6 Unique Items I Bring On Every Single Mission Trip

I think there are two types of people in this world. 

There are some of us who pack the night before leaving for a trip.

And then there are others of us who start packing a whole month in advance, no matter where we are going or how long we will be gone for (which also includes packing, unpacking, re-packing, double checking, and then packing all over again.)


I don’t know where you fall on this spectrum, but I do know that when it comes to mission trips, there can be a lot to thinking about and prepare for as you are packing depending on where you are going. 

I happen to be the person who starts packing at least 30 days in advance. My bag is out, and I begin making piles of things I will need over the course of 30 days. My system of packing, and the items I pack, has evolved over the years and with each mission trip that I go on and each location that I’ve traveled to. 

What I’ve found is that, no matter where I am going, there are a few unique things I bring on every mission trip: 

  1. Drip Drop Hydration Packets. Not any other kind of hydration packets. DRIP DROP. They are the best. They contain half the amount of sugar as sports drinks, and triple the number of electrolytes as sports drinks, and 25% more than pediatric alternatives. These are the hydration packets used by leading hospitals, pro athletes, and military and police, and are proven to rehydrate as effectively as an IV (and it’s gluten free).
  2. Soft collar neck brace. I am not kidding. Forget the travel pillows... they are never high enough, or they fall off while you are sleeping. A soft collar neck brace is the secret to sleeping on a plane. It doesn't allow your head to fall or jerk you awake. It holds you in place so you can sleep peacefully. Plus, the flight attendants give you special treatment.
  3. Neon duct tape. Forget luggage tags. The best way to spot your bags in a crowded airport is for them to pop out with lime green or neon orange duct tape across the front and across the back. Anyone on the team can recognize each other’s suitcases this way. 
  4. Tennis balls. Sitting on a flight for 18 hours straight isn't nice to your back, and no matter how much padding you have on your butt, it hurts to sit that long. Stand up, put the tennis balls on the seat of the car or the airplane seat. Sit down. On the tennis balls. Try not to scream and scare everyone around you. Sit there for 10-20 minutes, and then take them out from under you. You will feel the difference. 
  5. Ginger ale. Yup. Mini bottle of ginger ale because it's hard to find if you are out of the country, but it's the secret sauce to an upset stomach. 
  6. Camping towel. The reason a camping towel works better than a good old-fashioned bath towel is because, they take up 1/10 of the space in your suitcase, and they dry very quickly. Regular bath towels stay damp and start smelling moldy quickly.

There you go! These are just a few of the items I have found to be super helpful on every mission trip I have been on. 

So what are your must-pack items for every mission trip? I would love to hear your suggestions to add to this list! 

Click here to see my complete packing list for every mission trip.


Ashley Bohinc