10 Must Haves to Travel Nomadic

Posted Sep 16th 2010 12:14 PMUpdated Sep 16th 2010 12:15 PM


I am a travel nomad and always pack light, but there are things that I've learned I can't leave home without. Whether you are spending a week, a month, or a lifetime on the road, here are the 10 must-have items that world nomads need.

1. Camera
World nomads don't want to miss out on all the precious moments on the road and years from now, when memories fade, it will be nice to have photos of places past.

2. Music player
I'd go crazy without my iPod. When you are squashed between 10 people on a mini-bus in Laos, having music to take your mind off things will keep you sane.


Ed Yourdon, flickr

3. Laptop
Even if you aren't planning on working during your vacation, having a laptop makes it a lot easier for a travel nomad to stay in touch with people back home. Plus it's a great way to watch movies during long train rides.

4. Cell phone
SIM cards and cell phones are so cheap these days there's no reason why you can't have one with you at all times. I simply swap out my SIM card whenever I go to a new country, which makes meeting friends on different travel paths a lot easier.

5. Quick drying towel
If you are planning on staying at multiple hostels during your trip, it's essential to bring a quick drying towel. Regular towels will make a musty mess of your bag.


bark, flickr

6. Extra Socks
It might seem like a simple thing, but socks get a lot of wear and tear while you are traveling. I always bring multiple pairs, whether I am trekking through jungles or spending days walking around a major city.

7. Locks
I always carry a wide range of locks with me, especially since I travel with so many electronics. Locker sizes vary widely, so you never know what you may need.

8. Money Belt
There are pickpockets all over the world so it's good to have the extra protection. Money belts are essential when you're in a crowded market or on a packed bus.



9. Vitamins
Life on the road is unhealthy. You stay out late, you don't eat well, and you never get enough sleep. A small bottle of multivitamins won't take up much space and can help guard you from getting sick.

10. Backup Documents
Even if you travel light, it's always smart to prepare for worst-case scenarios. Carry copies of your passport in case you lose the original and need to arrange for a replacement. Having a copy of your travel insurance will definitely come in handy if you get sick and have to go to the hospital.

Filed Under: Tips & Tricks, Budget

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Tomás McCabe

These tips are brilliant! Only just started the travelling gig in the last year or so but this list is right on the money! My list for south east asia travelling tips are right here at my own blog, Tom Sauce:


Enjoy the travels!!

January 14 2016 at 12:07 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Thats are reat tips!
You for sure need laptop or tablet while traveling wonders of the world

November 22 2014 at 9:58 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I find the iPhone to be an indispensable travel tool. Internet, email, camera and music player all in one. Perfect for a short jaunt abroad, but if you are traveling for an extended period a laptop and a decent camera are a good call. But I admit, I'll at least bring a good camera with me regardless.

August 07 2011 at 9:42 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Oooh, you forgot an eye mask + ear-plugs. There's no way I could sleep on trains, buses and in many hostels without those!

February 19 2011 at 1:17 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Kash Bhattacharya

Great tips and all excellent.

Re Laptop nowadays especially when on short breaks across Europe, I've left even the netbook behind and just surfed, taken photos with my Iphone.

I've just get the HTC Desire HD so that will be an upgrade on the Iphone 3G in some respects :)

Say hello!



December 20 2010 at 5:57 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

thanks matt, great tips here! ive been on the road for 4 years now, working studying traveling and backpacking through more than 50 countries and i think this is spot on! my top 10 must haves for packing are here, at http://onestep4ward.com:


good luck guys and happy travels!!

October 30 2010 at 7:02 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Regarding your #10. As well as copies, consider scanning documents into an online storage account. If for some reason you lost everything, they can be recalled at an embassy, cafe, hospital or police station.

October 03 2010 at 1:50 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Dominican Republic

I'm not sure I would add a loptop to the list.
1) more weight.
2)You have to worry about theft, and it makes you more of a target
3)Internet cafes are everywhere, even in the almost third world areas, just find a larger city, (watch your passcodes though)

September 21 2010 at 11:56 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply