45 travel essentials for you to jet off in style

How do you master the art of brilliant bag-packing for your next adventure? Start by creating a list of the travel essentials.

It’s that time of year again, we’re ready to ditch winter and escape to the European summer for a few weeks of bliss. But before you go any further, take note - this isn’t your guide to minimalist packing, carry-on-only style. A Euro vacay requires DESERVES many many outfits. Take your cues from our holiday packing checklist below and start pulling together your fashion travel essentials.


The BF Jeans

Or your mum’s, whatever takes your fancy. The slouchy boyfriend jeans (or any jeans for that matter) are crucial when on holiday. Scrunchable, minimal washing required and wear-with-anything clothing are always top of the packing list.

Shop BF Jeans:

Missguided Exposed Knee Jeans
Cheap Monday Common Jeans
The Fifth Light The Way


Trusty T-Shirts

Getting around town in a crisp white or striped tee matched with denim cutoffs, reflector shades and summer sandals is a must. Pack multiple.

Shop T-Shirts:

Assembly Label Anyway Tee
T-Shirt Twin Pack
Vero Moda Anna Top


Image source: In The Frow

The Polaroid

Shake it like a polaroid picture. Printing out your memories to stick on the wall might be old-school but never gets old. Holiday mementoes of the original kind.

Shop Polaroids:

Sunnylife Underwater Camera
Vintage Polaroid Camera
Polaroid Socialmatic Camera
Urban Outfitters


Passport Purse & Phone Case

Look like a total pro on vacation with a sleek passport holder and envious phone case.

Shop Travel Accessories:

Marc Jacobs Passport Holder
David Jones
Experience Passport Holder
Urban Outfitters


The Denim Cutoffs

Mixing and matching has never been easier when you’re armed with denim cutoffs. Nail the effortless look with denim shorts on the bottom and pretty tops-on-top.

Shop Shorts:

One Teaspoon Bandits Shorts
General Pants
Rusty Lucky Shorts
Reclaimed Vintage Denim Shorts


Spiffy Shades

You cannot, we repeat, you cannot travel to another destination without cool sunglasses. It’s likely these will be with you at all times so the perfect pair of sunnies is a #musthave.

Shop Shades:

Quay Delihla
Le Specs Naked Eyes
David Jones
Rayban Round Mirrored Shades
Sunglass Hut


Fuss-Free Dresses

Day-to-night shift dresses in a variety of colours will get you through beaching, touristing and late night dinner dates. An off-the-shoulder style will be a plus to show off your sun-kissed shoulders.

Shop Day-Dresses:

Deviation Dress
Beginning Boutique
The Fifth Into The Sun Dress
China Doll Shift Dress


An Easy-Breezy Bag

In our eyes, the smaller the better. Find your fave mini cross-body bag that’ll take care of the essentials (lip gloss, purse, keys and phone) and if you really need to carry things around, load up a leather tote.

Shop Bags:

Camilla Small Canvas Clutch
David Jones
Kimchi Blue Suede Tassle Bag
Urban Outfitters


Swishy Straw Hat

Stay polished no matter what the plans are in a lady-like summer hat. If you haven’t found the one stalk your favourite Instagrammers, IT girls everywhere have the best finds for you to copycat.

Shop Hats:

Straw Panama Hat
David Jones
Fedora Hat
Mooloola Bruna Fedora
City Beach


Fancy Flats

Opt for espadrilles and summer sandals the next time you travel. Light and easy to pack, espadrilles are an easy all-day alternative to sneakers. And sandals? Well, they’re a no brainer.

Shop Fancy Flats:

Birkenstock Arizona
Jarvis Lace Up Sandals
Soludos Classic Stripe Sandal


The All Eyes On You One-Piece

Turn heads with a one-piece poolside or beachside - or by the bar. Pop on a pair of cute shorts and summer sandals and you’ve got yourself a beach-to-bar outfit in the blink of an eye.

Shop Head-Turning One-Pieces:

Seafolly Coast to Coast
Stone Cold Fox Swimsuit
Jets Bandeau One Piece
David Jones


No-Stress Sneakers

You’re bound to be doing some walking whilst touristing, pack a pair sneakers that will keep you on your feet all day and look good in your Insta-snaps.
Shop Sneakers:

Vans Disney Plimsolls
adidas Los Angeles
Converse Chuck Taylor
General Pants


A Cute ‘Kini

That’s right, they scrunch up so small you may as well pack two. Or three. Summer destinations demand a bikini uniform, plus a mandatory pina colada.

Shop 'kinis:

Topanga Laguna Ave Bikini
City Beach
River Island Balconette
Zimmermann Roamer Frill Bikini
David Jones


A High-er Heel

You’ll be seeing in the sunsets and since it’s summer, probably a sunrise or two! Pack one pair of heels for your party feet.

Shop High-er Heels:

Hysterical Heeled Sandals
Miss KG Gogo Platform Sandals
Nude Missy Silver


Cool-Girl Luggage

It falls into accessorising, k? Update that well-traveled suitcase you've had since you moved out of home to a nifty wheelie bag (bright colours, bright colours!) or an easy-to-carry oversized bag for your weekends away.

Shop Cool-Girl Luggage:

Country Road Logo Tote
David Jones
Knomo Bolsover
Jodi Lee Augustine

Hot Tips For Holiday Packing

  • Pack clothing you know you’re going to wear, don’t fall into the trap of bringing something you’ve never worn before. It’ll be a space waster.
  • Natural fabrics. Linen, cotton and silk are a godsend during travel time. Avoid synthetics such as nylon and polyester, you’ll wind up a hot mess.
  • Pack way less than the weight limit. You’ll be one happy chappy when you check in to your return flight without having to pay excess fees. Since when do you go on holiday and without a shopping splurge?
  • Pick up a new book you’ve been dying to read and download the latest podcasts to keep entertained in-flight.

The Holiday Checklist:

  • Jeans
  • T-Shirts
  • Polaroid Camera
  • Passport Holder & Phone Case
  • Denim Shorts
  • Sunglasses
  • Dresses
  • A Small Bag
  • A Hat
  • Sandals
  • One-Piece Swimsuit
  • Comfortable Sneakers
  • Bikini
  • High Heels
  • Suitcase

Be Plane-Pretty

Now, you’ve got your packing sorted but you still need to nail the perfect ensemble to be plane-ready. It’s a fine balance, think chic and comfortable. Not-so-cozy that you could be mistaken for wearing your PJs (take off the trackies) and not-too-tight, there’s no curling up in the chair when you’re wearing your party dress.

Be strategic here, wear the heavier items to leave more room for the good stuff. Channel an off-duty look with boyfriend jeans, a simple tee and sneakers or boots teamed with your wear-with-anything jacket - the bigger the better, it’ll double as your blanket when you snooze. Tie a light jacket around your waist and you’re all set to jet. Oh, and avoid make-up.

Beauty Regime

While we've said to avoid make-up, there's still a few things you can squeeze into your carry-on to make the jet-setting life a breeze when you land. Because you want to look fresh when you step off that 8 hour flight. Always always pack your toothbrush- toothpaste combo for those pearly whites. You'll have bed-hair, it's a given, so pack a small comb and if you're prone to dry skin a mini face and hand cream will leave you feeling a million bucks. Spritz on your newly purchased duty-free Chanel and gloss the lips for an Au naturel, fresh-faced arrival.

Jurlique Rose Hand Cream
Chanel No. 5 100mL EDT
Calvin Klein Lip Gloss

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Now all you need to do is choose your destination and make your way to the departure gate. Bon voyage, baby!

Doone Roisin

Doone Roisin is the social media butterfly and a Contributing Fashion Editor at finder.com.au. She's an online shopping enthusiast ready to show you what to buy and how to wear it, the best sales around town and insider tips to make note of.

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