I dislike packing. Well actually…I’m being modest. I hate packing (with a passion). If my bags could magically pack themselves, I would be happy. True story – it’s the night before my weekend trip to Stockholm and I’m frantically trying to figure out what to pack. What do I wear? What’s the weather like? Mom, did I pack my hair tie? Do I even need a hair tie? How many outfits should I bring? Meh, you get the point. But one thing is certain. Although I hate packing, there are a few travel essentials that I can’t leave home without. These items are so important that I keep them in my weekend bag all year round. I can’t risk losing them because they keep me organized.
Update November 2018: I’ve now started using PackPoint a packing app which has helped me reduce the burden of packing tremendously.
Weekend Travel Essentials
6 Things I Can’t Leave Home Without On Weekend Trips
Weekend adventure at Skyview in Stockholm, Sweden!
One of the most important travel essentials that you can buy for any trip is the right travel bag.
Over the past few years, I’ve become more of a packing minimalist. After a horrible experience dragging a heavy suitcase across London, I decided to stop overpacking – this is when a packing list would have come in handy!
I now only travel with my CabinZero backpack and a foldable 18-inch wheeled tote.
The right weekend travel bag is lightweight and durable. It packs enough clothes and shoes but it also compartmentalizes. Compartments are great for storing your travel essentials.
The right bag is also easy to handle and doesn’t put much strain on your back.
Benefits to Packing Light For Weekend Trips
There are lots of benefits to packing light especially for a weekend trip.
With a carry-on, you avoid baggage fees. Recently, Norwegian Air Shuttle charged me $65 USD to check-in my carry-on bag. This made a big dent in my Sweden budget!
You don’t have to wait around baggage claim for your luggage. You can hit the ground running immediately!
Travel Bag Wish List
I’m always looking for weekend bags. A hot ticket item on my list is Skate Hut’s stylish duffle bags. I love their colorful abstract prints. With padded shoulder straps and zipped compartments, their bags are fashionable and functional.
NeatPack Compact Hanging Toiletry Bag
Great for travel size bottles and more!
NeatPack compact hanging toiletry bag is one of my favorite travel essentials.
It’s a must have because I’ve never had a designated toiletry bag. Instead, I’ve always repurposed makeup bags. Maybe that’s why I’ve forgotten my toothbrush and deodorant so often.
The NeatPack compact hanging toiletry bag keeps my toiletries organized and visible. Its breathable mesh pockets remind me to pack things like my toothbrush, wipes, and razors.
The Neatpack toiletry bag falls in line with the company’s commitment to creating quality products that solve the most common travel problems. From compact hanging toiletry bags to passport holders, Neatpack is constantly coming up with innovative travel products tailor-made for travelers.
One of the bag’s cool features is a retractable hanging hook. With a hook, I can conveniently hang my bag on the bathroom door or over the shower rod. I can easily access my bag wherever.
Fits perfectly in a carry-on!
Long gone are the days when you need to keep your passport and wallet separate. When traveling, I prefer keeping my passport with me instead of leaving it at the hotel.
Passport wallets come in all different shapes and sizes. They are multifunctional and serve as a wallet and a passport holder. They keep my documents organized and safe.
Passport wallets conveniently hold your passport, driver’s license, boarding pass, itinerary, credit cards, coins, cell phone and more.
And if you’re looking for Disney themed travel items, this cross body passport holder (under $25) features two zippers for valuables and doubles as a wallet.
Another important travel essential is a universal adapter.
A universal power adapter charges my computer, phone and other electronic devices in any outlet around the world. I never have to worry about power conversion issues on the road.
I rarely get to do laundry when I’m traveling. So instead of having my dirty clothes mix with my clean clothes, a laundry bag keeps everything separate.
When I get home all I have to do is drop my dirty clothes into the washer. My clean clothes go back in the closet.
Although I don’t own packing cubes, lots of travelers swear by them. Travel Fashion Girl has used them for years!
Packing cubes are the ultimate luggage organizer and they help reduce space in your carry-on. I’m a bit behind on this but I plan to try them out in the near future.
They come in different shapes and sizes. You can use packing cubes to separate your tops from your bottoms. Or your underwater from your socks. Use it how you see fit.
What are YOUR favorite travel essentials for weekend trips?
Danielle is a travel finance strategist, writer, speaker and podcaster. She paid off $63,000 of student loan debt in 4 years, bought a house at 27 and has traveled to 26 countries. She refuses to let her financial responsibilities hold her back from living life on her own terms.