6 Essential Items of Clothing to Pack when Traveling

6 Essential Items of Clothing to Pack when Traveling (For Him):

Traveling For HimWe often carry too many clothes and have to travel long distances from the aeroplane to the taxi rank, via baggage reclaim. To help you coordinate a wardrobe to both dress for success and to dress down for casual occasions on your business travels, herewith a list of the six essential clothing items you should pack:

One jacket

If you are not packing a suit (in colours such as charcoal-grey or blue), consider a blazer. A blazer can dress up any outfit and provide a degree of warmth on cooler African nights.

Two pairs of shoes

Apart from the footwear you might be wearing when traveling (ideally boots with suitable ankle support and rubber soles), you should pack two pairs of shoes. One pair with shoe-trees should be a formal lace-up or loafer variety. The other pair, such as boat shoes, sandals or flip-flops, can be used for casual wear or going to the hotel swimming pool.

Three pairs of trousers

As you can use the blazer to dress up your trousers, you should pack one pair of dress trousers and two pairs of casual trousers such as chinos or jeans.

Four shirts

Always pack a white long-sleeved shirt which can create formal attire or a relaxed classic look. Drape a jersey over your shoulders for that French casual look. Another long-sleeved shirt and two short-sleeved shirts or golf shirts should be packed.

Five undergarments

Unless you would like go commando style, consider packing sufficient underwear to have at least one pair (of your five undergarments) in your carry-on bag. Should your case go missing in transit, at least you will have the luxury of clean underwear for the day you arrive at your destination.

Six socks

Always carry a spare pair of socks in your carry-on bag as over 40% of moisture is lost through the soles of your feet.

Whilst the above list should make packing easy, for trips longer than a day, you should also carry the following six miscellaneous items to extend your sartorial elegance and preparedness needs:

  1. A silk tie. To preserve the quality of this tie, wrap it around the cardboard core of a toilet roll and place it in a zip lock bag.
  2. A cashmere jersey. Often, the air conditioning on planes can make a night flight chilly and a cashmere jersey is a light weight solution. Also, you can drape the jersey over your shoulders for that French casual look.
  3. A pair of cargo shorts. Should the temperature reach the mid-20s at your destination, you can wear a pair of shorts with a short-sleeved shirt and boat shoes for a suave appearance.
  4. A hygiene kit. Rather than carry an extensive array of toiletries that can be purchased at your destination or are made available at your hotel, just carry the essentials: a razor, spare blades, shaving foam or oil, a shaving brush, toothbrush, floss and toothpaste. Leave this hygiene kit in your case and replenish items as they are used.
  5. An electronics kit. Pack a universal adapter with two USB ports. In this way, you will be able to charge your electronic devices vis USB and plug your laptop into an outlet at the same time. Consider carrying a power pack for emergency charging of your devices. Also, a spare mobile phone to insert a locally-purchased SIM card for cost-effective local calls.
  6. A survival kit. Rather than carry survival equipment or EDC items that might not be allowed on a plane or clutter your pockets, consider carrying the following items in a travel survival kit: a tactical pen, wind-proof lighter, a compass, a torch, 10 meters of paracord, a fixed-blade knife, a covert E&E kit (carried on your belt) and a pair of compact binoculars.

6 Essential Items of Clothing to Pack when Traveling (For Her):


Female travellers often worry about the “What if…?” factor with regards to the type of clothing they should wear during business or social events. A general rule of thumb is that if you have to pose the question, you probably do not need that item of clothing.

A jacket

As for male travellers, female travellers could consider a blazer or other jacket to dress up their outfits

Two pairs of shoes

One pair should be smart high heels or wedges (the shoes you like to wear for your formal business attire). The other pair should be casual such as pumps, sandals or other low-heeled shoes.

Three dresses/skirts/pants

Consider packing a little black cocktail dress, a business skirt and a pair of casual pants. By combining these with various tops and suitable accessories (scarf, jersey or belt), you can mix and match for any social or business environment.

Four tops

These tops should include one plain white blouse, a couple of colourful shirts and tank tops.

Five undergarments

Depending on your destination and accommodation, your undergarments should be light weight and drip-dry for ease of washing in your room.

Six leggings

These items can include socks, stockings and pantyhose of different colours to accent your outfit in either a business or casual situation.

As with the packing list for men, female travellers should also consider carrying the following six accessories:

  1. A scarf or headdress. Both a scarf or a headdress can be used in societies that require compliance with certain religious or cultural mores.
  2. A jersey. Consider carrying a jersey on board with you if the air conditioning makes the aircraft cabin chilly. Also, you can use the jersey for added warmth on nights out or to dress up your casual outfit.
  3. A pair of shorts. Whilst shorts are not deemed appropriate in some countries for religious or cultural reasons, they do provide a high degree of comfort when at the beach or in a very causal setting.
  4. A hygiene kit. A female hygiene kit should include all necessary items for personal hygiene that cannot be purchased easily at your destination.
  5. A makeup kit. This kit can include the standard cosmetics that you use on a daily basis. A small bottle of perfume can be purchased at duty-free and most hotels provide hair dryers in the rooms.
  6. A survival kit. A female survival kit should include an impact weapon (an ARK, a monkey fist, kubotan or an ASP baton) as well as the following: a whistle, a torch, a lighter, a covert E&E kit, a can of pepper spray gel and a small first aid kit.