17 Top Business Trip Packing List Items for 2020 + What to Wear & NOT to Bring

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Updated on May 12, 2020 by Asher Fergusson

B usiness trips can take all different forms, whether they are domestic or international, or focus on team building and leadership. It can be hard to know what to pack for a business trip, as there may be many different activities to pack and dress for.

We’ve put together this Business Trip Packing list to help you navigate what to bring on your trip! Our list includes sections on what to wear, what NOT to bring, and answers to all your business trip FAQs.

Don’t forget to bring patience and a sense of adventure because there are always bound to be last-minute changes in plans!

What to Pack for a Business Trip – 17 Essentials


1. Packing cubes

HERO Packing cubesPacking cubes will make your business trip packing and unpacking so much easier. Stay organized by utilizing these handy cubes when packing your suitcase and keep yourself from overpacking. These cases come in different sizes and colors and even include laundry and shoe bags as well!

View on Amazon.com ➜


2. Business Cards

Business CardsYou’ll be glad you brought business cards on your business trip, as you’ll likely have plenty of networking opportunities and will want to connect with people again after your trip. These cards are inexpensive and can be ordered right on Amazon!

View on Amazon.com ➜


3. Lipstick-sized portable charger

Lipstick-sized portable chargerA lipstick-size portable charger is a great item to bring on your business trip, as you’re likely to be using your smartphone throughout the day and won’t want to have to stop what you’re doing to recharge it. Toss this backup battery charger in your backpack and charge your devices while you’re on the go!

View on Amazon.com ➜


4. Windproof travel Umbrella

travel umbrellaDon’t get caught in the rain during your business trip! Make sure to bring a reliable windproof travel umbrella like this one with you to keep you and your business gear safe from the elements. This umbrella is awesome because it opens to cover up to two people.

View on Amazon.com ➜


5. Laptop

LaptopYou’ll definitely want to bring a reliable laptop with you on your business trip. Whether you’re using it to take notes, give a presentation, or chill out at the end of the day, you won’t want to leave for your trip without one! This one is relatively inexpensive and gets great reviews on Amazon.

View on Amazon.com ➜


6. Neck Wallet

HERO Neck WalletA neck wallet will definitely come in handy during your business trip. Keep your important documents, credit cards, cash, smartphone, and any other small valuables organized and secure in this handy pouch. A neck wallet is perfect for staying organized at the airport or keeping your belongings safe during your trip.

View on Amazon.com ➜


7. Virtual Private Network (VPN)

virtual private networkA VPN is useful for so many reasons. It will help you get around paywalls on popular news sites, will allow you access to websites that may be censored by the host country, and most importantly, it will keep your private information, like credit card numbers and passwords, safe from potential hackers whenever you connect to WiFi in public places.

View NordVPN.com Options ➜


8. Notebook

NotebookYou’ll definitely want to have a notebook with you when you attend a business trip. Take notes by hand during your meetings and use it to keep yourself organized. Perhaps even use it as a journal in your spare time during the trip.

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9. Business Outfits

Business OutfitsBe prepared for business meetings and outings during your business trip by bringing professional outfits. While there may be instances during your trip when you’ll want to wear more casual clothing, you’ll be glad you came prepared with enough business attire.

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10. LifeStraw Water Bottle

LifeStraw Water BottleA reusable water bottle is an absolute must-bring on any business trip. You’ll need to make sure you’re staying hydrated throughout the day and won’t want to waste money and damage the environment by buying plastic bottles. This water bottle comes with a built-in filter, too!

View on Amazon.com ➜


11. Backpack

BackpackA backpack with space to hold your laptop is completely key when heading to your business trip. Use it to carry your belongings to meetings and events during the trip so you always have what you need. This backpack also comes with a USB charging port.

View on Amazon.com ➜


12. Business Trip Travel Insurance

Business Trip Travel InsuranceIf your business trip is taking you more than 100 miles from home, you should definitely look into getting travel insurance before you go. World Nomads is always our top choice for insurance, as they have tons of inexpensive plans that offer you incredible coverage.

View their plans at WorldNomads.com ➜


13. Dry Shampoo

Dry ShampooDuring your business trip, you may not have a ton of downtime when you’re running from event to event. Be sure to pack some handy dry shampoo like this that will keep you looking and feeling fresh if you don’t have time to take a full shower!

View on Amazon.com ➜


14. Activated charcoal

Activated charcoalThe last place you want to be during your business trip is stuck in the bathroom with your head in the toilet! If you eat or drink something that doesn’t agree with you during your trip, you’ll be glad you brought some activated charcoal to expel the toxins in your body and keep you on your feet.

View on Amazon.com ➜


15. Gorgeous Outfit

Gorgeous OutfitDuring your business trip, you’ll probably have the opportunity to head out for nice dinners, happy hours, and other after-hours events. Be sure to bring a gorgeous outfit like this jumpsuit so you’ll be prepared for anything! This one looks great on a variety of body types and doesn’t wrinkle easily so it can be packed in your suitcase without a problem.

View on Amazon.com ➜


16. TSA-Approved Travel-Size Bottles

TSA-Approved Travel-Size BottlesYou won’t want to pack full-size liquids and toiletries for your business trip, so opt for bringing some of these TSA-approved travel-size bottles instead. These will help you pass through security with ease and can be refilled as needed.

View on Amazon.com ➜


17. Deodorant Wipes

Deodorant WipesDeodorant wipes are a great way to quickly freshen up during a business trip. If you don’t have time to run back to your room for a shower, keep these wipes in your purse or backpack so you can easily stay fresh throughout the day. Your colleagues will thank you!

View on Amazon.com ➜
 

Other Business Trip Packing List Items Not to Forget


What to Wear to a Business Trip


What you wear on a business trip will largely depend on your business and the company culture. That said, regardless of what industry you’re in, you should be prepared with at least a few business-appropriate outfits. That will include a nice collared shirt and long pants for men, and a business suit or conservative dress or skirt for women. Don’t forget a few nice outfits for happy hours, special events, and nice dinners you may attend as well.

What Should WOMEN Wear to a Business Trip? – (Click to expand)

Below is a sample women’s clothing list. (All items link to Amazon.com for your convenience).













Women should look professional and appropriate on any business trip, so be sure to pack things like slacks, pencil skirts, business suits, and blouses. You’ll also want some chic but relatively conservative outfits for evenings out, nice dinners, happy hours, and events where business attire won’t be required.

What Should MEN Wear to a Business Trip? – (Click to expand)

Below is a sample men’s clothing list. (All items link to Amazon.com for your convenience).













Men should dress in business attire and look presentable during business trips. That means bringing things like slacks, suit and tie, nice shoes, collared shirts, etc. Men should also bring clothing to relax and exercise as you’ll likely have some downtime during the trip when you’ll want to be more casual.

How to dress for different activities at a Business Trip – (Click to expand)

Business Meeting – You will inevitably encounter a business meeting or two during your trip, so you’ll want to be prepared in normal business attire. That means a collared shirt and slacks for men and a pantsuit or skirt and blouse for women.

Happy Hours – Happy hours are common during business trips, so you’ll want to look put together and professional, but you can dress a bit more casual than a business meeting. Opt for a dress with a jacket, a shirt without a tie, or general business casual attire.

Downtime – You’ll definitely have a bit of downtime at some point during your business trip, so bring casual, comfy clothes to relax in. Don’t forget swimwear if your hotel has a pool, and consider bringing clothes to workout in if you’d like, too.

Team Building Activities – Depending on the type of business trip you’re on, you may need to participate in team building exercises and activities. Be prepared by wearing comfortable shoes and a business casual outfit.

 

What NOT to bring on a Business Trip


1) 🚫DON’T PACK too much stuff: Your business trip likely won’t last longer than a few days, so save yourself the hassle of checking your luggage and only bring what you can carry onto the plane. You don’t need as much stuff as you think!

3) 🚫DON’T TAKE clothes that are too casual: Even though parts your trip might call for more casual clothing, you’re still on a business trip and will need to look presentable and professional most of the time. Err on the side of caution and pack mostly business and business casual attire.

5) 🚫 DON’T BRING a hairdryer: This is another item you’re likely to find in your business trip accommodation, and therefore don’t need to waste the space in your luggage by packing it. Hair dryers can be hard on your hotel’s power outlets, so it’s better to use the ones they provide anyway.

2) 🚫 DON’T BRING full-size toiletries: Leave your full-size toiletries at home, as they’ll just bog you down on your short business trip. Instead, opt for travel-size toiletries that you can easily refill or toss out at the end of your trip.

4) 🚫DON’T PACK your own towel: Don’t bog down your luggage with a heavy, bulky towel. Your business trip accommodation will likely have a towel for you to use that you can leave there when you’re done.

6) 🚫DON’T TAKE your most valuable or irreplaceable belongings: The last thing you need on your business trip is for your most valuable and precious belongings to get lost, stolen, or damaged. Bring only what you need for your trip and leave the rest at home!

What clothing should I NOT wear on a Business Trip? – (Click to expand)

On your business trip, avoid wearing clothing that is too casual for the events you’re attending and the colleagues you’re interacting with. However, if your company is more casual to begin with or your business trip focuses on camping or being mostly outdoors, then avoid wearing clothing that is too professional. If you’re not sure how to dress, ask your supervisor about the dress code for the trip ahead of time.
 

FAQs for Going on a Business Trip


    1. Will I have to pay for my own expenses during my business trip?

    Typically, employees will not have to pay for their own expenses during a business trip. Some companies will have you pay for the things you need during the trip and then will reimburse you afterwards, so be sure to save all your receipts!

    2. Will I have any downtime during my business trip?

    Whether you have a lot or a little bit of downtime during your business trip will depend on your company and the type of trip you’re attending. That said, you’ll definitely have at least SOME downtime, so come prepared with activities that help you relax and unwind.

    3. Will I be paid during my business trip?

    Yes, you should be paid during your business trip. If your company is requiring you to be present, then they will be paying you for your time.

    4. Where will I stay during a business trip?

    Your company will more often than not provide your accommodation for your business trip, which means you’ll likely be put up in a hotel for the duration of your stay. Your company will probably provide a means of transportation to and from the main events during your trip as well.

    5. How can I stay organized on my business trip?

    Bring packing cubes! Not only will packing cubes help you to avoid overpacking, but they’ll also help keep you super organized during your trip. Keep your clothing, toiletries, and work-related belongings organized in their own separate cubes. These will be a gamechanger for your business trip!

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