Here is my own personal ‘Must Pack’ list. These are the no matter what items that are always in my backpack/suitcase.
What’s in this image: Kindle (paperwhite), Watch, Noise Cancelling Headphones, First Aid Kit (With a few extra drugs), Spork, Journal Notepad (Large), Small Note pad, Pens, Toilet Paper (Flattened).
What Has Changed Over the Years
The Kindle replaced physical books (for the better) as it allows me to have multiple novels on the go at once without the extra KG on my back.
The Noise canceling headphones have replaced ear plugs for flights, although I do still carry a foam pair of earplugs with me most of the time.
WATCH: I did have a digital watch that survived 4years of abuse on the road, but finally succumbed to death on the Bolivian Salt Flats. Current watch is a Swatch (White Dial Black Strap)
FIRST AID upgrade over the years I’ve added to my first aid kit, and included some stronger painkillers after suffering knee and back problems. In the end if I really hurt myself I will go to the nearest doctor, but for scratches, cuts, and minor ailments I can normally get by.
WAIT WAIT . . . You still wear a watch?
I think a watch is possibly the best purchases a traveller can make if they value being on time. A mobile phone is notoriously unreliable when changing time zone constantly, and makes you a target for thieves if you pull it out in poorer nations.
A watch is set BY the wearer, and doesn’t try and be smart and change itself. The number of times I’ve heard of people missing planes, and buses because their phone decided it was daylight savings for no reason is crazy.
In the end being able to tell the time is important when you travel. Not everywhere has an abundance of clocks, not everywhere has cell coverage meaning your phone can go heywire. Old school isn’t always a bad thing.