The Essential Packing List for the Business Traveler

October 21, 2014

Packing list for business travel

When I’m heading out on a business trip I want to pack as light as I can, but I also don’t want to forget a thing! On a business trip there is no time to rush out and replace something, and if your hotel gift shop does have it – you can be sure it’s really going to cost you!

You only need to forget something once – which we did – before you realize how important a packing list is. Our little mishap was on a business trip to Vegas, my husband, the last minute packer, realized he forgot to pack his laptop power cord. We checked with the hotel and they didn’t have any available (I guess we weren’t the only ones to forget!), so the only solution was to head to the nearest electronic store. We definitely could have saved ourselves some time and money if we had remembered to pack the essentials.

The Business Traveler’s Packing List

Travel Paper and Documents
  • Passport
  • Drivers License (ID)
  • Visa
  • Tickets
  • Reservations & Travel Itineraries
  • Travel Health Insurance
  • Hotel Loyalty/Frequent Flyer Cards
  • Printed copies of Tickets, Passports, Emergency Information & Hotel Contact Info (I also like to email a copy to a relative or friend, just in case you lose your copies)
  • Travel Guide & map
  • Cash (in the proper currency if you are going to a different country)
  • Credit/ Debit Card(s)
  • Company Credit Card
Meeting Essentials
  • Expense Tracking for Reimbursement
  • Business Cards
  • Breathe Mints (better to be safe than sorry!)
  • Hand Sanitizer (you will be shaking a lot of hands!)
  • Company Documents
  • Notepad & Pen
  • Meeting Agenda & Itinerary
Tech Items
  • Smart Phone, Tablet & Chargers
  • Laptop & Accessories including Charger!!
  • Electrical Converters & Adapters
  • Flash Drive
  • A Portable Backup – I love the small 2TB Western Digital My Passport. It takes such little space and gives me huge piece of mind! Also, make sure to do a backup before you go, accidents happen when you’re dragging your laptop along with you.
  • Noise Canceling Headphones (Lifesaver if you need to get a bit of sleep on your flight!)

Casual Business Attire
* for most business trips you can get away with these bare necessities

  • 2 to 3 Dress Shirts
  • 1 Pants and/or Skirt
  • 1 Jacket
  • Belt
  • Dress Socks/Nylons
  • Dress Shoes
  • Ties/Suspenders

Casual Wear

  • 1 Shirt or T-shirt
  • 1 Pants
  • Regular Socks
  • Shoes


  • PJ’s
  • Underwear
  • Hat/Scarf/Gloves/Winter Coat (if needed)
  • Workout Clothes/Shoes (if needed)
  • Bra & Slip

*remember the 3-1-1 rule if using only carry-on

  • Brush/Comb/Hair Accessories
  • Toothbrush, Toothpaste, and Floss
  • Deodorant/Soap
  • Personal Medication/Prescriptions
  • Prescription Glasses
  • Contact Lenses and Solution
  • Makeup
  • Manicure Items
  • Hair care & Styling Items
  • Shaving Essentials
  • Antihistamine
  • Eye Drops
  • Cotton Swabs
  • Personal Hygiene Items
  • Lotion/Cream

*check ahead with your hotel to see if they provide some of these items for you

  • Travel Iron/Laundry Kit
  • Alarm Clock/Earplugs
  • Watch & Keys
  • Luggage Locks
  • Batteries
  • Umbrella
  • Book/Music
  • Snacks

You can download a printable Business Travel Packing List (pdf) here.

Is there something you can’t travel without on a business trip?