European countries are opening back up to Americans, and I’m almost beside myself with glee! This is a huge sign that travel and life are getting back to whatever normal is going to be. But, since it’s been a while since most of us have been to Europe (or anywhere, really), I decided to pull together a quick reminder of the things you’ll definitely need for your upcoming European getaway.
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Oh, yeah, they have different plugs over there! This is something we definitely haven’t had to think about in a while! International adapters are absolutely essential to anyone who travels with a phone, e-reader, iPad, wireless headphones, etc. So… everyone. This one is good in multiple countries with multiple prong styles, not just the European ones! It’s a great one to have for all your international travels, especially since it also comes with four USB inputs as well.
Also helpful: Essential Gifts for the Tech Savvy Traveler
Having a purse or daybag that’s both big enough to hold what you need and convenient in size and make is kind of hard to find! Versatility is very important, so if you can find a purse that doubles as a backpack when needed, like the one below, all the better! Europe is home to both bustling cities (where theft-proof options are essential) and beautiful mountain hikes (where a backpack is far more practical), so choose wisely! Both of the options below are bags that I would use myself!
More luggage suggestions here: Packing Strategy: The Right Luggage
Good Walking Shoes and Inserts
Having two surgically corrected feet myself, this one is non-negotiable for me. Throw some flats in your bag if you’re heading into a fancy restaurant, but if you’re walking around the cobbled streets of Europe, you need supportive walking shoes, and Superfeet inserts are a good idea, too. Leave the heels behind, ladies! Trade your flip flops for sandals with arch support and an ankle strap. No one wants a stress fracture, blisters, or just plain old foot pain on your first trip back to Europe!
Don’t take my word for it! I wrote this post about Travel and Your Feet with my podiatrist and surgeon!
Yes, even in the summer, you’ll want a scarf with you on your Eurotrip! If you want to go into any churches in Southern Europe, you’ll need to cover those sun-kissed shoulders. And you might be surprised at just how chilly Northern Europe can be, even in July and August! Trust me, you’ll be glad you threw in a light scarf for your European journey!
Essentials: What Every Woman Should Pack for Every Trip
So, you may or may not recall that you have to pay for water in much of Europe. It adds up! It’s good to have a water bottle handy to refill yourself as needed. Nathan is the brand I like best. I take a 32-ounce with me wherever I go, but it doesn’t fit in smaller purses. A 24-ounce should be enough to get you through, and will fit in your purse or day bag! Do yourself a favor and avoid glass bottles. They will inevitably shatter, and you’ll be sad… and maybe bleeding.
More here: 5 Practical Ways to Travel Sustainably
It’s important to keep your money and cards organized, so you’re less likely to lose them, but it’s even more important to keep them protected from scammers with scanners! In fact, you shouldn’t be walking around the U.S. without an RFID-blocking wallet, if we’re honest. I love mine, and whether you want something slim and discreet, something with a zipper, or something more like a clutch, I’ve got you covered!
Fun read: How to Outsmart the Pickpocket
Bonus for 2021
Since we know COVID is here to stay, and because rules are shifting quickly, and because requirements differ from country to country (and possibly city to city in some countries), there are a couple of things you should definitely pack a “just in case” options.
I know, I know, we’re all tired of them! But some businesses may still require them, and some countries may still require them in general as well. Plus, we’re all still required to wear them on airplanes. Bring a mask, bring an extra, you’ll be glad you did–and they don’t take up that much space! Treat yourself to some new ones. These were made in the USA!
Some countries are requiring proof of COVID-19 vaccination for entry without quarantining when you arrive. I know the vaccine debate is a hot topic, but the reality for travelers is that you’ll need to bring your vaccination card with you if you have one. Otherwise, you may have to quarantine for 10-14 days, or you may be denied entry altogether. Neither situation is ideal!
Keep your vaccine card with your passport, and if you have a yellow card, it’s also a good idea to record your COVID vaccine records there as well.
Read next: What to Know about the Yellow Card for Travelers
and Your Ultimate Guide to Travel Immunizations
Want more? You’ll find all my best packing tips on my dedicated Packing Page!
Need something to read on the plane? My Lost and Found Series in the perfect thing! In Book 7: Home Lost and Found, Sadie takes her first-ever Eurotrip through Germany, Austria, Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania!
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