Preparing for a Latin American trip

Looking up what to take away on a backpacking trip is one of the most searched topics for people travelling to Latin America. And outside of documentation for your single trip travel insurance and passport, it can be difficult to discern what is needed and what is unnecessary. Stereotypes of Latin American countries as backwards places where you can’t find any of the conveniences of western Europe has led many people to bring far too much while on holiday. But some very helpful people have made it a point to make a note of what they’ve brought on every single trip. Travel insurance, passports, and small gifts for new friends? Yes. Large first aid and medical stashes? No. This article will take some of the best advice from these reports to help you pack for your trip to Central and South America.

First Aid Kits: Yay or Nay?

This one is really debatable, and really depends on how much time you’re going to spend outside of cities or towns. Those who are based at hostels or registered campsites, and just spend afternoons doing leisurely hikes in the nearby nature, might find a large first aid kit is excessive. Most medicines are available over the counter at any pharmacy or even at your hotel or hostel’s reception. However, prescription medications, or medications that you take every day, are definitely a good thing to bring; even though the prescription might be covered by your single trip travel insurance policy, it might be time consuming to fill.


Having proof of your single trip travel insurance, and extra copies of your passport might come in handy while travelling. You can keep your passport locked in your hostel or hotel, and just display your copied version if anyone asks to see documentation. Also, having a copy of an itinerary with hostel or hotel bookings might be useful while border crossing.

Packing Cubes

Though they might seem unnecessary, those who have begun to use them swear by them. When you’re backpacking, much of what you’re carrying behind you is not easily accessible, and you’ll spend a lot of your holiday searching for things in your bag. But packing cubes make finding things much easier.


Some people use a small on on a key chain, and this can be useful, but most people who bring a flashlight, prefer to use head torches. They are especially useful for trying to get yourself into bed while sleeping in a shared room at a hostel.

Expensive hiking clothes

Many people who go on hikes think they need top of the range gear, when in reality most people are going on short hikes lasting just two to four hours in mild weather and won’t need all the expensive clothing.

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