London Packing List (28 Things You Might Forget to Bring)
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Planning ahead with a comprehensive London packing list is the best way to enjoy the city. After all, while London sees visitors year-round, it has notoriously unpredictable weather. Not packing correctly could mean the difference between having a great trip or a great disaster.
When packing for London, you’ll need to take into account the type of holiday you’re looking to have, the time of year you visit, and the activities in London you want to do. I’m a London local, and I’ve highlighted some of the most essential items to pack in this comprehensive London packing checklist. Let’s get you ready for vacation!
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London Packing Checklist
Any Londoner would tell you that an umbrella is a staple item for a London trip, as it’s a city that tends to get quite a lot of rain. If you visit during the summer or autumn, you’re less likely to get caught in the rainfall, but it never hurts to be prepared just in case.
The Repel Umbrella provides a great solution if you’re trying to pack light, as it’s very compact yet still practical to keep you dry during those spurts of rain.
Passport & ID Carrier
Store your important personal documents and keep them safe at the same time with this carrier.
I was introduced to the neck wallet the first time I visited Europe when I was 16 years old, and it’s a great way to ensure your personal items stay safe without fear of losing them or having them stolen.
The HERO Neck Wallet is a great multifaceted passport, ID, and document holder that is compact, discreet, and effective for keeping your important items safe.
A lightweight carry-on bag to transport all of your travel essentials.
A travel daypack is a staple of many travelers, particularly when you need to save space. It makes for a great carry-on or an efficient piece to take with you while you peruse the city or venture off on a day trip.
The KEOFID Travel Backpack is a trusted bag that will help you avoid theft on your trip, keep your items dry, and even charge your electronics.
Stylish and discreet rain boots to keep your feet dry while visiting London.
Rain boots are one of the most important items to include on your London packing list as they’ll help you avoid ruining your day with wet feet in case it rains.
The good news is that with the Amoji Unisex Chelsea Rain Boots, you can avoid taking up too much space in your bag. They’re compact, subtle, and will pair well with several different outfit options.
A fast-charging portable power bank for all phones with the capacity to charge two devices at once.
We’ve all run into the problem of our phones dying while we’re out for the day, and that’s the last thing you need when you’re in a foreign country or city. To combat this, a portable charger is a handy item to keep in your day bag.
With over 7.5K ratings and 4.5 stars, the Solar Charger Power Bank is a trusted portable charger to ensure your device stays ready to use.
Universal Travel Adapter
It’s easy to forget that different countries have outlets of all kinds of shapes and sizes, so we need to ensure we’re able to use our devices regardless of what country we’re in. This is where a universal travel adaptor comes in handy.
The EPICKA Universal Travel Adapter is a worldwide adaptor that contains 4 different plug styles that work in over 150 countries, including the UK. It is also safety certified and has USB ports to charge up to 6 devices at once.
Travel insurance is one of the most important things to ‘pack’ before going on a big trip, to give yourself and your belongings added security in the unlikely event that something goes wrong. This will cover you so you can go off and enjoy your holiday!
VisitorsCoverage.com is a great place to compare London travel insurance quotes from different providers. Their search interface is helpful for figuring out what kind of coverage is right based on your country of residence.
Reusable Water Bottle
A stylish and efficient water bottle to satisfy all of your hydration needs while you’re exploring.
Staying hydrated is key when traveling. Bringing a reusable water bottle on the go is a great way to ensure you’re staying hydrated, reducing plastic, and saving money on purchasing water.
Getting a collapsable water bottle is a great idea for light packing and the SPECIAL MADE Collapsible Water Bottles are a solid option as they are leakproof and super compact.
A lightweight windproof and waterproof jacket guaranteed to keep you dry and warm.
Walking around soaked is never any fun, so bringing rain gear on your trip to London is of utmost importance. Rain jackets are often quite lightweight, so they shouldn’t take up too much space in your bag, but you’ll be so glad you packed it.
The Charles River Apparel Rain Jacket is a great affordable and lightweight option to keep you dry and warm should you stumble across a windy and rainy day.
The perfect hands-free day pouch to efficiently hold your belongings.
A fanny pack (referred to as a ‘bum bag’ in the UK) might not be something you would normally add to your packing list, but I can assure you it is one of the handiest items you can bring! This will keep your belongings safe as you’ll be able to see them in front of you at all times.
ODODOS Unisex Mini Belt Bag is a great and affordable fanny pack option that has an adjustable strap and comes in several colors.
The perfect easy-to-use compact camera for snapping all the photos and videos.
London is a city where you will likely want to take lots of photos and videos to remember your wonderful trip. Having a good camera to capture these special memories is important, and something worth adding to your London packing list.
The 4K Digital Camera has a flip screen and is tailored for vlogging and point-and-shoot photos where not all your equipment is needed for great results. It even has a wifi function for instant sharing online.
There have been several instances where I’ve crammed a bunch of items into my travel bag in a hurry and have paid the consequences of that when trying to find something hidden in my clothing. Packing cubes are a great solution to this.
Coming in multiple sizes for your array of items, the Well Traveled Packing Cubes make packing easy.
Easy-to-use prepaid sim card with unlimited 4G/5G UK data to stay connected while away.
Your phone will likely be your main guide while visiting London. You’ll use it for getting around, looking for London restaurants, and staying in touch with people. Having a reliable sim card that allows you to use your phone abroad is a must.
For 30 days you can get unlimited data with the Sims4Travel Prepaid O2 Sim Card, with no contract required.
Mini First Aid Kit
A first aid kit is always a good item to keep in your car or house, so it makes sense to also bring one traveling for safety purposes so you can always be prepared. A portable kit will seamlessly fit into your bag and keep you protected.
The First Aid Emergency Kit is both a comprehensive and compact pouch that should have everything you need in case of emergencies.
Simple, stylish, and lightweight aviator sunnies with great sun protection.
Sunglasses are a great item to keep in your bag regardless of the season, in hopes that the sun will come out. This is an item I often leave the house forgetting, and wishing I had, so make sure you pack yours in a travel-safe case so you can enjoy the London sunshine.
A classic style of sunnies is the Ray-Ban Classic Polarized Aviator Sunglasses, which are unisex, polarized, and come in multiple colors.
A compartmentalized toiletry bag to fit your entire skincare routine.
A toiletry bag is a great way to organize your toiletries for a trip, especially if you are checking a bag and are able to bring all of your regular products. This will make it easier to find what you need without having to rummage through your suitcase.
The BAGSMART Toiletry Bag comes in 10 colors and has 4 compartments to organize your products.
Compact adult & kid-friendly binoculars to get you up close and personal with London’s top sights.
Binoculars are a great tool to help you get better views from afar, and a great hack if you’d like to see the sites without having to be in amongst the crowds.
You’ll want to find a pair that doesn’t take up too much space in your bag, so I would recommend the occer 12×25 Compact Binoculars, as these are foldable, waterproof, and easy to use for both adults and kids.
Other London Essentials to Pack
- Ear plugs
- Travel towel
- Hand sanitizer
- Tote bag
- Sleeping eye mask
- Kindle or book
- Other photography gear (i.e. selfie stick, memory cards, camera bag)
- Allergy medication
- Lip balm
- Passport, driver’s license, or other valid ID
- International health insurance
- Cell phone
- Glasses or contact lenses, contact lens case
- Hair dryers or other styling tools
- Spare batteries
Clothing to Pack for London in Spring / Summer
Clothing will take up a good portion of your London packing list, so you want to ensure you’re making the most of the space in your bag and packing to accommodate the time of year you visit London. The weather in London can vary even within the season, so having options is your best bet.
On a spring or summer trip to London, you will likely be safe with a more typical summer wardrobe. However, I do advise packing a light jacket in case you come across a windy day or a cooler evening. Long-haul flights tend to be chilly as well, so it wouldn’t hurt to have this on the plane.
So what clothing should you pack for London in spring and summer? Here is a quick London packing list:
- 2-3 pairs of shorts
- 2-3 sundresses
- 1-2 skirts
- 1 swimsuit (in case of a day trip to a coastal town or if your accommodations have a pool)
- 1 ball cap or sunhat
- 1 pair of jeans
- 1 pair of comfortable walking sandals
- 1 pair of sneakers
- 1 pair of ankle boots
- 1 pair of heeled sandals
- 7 pairs of underwear
- 4-6 T-shirts
- 1-2 dressier shirts
- 2-3 tank tops or vests
- 7 pairs of socks
- 1 rain jacket
- 1 pair of wellies
The above packing list should have you covered for a week-long trip to London in the summertime, but we’ve called out a few specific recommendations below to help aid your packing.
Stylish and comfortable sneakers that will have you walking around London on a cloud.
The best type of walking shoes you can use when exploring a city, regardless of the time of year, is a good pair of sneakers. It is definitely worth adding sneakers to your London checklist.
New Balance is a great brand of sneakers that have options for both men and women and provide a solid level of support while also looking stylish.
A basic T is something pretty much everyone has in their closet, and for spring and summer seasons in London, it’s the perfect lightweight item to pack.
Gildan makes reliable, comfy, and reasonably priced basic t-shirts that come in a range of colors, so you can have options on what goes best with your outfit for that day. These are versatile, with great options for men and women.
The perfect summer dress for wandering around London or partaking in afternoon tea.
A summer dress is a great item to pack because it won’t take up too much space and it makes a lovely outfit option for nicer occasions like afternoon tea or a fancy dinner. This specific option comes in 17 different colors and meets the dress code for afternoon tea, a popular event that is a must-try on a trip to London.
Pants that fit the bill for day or night wear that are both comfortable and practical.
When you’re looking to pack light for your trip to London, Chinos are a great versatile pant option that will offer comfort, and a stylish look, and can be used for multiple occasions. Whether you’re taking in the arts and culture of London during the day or going for a fancy dinner, these pants work.
Amazon has its own brand of highly-rated chinos that are very reasonably priced and come in many colors.
Need something reliable to wear on a sunny London day? These shorts have you covered.
Temperatures can skyrocket in the peak of London summer, so if you are visiting during that time of year, shorts are an absolute must to add to your packing list.
Levi’s is a trusted brand that offers high-quality, comfortable, and timeless denim. The women’s mid-length shorts or men’s 505 Regular Fit Shorts are a couple of great neutral options.
A reliable, simple, and comfy sandal that goes with most outfits and will keep your feet happy.
London is a super walkable city, and many argue best seen on foot! That’s why a pair of comfy walking sandals should be a staple on your packing list, so you can enjoy as much of the city as possible first-hand.
These Teva sandals come in both a women’s and men’s version and multiple colors and are known to be one of the comfiest walking sandals out there.
Clothing to Pack for London in Fall / Winter
London winters tend to be quite mild, but when there’s rainfall, the dampness can cool things down quite a bit.
Ensure that you have some warm clothing packed so you are prepared regardless of the weather. This will make your visit much more enjoyable, especially when doing outdoor activities such as looking at the wonderful holiday light displays that come out in November.
Because of the milder weather, it is also good to have some lighter options that can be swapped in for a warmer day or the days you plan to do indoor activities such as exploring some of the best museums in the world.
So what clothing should you pack for London in fall and winter? Here is a quick London packing list:
- 2-3 long dresses
- 1 swimsuit
- 1 beanie or winter hat
- 1 pair of leggings or track pants
- 3-4 pairs of jeans
- 2-3 pairs of chinos or trousers
- 1-2 long skirts
- 1-2 jumpsuits
- 7 pairs of underwear
- 7 pairs of socks
- 2-3 T-shirts
- 2-3 long-sleeved shirts
- 2-3 dress shirts
- 2-3 blouses
- 1 puffer jacket or lightweight winter coat
- 1 rain jacket
- 1 pair of wellies
- 1-2 fleece sweaters or hoodies
- 1-2 cardigans or sweaters
I recommend a selection of the above items, and below you’ll find a few recommendations of specific brands in case you’re on the hunt for a wardrobe refresh before your holiday.
A heat-insulated puffer jacket to keep you warm during those chilly and damp winter days.
When visiting a place like London that experiences the four seasons, a warm jacket is necessary during the fall and winter months to stay warm and cozy.
Columbia has a range of high-quality winter jackets for both men and women that won’t break the bank. The puffer-style jackets are also compact, making them efficient for packing or wearing on the plane.
A cozy beanie enough to keep your head happy walking around London.
London is a lively city any time of year, and although there are many things you can do indoors, it is known for its plethora of outdoor attractions. Bundling up during the cooler months is a great shout to maximize enjoyment while viewing the sights London has to offer.
Carhartt offers minimalist essentials in a bunch of great colors and has some great color choices for both women and men.
Keep your feet dry, warm, and cushioned, while you take to the London streets.
Thermal socks are one of the greatest investments you can make in your wardrobe during the fall and winter months. They will not only keep your feet warm but also dry, which is key when walking around London.
You can find a variety of unisex options that often come in multipacks at a reasonable cost.
Blazer / Sports Coat
A blazer may not be something you often think to pack for a holiday, but London is not just any city. A place filled with class and sophistication, you might find yourself in several circumstances – from a London date night to visiting London’s best bars – that warrant pulling out all the stops when it comes to your outfit.
Whether you’re wearing a blazer over a dress or a sports coat with a shirt, this item makes a great staple for winter events.
Cardigans are one of those items that never go out of style. Plus, they’re always good to have on hand for the cooler months, especially if you don’t feel like bringing a heavy jacket. During the fall especially, London is the perfect ‘sweater weather’, and a cardigan is a great item to bring along, especially if you want to wear a dress or t-shirt.
You can get this women’s cardigan in pretty much any color you fancy, and there are plenty of men’s options available as well.
London Packing Tips
Look At The Forecast in Advance
Dressing appropriately for the weather conditions is essential for having a great London trip. I highly recommend checking the forecast before heading out for the day so that you have what you need and can feel comfortable while venturing around the City.
Bring a Rolling Suitcase And A Day Bag
If you’re visiting London for more than a few days, I highly recommend bringing a rolling carry on suitcase, even if it’s a small cabin one, to ensure you have enough space to pack a variety of clothing options.
In addition to this, having a tote bag, purse, backpack, or other day satchel is a great lighter option to carry around your belongings while you’re walking around.
Pack For A Range Of Activities
Having outfits for a wide range of activities is very important in London, as there are so many things to explore and you want to ensure that you have the option to do anything your heart desires.
Depending on what season you visit, a mix of outerwear for cold weather, lighter clothing, casual, comfy, and a dressy outfit or two is suggested.
Pack Toiletries In A Separate Plastic Bag
While London is on the way to removing their liquids and gels policy for flights, whichever country you’re coming from might not have the same policy. If you’re packing carry-on only, then make sure you take one of those small plastic bags from the airport and fill it with your liquids and gels.
Don’t Forget Rain Gear
One of the most important things you could pack for a trip to London is waterproof clothing and shoes. The UK has a reputation for its rainfall, and although some times of the year are typically drier than others (summer and autumn), it never hurts to be prepared.
Doing laundry is not only a task that will allow you to pack more efficiently but will also ensure your clothes are clean and fresh for the duration of your trip. Your accommodations will likely have laundry services available if you’re staying in a hotel room or Air BnB, otherwise, there should be a laundromat nearby.
Safety is the #1 priority when traveling, so doing what you can to stay safe while you’re on your holiday will give you that extra peace of mind. While general safety tips go a long way, there are some specific tips for traveling safely in London.
FAQs About Packing for London
What should I bring to London with me?
Depending on which time of year you visit, pack a range of clothing. A couple of options for warm weather, a jacket, and some long sleeves is a great starting point. It is also wise to pack rain gear as London can live up to its reputation as a rainy city.
What should I pack for a 2-day trip to London?
For a two-day trip to London, I would recommend packing comfortable clothing for sightseeing, comfortable footwear, and a dressier outfit for evening activities. Some higher-end restaurants and bars have a dress code, so packing a dress or pair of pants that aren’t jeans is recommended.
What should I pack for London in March?
March is one of the coldest and rainiest months of the year in London, so pack warm clothing, an umbrella, rain boots, and a waterproof coat. You’ll want to have warm clothing in general, whether it be casual or dressy, especially in the evenings when the sun goes down.
How do I pack for London summer?
London summers are typically mild and tend to even have a heatwave for a couple of weeks a year in July or August. Pack shorts, t-shirts, and dresses, and also bring some lighter jackets for the evenings in case it cools off.
That sums up my London packing list! Whether you’re spending the bulk of your trip exploring the city or venturing off on some day trips from London, this London packing list will have you covered with everything you need.
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