I’ve been on two TrekAmerica trips so far. The first trek was the Southern BLT in 2016, which was a cross country tour of the USA. The second trek was the Glaciers + Grizzles Plus tour of Western Canada, which included the Rockies. Both very different tours but they were not camping tours.
If you are reading this but haven’t decided which trek to take yourself, then check out my post on how to pick your TrekAmerica trip.
I will be doing my first camping tour in June this year and will do a separate “What to Pack” camping post for that tour but for this blog post I will it will be purely based on what to pack for BLT and PLUS tours.
If you want to find out more about the tours, check out my FAQ’S about Booking and Travelling with TrekAmerica.
I’ve perfected this list after 3 summers of going to USA summer camps packing and then travelling with TrekAmerica twice. It’s been a work in progress but here’s everything you need to pack for your trip:
Passport – Obviously
- Visa Waiver – Anyone who doesn’t have a US passport will need to apply for an ESTA for America and an ETA for Canada.
- Trek Confirmation – Print off your Invoice.
- Trek Tips – These are really handy and have all your joining information on them.
- Trek Hotel Vouchers – Print these off. They have the address on them and you might need to show the reception them on arrival.
- Flight information – Download the app for your airline carrier. They will send you notifications when to check in 24 hours prior and when the gate is open etc. It’s also good to have in case your flight in delayed etc.
- Additional Hotel confirmation – If you are staying a few additional night beforehand in another hotel/hostel then bring this confirmation with you.
- Oyster Card – For my fellow Londoners
- Driving Licence – Want to drink on trek? Bring your ID. Please note, not all bars/clubs take Foreign driving licenses as IDs.
- Bank cards – Bring a credit card in case of an emergency and don’t forget to inform your bank of your travel arrangements so they don’t block your cards.
- Money – Pack any cash in your hand luggage in case your main luggage gets lost.
- Travel Card – If you have a foreign currency card, make sure you activate this properly before travelling.
- Travel Insurance documents – You don’t need to have every page of your travel insurance. Ensure you have the policy number and the 24 hour helpline or in case of emergency’s number written down. Send yourself a copy of the full policy to your emails.
**EXTRA TIP – Put all documentation in your CARRY ON BAG and keep it all in a plastic wallet**
CARRY ON BAG / BACKPACK
Sleeping bag – Some tours might require a sleeping bag despite not being a camping tour. Check your Trek Tips packing list which will indicate if you require to bring one.
- Travel pillow – A MUST! You’ll want this for the plane and in the trek van.
- Blanket – A light weight blanket is great for the van and some nights under the stars on trek. No spoilers.
- Emergency clothes – In case your luggage gets lost. Eternal pessimist.
- Comfy pants – To change into on the plane. Stay comfy.
**EXTRA TIP – When packing clothes, if you have a trek longer then 2 weeks still only pack 2 weeks worth of clothes. You’ll have laundry services in some of the hotels/hostels which you can use along the way. I did my laundry 3/4 times on my first trek which was 21 days long. I also stayed 4 nights before and after the trip.**
- PJ Tops x4 – I’m a t-shirt kind of gal. Stick to your own personal preference. It doesn’t really matter.
- PJ shorts x 2 – In case it’s nice and toasty in your room.
- PJ bottoms x 2 – In case you can’t figure out how the air con works.
- Sleep socks – 1 nice woolly pair is fine.
- Bras – Support for the twins.
- Sports Bras x 2- Support for hiking days.
- Knickers/Underwear x 14 – In the words of Bridget Jones “Last nights panties go in the laundry basket”.
- Socks x 14 – You can never have enough socks. For girls, make sure you mix between ballerina, ankle and full socks.
- T-shirts x 12 – Aka Day tops.
- Hiking tops x 2 – For days when your going…hiking.
- Going out outfits – Depends on how long your trip is. I counted how many nights we had in big cities which worked out about right.
- Shorts – Amount depends on the weather when your going and where you’re going.
- Jeans – Same here. Depends where and when you’re going.
- Down Feather Jacket – To stay warm in those really cold places.
- Swimsuits x 2 – There will be swimming pools, Jacuzzis or even hot springs on trek so be ready.
- Jumpers x 3 – I love to stay comfy and cosy. Even if your just visiting the West coast of America, you’ll need jumpers.
- Coat – Only for winter tours.
- Jacket x 1/2 – One light jacket and one warmer jacket (this can be your down feather jacket).
- Hat – Woolly hats are great if you’re going on a winter trip or going to the canyons at night. The national parks get a bit chilly. Baseball caps are great for hiking too.
**EXTRA TIP – Do not bring any item which are valuable on trek with you. Expensive jewelry etc is not recommend. Leave it at home.**
- Comfy Day Shoes – For day time walks and wondering around cities.
- Hiking boots or Trainers – If you have hiking shoes then great but don’t buy them unless your a serious hiker. Trainers with a good grip will be fine.
- Flip Flops / Sandals – For days on the beach or casual wear.
- Night out shoes – You won’t be able to get into some bars and clubs with trainers. Sorry boys. Especially for Vegas. You’ll need some nice shoes to get in.
- Shower shoes – If you are on a BLT trip (you’ll thank me for this one) buy a really cheap pair of £1 flip flops from Primark. You’ll want to throw them away once the tour is over.
**EXTRA TIP – Cover your shoes with bags. Lunch bags or frozen zip bags are the best.**
- Camera – To take as many photos as physically possible
- Memory card – Or two. Depends on how snap happy you are.
- Laptop – Only if absolutely necessary and insured.
- iPhone – Completely necessary to annoy loved ones with all your stories and pictures on social media.
- GoPro – Only if you have one. Great for some activities or water shots.
- Headphones – For the plane and general use.
- Phone Charger – For obvious reasons.
- Portable charger – Great for when you don’t have access to a plug or when your on the road.
- Travel Adapter – Or you won’t be able to charge your phone or electrical items at all.
- USB Cable – Keep with you in the trek van to charge your phone and for DJ duties.
- Straighteners – Some straighteners don’t work in the US due to the voltage. Do not bring a hair dryer with you as pretty much all the hostels and hotels have them in your rooms.
- 1TB Passport – If your bringing your laptops as a back up.
**EXTRA TIP – Make sure you are covered for all valuable items you want to take with you. Travel insurance only covers up to certain amount and sometimes only 1 items so check your policy thoroughly. You might need to look for an additional policy just for your cameras and laptop etc. I do advise not to bring any items which are not covered for damage or theft abroad.**
BATHROOM AND COSMETICS
Pretty standard. No explanations really needed.
- Bathroom bag
- Shower gel
- Hair brush
- Hair Bobbles/Ties
- Make up & Brushes
- Dry Shampoo
- Sun cream
**EXTRA TIP – Have 2 different types of locks. One big lock for lockers and a small lock for your suitcase. Keep the keys in two separate places**
That’s my list. I hope you find this useful if your a first time trekker. I will be going on my 3rd trek in June which will be a camping trip. Make sure you follow my YouTube channel for my forthcoming trek travel vlogs and follow my blog for notifications on my camping packing list. Let the countdown to Trek commence.
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Is there something I’ve missed off my packing list? Let me know in the comments below.