Your Essential Pre-Flight Travel Checklist

Your Essential Pre-Flight Travel Checklist

Last Updated on

Take the stress out of travel with our pre-flight travel checklist, ticking off all the essentials you need before you travel, from confirming your airport transfer to remembering to pack your phone charger.

Check for visa requirements

Some countries won’t let you in without a valid visa, so double check any visa requirements before you leave to avoid an awkward conversation at border security. It can take a number of days to organise a visa, so make sure to check this well in advance. While you’re doing this, check your passport validity, too – some countries require six months of passport validity to travel, so check well in advance of your flight.

Get travel insurance

Whether you’re travelling domestically or internationally, travel insurance is an an essential for many travellers. Some credit cards come with travel insurance, but it’s always worth doing some research into what you are and aren’t covered for; medical costs overseas can be sky-high, and travel insurance will usually also cover loss and theft of personal items. There are many different types of travel insurance, so do some research to find the one that suits you the best. Handy hint: Our friends over at allow you to compare travel insurance policies to find the best one for you.

Let your bank know you’ll be travelling

Tell your bank that you’re going to be travelling overseas so that you can use your card to withdraw cash or pay for things without your card being blocked. Make sure you have some cash in the local currency handy though – it will always come in useful. If you have a credit card, this is even more important that you let your bank know, as you don’t want to get left in a foreign country with no access to money!

Handy Flight Checklist for travelling smooth

Pack these carry-on essentials

Lip balm

Aeroplane cabins are pressurised which means your lips are likely to dry out – this is unpleasant at the best of times but especially if you’re travelling long distance. Pack some balm to keep your lips hydrated.

Shawl of scarf

Aeroplane cabins often cool down on a flight, so to stay warm it’s worth packing a shawl or light scarf to wrap around yourself.


Major airlines often offer these on your flight, but it’s always good to pack your own pair just in case. Noise-cancelling headphones are a big plus on busy flights and if you’re a light sleeper. If your headphones are bluetooth, don’t forget your charger!

Book, Kindle or Entertainment

Get some reading done and pack a book in your carry-on. It’s a great way to kill time on the plane, in the departure lounge or in an airport lounge. If TV series and movies are your love, be sure to load up your tablet or laptop with some a season’s worth of new shows!

Menthol Inhaler

Relieve any nasal congestion by packing an inhaler in your hand luggage. They’re so small that they won’t weigh you down, and will offer relief if you’re feeling blocked up from the plane.

Toothbrush and paste

Some airlines will provide a travel toothbrush and paste, but pack them in case – you’ll thank us if you’re on a long-haul flight!

Essential medications

Make sure you have any medication you’ll need in your hand luggage, as well as any prescriptions in case you need to show security. Depending on the the length of your journey, be sure to pack enough medication that will suffice for your duration, as well as prescriptions or medical history documentation if you need to get more mediation overseas. Asthmatics, don’t forget your inhaler!

Spare change of clothes

In case of flight delays or lost or delayed luggage, it’s not a bad idea to have a spare change of clothes or underwear handy in your carry-on baggage. Suitcase with toiletries and hat Make sure you double check your airline’s carry on restrictions before you pack your bags

Check your carry-on and checked luggage

Will your carry-on bag fit the requirements and restrictions of your airline? Always double check the weight and size of your bag, and if it’s too big or heavy, you may be requested to check it in instead, which can incur extra baggage fees. A good rule of thumb is to wear any heavy items of clothing on the plane (you can always take them off once on board) and pack lighter items in your carry-on or checked baggage. There are also limits as to what liquids you’re able to bring on board in your carry-on and what quantity. Usually small amounts in a sealed bag are fine, but it’s always best to double check your airline’s policy on what is and isn’t allowed, or you may end up having to throw away perfectly good toiletries and other products at security. While you’re checking your carry-on luggage, it’s also worth making sure that your checked luggage is within the weight and dimension requirements, so that you can avoid any nasty last-minute charges. Handy hint: If you’re travelling to the USA, you will need to lock your bag with a TSA-approved lock. Read our 8 Things You Should Know Before Travelling To The USA for more helpful pre-travel tips.

Confirm your airport transfer

To ensure a seamless trip, make sure you’ve confirmed your pick-up time and meeting point of  your airport transfer with your transfer company and driver 48 hours before you’re due to depart. Double check that all of your booking details are correct, and before you leave check your email and phone for any correspondence from either or your transfer company.

Make sure you’ve charged your phone

You’ll need a phone when you travel as your driver and/or transfer company may need to contact you. If you’re travelling overseas, check with your phone provider if you can use your phone to make and receive calls and SMS messages overseas. Don’t forget to make the most of the free WiFi that is available in many international airports, too (check our airport pages for more information on this). Don’t forget to pack your phone charger as well – these are one of the most common items left in hotels. Handy hint: Remember to buy an international travel adapter for your electronics if you’re going overseas.

Check-in online

Save time at the airport by checking in online, if your airline allows it. You’re usually able to print or download your boarding pass, meaning that if you’re travelling with just carry-on luggage, you can skip the lines and head straight for security.

Make copies of your travel documents

It’s always good practice to make copies of all your important travel documents, like your passport and driving licence, just in case your passport is lost on your travels. Keep a copy in your luggage separate to your passport, and leave a copy with a trusted friend or family member back home.

Pack your passport and any tickets!

It’s the most obvious thing to pack, but so often people arrive at the airport only to have left their passport on the kitchen bench (or in the photocopier!). Don’t walk out the door without double checking your passport and any travel tickets or boarding passes are in your bag. Last but not least, remember to set your alarm if you have an early airport transfer!

Check COVID-19 Requirements

Make sure to check the COVID vaccination and PCR testing requirements of the airline you’re travelling with and the destination you’re visiting.

Haven’t booked your airport transfer yet? Head over to to search and compare thousands of airport transfer options and find the one that’s right for you.


Want free insider travel tips and inspiration delivered straight to your inbox?

To ensure a seamless trip, make sure you’ve confirmed your pick-up time and meeting point with your transfer company and driver 48 hours before you’re due to depart.