Oz backpack check list.

  • Backpack: This is obviously the main ingredient, unless you have pockets like Mary Poppins’ handbag. The size you choose is completely dependent on the length of your stay, as well as the activities you plan to partake in. For a short stay you should look at 40-55L packs, they are also better suited for the vertically challenged adventurer (like Ally). For a longer stay, I’d lean towards a 65L+ which could be too big for someone Ally’s height (5’1″), but means you can cram more stuff in. It’s important to always pack light, especially if you plan on doing a lot of walking. I usually aim for a total backpack weight of 12-15kg. Try to leave a bit of room for anything you may purchase along the way.
  • Visa: Every visitor requires a visa for entry into Australia, whether its a Tourist Visa, Working Holiday Visa, etc. Make sure you apply well in advance to avoid disappointment. Tourist Visas are typically valid for up to 3 months, and are valid for a year after they are granted. Working Holiday visas are valid for up to a year, with an option to earn a second year, by completing 3 months/88 days regional work. You also have a year to activate the visa after it is granted. Find out more here.
  • Passport: No brainer, you won’t get far without it. Check it’s still valid, and won’t expire during your stay. You need to renew UK passports 6 months before expiry, however, they add any remaining days/months onto your new passport expiry date.
  • Debit/Credit card: You’re not going to want to carry a wad of cash around with you, so a card is the way to go. I use the Halifax Clarity credit card, which doesn’t charge me for use anywhere in the world. I also have a UK current account with stored funds, which I use to pay off the balance of the credit card each month. Remember to notify your bank of your travel plans, so they don’t block your card. If you’re on the Working Holiday Visa, you are eligible to open an Australian bank account. We went with Westpac Bank, as it was included in the package we purchased when applying for our visas.

  • Travel Adaptor: Australia uses the 3 angled pin plug/outlet. But if you are planning on traveling elsewhere after, you can get universal travel adaptors, I have this one and it’s awesome.Oz-outlet
  • Drivers Licence: If you are planning on road tripping around oz, you’ll need this to hire a car or camper van.
  • Flip Flops: Referred to as ‘thongs’ by Aussies, flip flops are an essential for anyone backpacking in Australia. You’ll obviously need other shoes as well, but nothing cools off your feet like wearing flip flops on a hot day.
  • Insect Repellent: There’s a ton of creepy crawlies that you’ll want to stay clear from in Oz. Bringing a travel can of insect repellent, should reduce the chance of you coming into contact with one of these nasty little bastards.
  • Sun Screen/Sun Glasses: Australia is known for it’s extreme, unrelenting heat, and you need to be prepared for it. I’m fair skinned, and I’ll be bringing SPF 50. One of Australia’s national treasures, Hugh Jackman, had skin cancer for his 6th time this year, and posted a reminder to everyone to wear sunscreen. Read more here.
  • Travel Insurance Documents: Always worth having these to hand in case anything goes wrong during your trip (fingers crossed it doesn’t). We always get our travel insurance through STA travel, who use Allianz, and are usually the best price.
  • Clothes: Another obvious group that will take up the majority of your backpack. We will aim to do laundry every 10 days, so we’ve brought enough to wear a different item everyday, although you could pack half this amount if you don’t mind wearing the same sweaty shirt two days in a row.I brought 1x Hoodie, 1x Waterproof jacket, 1x Sweater, 3x Jeans/Trousers, 10x T-shirts/Tank Tops/Shirts, 4x Shorts, 4x Swim shorts, 10x underwear/socks, 1x cap.
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