – Jobar International Travel Urinal for Women
Feminine hygiene protection (Menstrual Solution) – Diva Cup
Hand Soap -Travelon Laundry Soap Sheets, 50-Count
Electronics travel gear
Mobile Phone– Samsung Galaxy S7
Today its literally difficult to image lives without a mobile phone.Something that everyone has however as a traveler this comes handy even when you need to capture some moment or to use travel apps besides using it as a mode of communication. In my opinion iphones are exhorbitantly priced for the features that they offer. Its purely the brand.Hence, the best choice today would be Samsung Galaxy J7 . Features: Android 6.0 Marshmallow OS, 5.5 inch HD Super AMOLED Display, 13 MP Rear Camera, 5 MP Front Facing Camera, 16 GB ROM / 2 GB ROM, 3G/4G LTE (where available), 1.4 GHz Octa-Core Processor, 3000 mAH Battery
Digital Scale- Balanzza Ergo Digital Luggage and Baggage Scale
Compact and easy to use. Automatic hold feature allows you to lift luggage, set it down once beep indicates weight has been registered, and then read the weight on a large digital display. It is the first scale that is horizontally positioned instead of vertically, offering the most natural way to lift heavy objects. The screen is located on the upper side of the scale so the user can see the weight while lifting it with one hand. The user can also wait for the beep and set it down if lifted with 2 hands. Its ergonomic shape lets you lift the objects easy and with less stress to your hands.
International Plug Adapter with USB- M8 By OREI – The International Mate
Pocket-sized power adapter for taking along with you anywhere you travel. Can use in more than 150 countries, so you never need to be at a loss for power again for your essential traveling products. This all-in-one plug adapts power outlets for laptops, chargers, and similar devices, and features a safety release button and built-in fuse to ensure safe operation
Cameras & Accessories
Here comes the most tricky part- Camera. There are many brands and every brand comes with a huge range. Then accessories including lenses, tripod, flash, filters etc is another world of options.Since I personally use Nikon, I am giving recommendations based on my experience as well as my aspirations after extensive research on various options. The list is not complete in terms of all accessories required however I shall keep adding as and when something comes up and I find it worth mentioning.
GoPro HERO5 Black
A great action camera, Sturdy construction, highly portable, waterproof and with android connectivity. Smooth stabilized video, crystal-clear audio and pro-quality photo capture combine with GPS to make HERO5 Black simply the best. A must have to capture all sorts of travel moments. HERO5 Black is the most powerful and easy-to-use. Features include 4K video, voice control, one-button simplicity, touch display and waterproof design.To edit and share, HERO5 Black automatically uploads footage to your GoPro Plus cloud account to provide easy access on your phone. Then, you can create amazing videos automatically with Quik, the GoPro editing app.
Digital SLR – Nikon D810 FX-format Digital SLR
This one is the latest in the Nikon range of full frame cameras. Expensive but comes with great features for professionals. . Extreme resolution, jaw-dropping image quality and huge dynamic range in both stills and Full HD 1080p video applications. A newly designed 36.3 megapixel FX-format full-frame image sensor with no optical low-pass filter is paired with the thrilling performance of EXPEED 4 for staggering detail retention, noise-free images from ISO 64 to ISO 12,800, fast frame rates, cinematic video capabilities, in-camera editing features and outstanding energy efficiency.
Not for first time buyers of DSLR. Among DSLR cameras, you can look at both Canon & Nikon DSLRs. Read here to know more on which camera and accessories to buy
Lenses for Full frame Nikon Camera
Nikon AF-S FX NIKKOR 50mm f/1.8G Lens with Auto Focus
Nikon AF-S FX NIKKOR 14-24mm f/2.8G ED Zoom Lens with Auto Focus for Nikon DSLR Cameras
Finest wide angle lens at present. Other than prime lens, a wide angle lens is necessary for capturing landscapes, architecture and for travel photography. This one is a great lens and is loaded with features including Fast aperture, high-performance, ultra-wide-angle zoom optimized for FX- and DX-format sensors featuring Nikon’s exclusive ED Glass and Nano Crystal Coat.Fast, ultra wide-angle AF-S zoom lens optimized for edge-to-edge sharpness on both the Nikon FX- (23.9 x 36mm) and DX-format image sensor. Focus as close as 10.8 inches at the 24mm setting. Enhanced optical formulas engineered to produce exceptional sharpness, contrast and color, rendering outstanding image integrity.
Nikon AF-S FX NIKKOR 300MM f/4E PF ED Vibration Reduction Lens with Auto Focus for Nikon DSLR Cameras
Along with a prime and wide angle lens, a zoom lens too is required for travel photography especially if you love wildlife photography.AF-S NIKKOR 300mm f/4E PF ED VR is the world’s lightest 300mm full-frame AF lens. But handling isn’t the only advantage; the Performance also is great in terms of new levels of sharpness and clarity with virtually no chromatic aberration or ghosting.
Tripod for camera
Slik Pro 700DX AMT 3-Section Tripod with Pan and Tilt Head, 19.8lbs Capacity, 6.23′ Maximum Height, Black
Tripod head – ARCA-SWISS Monoball Z1 SP Single Pan with Quick Set Device “Flip-Lock” , Supports 132 lbs
Camera & Accessories Backpack – Tamrac ANVIL 23 Photo DSLR Camera and Laptop Backpack (Black) with 32GB Professional 1000x SDHC Class 10 UHS-II Memory Card
Anvil packs are tough, but light thanks to the engineered materials. They feature a large main compartment designed to carry multiple pro-sized DSLR bodies with lenses attached along with a full range of lenses, flashes and accessories. A front padded pocket holds most 15 inch laptops and exterior pockets hold accessories. Carries a tripod with quick release straps. Comfortable airflow harness and removable Arc and M.O.L.L.E. compatible belt system makes any amount of gear easy to carry.
Memory Card – SanDisk Ultra 64GB microSDXC UHS-I Card with Adapter, Grey/Red, Standard Packaging
Headphones for eyes and ears – Sleep phone SC5BM Headphones Classic
These soft headphones provide ultimate comfort for use in bed. Listen to relaxation music, audiobooks, rock music, radio, or anything you like via your iPod, smartphone, CD/DVD player, MP3 player, radio, bedside TV, white noise generator, computer, or anything with a 3.5mm jack.
Entertainment/ Music – Apple Ipod Nano 7th Generation 16 GB
Wireless headphones- BÖHM Bluetooth Wireless Noise Cancelling Headphones with Inline Microphone
Great quality at much lesser cost compared to brands like Bose . Wireless bluetooth headphones, premium stereo drivers, rechargable battery, comfort and style.
Portable Speakers – Inno Flask Bluetooth Speaker
Fashionable design and high-quality sounds. Micro-B USB charging socket. 3.5mm AUX input socket.Comes with high-quality leather case
Kindle to Read – Kindle Paperwhite E-reader – Black, 6″ High-Resolution Display (300 ppi) with Built-in Light, Wi-Fi
Binoculars – Nikon 8218 Trailblazer
The waterproof/fogproof Trailblazer is Nikon’s newest compact All Terrain binocular. Sleek, lightweight body, lead-and arsenic-free Eco-Glass optics and rubber coating provide a comfortable grip. Multiple layers of anti-reflective compounds offer crisp, sharp viewing. Magnification: 10x . Must have for wildlife enthusiasts.
Neck Support Pillow – REI self inflating PillowIf you prefer some more support, you can try the one below.
Travelrest – Ultimate Memory Foam Travel Pillow
Exclusive non-slip backing holds pillow in place! The high-quality, thermo-sensitive memory foam molds perfectly to the contours of your neck and shoulders to help maintain natural alignment while sleeping. The included pouch allows pillow to compress to quarter its size, making it the optimal size to take traveling anywhere. The cozy, velour cover is easily removable and machine washable.
Sleep Mask – ALASKA BEAR® Natural silk sleep mask & blindfold
A sleep aid and eye relaxer, made of 100% top-quality 19 momme natural mulberry silk on BOTH sides.Gentle, easy-to-adjust headband won’t tangle hair. Fits comfortably with ear plugs and even with a CPAP facial mask. Fully adjustable strap . Get the benefits of total blackout, whether at home, in a hotel or on the plane (where bright led light and dry air can be especially harsh). The perfect travel accessories to help keep you feeling rested and refreshed.
Earplugs that reduce airpressure and noise – Carplanes earplugs
These extremely comfortable earplugs have a noise reduction rate of 32 decibels and are among the cheapest you can find.These ear plugs are molded with super low-pressure, skinned and tapered foam to provide unmatched comfort and improved hygiene.
Medical needs while traveling
First Aid kit -Compact first aid medical kit by TripWorthy
Medical grade quality, convenient, durabel and lightweight.
Medication organizer – 7 day Travel Pill Box, Prescription & Medication Organizer
Medication during travel – Natico Travel Pal Alarm Clock and Pill Box
Last but not the least, travel insurance is one of the most important travel gears.
World nomad travel insurance
This one comes with high recommendations from lonely planet, Eurail, Intrepid and more. This is specifically meant for travel around the world which may involve many activities and adventures.World Nomads travel insurance has been designed by travelers for travelers, to cover the trip essentials. Even if you run out of travel insurance or leave without it, World Nomads can cover you.
Besides please use online sites that compare insurance from various companies. In India one such site is policy bazar. To know more about how to buy travel insurance, click here