27 Things to Pack if You're Traveling Alone for a Safe, Fun & Relaxing Solo Vacation

Embark on your main character journey with these travel accessories, gadgets, and all-around essentials.

By Ella Chakarian, Megan Gray May 18, 2024 2:00 AMTags
shop_solo travel essentials_heroPhoto Courtesy of Getty Images - Virojt Changyencham

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Taking a solo trip can be a freeing experience. Since there's no one to check in with, you can essentially go where you want, do what you want, eat what you want, etc. Some parts can be stressful, some can be relaxing, but overall it can be a fulfilling and meditative excursion. But, as important as it is to unwind on a vacay, it's equally important to travel safely (especially if you're a woman). That's why we searched all over for the solo travel essentials you need to add to your packing list, no matter your destination. Whether you're headed to a tropical spot to relax by the beach or backpacking through a new country, there's a few must-have items and gadgets that every solo traveler should pack.

From the cozy to the practical, from spring break to an extended holiday, you want to be prepared. Things like personal safety alarms, portable door locks, and filtered water bottles can make sure you're healthy and safe in any location. Chic matching lounge sets and a hydrating facial mist can ensure that you're stylish and refreshed. And, to keep you occupied, you may want a Nintendo Switch or a travel journal on hand.

This packing guide has all the items and accessories you can't forget to purchase before hitting the road or jet-setting. Bon voyage!

What to Pack on a Solo Trip:

Everywhere Belt Bag 1L

The lululemon belt bag was made for on-the-go use, so it's especially handy for any upcoming travel plans you may have. The belt bag will allow you to travel hands-free and in style. You can wear it as a crossbody or around your waist, and it's spacious enough to fit your everyday essentials. It also comes in a ton of cute colors for just $38.

Beekman 1802 Travel Size Milk Shake Hyaluronic Acid & Squalane Facial Toner Mist

I'm a big fan of toner sprays, and one of my favorites is Beekman 1802's Milk Shake mist. It can relieve redness, minimizes pores, and it's blended with goat milk and mugwort with squalane and hyaluronic acid for sensitive skin. This travel-friendly size (2 ounces) is perfect to keep you refreshed and hydrated no matter where you're heading.

iWALK Mini Portable Charger

This small portable charger will be a life-saver when traveling alone. You'll also get tons of use out of it year-round. It has over 6,600 positive reviews on Amazon, one reviewer sharing, "This product is great to have in your purse, bag or car for on the go occasions. I've used it during work conferences, airplane and traveling where a plug in was unavailable for charging. Super lightweight and doesn't take up space."


She’s Birdie–The Original Personal Safety Alarm for Women by Women

When traveling solo, you can never be too safe. This personal safety alarm is an affordable safety measure that is worth taking. You can loop it onto your keys or handbag for easy access, especially when walking alone during the day and night. It has a blaring alarm sound and strobe lights that aim to create a diversion in case of a threat.

One of the 10,200+ 5-star Amazon reviewers shares, "Just an added peace of mind is nice to have around especially since I travel and can't bring other safety items when flying. I just keep it on my keys at all times."

Addalock the Original Portable Door Lock

This portable door lock is perfect for traveling, so you should buy it while you can for just $17. It'll provide you with extra peace of mind when traveling alone.

One of the 13,000+ 5-star reviewers shares, "I Love it!!! It even worked on a rickey door lock of a hotel I was so glad I had it with me otherwise I would not have slept for fear of someone trying to enter."

ATUMTEK Bluetooth Selfie Stick Tripod

Traveling by yourself means one thing: selfies. Make it easy, and score some 'Gram-worthy picks, with this selfie stick that's also a tripod. It easily folds up, measuring just 7.7 inches, and there's even a detachable Bluetooth remote.

GEOMETRICAL Wallet-Size iPhone Tripod

If you're looking for something smaller than a selfie stick, this wallet-sized iphone tripod is a solid bet. It fits right in your wallet and includes adapters to accommodate different phone cases. Reviewers report that it's convenient and holds your phone steady for hours.

TSA Approved Luggage Travel Lock, 2-Pack

This set of travel locks are a must-have to prevent any luggage break-ins. One reviewer shares, "Beyond travel, this lock is versatile, making it an ideal choice for school lockers, gym bags, and more. The set-your-own combination feature adds a layer of personalization, making it easy to remember your unique code."

Apple AirTag

We suggest keeping an Apple AirTag somewhere in your handbag, wallet and suitcase so that you can easily track your belongings down if they get stolen or lost.

Ytonet Travel Laptop Backpack

This travel backpack has lots of room for all your essentials, including electronics. Plus, it has a USB charging port so you can charge your tech on the go.

It has over 9,000 5-star ratings on Amazon, one reviewer totally raving, "I used this as my carry on when I travelled to Europe. I put all my extra pair of clothes, make up, electronic gadget and all my documents and food to eat on the plane, and still have more space. First time using a back pack and loved it. Plus you don't have to rush to board so you can get an overhead space, since this backpack is just the right size to go under your seat."

Mini First Aid Kit, 110 Pieces

This mini first aid kit is travel-friendly, water resistant and comes with 110 pieces. It has over 6,300 positive reviews on Amazon, one reviewer saying, "I bought this for a trip where we would be doing quite a bit of hiking and now keep it in the car. For such a small kit, it contains a ton of items for every first aid need."

LifeStraw Go Water Filter Bottle

Traveling with a reusable water bottle is not only sustainable, but traveling with one that has a built-in filter may also be a life-saver. This LifeStraw water filter bottle comes in a ton of colors on Amazon, and has a bunch of rave reviews.

One reviewer candidly shares, "I used the life straw traveling in Cuba and it worked great. It was so nice to not have to buy bottled water."

Shure AONIC 50 Wireless Noise Cancelling Headphones

These noise cancelling headphones are worth the investment. I've worn them on the NYC subway and can listen to my music and podcasts with utter clarity. They're comfy, feel sturdy, and are perfect for noisy airports or hostels. Best of all, they're wireless and can run for 20 hours on a full charge.

Lip Balms with SPF that Will Make Your Lips Soft, Kissable & Ready for the Sun

Amazon Basics 4-Piece Packing Travel Organizer Cubes Set

These highly-rated packing cubes are a must-have for any traveler. They come in a pack of four with breathable mesh (perfect for letting air circulate) and a strong zipper. One shopper reported, "This keeps a suitcase organized and makes multiple hotel travel very easy. Nice and breathable fabric and quite spacious. I will always use them now."

Nite Ize Runoff Waterproof Packing Cube

And if you're traveling somewhere wet, or just want to make sure your belongings stay dry, this waterproof packing cube is the answer. It can keep wet bathing suits separate, electronics dry, and you can even submerge it in 1 meter of water for up to 30 minutes.

PRETTYGARDEN Women's Fall Two Piece Outfit

Travel in style and comfort with this matching loungewear set. It's the perfect airport outfit because it has super soft, breathable material. One reviewer raves, "This two-piece set is my true travel companion. It's like Goldilocks found the just right porridge of clothing fabrics - not too thin to be mistaken for a cobweb, not too heavy to turn me into a walking sauna. Plus, it comes in short and long sleeve versions, like having a built-in superhero cape for windy days."

Avoogue Women Lightweight Waterproof Rain Jacket

Being a prepared traveler also means being ready for any kind of weather. Make sure you stay dry with this waterproof rain jacket. It's lightweight, has deep pockets, and, best of all, it folds into an included pouch so you can keep it in your bag, just in case.

Touchland Glow Mist Revitalizing Hand Sanitizer Spray

One of the grosser parts of travel is touching new things. Keep your hands clean and hydrated with Touchland's hand sanitizer spray. It's beloved by celebrities, TikTok, and everyone over at E!, and is so easy to throw into a bag. Plus, it's subtle rosewater scent is so pretty.

Nook Theory Travel Journal

Pack this hardcover journal in your travel bag and you'll not only keep a record of your trip with the helpful prompts, you'll also have room for a little self-reflection. Solo trips are a great way to get in tune with yourself, and journaling can be super therapeutic during the process.

Travel Wallet RFID Blocking Passport Clutch

Keep your travel documents, cash, cards, and any other important paperwork safe and secure in this clutch that can hold everything. It's made of an RFID-blocking material, closes with a zipper for extra security, and includes a carrying loop so it always stays in your grasp.

IDEATECH Reusable Storage Bags, 10-Pack

Having a set of reusable storage bags can be so handy when you're traveling. Not only is it great for toiletries or wet items, but, if you're on a budget, it's an ideal place for storing food for the day (take whatever you can from a free hotel breakfast). This 10-pack comes in three convenient sizes.

Rainleaf Microfiber Towel

In the Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, Douglas Adams writes, "A towel, it says, is about the most massively useful thing an interstellar hitchhiker can have." And it's also true for solo travelers. This microfiber towel comes in a variety of colors, sizes, and it's super absorbent and dries fast. You'll never know when you'll need.

Travelon Women's Anti-Theft Classic Mini Shoulder Bag

I've gone on several trips with this anti-theft shoulder bag (even to pickpocket-riddled Naples), and IT WORKS. There's plenty of room for your essentials, plus a water bottle, and the main compartment and front flap are protected by clasps for extra protection. Plus, the adjustable strap is thick and cut proof.

Dr. Scholl's Shoes Women's Time Off Sneaker

You obviously need a reliable and cute pair of walking shoes to get you through your travels. These Dr. Scholl's walking shoes are not only super trendy, but comfortable, too. You can snag them from Amazon in a bunch of different colorways. They'll pair nicely with any outfit while you're traveling.

Women's Tree Pipers

Looking for a backup pair of white sneakers? These Allbirds are so comfortable and breathable, I sometimes forget I'm wearing them at all. They're available in 9 colors and are made of sustainable materials, which is an added bonus.

Nintendo Switch Lite

If you're like, what do I do when I'm alone on my trip? You might want to have this cute coral Nintendo Switch Lite handy. It's portable, compact, and you can easily download games from the online shop.

Therapy Healing Balm

Your skin gets so dry when you're traveling. Keep your lips, heels, cuticles, and elbows, soft and moisturized with this healing balm. It's also fragrance free, so it's great for sensitive skin.

Stay hydrated when you're on the move with these travel-friendly water bottles that won't leak, spill, or get moldy and gross.

—Originally published Mar. 8, 2023 at 5 AM PT.