Middle East Packing List

Hello! Happy Friday and first day of Spring to you. It sure does not look “spring-y” around these parts, so I hope that the sun is shining where you are because these gloomy Texas days are getting old. 35569826a138cb90b20ffcff8a7b9559

To officially wrap up this Middle East travel series, I wanted to finish with a post about what I packed in my suitcase and also in my carry on bag. Before traveling to new cities or countries, I always research travel blogs looking for recommendations/advice based on personal experiences and find that they help me immensely. I am hopeful that this post will be helpful for an inexperienced or experienced traveler.

The first two international trips Jordan and I took as a married couple were to Mexico for our honeymoon and then Italy during the Summer of 2014. Those trips were similar in the sense that the weather was very hot, clothing needed to be light, and there were no major rules (besides at the Vatican) as to what was appropriate to wear. You may remember that for the Italy trip, I packed a lot of dresses, skirts, tank tops, and sandals. The Middle East is a completely different story.

I knew before packing that modesty is hugely important and essentially required in many of the touristy areas we were going to. The other little hurdle that made packing a bit more difficult was the fact that the first half of our trip would be spent in a winter climate and then the second half, the temperatures were in the mid-70’s the entire time. Thankfully we decided to check our bags from JFK to Amman so space was not an issue like it was for Italy.

My main objective was to pack items that could be worn in both climates. For bottoms I packed 2 pair of denim jeans, 1 pair of navy skinny jeans, black yoga pants, 1 pair workout shorts, 1 pair of black leggings, and 1 black maxi skirt. For tops I packed a lot of neutral tops both short-sleeved and long-sleeved, as well as a couple thinner sweaters that could be packed easily. I did get a little carried away with scarves (four) because they could be worn as a shawl, neck warmer, or even blanket. Shoes included Toms, grey booties, black flats, tennis shoes, and then 1 pair of heels for the wedding. Speaking of the wedding, I was able to find a long, black formal dress at Von Maur (can I get an “amen” from my Midwestern gals out there) on sale which was very exciting. I wore one of my scarves as a shawl to cover my shoulders in case that was required. Accessories included stocking cap, gloves, fedora hat, and minimal jewelry.

PicMonkey CollageFor the carry-on, I used one of Jordan’s backpacks which at first I was reluctant to using mainly because it isn’t the most pleasing to the eye, but I was very thankful he talked me into it. They really are practical and do not hurt my back like many large bags do. For electronics, I packed my tablet, camera, headphones, and cell phone. I have kindle loaded onto the tablet so I keep my books on there instead of packing them separately. Although I ended up just watching movies for the majority of the flight, it was nice to have my tablet to read a book or the Bible. Toiletries included face wipes, lotion, chap stick, deodorant, perfume stick, dry shampoo, and makeup. Since the flights were long, I wanted to be able to freshen up on the plane before we landed. Other miscellaneous items that are must-haves in my opinion include my travel journal, lavender essential oil to help me rest/nap, large water bottle (tried to drink 8 ounces every 2 ours or so on the flight), gum, and sunglasses to have on-hand when we land.

Collage 2

One item not pictured that we definitely used a few nights were sleeping pills. I took Melatonin and Jordan packed prescription pills which I tell ya, they get the job done. I never take any sort of sleeping pills on the plane, mostly in fear of saying odd things or feeling funny if they did not work well. I prefer to take them that first night we land at our destination and go to sleep extremely early. Sleep is essential on international trips and it can often times be so very difficult to adjust with the drastic time difference.

Packing does not have to be a dreaded process. I have learned that research, creating lists, and setting aside ample time is essential in the packing process. Unless you are like my husband and prefer to pack 30 minutes before a domestic or international trip. I call that procrastination, but he would call it rock star packing. Whatever your preference, happy packing!

Enjoy your first weekend of the Spring season and thanks for reading.

Abby Dawn

Sources: {Google Images, Samsung, Anthropologie, H&M, and Nike}

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