The world is huge

Don't miss any of it

Travel news, itineraries, and inspiration delivered straight to your inbox.

By proceeding, you agree to our Privacy Policy and Terms of Use.

Backpacker hiking
Alena Ozerova | Adobe Stock

Essential Items for a Budget Travel Packing List

Traveling on a budget doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice comfort or convenience. With careful planning and packing, you can have an enjoyable and affordable trip. In this guide, we will outline the essential items you need to pack for budget travel.

Clothing and Accessories

When traveling on a budget, it’s important to pack the right clothing and accessories to ensure you are comfortable and prepared for any situation. Choose lightweight and versatile clothing that can be layered depending on the weather. Make sure to pack a hat, sunglasses, and rain jacket or poncho, in case of bad weather. Don’t forget to pack comfortable walking shoes and swimwear if you plan to visit the beach. Additionally, bring a travel towel and travel-sized toiletries if you’re staying in a hostel or somewhere they may not be supplied. Finally, a money belt or hidden pouch is essential for keeping your valuables safe.

Travel Gear

In addition to clothing and electronics, you should pack a few essential items to make your travels more comfortable. These items include a backpack or carry-on suitcase, packing cubes or compression bags, a travel pillow and blanket, a travel-sized first aid kit, a travel lock and cable, a travel umbrella, a portable water bottle, travel-sized laundry detergent, a travel-sized sewing kit, and travel-sized stain remover.

Technology and Entertainment

Having the right electronics can make a huge difference when traveling. Make sure to pack a travel adapter and chargers for all your devices. Additionally, a portable power bank can be useful for keeping your electronics charged when you’re on the go. Technology and entertainment items are also essential for budget travel. Packing a few items can help keep you entertained and connected on the go. Some items to consider include:

  • Smartphone or tablet
  • E-reader or books
  • Portable speaker or headphones
  • Universal travel plug adapter
  • Portable Wi-Fi hotspot
  • Camera or GoPro
  • Travel journal and pen
  • Deck of cards or travel games
  • Portable charger for electronics


Finally, a few miscellaneous items are also essential for budget travel. These items can help you stay organized, safe, and comfortable while on the road. Some items to consider include:

  • Travel insurance documents
  • Passport and photocopies
  • Visa and travel permits
  • Local currency and emergency cash
  • Travel guidebook or maps
  • Snacks and reusable water bottle
  • Travel-sized laundry bag
  • Travel-sized toiletry bag
  • Travel-sized sunscreen and insect repellent

You Might Also Like:

What to Pack for a Long Trip: The Ultimate Packing List
The Ultimate Footwear Packing List
The Ultimate New York City Packing List
The Ultimate Packing List for Business Travelers
Ultimate Packing List for a Family Road Trip

We hand-pick everything we recommend and select items through testing and reviews. Some products are sent to us free of charge with no incentive to offer a favorable review. We offer our unbiased opinions and do not accept compensation to review products. All items are in stock and prices are accurate at the time of publication. If you buy something through our links, we may earn a commission.

Top Fares From