When I was younger, I was a world traveler, thanks to my job. I was fortunate enough to visit Asia, Australia, and Europe on a regular basis. When I say “regular basis,” there was a 6-year period when I was in Europe on an average of 1 week per month. This does not include domestic travel. I was the queen of packing and preparing for my trips. I could get my things ready in an hour.
This summer, I plan on visiting Italy for ten days with my oldest son (a gift from my husband). Yes, the hubby is the best! And I can’t begin to describe how excited I am. I’m already preparing for the trip. I’ve pulled together a list of the things I plan on taking.
The Italians embrace style and fashion. Although it can be hot in Italy in the summer, shorts are not something adults wear, unless they’re headed to the beach. Despite the heat, I am avoiding tank tops for this trip – churches require sleeves. I also prefer loose fitting clothing, because nothing is more uncomfortable and unattractive than having clothing stuck to my body in the humidity – it’s also something no one wants to see.
- 3 dressed – below the knee, because the churches in Italy have a dress code
- 1 scarf / pashmina – to cover my shoulders at previously mentioned churches (just in case my sleeves are considered too short
- 2 pairs of capris
- 2 tops
- 1 pair of walking sandals
- 1 pair of dressy sandals
- 1 Pair of Flats
- 5 Bras (I don’t want to have to spend too much time hand washing things)
- 1 hat
- 1 Belt
- 10 Pairs of Underwear (laundry again)
- 1 night gown
- Sunglasses (debating this one; I need a good pair and was thinking of picking one up in Italy, home of Luxottica)
- Meds (both over-the-counter and prescription)
- Toiletries (toothpaste, small floss, shampoo, conditioner, lotion, sunblock, toothbrush, face wash, deodorant, brush – my hair is starting to come in and can get wild, nail clippers, nail file, razor, and makeup)
- Kindle Fire
- Plug Adapters
- 1 trendy but purse that can be packed
- Mobile phone (currently, I have a Nokia, which I love, but that may change – I just hope I can replace it with another Nokia)
Travel Tricks and Tips
- I pack anything that leaks in zip lock bags, thus protecting my clothing.
- I always leave enough room when packing for souvenirs I may pick up on my travels. If I buy anything fragile while abroad, I wrap the item in a towel to prevent it from breaking on the trip home.
- I ensure I download all the apps I need, like What’sApp, and Uber apps.
- I make copies of all my documents – passports, credit cards, reservations – and give them to a family member at home. This way if anything is lost or stolen, I can take the necessary actions.
- I only travel with a little bit of cash. Most places in Europe take credit cards and there is no minimum fee (there isn’t supposed to be a minimum fee in the US, but some vendors ignore it). However, I like to have cash for tips and those few places that don’t accept credit. I don’t worry about running out of cash, because it’s easy to take money out of ATMs; besides the exchanged rates are often better when you do this.
- Before leaving, I notify my cell phone carrier, bank, and credit card companies that I’ll be traveling abroad, this was I don’t waste time on a trip assuring them that my charges are valid. Honestly, I must do this with my bank when traveling domestically; they’re big on fraud prevention and deny charging privileges when I use my card out of state.
- I always research the country I’m about to visit to get a feel for current events, weather, fashion, etc. I always embrace the motto “When in Rome…” which I believe works extra well for this trip.
Please let me know if I’ve left anything out or if you have any travel tricks like my plastic bags. I feel like I’ve still got it, but one never knows. All comments are appreciated (and needed!).