India Gear Checklist

Why this list? It’s a simple, last-minute checklist to make sure that you have the “essentials.” Some items are luxuries. No, St. Paul didn’t pack most of them.
  1. Alarm clock for travel + wristwatch

  2. Army-style duffel bags with zippers the length of the bag for easy access

  3. Army issue DEET for mosquitoes (100% spray bottles can leak, melting various plastics, etc.)

  4. Backpack and/or nylon or other valise and possibly a fanny pack

  5. Breath spray or drops (dental gum?)

  6. Calculator-solar

  7. Camera with extra batteries and film or large media card for digital camera and extra rechargeable battery, with charger. If you’ll need electric power, consider buying a surge protection/plug adapter: Go to for the “All in One Surge Protector” (about $20).

  8. Cash (US $70.00 for Indian visa), debit or credit card. You can pay with VISA at many places and incur NO currency exchange fees—good especially for shopping for gifts in duty-free shops.

  9. Clothing: bathrobe, 4 dress shirts and 4 pants, 5 sets of underwear, hat, rain jacket/poncho, sandals, shoes well-waterproofed. Bring zipped plastic bags for shoes and to contain spills.

  10. Cord, inexpensivebnylon 25' braided utility cord for mosquito net

  11. Driver’s license in case you need to rent a car

  12. Ear plugs and mask to block light (improves chances of sleep on jets and in noisy rooms)

  13. Email addresses that will be needed, in page-protector, or PDA; copy of passport photo page

  14. Flashlights: 2 Garrity™ heavy-duty disposable flashlights, or AA-size flashlight with extra longlife batteries

  15. Granola/fruit bars (Nature Valley™ “Chewy Trail Mix” from Sam’s Club™ )

  16. Hairdryer, lightweight, with 240/120 capability

  17. Insect spray for bed (against bed bugs, earwigs), but not in an aerosol can

  18. Knife, spoon, fork set (sharp knife for cutting nylon cord and fruit)

  19. Laundry bags—2 different-colored nylon mesh (@ clean and dirty clothes)—see Walmart, laundry soap in Ziplock or other container, retractable clothesline (Walmart), craft-sized clothes pins for doing laundry and a universal flat stopper for sinks or tubs.

  20. Locks—use strong plastic connectors instead to prevent tampering

  21. Meds: anti-itch gel, aspirin/ ibuprofen, Band-Aids, chewable vitamin C, vitamins, Doxycycline, Ex-lax, Immodium, Ex-lax™, Larium (WinnDixie cheapest located in Chattanooganote side-effects), triple antibiotic ointment with topical pain reliever (generic); multi-vitamins and other vitamins, sleeping pills—generic, melatonin for jet lag (carry prescription drugs in carry-on in case baggage is lost) or sleeping pills.

  22. Money/passport pouch—concealed under clothing (mine goes around the neck)

  23. Mosquito net (used or new Army surplus is fine--check for holes before you buy it) spray for mosquito net (Permethrin—some are allergic to this, treat before you leave home)

  24. Passport & yellow immunization card in case of need

  25. Pillow—air or filled horseshoe-style or compressible (camper) pillow

  26. Knife--sharp pocket knife/ scissors—put into checked baggage.

  27. Solar shower (camp shower if you intend to go to remote places)

  28. Suit jacket (wrinkle-free) and tie for preaching—some preachers bring several jackets/suits

  29. Sweatshirt or sweater

  30. Tablet for writing, pens, highlighter, page protectors in poly notebook covers—consider small reading light that attaches to the book

  31. Toiletries: shampoo in small container (Walmart sells empty plastic bottles —unscrew top and put a scrap of plastic bag on, then reseal to help stop leakage), bar soap in ziplock bag, antiperspirant for flights, safety razors, small size shaving cream for men, washcloth, towel, shower thongs, smaller toothpaste, toothbrush in holder, polished metal mirror, nail trimmers (checked baggage), toilet paper roll; Wash N' Dry™—80 self– contained packets and/or disposable washcloths, sunscreen

  32. Water Bottle—Nalgeen™, or rely upon mineral water bottles purchased in-country

  33. Waterless hand sanitizer (2-3 small bottles that have skin nutrients such as aloe)

  34. Waterproof matches (Walmart) For remote areas, I carry a camper-style water purifier that screws atop a Nalgene™ 1 qt. water bottle.

To carry on your person or in carry-on for the flight:

Pen, small tablet or large lined sticky notes, prescription drugs, ear plugs, eye shades, travel-size deodorant, breath freshener/travel toothbrush & paste, reading glasses, travel pillow, copy of photo page of passport, address and phone number of destination. In concealed travel pouch should be your tickets, passport, debit/credit cards, and currency. Of course, if you bring a camera, a laptop computer, or a video projector, they should be carried with you, not as checked baggage. Digital cameras are less vulnerable to security x-ray damage.