Packing. One of the most highly anticipated and dreaded parts of any trip.
If you’re anything like me, you immediately begin feeling overwhelmed. You start thinking through your wardrobe and begin making a list of what you will need to find. And then of course, how on earth is all of this going to fit in your bag?! One thing I struggle with is feeling limited by what will fit in my bag.
There are a few things I have learned over the years that help me to pack the best bag. Here are a few tips and a downloadable packing list to help you when you're packing:
Know where you’re Going
Every country (and in some cases even specific parts of the country) is different. Do some research on what is appropriate to wear. The best place to start is by contacting your ministry partner. They can give great insight on what types of clothing items to pack.
The top thing to always remember when going on a mission trip is to lean towards the modest side of whatever the cultural norm is. Loose > Tight
What is the Forecast?
Are you traveling during rainy season? Is it summer? Winter? Keep in mind that where you are going might be very different from where you are. For many of us, we probably travel to warm climates. In this age of technology we live in, the clothing industry has also benefitted. There are great options today with various lightweight and breathable fabrics. Make sure to check those fabric labels!
What is the predominant religion(s) of your destination? What are their beliefs? Is it required for women to cover their heads? This will help you know how to respect the people you are serving and be above reproach when you share truth.
Don’t go Designer
I get it. I like to look cute too. And I want those pictures I take to be really fun. Rather than packing all of your nicest, most expensive clothing articles, find inexpensive options. If your focus is more on keeping your clothes looking nice than the needs of the people you are serving, you’re going to spend a lot of energy on the wrong things. Take some trips to your local thrift and bargain stores. Use your creativity to keep your style in tact.
I hope that these tips help you out when preparing for your trip! We've got a printable/downloadable Mission Trip Packing List hosted on our Google Drive. We'd love to share that with you!
You can also check out this website for a packing list to A N Y W H E R E.