• Claire

What's In My Carry On? - Gap Year Round The World Trip

Updated: Nov 4, 2018

Planning to be overseas travelling for a least a year in many different climates means packing is quite tricky. I share with you everything that I'm taking in my carry-on backpack for my around the world trip!


Overview - Everything I'm packing:





The bag that I'm taking with me is a Kathmandu Eos 28L backpack which I bought for myself during the boxing day sales. I found my previous backpack to be slightly too small and wanted a bag that I'd also be able to take trekking. I like this bag as it isn't an excessive size but gives me enough room to fit extra things like my laptop and has a good amount of pockets for extra storage.

  • Passport/Travel Documents

Along with my passport, I keep copies of the booking confirmations for whichever flight or hostel I'm en route to in my purse. Also, I like to print out copies of my travel documents like flight and hostel booking confirmations and get them bound together to keep them neat. I then rip them out of the 'book' as I need them. I find this way works best for me and avoids me having bits of loose paper floating around my luggage.


  • Currency

As a general rule I usually purchase $100 AUD worth of currency for each country I plan to visit before I leave to ensure that when I arrive I have some backup cash to get me through until I find an ATM. In this case, I have nearly 4000 Philippine Peso.


  • Snacks

For me snacks are a must-have essential to pack in my carry on. As someone who doesn't eat meat, who likes to try to eat relatively healthy and who often travels on budget airlines with limited food options I like to bring a good supply of snacks. Some of my favourites are Cliff Bars, fruit and nut mixes, muesli bars or oat slices, bananas, vege chips, gum or chocolate-covered rice crackers.

I also bring my trusty reusable 'spork' to do my best to save on plastic when eating out.


  • Empty water bottle

Although not pictured, I always make sure to bring an empty water bottle. Carrying an empty water bottle means you won't get it confiscated at security. Airports always have filtered water taps to refill it and air hostesses are normally more than happy to fill it for you during the flight - except last time I flew I asked the hostess if she could please fill it for me and she must've misunderstood what I had said and thinking it was rubbish, scrunched it up and threw it in the bin!

Something I didn't know when I first started travelling was that most travel insurers won't cover the cost of your valuables if an airline looses your luggage if they are stored in your checked luggage. Hence, now I make sure that I keep all my valuables close to me in my carry on.


  • iPhone

  • MacBook

  • Camera

  • Go Pro

  • Portable Charger

  • Charging cords

  • Earphones

  • Universal adaptor


The 'big' electronics that I'm taking on this trip are my iPhone, MacBook Air, Olympus OM-D E-M10 camera and GoPro Hero 4 Silver. I don't normally like taking my laptop on trips as it adds extra weight and I hate the thought of loosing it! But I definitely need it on this trip to work on my blog, research destinations, bookings etc.


I also like to bring my portable charger which has enough power to recharge my phone 4 times over, charging cords for my laptop and iPhone as well as a pair of the Apple earphones.


My new Belkin travel adaptor is my newest travel purchase and currently my most favourite travel accessory. Having a lot of electronics means I have a lot of batteries to charge at once. Previously I used to bring a bulky 4-plug power board with me on my trips to charge everything. My Belkin travel adaptor is much smaller and comes with 5 interchangeable plugs which claims to cover me in over 150 countries. It has surge-protected USB plugs (x2) and x2 normal plugs so I can charge four of my devices at once!

Other bits and pieces I like to bring on the plane include:

  • Jacket - Because it's always cold on planes and it doesn't quite fit in my big bag.

  • Toiletries - like tissues, Panadol and makeup wipes.

  • Sunglasses - So they don't get crushed in my big bag!

  • Hand Sanitiser - My hand sanitiser is in a silicone holder which turns it into a keyring and makes it super handy to access.

  • Travel Journal/Pen - I love to keep a journal while travelling so I always bring a travel journal and pen with me. I find planes a great time to catch up journal entries.


Check out all my other travel advice articles right here on my blog!