If you are a chronic over packer, please raise your hand! For even small 3-day trips I have trouble not stuffing an entire suitcase. So when packing for Portugal a few months ago on my first trip to Europe, I tried to go easy on what I brought with me. Traveling carry-on only is becoming more popular and people often say what they could have done without. However, I thought I’d mention what I am glad I brought with me when packing for Portugal.
So if you’d like to find out the travel items that I think deserve a spot in your duffel bag, carry-on or checked luggage, keep reading.
This seems like a fairly obvious thing but I never see this mentioned on any packing lists. I always bring paper towels when I travel and definitely didn’t skimp on a roll when packing for Portugal. Paper towels come in handy for a multitude of purposes: cleaning up messes, using it as a napkin for snacks, drying your face, etc. Sure, this can also be something you buy at your destination, but I enjoy having it with me even when I travel.
So this one doesn’t have to be actual pistachio kernels. But having a snack was essential for me when packing for Portugal as well as other long-haul trips. I prefer something that isn’t too messy, doesn’t have a strong odor and can be stored/transported easily. For me nuts when. I don’t have to worry about heating them up or it having an obnoxious smell on the plane. I personally only eat the kernels without the shells because I like to protect my nails and nail polish, you know?
What really came in handy on the airplane was having the flight attendants bring me a hot cup of water. They have tea available, but I liked being able to choose from my own favorites. Also, the Airbnb I stayed at the first few days in Portugal had a tea kettle and I took advantage of that. The only thing I wish I did when packing for Portugal was bring more tea bags because I ran out before my trip ended!
Two Power Adapters
I brought two power adapters to charge my electronics. For some reason my gadgets charged super slowly! It would’ve taken me forever to charge my phone, headphones and Kindle if I couldn’t do it simultaneously. Next time I am packing for Portugal (or anywhere else) I will definitely bring more than one adapter, or perhaps invest in one with multiple USB ports.
I have a cute toiletry bag I purchased from Victoria’s Secret. This item almost didn’t make the list when packing for Portugal because it’s not very compact. However, I think having all my toiletries in one spot rather than sprinkled throughout different plastic baggies was super convenient. You can find similar ones to the one I have here.
Cross-Body Bag & Bookbag
I tried my hardest to just bring one of them when packing for Portugal. But I couldn’t decide! Now looking back, I’m glad I had both options. I used my small backpack when exploring for the days and I’d be walking a lot. And I used my cross-body bag when going out at night or in more crowded places where I was more conscious of pick-pockets.
The next item I glad I included when packing for Portugal is my Adidas hoodie. Sure, any brand would work here. But what I loved about the one I wore specifically is the large pocket on the front. It was very useful when going through the airport and being able to slide my phone, passport and boarding pass in there. Which, brings me to my final item…
This is an item I can definitely see why some people believe it’s unnecessary. But it helped me keep all my documents in order and together. And as someone who was super nervous about the details of getting through the airport, any small thing to help alleviate my nerves is always a plus in m book. I purchased mine from Amazon.