Planning your holiday packing list

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Whether you’re away for three nights or three weeks, packing for a holiday can be much harder than it seems – particularly if you need to adhere to the strict carry-on luggage rules imposed by certain budget airlines.

But with a little forward-planning and a comprehensive checklist, you could master the art of packing in no time. Read on for our pick of the web’s best packing advice sites and printable packing lists.

Tips for advance holiday packing

Scared you’ll forget to pack essential holiday items? Start planning your packing list a few weeks in advance and you’ve got more time to cover all bases. Holiday Extras is a great place to start: in addition to general packing tips, their holiday checklist has a comprehensive list of what to do up to three weeks before you travel. There’s some valuable reminders here, including checking that your EHIC (European Health Insurance Card) and travel insurance is up to date, applying for a visa if necessary, ordering travel money and making an appointment with your doctor for essential travel vaccinations.’s packing tips are also very handy. A few points on this list are worth dealing with several months before you travel – for example, checking that your passport is still valid for the duration of your trip. Some countries specify that you have at least six months validity on your passport from your date of travel, so check your destination’s requirements well in advance.

For advice on luggage, the Telegraph’s 50 top packing tips are indispensable. There’s an extensive section here on buying the right luggage, so make sure you read this article if you’re hoping to invest in a new suitcase. You’ll also find some great advice in there on how to pack your belongings and maximise luggage space.

Travel Supermarket’s packing notes are worth reading too. This blog has some great tips on being ruthless with your packing. So if you’re the kind of person who always packs too much, start your checklist here.

Best online and printable holiday packing lists

Once you’ve gathered all the advice you need, it becomes much easier to compile your own personalised holiday packing list. However, if you’re looking for ready-made lists to print off the web, you’ve got plenty of choice.’s printable checklist is comprehensive without being too long: print this out to ensure that you don’t forget to pack all the essentials.

TravelSmith’s packing checklist is useful too, especially if you’re in the habit of forgetting things on holiday. This list has a handy summary of technology items to pack too – perfect if you want to ensure you can stay online while you’re on vacation.

Remember, while these printable packing lists might be thorough, they may not include everything you need. If you’re going on a specialist holiday – like a winter sports trip or a safari – you may need to ensure that your luggage contains some out of the ordinary items. And if you’re travelling with children, your packing list could be even longer: Fodor’s vacation packing checklist for children is a useful reference, whether you’re holidaying with babies or teens.

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