How to Travel Like a Pro: Short Business Trip Packing List

The best investment is in the tools of one’s own trade.

Benjamin Franklin

Benjamin, one of the most influential people in modern history, knew and made it clear that the core of success and improvement lies in hard work and its tools.

Sometimes, we get carried away when packing for a business trip, whether for one day or a week; we pack so many items as if they are our “tools” for success, believing it’s an efficient way of ensuring nothing will go wrong.

However, we stand corrected when we suffer from unneeded heavy luggage and lost time. Tie no weight to your ankles because there’s no need to carry the burden of unnecessary items when you know your must-have items and pack them like a pro.

In this article, we put together a list of the much-needed items to pack for a stress-free business trip:

1. Documents

Stating the obvious, it’s crucial to carry your valid identity card, driver’s license, passport, and boarding pass for international travel.

Keep in mind that if you travel overseas, some countries won’t let you in unless you have a copy of your itinerary to show the border security that you will leave the country when your business trip is over.

For your benefit, make a copy of your hotel reservation and transportation details and keep them together. If you’re not a paper person, you can access them quickly by adding those documents to a file on your smartphone or marking them as necessary in your email inbox.

Nowadays, many regular travelers create a folder in a cloud drive and store all important documents to have them ready whenever needed. You can easily have your own free space in cloud storage through Google or Microsoft email services.

2. Laptop

You should bring your laptop while moving to save time and be more productive. You’ll need it to type and organize business-related notes, access business files, and review presentations. Also, it helps you watch over and attend to other work tasks you must complete upon your return.

Before leaving home, ensure to charge your laptop fully, and remember to pack the battery charger. It is also advised to have a piece of luggage with a laptop compartment to keep it safe or if you don’t mind carrying a backpack or a suitcase, choose one devoted to your laptop.

3. Wallet

While a fresh traveler might think wallets are a minor thing to care about, a regular business traveler knows exactly how important wallets are; it is essential to keep your cards and cash in a secure place that is easily accessible. Take only the essentials, credit cards, ID, and some money.

Money clip wallets are worth considering, as their minimalist design makes them perfect for storing your essentials neatly without taking up so much space and looking bulky. They have enough slots to accommodate all your cards, cash, ID, and notes yet still look chic and slim.

In addition, most of them feature RFID blocking to prevent data theft. Choose RFID wallets manufactured by trusted brands, since they have been tested and approved to keep your data safe. Such wallets feature a protective layer, making your data inaccessible to RFID scanners.

4. Business Travel Wardrobe

Building a capsule wardrobe of interchangeable clothing basics will help you save packaging space, money, and effort. When packing, choose items that can be mixed and matched, preferably ones that you like with neutral colors.

It is a business trip, and you’re most likely to wear formal clothes; however, you also need to bear in mind that you may have some spare time for networking and exploring the city, meaning you have to pack some casual clothes as well.

Fortunately, when you load a minimalist travel wardrobe, you can combine formal and casual clothing, making a whole different outfit. Some essentials to pack:

  • Two bottom-up shirts
  • One blazer
  • One casual top
  • Two bottoms
  • Two pairs of shoes: 1 formal (Oxford or dress shoes), and a casual, comfortable pair
  • Pj sets are perfect after a long tiring day
  • Three pairs of underwear and socks

Also, invest in packing cubes to keep your clothes neat, wrinkle-free, and organized. They are flexible containers in your luggage to help you separate and organize your contents.

5. Travel Kit

Don’t forget to bring basic mini toiletries such as toothpaste, toothbrush, shampoo (dry shampoo comes in handy for urgent situations), razor, comb, sunscreen, and face wash.

Appearance matters! Looking clean and neat sure makes you look professional, and you’ll feel comfortable in your skin. In case you feel out of sorts, pack some medications. It’s better safe than sorry!

6. Travel Electronics

Consider putting your electronics in a separate cube or along with your laptop bag to protect them from damage and to find them easily.

You’ll need:

  • Business cellphone & personal cellphone plus their chargers
  • Headphones
  • Adapter
  • Power bank

You need all your devices to be fully charged for essential calls, business presentations, and personal use. Investing in a 4-port charger is a game changer when You forget to pack multiple adapters for all your gadgets since it allows charging different devices simultaneously.

Also, check with your network service provider before leaving to ensure you have roaming service activated and can always access the internet. Questioning about tariffs is also a plus to avoid any surprise fees at the end of the month.

7. Snacks and Water

Packing your snacks helps you stay energetic when you’re stuck on a plane or any other transportation. It is also more affordable since it saves you money so you can later have a nice meal in a restaurant or hotel.

Bringing some healthy food keeps you away from unhealthy snacks; moreover, if you’re traveling to a place where the food culture is different from yours, you might not like the food there and strive to find something you can eat.

Attending a business meeting away from home while feeling hungry because you don’t like the food there is the worst thing ever.

Portable snacks like fresh fruit, dried fruit, Oatmeal cups, granola, and protein bars are great options to consider; they are easy to stash, and you can have them during a quick break.

8. TSA-Approved First Aid Kit

It is a good idea to get a mini first aid kit certified by the US Transportation Security Administration. You can buy a TSA-approved first aid kit or assemble one according to the online guidelines.

The least you can do is add some OTC painkillers and a few band-aids, even if your trip is too short.

Sometimes traveling for long hours might cause jet lag, dizziness, headaches, or even stomach ache. In such cases, you will thank yourself for packing some OTC painkillers.

9. Invest in a high-quality cabin bag

The travel carry-on bag, commonly known as a cabin bag or duffle bag, is a separate bag that can be carried by hand or delivered into the airplane or train cabin; for some models, it can be carried around as a backpack for ease of use.

Carry-on bags have many benefits, like storing the most important things a traveler doesn’t want to leave in the luggage.

It is worth noting that carry-on bags are available in different styles. Although buying the best option you can afford is preferable, it is better to stay moderate; obviously, you don’t want your bag stolen, so refrain from buying a costly one that’ll catch everyone’s attention at the airport or train depot.

Some carry-on bags are similar to luggage ones but smaller in size and more convenient to move around.

In general, sturdy wheels are a must with four rolls so it can be easier to drag; lightweight and waterproof carry-on bags are always a bonus; a firm, solid, low-maintenance design that is practical and easy to clean and store is highly required.

10. Bring a luggage lock

As a regular business traveler, security and safety are essential core values.

Whether it is your safety, data security, or your luggage; therefore, we suggest you consider adding a luggage lock to your bags so you can ensure no one will steal anything from you along the journey.


Packing for a business trip can be overwhelming, but what is even worse is looking unprofessional and unprepared.

Unfortunately, many people don’t take enough time to make their packing list, forget something, or suffer from overpacking, wasting their time and luggage storage space.

There is a saying; a journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step. Although travel packing lists might sound unimportant, making some time to figure out what to pack and how to pack can help you enjoy your time and be more productive on your business trip.

When traveling for business, you only need to focus on doing business and not worrying about anything else like what to wear, how to charge your laptop, what to eat or drink, etc.

About the Author!

Mariam Simmons is a fashion enthusiast and Content Manager at Alpine Swiss. She loves traveling to the world’s top stylish destinations and gets inspired to create helpful fashion and lifestyle guides. With over a decade of writing experience, her main goal in creating content is to ensure readers learn something useful and provide value instead of noise.

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