Whether you’re a beginner traveller on your first jaunt or an experienced nomad, it’s still useful to check out what to and what not to take so here are ten items that you should probably avoid.

1. Photos

You won’t forget what your boyfriend, mum, dog looks like so no need for photos. You might feel a bit silly when you’re sticking these pictures up in every hostel every other night. Leave them at home, your dog will never know.


2. Heels & Shoes

Heels for women and shoes for men are an avoid item when backpacking. They’re heavy, bulky and unnecessary. Many girls and guys don’t wear them travelling, so save the room for more useful items.


3. Laptop

Most decent hostels around the world have free computers and WIFI, therefore your laptop is not necessary. It’s heavy, it’s expensive and your insurance may not cover all of the cost. If you’re desperate you can use a smartphone, as its surprising the amount of free WIFI which is available around the world these days. Avoid any items that target you for potential theft, it will make your trip much more hassle-free.


4. Hair-Dryer

Another bulky item. Yet again this item can be found in many hostels for free. Also, his item is less than desirable when travelling in a hot, humid country.


5. The Whole of the Pharmacy

Take your basics, pain killers, plasters and malaria tablets (if in a malaria zone). You can buy emergency medication when travelling, even if can’t understand the packaging it is better than trying to find your malaria tablets if you’re rummaging round a first aid kit with every tablet under the sun.


6. Another Memory Card

Don’t take another memory card, if yours gets full then take a memory stick, or even better put your memory card into a hostel computer and email all the photos to yourself, that way they will never be lost.


7. One Too Many Books

Two words, book exchange.  Books are heavy and space consuming. Take a few cheap paperbacks and then swop them with a box exchange that is usually available in most hostels. Or even better, swop a book with another traveller.


8. Shower Gel 

Just use shampoo. Backpacks can already be pretty full with different bottles and products. To cut down use your shampoo as shower gel, or buy a 3 in 1 conditioner/shampoo/shower gel. Or even better, just the free shower gel in the hostel.


9. Food

Half the fun of travelling is to try the different food around the world. Keep any ‘home’ foods at home, snacks aren’t going to be tough to find abroad.


10. Guidebooks

Yet again, more books which are heavy and bulky. Use the incredible invention of the internet and find any travel advice for free. Also, if you’re travelling to a popular destination, then no doubt your hostel will provide plenty of information for you, or even better a tourist information centre.


By Becky Wood


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