Bali packing list for girls

The BEST Packing List for Bali – Solo Female Travel 2021

THE SOLO GIRL’S PACKING LIST FOR BALI

Packing for Bali takes finesse, girls! You need to be prepared for a wide range of Bali adventures from swimming on some of the world’s best beaches to taking Instagram photos in Bali’s most Instagrammable cafes. The key to packing for Bali is balance!

In this packing list for Bali, I’m going to show you what to bring on a proper Bali vacation. Follow this solo female travel guide – and you won’t have to worry about over-packing or underpacking.

Here we go. Here is the ultimate packing list for Bali for solo female travelers.

A Quick Guide to this Blog

#1 – CLOTHING

Girls, Indonesia is hot. Like HOT HOT. And while in an ideal world, we’d be running around in a tank top and shorts, we can’t do that because #Indonesia. We’ve got to keep in mind that Indonesia is a relatively conservative country – both on the streets and in the temples.

So trust me when I say that balancing your India wardrobe is an art form.

LETS START PACKING

✔️ Two Capri Pants

For plane rides and car rides…and whatever else you may ride (that sounds accidentally dirty so I’m just going to leave it).

OALKA WOMEN’S YOGA CAPRIS (IN 2 COLORS)

Get These on Amazon->


Three Maxi Dresses or Wrap Dresses

Maxi dresses are the most versatile articles of clothing in your bag!

Dress them up for a night out, cover your knees for a day of temple hopping or throw one on to look airport chic.

Here are a couple of my maxi dress picks…

✔️ Breezy Tropical Maxi Dress

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green floral maxi dress

✔️ Much Obliged Golden Yellow Wrap Maxi Dress

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✔️ Heart of Marigold Rust Red Floral Print Wrap Maxi Dress

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One Midi Dress

For our nights out…we’re getting super sexy by showing our ankles LOL

✔️ Postcards from Positano Blue Tie-Back Button Front Midi Dress

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Two Long Skirts

When you enter temples in Bali, its always a good idea to have a skirt that covers your knees.

✔️ Samoa Blush Midi Skirt

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✔️ Doublju Womens Waist Strap Tie Up Point Long Skirt

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✔️ One Throw-Over or Shawl

Ps. You can buy beautiful shawls in Indonesia!!!

This baby doubles as a temple shawl and an airplane blanket!


The Wayfarer Wraps and Blankets Collection

Get on Happy Luxe ➜

One Pair of Flowy Pants

These pants are very Ubud…and photograph really cute. I love these for those long cross-island car rides.

✔️ STARBILD Women’s High Waist Palazzo Wide Legs Yoga Pants Layered Flowy Loose Flared Pants

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Versatile Tops

Bali is so chic and fashionable that you will want to have outfit changes from day to night. Pack some tops that work for both.

✔️ YunJey Round Neck Triple Color Block Stripe T-Shirt

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✔️ Women’s Solid Open Front Tie Knot Crop Top Long Sleeve Deep V Neck Ruffle Chiffon Short Blouse Shirt

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✔️ BLENCOT Women’s Button Down V Neck Strappy Tank Tops Loose Casual Sleeveless Shirts Blouses

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Comfy Travel Undies

I love lace undies and thongs…but when I’m traveling, I got the practical route!

✔️ Warm Sun Women’s Bamboo Viscose Fiber Panties

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✔️ REI Co-op Active Bikini Underwear- Women’s

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Light Sweater or Windbreaker for Nights and Travels

Amed. Ubud. Sidemen. These areas tend to get a bit chilly at night. Bring a light jacket.

✔️ SweatyRocks Women’s Casual Color Block Drawstring Hooded Windbreaker Jacket

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✔️ Amazon Brand – Core 10 Women’s Soft Cotton Modal French Terry Fleece Yoga Wrap Sweater

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✔️ Milumia Women Color Block Drawstring Hooded Zip Up Sports Jacket

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Active Wear/Workout Shorts: https://amzn.to/2HrwCCH 

Bedtime Nightie: https://amzn.to/2UO0vAd

SHOES

I have a holy collection of shoes that I always travel with:

  • 1 pair of flip flops
  • 1 pair of walking sandals
  • 1 pair of cute sandals
  • 1 pair of running shoes

Make sure you tick each box.

Flip Flops

(I’ve been wearing these travel flip flops for 10 years – replacing them every 2 years)

✔️  Sanuk Women’s Yoga Joy Flip-Flop

Best Flip Flops Ever:
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Walking Sandals

I love a pair of travel sandals that are cute to pair with a dress but are also comfortable enough that your feet aren’t sore by the end of the day. 

✔️  Merrell Women’s Around Town Arin Backstrap Sandal

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✔️ Teva Original Universal Black 7

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✔️ Cute Sandals

(((Add here)))

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✔️ Tennis Shoes or Running Shoes

https://amzn.to/358ntqi

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Swimsuits for Hotel Pools

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✔️ CUPSHE Women’s Smocked Green and Monstera Ruffled High Waisted Bikini

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✔️ CinShein Women’s Bikini High Cut Leopard Print One Piece Monokini Swimsuits Backless Thong Bathing Suit

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✔️ Tempt Me Women Two Piece Swimsuit High Waisted Off Shoulder Ruffled Bikini Se

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Long Black Sheer Skirt: https://amzn.to/339EMXV

ESSENTIALS

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✔️ 1. Travel Insurance

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WORLD NOMADS
SAFETYWING

✔️ 2. Travel Wallet

Krosslon Rfid Passport Holder Wristlet Travel Wallet

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✔️ 3. Travel water bottle

Nomader Collapsible Water Bottle

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✔️ 4. Electronic Adaptor

SAUNORCH Universal International Travel Power Adapter

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✔️ 5. Travel Towel

Black Hills Off White Multi Print Travel Towel

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✔️ 6. TSA Locks

ZHEGE TSA Lock 2 Pack

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✔️ 7. Hand Sanitizer

Bath and Body Works Anti-Bacterial Hand Gel 5-Pack PocketBac Sanitizers

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✔️ 8. Packets of Tissue

Kimberly-clark Corp 11975 Kleenex White Facial Tissue

You won’t find much toilet paper in Indonesia.
Fun Fact: Indonesians interact with food and humans using their right hand, as their left hand is used for bare wiping – as in water + hand = tissue.

Get on Amazon->

✔️ 9. Menstrual Cup

Saalt Soft Menstrual Cup

You won’t find much toilet paper in Indonesia.
Fun Fact: Indonesians interact with food and humans using their right hand, as their left hand is used for bare wiping – as in water + hand = tissue.

Get on Amazon->

Platinum Venus Razor: https://amzn.to/2Hrx57V

BAGS AND PURSES

✔️ 1. Main Travel Backpack

Osprey Fairview 40 Women’s Travel Backpack
With the uneven roads in India, I recommend that no one brings a rolley suit case.
The BEST travel backpack I’ve ever used is this Osprey Farpoint.

And because we’ll all have the same backpack…customize yours.

Get on Amazon->

✔️ 2. Jewelry Organizer

Jewelry Roll Clutch- Travel Jewelry Case

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✔️ 3. Passport and Money Belt

Large Fanny Pack with 4-Zipper Pockets

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✔️ 4. Bra Pouch

Braza Secret Bra Stash

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✔️ 5. Laptop or Carry-On Bag

Hap Tim Laptop Backpack

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Anti-Theft Backpack: https://amzn.to/35X9R30

Travel Wallet: https://amzn.to/3pRX3CG

✔️ 6. Anti-Theft Over the Shoulder Purse

Travelon Anti-Theft Classic Messenger Bag

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✔️ FANNY PACK (IF YOU’RE SUPER COOL LIKE ME)

iAbler Holographic Fanny Pack for Women and Men

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✔️ FOR NIGHT

MINICAT Women RFID Blocking Small Crossbody Bags Cell Phone Purse Wallet With Credit Card Slots

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Small Day Purse: https://amzn.to/3kTpP23
Large Day Purse: https://amzn.to/3pOqWnH

BATH AND BEAUTY

✔️ 1. Cosmetic Bag

Relavel Travel Cosmetic Bag

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✔️ 2. Toiletry Bag

Portable Hanging Travel Toiletry Bag

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✔️ 3.Dirty Laundry Bag

Miamica Laundry Bag

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✔️ MAKEUP AND FACE PRODUCTS

Watch my Best Makeup For Traveling video here:

LIST OF PRODUCTS I USE:

✔️ 1. Lip Balm with SPF

Burt’s Bees 100% Natural Moisturizing Lip Balm

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✔️ 2. Brush on Sunscreen for your face and decollete

Brush On Block Mineral Sunscreen Powder

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BATH & BODY

PRO-TIP , TRAVEL SIZE EVERYTHING IS THE WAY TO GO

✔️ 1. Travel-Size Silicone Jars

Travel Containers, Silicone Cream Jars 

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✔️ 2. Sunscreen

Neutrogena Ultra Sheer Dry-Touch Water Resistant and Non-Greasy Sunscreen Lotion

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✔️ 3. Shampoo & Conditioner

Love Beauty and Planet Shampoo and Conditioner

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✔️ 4.Dry Shampoo

Batiste Mini 1.6 Ounce Variety Pack

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✔️ 5. Anti-Perspirant Deodorant

ZeroSweat Antiperspirant Deodorant

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✔️ 6. Travel Hair Brush

Travel Brush All-in-one with Compact Mirror Case

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✔️ 7. Body Wipes

Bliss – Lemon & Sage Refreshing Body Wipes

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✔️ 8. Makeup Remover Wipes

Olay Cleanse Makeup Remover Wipes Rose Water

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✔️ 9. Toothbrush with Case

4 Pack Travel Toothbrush Case

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FOR THE TUMMY

When you travel, your tummy is introduced to foreign bacteria. You’re bound to get some weird stuff happening in Indonesia, so let’s prepare…

✔️ Charcoal Tablets

Organic Activated Charcoal Capsules

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✔️ Imodium

Imodium A-D Anti-Diarrheal Softgels with Loperamide Hydrochloride

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CAMERA AND ELECTRONICS:

✔️ Electronics Organizer

Electronics Organizer

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✔️ HERE ARE ALL THE ELECTRONICS I TRAVEL WITH:

DJI MAVIC Air Fly More Pack: https://amzn.to/35T0XTS

DJI Osmo Mobile 3 Combo: https://amzn.to/3fpWJ9v

iPhone 11 Max Pro (unlocked): https://amzn.to/335mjLV

MacBook Pro: https://amzn.to/35T8UZd

Xiaomi Ear Buds: https://amzn.to/397yxHV

GoPro Hero 8: https://amzn.to/33EBJI6

Canon G7x Mark II: https://amzn.to/39Zhnum

✔️ FOR YOUR GLOW UP

GoBabyGlow Playlists

Glow Up Official
Packing Playlist
The Day Before you Fly
Airplane

TRAVEL DAYS IN INDONESIA DOWNTIME

✔️ Travel Bucket List Journal

Travel Bucket List Planner & Journal

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The Solo Girls Travel Guidebook for Bali
https://amzn.to/2O9lbyM

✔️ Travel Journal

Refillable Handmade Travelers Notebook

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✔️ Travel Journal

Lock Diary Leather Locking Journal Writing Notebook

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Sports Bra Phone Pocket

20 Ways to Hide your Money and Jewelry While Traveling

Let me scare you with some travel truth. Your shit can get stolen while traveling!

We’re usually talking about credit cards, cash, passports, cameras, and purses (very rarely do big backpacks get stolen).

Thieves go where the tourists go. Stealthy pickpocketers + bag snatchers = What YOU need to prepare for BEFORE you travel. You need to come prepared with ways to hide your money and jewelry while traveling.

Thieves are looking for tourists who have their guard down in that “nothing bad ever happens on vacation” mode. Whether it be gracefully sliding your phone out of your pocket at a bar in Bali or stealthily stealing your purse while you’re sleeping on a bus in Vietnam…they are good at what they do.

The good news is this: Thieves are opportunists. Don’t give them the open opportunity to take your shit…and they won’t. It’s sincerely that easy and once you’re prepared, there’s no reason to be scared.

So, listen up while I spit some travel safety tips and wisdom!

Travel Safety Tips for Solo Travelers

  1. Only take cash out to the bars – not debit cards.
  2. Don’t set your phone on the table while you eat.
  3. Don’t set your purse on the ground or hang it on the back of your chair.
  4. Carry these TSA-Friendly Locks for hostel lockers and to lock your luggage during transit.
  5. While on overnight buses, sleep with your cross-body purse on your body + your purse zipped.
  6. Don’t store your purse or laptop bag in under the bus (in the luggage compartment) on long-distance buses.
  7. Wear your concealed money pouch under your clothes (you wouldn’t believe how many people don’t understand this).

For country-specific safety tips, get your copy of The Solo Girl’s Travel Guidebook before you go!

Now, the best ways to hide your cash and credit card while traveling!

 

#1 – A Scarf that Doubles as a Travel Pocket for Cash and Keys!

 

Scarf

Promising Review: “This is the best purchase I have made in a while! The pocket fits my Galaxy S8 phone, 2 passports, long wallet and camera AND there’s still room.” – Bubbie5

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#2 – A Functional Hair Brush with a Hollow Handle- Roll the Cash and Hide

 

Brush

Promising Review: “HIGHLY RECOMMEND, especially if you are traveling and need to carry a large amount of cash. I could fit about 12-15 bills in it.” – Pinky

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#3 – A Speed Stick to Camouflage your Money from Thieves.

Safe Stash

Promising Review: “Clever!!! I have taken it with me on a few trips it is a great place to hide a little emergency money or small jewelry.” – C. Villarreal

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#4 – Staying Stylish, Keeping Fit and Safely Storing Jewelry Comes Easy with this Running Belt

 

Travel Money Belt

 

Promising Review: “I bought this belt for running and hiking, but mostly to take with me to Mardi Gras this year in New Orleans so I have one less thing to carry, and I don’t have to worry about being ripped off.” – Kate

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#5 – This Bra Stash Accessorizes your AND Stashes Your Cash!

Bra Stash

Promising Review: “I have a great travel bag, but I like to keep my money directly on me when I travel. This is the most comfortable and secretive way to do so that I’ve found yet.” – Samantha.

Ps. I’ve been carrying the SAME one of these for nearly 8 years now. Best investment!

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#6 – Travel with your Money Safely in your Underwear – Ultimate Privacy

 

Pocket Stash

 

Promising Review: “The underwear was comfortable and gave me peace of mind that I had money stored in the underwear while in Paris with pickpockets.” – Linda A

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#7 – Traveling Tank Top with a Hidden Front Pocket

 

Travel ShirtPromising Review: “I purchased the black version and stored 1 passport, 1 credit card, 1 license, and cash in the pocket.” – KS.

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#8 – A Water Resistant Pouch with a Lock Closure

 

Money Bag with Key Lock

Promising Review: “Great buy, feel much better about carrying cash or checks when traveling.” – PlayGirl

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#9 – An Ordinary Marker Turned Cash Hideaway

 

Secret Stash Can

Promising Review: “This is exactly what I was looking for to clandestinely stash things. The best thing is it’s an actual working marker I can use to write with!”- Mary A

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#10 – Wherever your Travels take you- Keep your Cash Conveniently at Arm’s Length with a Travel Neck Pouch.

 

Travel Neck Pouch

 

Promising Review: “Used it as my wallet during the entire 10-day trip so that I wouldn’t have to worry about pick-pockets snagging my passport/ID/credit card/debit card/cash/train tickets, etc out of my shorts pockets.” -Oakley

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#11 – Get a Credit Card Holder to Store your Debit Cards AND Prevent Electronic Skimming

 

Pocket Wallets for Men & Women

 

Promising Review: “I can put my driver license, work ID card and several credit cards in this small leather wallet. It can be kept in my pocket but almost cannot fell it when I was jogging outside.” – Chris

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#12 – An Underwear Girdle that’s Stylish and Hides Way Your Cash!

 

Travel UndiesPromising Review: “Your money and passport are always comfortable with you and so easy to access. I can even sleep safely with my money with these cool panties.” – Kathryn G.

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#13 – A Clever Way to Conceal Valuables Right under your Boobs

 

Tank Top

Clever Travel Companion Unisex-adult Tank Top with Two Secret Pockets

Promising Review: “With this tank tops side pocket design, items are not visible. A passport and extra currency can be kept well hidden during international travel.” – Bubbly.

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#14 – A Belt with Hidden Compartment- Perfect Place to Store Quick Cash

 

CASH BELT

 

Promising Review: “While you can always replace your license and credit cards are protected against fraud, if you have cash stolen while you travel you are out of luck. This is a great way to safeguard from theft.” – E. Spalter.

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#15 – A Money Belt to Deter Quick Fingers

 

Day Tip Money Belt

Promising Review: “This product allowed me to travel with $7,000 cash without being noticeable. It did not even beep in the metal detector, just make sure not to put metal in it.” – Melinda Vazquez

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#16 – A Wallet to Slim Clip to Discretely Carry Your Cash & Cards- Great Way to Frustrate Pick Pocketers

 

Money Clip Wallet

 

Promising Review: “This is hands down the best Money clip/wallet that I have used in 17 years. One of the keys to its success is the center pocket for items that are irregular in size.” – GJL

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#17 – A Roll Bag to Stash your Jewelry in Your Purse – Not your Checked Bag!

 

Jewelry Roll Bag

 

Promising Review: “I had a horrible system of traveling with my jewelry, so this is a true life saver! It is compact and fits practically anywhere. Especially if you travel with necklaces, GET THIS!” – Mai Tai

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#18 – A Garter Hoslter for the Most Descrete Hiding Spot Ever

 

Garter Purse

Promising Review: “I recently used this at a rave/concert (jumped a ton and bumped into a bunch of people constantly) and it held up without re-adjustment.”- Bittenapples

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#19 – A Back Bra With a Back Pocket! Talk About Carrying Your Money On Your Back, Is There Any Place Safer? 

 

Sports Bra Phone Pocket

Promising Review: “This sports bra is very practical. It fits very well and looks great. It’s made very well, great material. My phone actually fit in the back pocket too.” -Bird Cwynar

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#20 – Everyday RFID Blocking Wallet for Anti-Theft Credit Card Protection

 

Anti Theft WalletPromising Review: “I have a card in every pocket, and 2 IDs in the ID pocket for a total of 7 cards. Even with all of these cards, I was able to comfortably fit $300 worth of $20 bills (15 bills total) in the middle cash slot with plenty of wiggle room.” -AC

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Conclusion – Ways to Hide your Money and Jewelry While Traveling

I see it all the time. Solo travel girls walkin’ round big cities or sipping cocktails in crowded bars with their purse gently dangling by their side, either half-zipped or no zipper at all. I SEE IT and the THIEVES SEE IT. Don’t be that girl. Don’t make yourself a target and follow my simple tips above.

Oh, and once you’re done reading this article – let your anxiety go. You are officially more prepared than most travelers which means, you’ve officially not the target anymore.

 

Before you Travel!

Check the Expert Packing & Prep List

Get a Proper Travel Credit Card

Bring The #1 Travel Camera

Pack Best Travel Makeup Products for Humid Weather

Have fun. Pack sunscreen, please!

 

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Travel Credit Cards

The 3 Best Travel Credit Cards & Travel Debit Cards

When I was younger, I was taught that credit cards were bad.

When actually, it turns out that spending like an idiot is bad.
AND buying flights with cash/debit cards is the REAL way to spend like an idiot. 
 
Don’t spend $500-$1600 on a plane ticket and get nothing in return! 
Repeat after Me: Never pay cash for airplane tickets or hotels.
If travel is a part of your life now OR you want to go on the best trips for solo travelers next year – you need to apply for the best travel credit cards ASAP.
This isn’t clickbait. This is my true, honest, urgent advice for any person that wants to travel more and spend less. 
 
For example; if you buy a $500 plane ticket with American Express, you’ve now got 25,000 travel miles – which equals a free one-way ticket to Thailand or free hotels while on your trip. 
Get it?
 
Your spending directly converts to travel points. 
Besides travel points, these travel cards come with powerful travel benefits like this…
 
  • Airport Lounge Access around the World
  • TSA Pre-Check
  • Miles and Points Used for Free Flights
  • Free Hotel Upgrades
  • Business Class Upgrades on Flights
  • Insurance (Purchase Protection) on Gadgets
  • Coverage on Lost Baggage & Delayed Flights
  • $200 of Free Uber Credits

Ya’ll, I could keep going.

Let’s just get into it and I’ll show you how to travel like solo female traveler queen (or king, hey!).

This is how I travel every month for pennies. 

 

Best Travel Credit Cards

If you’re not cashing in on travel points when buying flights, staying at hotels, and eating at restaurants…you crazy.

Here are the credit cards I use every day AND for all of my solo female travel trips…

 

#1 – Chase Sapphire Preferred 

Best for Overall Travel, both Domestic and International, and for Everyday Spending

 

  • 2x points when used on flights, hotels, Uber, AirBnb, and restaurants
  • Trip Cancelation Coverage (weather, sickness and other causes)
  • Baggage delay insurance
  • Purchase Protection Insurance on items purchased with your Chase card
  • Primary Rental Car built-in insurance
  • 50,000 point sign-up bonus (that’s enough for a 1-way ticket to Asia) after spending $3k in the first 3 months

How Much: No sign-up fee and free for the first year. 

I use this card for everything in America, online, and abroad.

AND when I was in Indonesia, my phone was stolen at a bar. But because I bought my phone with my Chase Sapphire Preferred Card, the full amount was totally covered and back in my bank account within a week.

Travel girls, take note from my situation: Solo trips for women require a safety net when things go wrong – and Chase Sapphire travel credit card acts as your safety net.

This is my referral link. When you use it, I get 15k points. Let me know if you do, so I can thank you!

 

#2 – American Express Platinum 

The Most Powerful Travel (and Every day) Credit Card Ever

 

American Express Platinum Travel Credit Card

  • 5x points on flights and hotels
  • $200 in Uber Credits per year
  • $200 Airline Fee Credit per year (aka money back)
  • Baggage delay insurance
  • TSA Pre-Check / Global Entry
  • Airport Lounge Global Access with Priority Pass
  • Elite Status with Hilton and Marriott
  • Purchase Protection Insurance on gadgets purchased with this card
  • Trip Cancelation Coverage (weather, sickness and other causes)
  • 60,000 point sign-up bonus after spending $5k in the first 3 months

How Much: $495 per year…BUT BEFORE YOU PASS realize that your $200 Uber Credit + $200 travel reimbursement takes that down to $95 per year…which is more than made up for with free alcohol & food in airport lounges and those 60,000 travel points.

This is my referral link for American Express. When you use it, I get 15k points. Let me know if you do, so I can thank you, again!

Note: AMEX is best used for flights, hotels, and all online tour bookings/shopping – but isn’t accepted in stores in Asia.


Best Travel Debit Card

#3 – Charles Schwab Brokerage Account

Did you know that foreign ATM fees can charge as much as $8 per transaction? You’re literally paying to withdraw your own money from your own account. And when dinner is $3…that shit don’t make no sense.

On top of that foreign ATM fee, your bank will likely charge you a fee for using an ATM other than your own.

That’s two fees and if you ask me….that is some bullshit.

But ya know what bank doesn’t charge you ATM fees? Charles Schwab.

They don’t charge ATM fees AND they reimburse you – every month – for the ATM fees that foreign ATMs charge.

 

I opened a Charles Schwab Checking Account in 2014 and I’ll never change.

Ps. When you open an account with this link, you get $100 deposited (free money) into your new account.

So, a Charles Schwab card gives you:

  • No ATM penalty fees abroad or at home
  • Reimbursement on foreign ATM fees
  • Official Visa-exchange rates when you withdraw cash abroad
  • Amazing coverage in case of fraud
  • Also, a built-in brokerage account for trading stocks and investing in EFTs (I’ll save this topic for another time)

Update: My credit card information was hacked while I was in Bali.

Charles Schwab came to my rescue with just one phone call. 

  • They put the money back into my account within days (even before the investigation was complete)
  • They sent me a new card TO BALI via FedEx Priority. 

Wells Fargo won’t do that. 


How to Use Travel Credit Cards

 

1. Spend with your Travel Credit Cards Every Day

These cards are a full replacement for your everyday credit cards.

  • Book your flight with these cards
  • Book your hotels with these cards
  • Pay at restaurants with these cards
  • Go shopping with these cards

Why?

  • Travel Credit Cards collect travel points when you spend on flights, hotels, Uber, restaurants, and more. These points add up for major travel benefits.
  • Travel Credit Cards come with purchase protection (example: I bought a phone with my travel card, it was stolen in Indonesia, and my travel credit card reimbursed me)
  • You don’t have to exchange/carry huge amounts of cash when you travel
  • And much, much more

2. Optimize your Travel Benefits

Once you get your card, it’s time to start setting up your rewards

AMEX and Chase Sapphire partner with different programs to give you discounts on spending like,

  • $200 Uber Credit
  • 5% back at Starbucks
  • Get $30 off at LuLus

You’ve got to remember to go online and sign-up for whichever deals you want!

Don’t forget to apply for TSA-Precheck, and order your Airport Lounge Pass!

 

Conclusion to the Best Travel Credit Cards and Debit Cards

Save money. Protect your electronics. Travel more comfortably. Travel Credit Card

If you plan to get on an airplane sometime in the next 5 years…start collecting those travel points on day-to-day purchases for some amazing travel opportunities.

Ps. Traveling with a lounge-access Priority Pass literally changes the entire trip from headache to play-time!

Thank you American Express Platinum for free Business Lounge Access.

 That’s it!

If you use my referral links, don’t forget to tell me so I can say thank you!


Safe Travels! And don’t forget to tag me in your travel photos on Instagram @SoloGirlsTravelGuide

 

***Disclaimer*** Every time you book through a link in this post, The Solo Girl’s Travel Guide gets a small commission at no extra cost to you. Your support keeps this site alive! Xoxo


 

The ULTIMATE Prep & Packing List for Travelers

There’s a difference between someone who goes on vacation and someone who travels. 

This list is for the latter. 

*This is a long one. Read this whole thing and now, you essentially travel like me. 

 

Here is every gadget, credit card, and habit that I carry with me when I travel.

I save money.

 I avoid problems.

I gain time.

All because I pack and prep like the god damn pro traveler that I am.

Tick these items off your packing prep list, and you will have learned the lessons which took me nearly 10 years to master.


prep list


#1 – Check your Passport

AMERICAN PASSPORT

There are things about your passport that you don’t know!

First, make sure that you have more than 6 months validity on your passport. In other words, make sure your passport doesn’t expire in the next 6 months.

For example, if your trip begins on January 1st, 2020, your passport must be valid AT LEAST until July 1st, 2020. Countries reserve the right to put you right back on a plane to where you came from if your passport expires within 6 months.

Second, check how many pages you have left. Some countries (like Cambodia and Vietnam) don’t simply give you a stamp, they give you a gigantic sticker that takes up an entire page! If you’re running low on space, this could be an issue.

Oh, and make a couple copies of your passport to keep on hand. Black and white is fine. 

#2 – GET TRAVEL INSURANCE

I would never travel without travel insurance and neither should you.

1 week. 1 month. It doesn’t make a difference. You need to be covered for everything from Lost Baggage to Motorbike Accidents.

When traveling long-term, I use IMG Insurance as the plans are more economical for bigger trips and they provide extensive coverage with everything from hospital visits to flight cancelations. Customer service is quick to handle your claim and reimburse you!

For trips under 3-months, I use WorldNomads Travel Insurance as they offer the most straight-forward travel plans ever. Pick the Standard Plan for basic travel coverage/flight delay protection or the Explorer Plan for extreme adventures like Kayaking and Rock-climbing. These plans include massive accident coverage from $100,000 to $1,000,000 – plus, evacuation coverage if you need to be helicoptered off a mountain somewhere.  

#3 – update your bank cards and credit cards

As a traveler, there are two money rules to live by:

  • Don’t buy flights and hotels with cash
  • Make sure your debit card is compatible with foreign ATMS.

If you’re cool with traveling with your weak-ass Visa debit card, skip to listicle #4. If you want to save money and rack up travel points for free flights, I’ll break down my Bank Card Trifecta now…

I travel with 3 cards in my wallet at all times: 1 amazing debit card and 2 travel credit cards.

              1. Charles Schwab Debit Card – Best for International ATM Withdrawals
        1. Chase Sapphire Preferred – 2x points when used on flights, hotels, Uber, AirBnb, and Restaurants + Trip Cancelation Coverage (weather, sickness and other causes)
        2. American Express Platinum – The Most Powerful Travel Credit Card Ever + Airport Lounge Global Access with Priority Pass & 5x points on flights and hotels.

For more info (and to learn how to fly Business Class for free) check out The Best Travel Credit Cards and Travel Debit Cards.

#4 – Medications & Travel Vaccinations

No, you cannot bring your Adderall to Thailand or Indonesia. Not even with a prescription.

No, you do not need to start taking Malaria medication before you visit Southeast Asia.

And yes, you can bring Tylenol and motion sickness pills – but you can also buy them inside stores all over Southeast Asia.

Now, what about vaccinations?

Before you go anywhere, make sure you’re up to date on all the basic vaccinations like Tetanus, Hepatitis A & B, and your MMR vaccine.

Just like shopping for a travel insurance plan, your vaccinations and medications will depend on which destination you’re visiting.

The CDC Website…and your doctor who just googled the CDC website before your visit…might recommend some whacky vaccines aimed to cover people working on Pig Farms and teaching English by candlelight in remote jungle villages for 5 months. But that’s not you.

So, what about the CDC’s recommendations? Do you really need the Japanese Encephalitis vaccine? No. Do you need the Rabies series? Nah, not really. Am I a doctor? Absolutely fackin’ not, but I have lived in Asia for a very long time and have never heard of any travelers contracting rabies or Japanese Encephalitis.

Tip: Skip the high price of vaccinations at home and get your vaccinations at an international hospital in Asia for a fraction of the price.

#5 – Download this traveling organizing app

The most useful travel app ever is called TripIt. It’s an app that organizes all of your travel reservations into one clean timeline that you can access both  online and offline.

You simply forward your confirmation emails (hotels, flights, tours) to Plans@Tripit.com (once you’ve registered) and your itinerary is immediately organized to the app on your phone.

Need to pull up the directions to your hotel? The link is in your app. Need the confirmation number for your airline reservation? It’s in your app. Need the local phone number of the AirBnb you’ve booked? Just click the number in the app.

Game Changer.

Packing list


#1 – The best travel backpack ever

You and your travel backpack will develop an intimate bond. You will sleep with your backpack, snuggle your backpack, and you might eventually name your backpack. You need to love your travel backpack!

After 9 years of backpacking and nearly $1,000 spent on testing out 5 high-quality travel backpacks, I have finally settled on a favorite: The Farpoint 40 Liter.

This backpack is everything:

  • Compact carry-on bag perfect for the overhead bin
  • Comfortable fit for long days of carry
  • Front Open zip panel for organization
  • Versatile and secure pockets that can fit big items like Nike shoes!
  • Duo-Carry Function: carry as a backpack or a duffle bag
  • Perfect size for a long-trip!

#2 – Anti-theft purse

It’s not just the locals you’ve got to watch for, it’s also other travelers. Pick-pocketers prey on girls who have their guard down at parties, on buses, and in large crowds.

So, here is what you need to look for when buying your travel purse:

  • Zippers, not magnet or Velcro straps
  • Across-the-shoulder carry
  • Thick straps that are hard to break
  • Classic design that you’ll actually want to wear the whole trip

For a day purse that can carry your essentials plus snacks and a sweater, the Travelon Anti-Theft Heritage Bag is the best.

For a “Just my money and keys” bag that you’ll want to wear out on the town, Travelon Women’s Anti-Theft Heritage Small Crossbody Bag is it.

#3 – Adapters & Converters

Adapters and converters are not the same thing.

Adapters only help your plug fit the wall socket. The wall plugs at home may be rectangles, but in Bali they are circles. You need adapters for things like phone chargers.

Converters fit the wall socket and convert the electric voltage. Try plugging your blow dryer into a socket with a higher voltage and POOF, you’ve just broken your blow dryer.

Electronics need an adapter. Hair tools need a converter.

#4 – A pen

Duh. But I bet you’ll forget to pack it!

Pack 5. Stick them everywhere.

#5 – PAck Light

The less things you have, the more free you are.

Save room for shopping. And if you are unsure on whether to bring those jeans, or that lotion- then you don’t need them.

Airlines typically have a weight limit per bag, which can get pretty pricey if you exceed it.

Sneaky Tip: put your heaviest items in your purse or laptop bag- airline personnel rarely weigh those. Then, redistribute your items after you go through security.

The best thing to do is buy a gadget that is both, like this International Power Adapter.


What about dresses? Socks? Makeup bags? Check out my travel store to see what I travel with!


Never underestimate the power of packing like a pro.

You dissolve problems and gain power. Yes, literal power in situations that otherwise might make you feel powerless.

Packing professionally can mean the difference between paying $60 extra because your carry-on is too heavy and being bumped up to Business Class on a 7-hour leg.

Both of these things happen to me on a regular basis depending on how well I do or do not pack before my trip.

Sign-up here and I’ll send you my Official Packing Checklist for Free.