MIDWAY GENTLEMAN

The Best Travel Essentials You Can Never Leave Home Without

You are planning for a short weekend trip but not sure what to take with you on the journey? Then you are at the perfect place. As a person, who's been traveling at the weekends since he was 16, I developed the list of essentials every man should pack in his bag.

What a gentleman should pack for a weekend highly depends on the season and the place where he travels. There is a huge difference between a business trip and a weekend escape with your significant other, but one thing is sure. No matter the occasion, with these travel essentials on the list, everything is possible.

Picking the right bag

First things first, you need to clarify what kind of bag you want to use for the weekend. A suitcase, a weekend or a backpack? Trust me – if you pack wisely, you can do a whole weekend with just a backpack. It may be tight but doable, especially in summer. If you plan to travel by plane, make sure to check the bag sizes and prices for your travel.

Brown Tan Leather Weekender Bag on the Floor
Travel Essentials: The Weekender © Erol Ahmed

For a weekend trip you have three main options:

  • A backpack: Probably the most informal option, but the easiest to carry and the most likely you already own one.
  • A weekender bag: The weekender is a more professional and formal traveling bag that can be perfect for all scenarios. When picking a weekender, try to go for a subtle look, something lather, rather than a canvas sports bag. If you are in a hurry, you can use a sports bag, but I believe every man who regularly travels should invest in a high-quality leather bag.
  • Suitcase: When choosing your suitcase, it is worth knowing the size guides of your preferred airlines, pick a suitcase that fits most of the airlines, you probably won’t find one that fits all, but if it fits 2-3 airlines, you will be good for the journey.

Two pairs of pants (1 jeans and 1 trousers)

Packing two pairs of pants is not mandatory, as you can alternate your outfits – even with the same pair. Of course, only if you choose versatile color pants. But the option of having another pair of pants is always pleasing. Think of all the dinner accidents that involve red wine. If you only pack a pair, you’re in for some unpleasant moments.

Three Assorted Color Pairs of Levi's Jeans
Photo by Mnz on Unsplash

Underwear and socks

These two items are essentials no matter how long you travel. I advise you to put an extra pair in your bag – just in case, for example, you want to go training on that day. You need a clean pair of socks and underwear afterward.

Pro tip: if you pack shoes for your travel, make sure to stuff your shoes with your underwear and socks to save some time and also help the shape of your shoes. 

Dress shirt

A dress shirt is never a bad idea, whether you are planning to make a deal with your potential client or have a lovely dinner with your significant other. This cocktail look can pair with almost anything else on the list – the jeans or the trousers. Dress it up or dress it down according to your needs.

Business Casual Shirts on Rack
Photo by Waldemar Brandt

Tracksuit

Whether you visit your friends or family or go on a business trip, no one expects you to wear a suit while you stay inside or go for a walk in the morning. Pack your tracksuit, and feel comfortable on the weekend. Sometimes I only pack the pants to save time and space in my bag, and it is usually more than enough for me to feel comfortable – in the worst-case scenario, I can wear the sweatshirt I packed with the pants.

Sunglasses

It’s a small accessory, yet can be helpful, especially on those sunny summer days. I never leave my house for more than an hour without my sunglasses. Especially when I am travelling or driving. It is an essential that all man should keep in their bag.

Sunglasses Next To Beach
Photo by Sebastian Coman Travel

T-Shirts and polos

T-shirts and Polos are those other comfortable pieces that match perfectly with your tracksuit – or if you want to look professional, but not wearing a suit or shirt, pair polos with a pair of trousers and a stylish pair of shoes and you will be good to go.

Man Wearing White T-shirt with Denim Jacket

Dopp Kit

It should be obvious by now, but make sure to always have your Dopp Kit with you. 

Black Tech EDC Dopp-kit Glasses Headphones Camera Journal
Black Travel Essentials © Supply 

Pro-tip: I always carry my Dopp kit with me, whether I go to the gym or plan to not sleep at home for some reason. Make sure to always stock up your essentials in your Dopp kit, and you will be good to go for the journey. If you are interested in which Dopp kit I am currently using, it is a leather Dopp kit made by Vera Forma.

Book for travel

If you are traveling by train or plane, one of the best ways to make the journey shorter is to pack your favorite book. Trust me. I am a person who has traveled a lot since I was a teenager. Packing your favorite book doesn’t take up a lot of space in your backpack or weekender but will make your journey better and seem shorter.

Chargers

Whether you plan to use your phone or other gadgets a lot or not, chargers are essential. So, don’t forget to toss them in your bag, or your weekend won’t be that happy without photos or GPS. I know you can buy new chargers at almost any story by now, but why waste your money on items you already own. Double check before you leave the house, and not forget about your chargers.

White Power Adapter and Charger Cable
Travel Essentials: Chargers © Rebecca Aldama

Earphones

Whether it is noise-canceling headphones or regular earphones that were added to your phone, it is a must to pack earphones, especially like in the previous point, if you travel via some sort of public transport. Try to find a pair with great battery life or a wired one if you take a long plane flight.

Laptop or tablet

I am someone who likes to work while traveling, especially during transportation. Phones are getting better every year, but a full-on laptop will always be better to get some work done. If you don’t like to work on the weekend, that’s totally fine, but having a laptop or tablet is great for many things. You can watch movies or TV shows, or if you take some pictures and want to check them out on a bigger screen, a tablet or laptop is perfect for that.

Travel Essentials: Man Brown Weekender Bag Filled with MacBook and iPhone
Gentleman Travel Essentials © Oliur

Pack of tissues

It is a highly overlooked item, but you should always keep a pack of tissues in your bag. In my opinion, every man should have a pack in his bag. I couldn’t count how many times I was grateful for someone who passed me one or the numbers of thank yous from people I gave to.

Money, ID, Passport, Documents

The last items on the list should be obvious once again. Whether you travel inland or abroad, keeping some cash and your documents is a must for everyone, not just men.

Travel Essentials: Glasses, Camera, Passport
Travel Essentials © ConvertKit

Optional items

Now that we finished the essentials, I list a few optional items that can be handy in your case, depending on where you are going:

Umbrella

The first optional item is an umbrella. If you’re visiting London, for example, I recommend packing an umbrella. It doesn’t matter if it’s summer or autumn. However, if you’re going to a sunny beach, you can leave the umbrella at home. If you can fit in your bag and know the weather might rain, pack an umbrella.

Sunscreen

If you plan to go to the beach on a sunny day, toss a bottle of sunscreen into your bag. It will prevent your skin from sunburn.

Camera

Finally, the last item on the list is a camera. Although the camera in your phone is getting better each year, it will never be as good as the real deal. If you are a hobbyist or a professional and prefer to take pictures with your professional gear, take it with you.

Woman Holding a DSLR Camera and Taking a Picture
Photo by Marco Xu

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Keep on reading: 10 Best Tips What Gentlemen Should Wear in the Summer

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