We always ask during interviews what are the top 5 things you couldn’t travel without.. We get lots of crazy answers but apart form the obvious ones like Passport, Visa & Money (though we are trying to prove the 3rd one wrong) we get some pretty interesting Items. We arrived at our first overseas destination 70kgs over weight and were going to be charged $25AUD for every KG we were over… it was a lot of money. Unlike most we have a ton of music and camera gear so we had to chuck lots of our personal stuff (we were already sharing the same clothes bag) were left with very few clothes, were already sharing jeans and Josh spent his first day in a new country with no shoes. We quickly learnt what is important and what is not. The 70% rule, only pack to 70% or your capacity. It might be hard at first but you will save yourself a world of trouble, some money and your back with thank you. By the way this list doesn’t include clothes, its a list of the little things you may not think you need but will find yourself needing at some point. Here is the top 10 travel items in no particular order to keep your sanity and maybe save you from travels numerous and unrelenting curve balls as voted by our fans and interviewees.
1. Multi Tool Time and time again this has saved the day when it comes to trouble shooting, fixing, screwing, pulling and cutting cheese to radiator hoses. It really is your best friend that doesn’t complain when traveling. The scissors can cut tags and sneakily trim your nails, its a corkscrew for the bottle of wine you can’t afford but a bottle opener for the beers you can. Don't be stingy when purchasing one, you get what you pay for and sometimes you may ask a lot of your multi tool so you want to be sure it can be relied upon. You don’t need the biggest baddest one and don’t get the smallest one. Play around with a few and see what you like, we meet backpackers and its common for everyone to parade their multitool like peacocks. Remember not to carry it on flights and to always check it in. They are expensive and I have been told by airport staff they literally have rooms and rooms of confiscated ones. Get your Macguyver on!
Notebook & Pens Still the fastest way to record information on the fly and recall it without the stress of its battery running out. Having a few small ones to separate content is ideal but even just having one can save your ass. It can be a check list for your stuff, a quick hand drawn map/ directions, a new recipe from one aunty you met in the last village, important dates, names and address or even writing random brain farts or the classic travel journal which many start but few finish. I don’t think this one will ever become redundant.
3. WaterBottle This is one we never really though of.. until we acquired the most badass water bottles on the planet. We got these water bottles from the legend Shane at Eumundi Markets almost 8 months ago and they literally have not left our sides since. Invest in a decent water bottle that you will want to hold on to. Carrying water can save you somedays when you spend a little longer out than expected, when you go for a walk and don’t have access to good water, lets be honest we don’t need to go into a lot of depth about how counterproductive to life not having water is. We found these eco friendly bottles and love them. They are practically indestructible, don’t leak, regulate the water temperature and you can choose the colour of the case, stitching and the strap so if someone one pinches it, you can identify it… probably in the style of ‘Taken’ because this bottle will become your life, your baby, your spring of eternal life. We have filled ours with port, tea, wine, water and rum. They hang over your shoulder freeing up you hands and have a handy clip to fasten you your belt so the don’t flick all over the place when you’re raging in a bush doof off your titties after 3 days straight of miscellaneous substances and hookups. Check out https://www.facebook.com/myvesica
4. Quick Dry Towel / Micro Fibre Ok, not as nice as zero-twist yarns of the finest, longest staple Egyptian cotton with double-rolled, hand-sewn scalloped edges and dyed with hand-mixed paints to set deep within the fabric. But these guys dry quick, dry your ass and take up fuck all of your precious space in the backpack. They are very durable and don’t littler little bits of cotton everywhere. Some places have towels, some places let you hire towels but most don’t have either option. Its cheaper than buying and hiring every time, it also doubles as your beach towel and a picnic rug... We have a large one and a small one which is good for cleaning up small spills and its a fantastic screen cleaner for your laptops and phones.
5. Smart Phone Torch, Ipod, Camera, GPS, Google, Translator, Viber, Skype, Calculator, Unit Conversion, flight / hostel booker. Most of these things deserve a blurb on their own as a travel companion but what if i told you there is a device that has mastered all of these and fit it all into a nice pocket sized leg warmer? At the end of the day you can survive without any of the things on the entire list but some things do make life a lot easier.
6. Universal Travel Adaptor Probably going to make your life a lot easier, find one that has surge protection and always check the amps/ watts of where you are going. Hate to fry your laptop full of your precious memories and leave itinerary. This one looks cool and can be used in over 150 countries, has 2 USB ports and some flags on it… just some, the same few flags a few times actually... you can find it here
7. Wet Wipes/ Tissues This is one of the most common ones we hear for sure, especially from women. Sweating from the heat, dusty from the walk, dirty from … well… backpacking these things have more uses than you can probably name. We clean our gear, screens, cutlery, wipe blisters and in Asia our asses. Sickness can strike at anytime and both of your ends will be thankful you have a few tucked away for these situations also wiping whatever it is from or off your body may save some of the limited water you have available. This will keep you human until you get to your destination.
8. Duct Tape This one comes in handy more than you think. A good roll of tape can save you a ton of hassle. Tears in you luggage, holes or rips in shoes, a tear in a fly screen, a hole in your inflatable neck pillow, sleeping bag. Tape can surprising solve lots of problems or at the very least keep your shit together until you can relapse or repair it. Maybe because we have music and film gear we use it a little more but we do find ourselves leading it out occasionally. This cloth tape or gaffer tape is the personal favourite.
9. Travel Wallet Keep the important stuff in one place, now that doesn’t mean carry it on you all the time, no one wants to get mugged and it can happen anywhere. But when you are in transit or moving to and from a country, keeping your important documents handy saves time and stress. What to do with your passport when out for a night is completely up to you. There is no fool proof way to protecting your things, just always be aware and always be consistent with how you handle and store these things so they don’t get misplaced or left our for someone to take advantage of.
10. Zip Lock Bags Sandwiches are an important part of life, we love them and they helped fashion our last travel buddy the zip lock bag. Keep soiled or wet clothes/ items separate from your freshies, chuck your electronics in one when you go through airport security, protect your stuff from the rain, keep tea bags, electric cables and of course keep your sanga’s fresh m8. They are a great way to keep your items in check and sorted.
There is a multitude of items for a multitude of reason and applications. Here is the first list we have thrown together for those of you out there looking to travel smarter for longer. There are a few things we have attached at the bottom that you can also consider, I’m sure this will grow and we have probably missed a few things have save you in your travels. Let us know what saves you from reverting back to your ancestral roots as a cave dwelling stink bomb at [email protected] Other things you may want to think about.. Travel Clothesline Front Pocket Wallet/ Bum Bag DayPack Coin Purse Ear Plugs/ Eye Sleeping Bag Liner Padlocks Neck Pillow