What to Pack for Your European Backpacking Trip

Free Printable Packing List

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Before we left on our trip, I was trying to make a list of what to pack. Basically, I was overwhelmed.

I had never been to Europe before and here I was trying to plan for 7 months, in more than one season, for 17 countries.

The following is a list of what I brought. At the end you will find things I had to buy because I didn't bring them as well as things I didn't end up needing.

I will personally guarentee you you will not need everything you bring! We sent two boxes of things home once it occurred to us how heavy our packs were and how much pain our backs were in!

Backpacks? Try my Backpack Recommendations page.

What I Brought



Washing Clothes


  • 3 T-Shirts
  • 2 Pairs of jeans (one got sent home after winter)
  • 1 fleece shirt (got sent home after winter)
  • Gloves (got sent home after winter)
  • 1 sweatshirt
  • 1 pair cotton pants
  • 1 pair nylon warm-up pants
  • 4 light sundresses
  • 2 pairs of shorts
  • Nightshirt
  • Underwear
  • Socks
  • Rainproof jacket
  • Bikini
  • Sarong
  • Hiking shoes
  • Sandals



Important Items


Things I bought

Things I didn't need

  • Travel umbrella (just used my hood on my jacket)
  • A dressier pair of shoes (what was I thinking??)
  • A phrase book (our guide book had basic languages at the back)
  • Pac-Safe (wire mesh that goes around your pack. More hassle than help)

    Here's a list I created that you can print off for packing for your trip.

    Other Travel Items

    To view them all with pictures, click here.

    For individual items, click on the link.
    (Links will open in a separate window).

    SnacPac Picnic Kit
    Insulated Bottle Carrier
    Laundry Kit
    Woolite Packets (10)
    Flexible Sink Stopper
    Mesh Pockets - Small (5x7")
    Mesh Pockets - Medium (7x10")
    Mesh Pockets - Large (10 x 14")
    Eagle Creek Pack-It Compressor
    Eagle Creek Pack-It Sacs (X-Small)
    Eagle Creek Pack-It Sacs (Small)
    Eagle Creek Pack-It Sacs (Medium)
    Eagle Creek Pack-It Sacs (Large)
    Retractable Razor
    Eagle Creek Wallaby Trip Kit
    Eagle Creek Over Board Toilet Kit
    Travel Container Set (4 oz)
    Pop-Up Hair Brush
    Micro Turbo Hair Dryer
    Folding Curling Iron
    Mini Sidekick Bag
    Sidekick Bag
    Vertical Security Bag & Passport Checkbook Cover
    Splash Caddy Junior
    Eagle Creek Deluxe Security Belt
    Undercover Silk Waist Wallet
    Cable Lock
    EZ Reader Combo Locks
    The SECURITY Bag (Travel Size)
    Silk Sleep Sack
    Mini-Time Travel Alarm
    MityLite Flashlight
    Flat-Packing Umbrella
    Cash InCase
    Five-Pocket Purse
    Combination Converter Kit
    Adaptor Plug Set

    Hope this helps!

  • Packing Tips

    If something is wrinkled, wet it, shake it out and hang it to dry.

    Roll your clothes to help prevent bad wrinkling.

    If you have student ID, bring it! You can get discounts everywhere.

    Buy a backpack with detachable daypack, it's easier than trying to pack a small bag as well!

    Put your shampoo and other toiletries in ziplock bags to prevent leaks.

    Contact lense solution and sunscreen is VERY expensive in Europe.

    Ask your bank if you can get a duplicate ATM card. Give this one to your travel partner in case of theft.

    Photocopy your important documents. Keep one set and give your travel partner one set to hold.

    Keep your travellers cheques and the list you make when you spend them separate. That way you have all the info in case of theft.

    The cheapest way to ride the rails

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