Air Travel Checklist

No two suitcases on a baggage carousel contain exactly the same items, however there are items that should go on everybody’s To Do and To Pack checklists.

To Do

Online Research before travelling

  • Confirm flight reservations
  • Check your passport to ensure it will be valid for the duration of your trip
  • Research the destination and find out if there are any recent issues reported by Foreign and Commonwealth Office that may affect your trip
  • Book an appointment at your GP or local travel clinic and get vaccinations if required
  • Apply for visas
  • Check-in online if the airline offers online check-in
  • Print out boarding passes
  • Notify the airline about any special meal requirements
  • Check the baggage size and weight allowances for checked-in and hand luggage as those may vary
  • Sort out currency to avoid higher exchange rates at the airports
  • Phone your bank to notify them you will be abroad so that they add a note to the system saying that your card may be used abroad

To Pack

What to pack in your Hand Luggage

Hand Luggage

  • Passport
  • Tickets
  • Travel insurance documents
  • Driving license
  • Local currency or traveller’s cheques
  • Credit cards
  • European Health Insurance Card (EHIC)
  • Medication
  • Mobile phone and charger
  • Camera, memory cards, charger
  • Travel guide
  • Magazines, books, games, iPod
  • Glasses / contact lenses
  • Change of clothes
  • Jewellery


    What to Pack in your Suitcase

  • Electrical adapters
  • Photocopies of documents (passport, insurance, visas, driving license)
  • Clothes, shoes
  • Accessories (sunglasses, sunhat)
  • Toiletries, hair products
  • Suntan lotion
  • First aid kit
  • Sleeping pills (to help with jet lag if going on a long haul trip)
  • Motion sickness tablets
  • Insect repellent
  • Gifts (if going to visit family and friends)
  • Swimwear, snorkels, goggles (if going on a beach holiday)

Flying with children

What to pack when flying with children

If travelling with children, your packing checklist will be longer. Here’s a few items you shouldn’t forget:

  • Child’s passport
  • Baby food
  • Baby wipes
  • Clothes
  • Nappies, swimming nappies, nappy cream, nappy sacks
  • Shampoo / wash
  • Shoes, sandals
  • Sunhat
  • Suncream
  • Swimming suit
  • Toys
  • Books
  • Pacifier
  • Changing bag
  • Sleeping bag
  • Medicines
  • Infant equipment (such as travel buggy, car seat etc.)

Use this ‘Flying with babies and toddlers’ guide to get more packing ideas and where which item should go – your hand luggage or the checked-in bag.