41 Must-Have Travel Essentials for Women

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Are you planning a trip soon? Here are 41 must-have travel essentials for women that will make your trip comfortable and stress-free.

travel essentials for women

Are you gearing up for a trip and wondering what to pack? Knowing what travel essentials you’ll need to make your trip comfortable and stress-free can be hard as a woman. That’s why we’ve compiled a list of 41 must-have travel essentials for women. From a sturdy backpack to a travel-sized yoga mat, we’ve got you covered for any adventure you have planned. So, pack your bags and get ready to hit the road with confidence!

I’ve been traveling full-time for over three years and have tried hundreds of products to find exactly what you need for your next trip.

We’ll cover the must-have travel essentials for women, plane travel essentials, luxury travel accessories for her, and more!

This post is all about the best travel essentials for women to have a stress-free trip.

41 Top Travel Essentials for Women:

1. Versatile Backpack

A versatile backpack is a must-have for any traveler, as it allows you to easily carry all your essentials and keep your hands free while exploring new places. Look for a sturdy, versatile, and comfortable backpack for long periods of wear. Consider features like waterproof or water-repellant materials, laptop sleeves, and built-in camera storage. You’ll likely use your backpack for day trips, as a carry-on, or for beach days (basically every day).

2. Turkish towels

A Turkish towel is essential for its quick-drying properties and compact size, making it ideal for travel. Unlike traditional towels, a Turkish towel can be easily packed into your backpack or luggage without taking up too much space and will dry quickly after use. They are perfect for beach days, lying by the pool, and are soft enough to be used as a blanket!

3. Travel-sized Toiletries

You never know what you will get when you stay in hotels or Airbnbs. Bring your favorite products without hunting for the travel-sized (often expensive) version. I always bring face wash, shampoo, conditioner, body lotion, and even hand soap! Plus, you can refill at hotels if you find a brand you like (like Hilton’s).

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4. Door Stopper

A door stopper is a small but important item that can provide extra security and peace of mind when staying in unfamiliar places. Use a door stopper to prevent unwanted entry to your room at night, to prop open a door for ventilation, or to bring all your luggage inside.

5. Headlamp

A headlamp is a versatile tool that can provide hands-free lighting for nighttime activities or emergency situations. Look for a lightweight and compact headlamp with adjustable brightness levels and long battery life, and optimally rechargeable. There are often brownouts or blackouts in various countries so it’s nice to be prepared.

6. Corkscrew

A wine opener is a handy item for those who enjoy a glass of wine while traveling and can save you from having to purchase one at your destination. Look for a compact and lightweight wine opener that can easily fit into your luggage or backpack. Just note, you can’t always bring them as carry on so you may have to check it.


A reusable water bottle is a sustainable option that allows you to stay hydrated on the go and avoid purchasing single-use plastic bottles. Look for a durable and leak-proof water bottle that is easy to clean and refill. Remember that you can’t always drink tap water while traveling, so be sure to refill from filtered water (the hotel gym is a great place to look!).

8. Waterproof Jewelry

Waterproof jewelry is a practical option for those who don’t want to take off their jewelry while swimming or enjoying water activities. Look for waterproof jewelry made from materials like silicone or stainless steel, which can withstand exposure to water and other elements.

9. Scrunchies

Scrunchies are perfect for keeping your hair out of your face while exploring new places. Look for a scrunchie made from soft and gentle materials, like silk or velvet, that won’t damage your hair. Humidity, long days, and days in the water can do so much to your hair; having a scrunchie on hand makes it one less thing to worry about.

10. Versatile Scarf

A versatile scarf can double as a shawl or head covering, providing both style and function while traveling. You’ll want a scarf made from lightweight and breathable materials like cotton that can be easily packed into your luggage or backpack and doesn’t wrinkle too badly.

11. Breathable Dress

A breathable dress is essential for staying cool and comfortable in hot weather. Look for a dress in a loose and flowy style that allows for plenty of ventilation. Bonus points for a dress that covers the shoulders and knees so you can wear something cute and comfy to temples and churches without having to put on more layers.

12. Cozy Sweater

A cozy sweater is a must-have for chilly nights or for layering in colder climates. These sweaters can be easily layered over other clothing items. Even if you travel during summer, you never know when you’ll need a sweater on a plane or a bus.

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13. Leggings

Leggings are a comfortable and versatile option for travel days or for layering with other clothing items in cold weather. Leggings made from stretchy and breathable materials, like spandex or polyester, won’t restrict your movement. Be cautious in some countries with leggings as it may be immodest to wear them in public.

14. Makeup remover Pads

These microfiber cloths are crazy good at removing your makeup. You won’t even need makeup remover. Plus they are washable! 

15. Comfortable Bra

A comfortable bra is essential for long travel days, providing both support and comfort. I honestly don’t own any bras with underwire and would recommend you buy at least one for those long haul travel days, too!

16. Period Underwear

Period underwear is a practical option for those who menstruate, providing added protection and comfort while traveling. I’ve been using these for over a year and LOVE them. You can buy different levels for different days and it makes traveling so much easier not having to try and find tampons (they can be hard to find sometimes).

17. Sandals

Sandals that are both stylish and comfortable are a must-have for warmer climates or water activities. We’ve both been wearing Tevas for years and absolutely love their shoes. They last forever and are great to walk all day in without being ugly. They have so many styles!!

18. Sun Hat

I love hats. I usually travel with at least two hats. They are life-savers on hiking, beach days, or days exploring a city where we walk everywhere. I am currently loving the bucket hat or ball cap for adventurous days and a flat-brimmed hat for city days.

19. Packable Rain Jacket

A packable rain jacket is a must-have for staying dry and comfortable during wet weather. Even if you are traveling during the dry season, it still can rain and it’s better to be prepared than soaked. They also double as good wind-breakers or “ponchos” for waterfall exploration.

20. Sunglasses

I usually have one pair of sunglasses that can get trashed and I don’t care. These are cheap and for the beach or hiking. I also have a pair of polarized, cute glasses for city days or driving.

21. Sunglasses strap

This is a new trend, and I am loving them. Sunglasses straps keep your sunglasses secure and prevent them from getting lost or damaged, and they are so cute! They also allow you to easily hang your sunglasses around your neck when you don’t need them, freeing up your hands for other tasks. I find them especially useful when going in and out of the shade and sun and while on the back of a motorbike, so I know they won’t fly off.

22. crossbody bag

If you’d rather carry a purse than a backpack (or have both options), you should definitely make it a cross-body. This keeps everything secure, so no one snatches your purse from you, and you can pretty much forget about it. This way, you don’t keep setting it down or leaving it behind.

23. reusable shopping bag

A reusable shopping bag is a sustainable option for carrying souvenirs or groceries while traveling. We always have a bag on hand to carry any purchases so we can hopefully curb as much plastic waste as possible. These also double as great picnic bags or beach bags! 

24. International adapter

This international adapter and extension cord will charge everything you need everywhere you go. And it may make you some friends when you plug in at a cafe or airport. It’s also a surge protector keeping your gear safe during power outages.

25. Portable charger

I seriously don’t go anywhere without my iPhone MagSafe charger. It’s so easy to pop on in an emergency, so I know we will never be without my phone (aka our lifeline when traveling). We also carry a larger battery pack for charging headphones, camera batteries, etc., for travel days or longer exploring days. Again, this may make you friends!

26. sleeping mask

If you are a light sleeper, a sleeping mask and, or earplugs may be helpful. They are small enough to pack in a carry-on and can be helpful for flights, bus rides, or even noisy or bright hotel rooms.

27. hat clip

If you bring your super cute flat-brim hat, make sure it doesn’t get squished before you arrive with this hat clip. It clips to your carry-on, so you can bring your hat but not have to wear it in the airport or try to carry it everywhere you go.

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28. e-Reader

I love reading, and real books are always better, but an e-reader works great for traveling. The newest ones have the right screens for reading in the bright sun or the dark of a hotel room.

Pro Tip: Sign-up for a free Libby account and connect it with your local library card. You can access your local library’s e-reader collection and download them for free!

29. Polaroid Camera

No trip is complete without some photos, and while your new smartphone is good enough, if you love a good old-fashioned printed photo, like me, check these out.

30. First aid kit

It’s always better to be safe than sorry. This little guy fits in your suitcase or backpack and is especially perfect for hiking or trips to remote locations.

31. Packing cubes

Staying organized while trying to live out of a suitcase isn’t always easy. Packing cubes make it so much easier. You can separate your clothes from your husbands’, your underwear from your shirts, etc. It keeps everything cleaner and easier to find.

32. travel makeup bag

This bag is perfect for travel since it keeps your brushes from your makeup. You never know if an eyeshadow is going to break or a foundation is going to explode, and it’s best to keep your brushes safe.

33. jewelry case

With your waterproof jewelry in hand, you may not even need a jewelry case. But if you decide to take off some of your jewelry or bring multiple pairs these cases keep your necklaces untangled and your earrings organized.

34. medicine case

It’s always a good idea to bring a few medicines on hand (ibuprofen, motion sickness, etc.). This pack keeps them organized (and labeled, very important!). Plus you can through it in your bag and always have your go-tos on hand.

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35. Passport Holder

Keep your passport safe from RFID, water, greasy hands, and getting shoved to the bottom of your bag with this cute passport holder. Plus you’ll always know whose is whose when you are traveling with others!

36. Travel umbrella

Rain comes at any time, but these can also be useful to keep you out of the sun!

37. travel steamer

I try to pack wrinkle-free clothes. Sometimes, you can’t resist bringing your favorite dress or must be presentable for an event. This steamer is super handy and much safer than using a hotel iron (if they even have one).

38. electric toothbrush

Staying on top of your oral hygiene while traveling is still super important. We love these toothbrushes (pink for me!) because they stick to the mirror and come with a travel case. The batteries usually last three months, so I don’t have to charge them, and if I need batteries, they are AAA, so they are super easy to find.

39. sunscreen

Don’t be those people that come back peeling like crazy after a nice trip. Wear your sunscreen. Use this sunscreen and be nice to the oceans!

40. face wash

Sweat, pollution, dust, stress. It’s all a part of travel. Ensure you take care of your face, and don’t forget your face wash! This stuff is my favorite.

41. emergency nail kit

Ever had a hang nail on a trip, and you can’t get it off? Well, this kit is exactly for that.

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