For all you nosey rats, who want to get an inside look into my luggage!
So The Rat Fam is headed to Shanghai Disneyland in a few days and I wanted to share what I'll be packing for this trip! Hopefully, you'll find something helpful in how I pack and what I normally bring on an overseas trip to the happiest place on earth. Here we go!
I've always been one to pack way in advance of a trip. I like to plan exactly what I'm gonna be wearing on each day, and put them aside about a month before my flight. Maybe it's just me, but there's something awfully exciting about packing for a holiday and I usually pack and repack a couple of times (just for the heck of it)! Here's a list of stuff I'll be bringing along.
Passports, necessary visas, travel documents... I carry these in a huge travel wallet so that I have everything in one place. I still find value in printing out my documents, as you never know when technology is going to fail on you and you might need a reference. I also make it a habit to bring a copy of my identification and pack that separately my luggage, in case I lose my passport.
I also prefer exchanging the currency locally in Singapore and bringing cash, but I do bring an extra debit card, just in case I feel particularly spendy. Other essentials include portable chargers (especially considering the sheer number of pictures you're gonna be taking in the parks), a travel power adapter, a WI-FI router (I get mine at the airport before departing, you can read more about it here) and for this trip in particular, I'll be making sure I have a VPN installed on my phone.
2. Money-saving necessities
I love my coffee and can't go a day without at least two cups. Thanks to that nasty habit, I've found myself spending an average of $10 a day on coffee from cafes in the past. On a more recent trip with my mum, I noticed that she was packing instant coffee and since then, I've always done the same. Especially after a trip to Tokyo where I couldn't get on with the taste of the instant coffee in Japan.
This trip, considering we're staying in Shanghai Disney's Toy Story Hotel and will be spending almost the entirety of the trip in the resort, saving as and where we can is extremely crucial (especially since I plan to come home with a shit ton of souvenirs). I'll be bringing my handy (pun intended) Mickey bottle carrier thingamajig so that I don't keep accidentally throwing those plastic bottles away and actually reuse them through the trip. Plus, it'll be so much healthier than drinking soda!
Depending on your personal habits, you may want to pack stuff that you might not be able to find in a foreign city or that might save you money. And remember, coffee doesn't taste the same everywhere. You can find more money saving tips here!
I always try to underpack for a trip, and most of the time I fail. Especially for a Disney collector, it may be hard to decide on the bare minimum to bring, since you spend your time purchasing stuff that you could wear to the parks "next time". I found myself feeling like I had to choose my favourite child when deciding which notoriously loud Disney t-shirts I should be packing for this trip.
While this may make me sound like a hoarder, I always remind myself that overpacking will prevent me from getting new stuff for "next time". Everyone travels differently, and I personally love getting souvenirs and gifts when I travel. Underpacking allows me room to get them. And in all honesty, no one's gonna care if you re-wear an outfit during a trip. We don't all travel with paparazzi stalking us.
I also always fold my clothes in the Konmari way and stuff them into packing cubes. I've found that while they may not save much space, packing cubes allow me to keep organised through the trip, especially when moving from accommodation to accommodation as I simply pack clothes for each leg of the trip and take only that packing cube out each time.
Bonus tip: I like packing bags within bags to save space. Some airlines allow each passenger 2 pieces of luggage and I take advantage of that fully, packing a medium luggage in a large one for longer trips. This way, travelling to my destination is easy, since I only have to drag 1 piece of luggage around, but I'm still assured of space for souvenirs.
I used to make the mistake of packing nicer shoes for trips, but quickly realised that you only need one pair of worn in and comfortable shoes. Disney parks involve a crazy amount of walking (according to my Health app, I've clocked the most steps on Disney days), and you've got to be practical when it comes to footwear. Never travel with a brand new pair of shoes. I made that mistake once and had to pay the price with bleeding and sore feet.
For smaller accessories, I keep them in a separate drawstring pouch with my delicates to prevent misplacing them. I don't wear any jewellery on flights, to prevent being held up by metal detectors. Headwear are a Disney essential and I normally pack one to prevent myself from the temptation of purchasing one at the park, since I don't wear them day to day at home.
As someone who cares deeply about my skin and appearance (in other words, vain), I never skim on my skincare steps when travelling and like to make sure that I have all the makeup I'll need. I save samples whenever I get them and bring them along on my trip. I also repot my skincare into smaller containers. I never travel with any liquids above 100ml, just in case I forget to pack them in my luggage. On longer trips, I like to purchase travel sizes of shampoo, conditioner and shower foam only when I get to the destination, if these are not provided by the accommodation.
I used to pack tons of makeup for options, but quickly discovered that I prefer going minimal on vacations to save time. These days, I try to pack multi-tasking products in order to save space. I also get travel sizes of makeup and depot my powder products into a small palette, so that I have everything in one place.
Fellow contact lenses wearers, always bring an extra pair, just in case. Getting a pair overseas can be a real hassle!
6. First Aid & Miscellaneous
I always pack some painkillers, Band-Aids and charcoal pills. Feeling unwell when you're travelling is horrible and trying to get what you need in a pharmacy where they speak a different language might be tedious. Sometimes, the food in a new city may not be something I'm used to and charcoal has saved me on a few different trips. I also normally pack some empty Ziploc bags just in case there's a chance of rain so that I can keep my valuables dry. And a light umbrella or poncho!
Being a pin trader, I've also packed some lanyards to show off my collection in the park and tons of traders, since I rarely get the opportunity to trade in real life, and I plan on getting the whole family involved this time. I'll probably be carrying these in my hand-carry, so as to not add weight to my luggage.
So there you have it! Let me know what you normally pack on your Disney trips and if you have any tips or tricks that could help another Disnerd out!
Till next time,