The Ultimate International Travel Checklist for Indians | 2024

The Ultimate International Travel Checklist for Indians | 2024

Anxious regarding preparing for your upcoming international trip?

Worry not. Here is a Comprehensive International Travel Checklist that covers the following:

a) Documents (Passport, Visa etc.)

b) Money (How to carry, and how much to carry)

c) Phone connectivity

d) Other important stuff to carry

e) Step by Step process to follow before your flight.

f) Other frequently asked questions such what to wear, what to carry/ not-carry etc.



FAQ: What documents are required for International Travel?

a) Passport
b) Visa
c) Health Documents (for specific countries only. e.g. yellow fever vaccination for Africa)
d) Travel Insurance: We highly recommend it.

There is a reason documents is the number one item on your International Travel Checklist. It is the most critical item.

Assuming you have got your visa sorted out, recheck the following:


a) Is your passport valid for more than 6 months from the date of travel?

This is a mandatory requirement for visiting most countries, and is usually checked by the airline at check-in.

Make sure you fulfill this criterion (especially if you are travelling to a country where you will be given a visa on arrival), to avoid unnecessary disappointments like boarding being denied, and issues at foreign immigration.

b) Does your passport have enough blank pages (1 or 2 usually)

Need this for accommodating immigration stamps? If the number of pages are not sufficient, you may have to apply for a new passport.

Visa: Is your Visa valid for the period of your travel?

Recheck this. In case you are opting for a Visa on arrival, this does not apply to you.

In case you plan to enter the country multiple times during your visit, make sure your visa is a multiple-entry visa.

d) Do all the personal details mentioned in the passport and visa (e.g. name, date of birth, passport number etc.) match?

Don't forget to take printouts of your entire itinerary. Better yet, also carry an electronic scanned copy of all the documents (pen drive, hard drive etc).

Here are the other documents that should be on your checklist for foreign travel

i) Copy of your passport: This serves 2 purposes:

a) In the unfortunate incident that you lose your passport in a foreign country, a copy of the same will be very handy in proving your identity.

b) While travelling within the country for site seeing and other activities, it may not always be a good idea to carry around your original passport due to safety concerns.

It is always better to leave the original passport in your hotel locker or a locked suitcase and carry a copy to prove your identity.

ii) Copy of your visa: For the same reasons as applicable to the passport copy.

iii) Copy of all your pre-booked tickets: Return air tickets to India and other Air, Bus, Rail, Ferry tickets etc. for your travels.

In case you have done online check-in for any flights, don’t forget to carry a printout of the boarding pass.

iv) Proof of accommodation: Copy of your booking confirmation with your name on it (MakeMyTrip, Airbnb, etc.)

v) Copy of your travel insurance: It is highly advisable to take travel insurance for your foreign travels.

It is a very low price to pay for the comfort and protection it will give you against unforeseen medical expenses, lost baggage etc.

vi) Your old passports if any: Crucial if your old passport contains a valid visa which you intend to use during your travel. Even otherwise this is an added security.

vii) Indian Driving License: Incase you have plans to rent a vehicle abroad.

viii) A list of all important phone numbers: Very handy if you lose your phone (touchwood).


Now that you have your documentation sorted, let’s talk about the next important thing to consider; Money. No Travel Checklist is complete without this item.

a) Rule number one; If you intend to convert Indian rupee (in cash) to a foreign currency, do it in India before you travel.

If you try to do this abroad, you will be charged a hefty premium for conversion. Also, some exchanges abroad may not even accept the Indian Rupee.

b) Carry a minimum amount of foreign currency when departing India and try to manage other expenses using a credit card or travel card as these is the most secure and convenient mode of transaction.

Make sure you own a card that doesn’t charge you huge premiums on foreign currency transactions. 2-3% is a good range.

c) It is advisable to carry some USD as a buffer as this is one currency that has acceptability all over the world.

In case you run into any trouble such as card not working, or land at places where cards are not accepted etc., you can always convert your USD to local currency easily.

Moreover, you can also bring the unused USD back to India and use it for future travels.

d) Call your bank and inform them that you are travelling abroad and that you will be using your credit/ debit card in a foreign country.

This is to prevent your bank from blocking your card to suspecting fraudulent transactions. Ask your bank about foreign transaction charges applicable.

Also don't forget to activate international usage on your card.

e) Make sure your credit card has sufficient credit limit. Clear any outstanding or unbilled dues before travel, if required.

f) Use debit cards only to withdraw money: As much as possible, avoid swiping your debit card abroad. Debit cards usually have hefty charges for foreign transactions and are more riskier with respect to fraud.

h) Deactivate the tap facility on your card. This will prevent misuse of your card in case of theft.

i) Activate your credit card for International use

And now to third item on the Travel Checklist,

BTW, you may want to read our comprehensive guide on how to carry money abroad from India


a) Although most places abroad have free wifi, a mobile connection with data will go a long way considering the following benefits:

i) People can reach you at any time in case of an emergency.

ii) Your bank can reach you for any clarifications regarding transactions. This will prevent banks from blocking your card in case they suspect fraudulent transaction.

iii) You can make instant bookings for taxis, buses etc while travelling when wifi is not available.

iv) What if you need at OTP for some reason?

v) You can do online research on places to visit, logistics etc.

vi) You can use maps to find your way. Helps a lot if you are lost too.

vii) You can contact emergency services such as police, hospital or the Indian Embassy if you get into any sort of trouble.

One generally has 3 options for staying connected (voice and data) while travelling abroad. Each along with its pros and cons are as below.

Option 1: Use your India Sim


a) You are available on your India number throughout, and you will not miss any calls or messages.

b) No hassle of informing alternate number to people who may try to contact you.


a) The most expensive option especially if you do not subscribe to any country/ region specific international packages.

b) That said, many Indian service providers have come out with attractive packages for International roaming recently.

Option 2: International sim providers


a) You will receive your international number before travel and you can share this with your contacts in advance.


a) In case you want your India number to remain active during your travel, you will have to use a different phone/ a dual sim phone.

b) You will have to inform your contacts of the new number.

Option 3: Purchase a local sim at your country of visit


a) The cheapest option usually.

b) Very easily available. Most countries don’t even ask identification to issue a sim card.


a) In case you want your India number to remain active during your travel, you will have to use a different phone/ a dual sim phone.

b) You will have to inform your contacts of the new number.”

FAQ: How do I prepare my phone for International Travel? - Important

Whether you are taking a local sim, or using your own India sim, keep this one thing in mind. Data is expensive in most plans.

Hence while using mobile data abroad, use it wisely. Remember to deactivate mobile data use for background activates in your phone such as app updates, mail refresh etc.

Use mobile data only for important stuff such as searching for directions, booking taxis etc. For everything else, use Wifi in the hotel room.

This completes the BIG THREE items (Docs, Money, Connectivity) of your checklist for international trip



    • Most drugs which are available Over the Counter in India may not be so easily abroad. In case you catch a cold during your holiday, you don’t want to waste time visiting the doctor to get a prescription.
    • Carry medicines for common issues like a headache, fever, cold, vomiting, sprains, small wounds etc.
    • Remember in case you are carrying prescription drugs, check the regulations in the country you are travelling to.
    • Some drugs may be regulated in some countries and you may be asked to produce a doctor’s prescription by customs.

    Universal Travel Adapter: 

    • An essential while travelling abroad. Get a universal one which can be used in any country (helpful in all your travels).

      An Airline Travel Blanket or Light Jacket

      • Airlines cabins can get mighty cold. You don't want to arrive at your beach destination all frozen do you?
      • This one will keep you warm and cozy.

      A Travel Wallet:

      • Helps in keeping your belongings safe so that you can have a worry-free trip.

      A Toiletry Bag

      • This one is a must have these days. 
      • Makes your packing, unpacking and organizing a breeze by having all your toiletries in one place.

        Compression Flight Socks:

        • Some of us get tired, achy and swollen legs after long haul flight journeys. This one will save your day

        Water Bottle: 

        • Bottled water is generally expensive abroad, especially in Europe. However, tap water is safe to drink in most countries. 
        • Carry a bottle of water with you at all times and keep refilling it at public facilities. This will save you a lot of unnecessary expense.


        • Need we elaborate?

        Moisturizing Cream:

        • Essential when travelling to cold/ dry countries.

          Ear Phones: 

          • Music, Videos, Hands free, protection from the outside world. You get the point.

            Wet Wipes 

            • Ok this is a sensitive topic. Most of you are aware that toilets in the west are usually dry. Meaning no water, just toilet paper. If you can manage with TP alone, kudos to you. That water bottle you are carrying will be very handy too. 
            • But here is a hack. Use wet wipes after using regular tissue. This will finish the job that the toilet paper is unable to and also give a clean feeling. Best of both worlds.


            • For obvious reasons.

            Hand Sanitizer:

            • Considering you will be out exploring a lot, this will be handy for keeping yourself hygienic.

            An Umbrella:

            • An umbrella may not seem like an obvious choice for us tropical people, but in temperate areas (Europe and America mostly), unpredictable showers can catch you unaware. 
            • A small foldable umbrella in the backpack has saved the day for many travellers.

            Toilet Seat Covers:

            • You won’t have to dread using public toilets anymore.

            A Travel Pillow: 

            • Very handy for giving your head a break and getting a good sleep on flights, buses etc.

            A Microfiber Travel Towel:

            • While most places of stay provide towels, it is smart to have a light weigh, quick drying microfiber towel with you in your backpack. 
            • Very useful especially at the beach where you can lay it down to keep your stuff and use it for drying yourself later.

            Packing Cubes

            • Works very well to segregate the contents of your suitcase and make packing and unpacking a breeze

            Luggage Lock: 

            • Extremely Important. It is crucial that no-one else other than you and the people you trust have access to your bags when travelling to a foreign country.
            • You are responsible for all the goods in your bag no matter how it landed up there. Keep your unlocked bags on you at all times. Always lock your check-in bag and unattended bags (e.g. Bags left in hotel rooms, cloakrooms).
            • Carry TSA Luggage Locks if you are travelling to the USA

            A Small Back Pack

            • Leave your big bags at the hotel and carry a small backpack to hold all your bare essentials like Money, Sunscreen, Water, Sweater/ Jacket/ Scarf, Passport/ Visa copies, Sunglasses etc). 
            • Go for a foldable one that is easy to pack and use.

            A Pen: You need it for filling forms

              Contact Details of Indian Embassy in your destination of travel: 

              • In case trouble finds you. 

              And that's it. Your International Trip Checklist is Complete. You are all ready for your Foreign Trip.

              FYI: These are the basic essentials. We have not mentioned the usual stuff such as clothes and shoes. That's up to you depending on where you are travelling, and what activities you plan to engage in.

              FAQ: What are the steps to take when Travelling Abroad?

              1) Make documents ready (Passport, Visa, copies etc. as mentioned above)

              2) Do travel shopping (as per checklist above)

              3) Do check-in and seat selection as soon as it opens

              4) Pack for the trip

              5) Check baggage weights before leaving home, and make sure bags are locked.

              6) Make sure your cards are working, has limits, and are activated for international travel.

              7) Make sure that your connectivity (phone  - voice and data) is sorted.

              Airport Process for International Flights

              8) Arrive at Airport 2-3 hours before flight

              9) Do check-in and baggage drop.

              10) Fill immigration form and proceed to Indian immigration

              11) Clear security check

              12) Board the Flight

              13) Fill immigration forms for the destination country on the flight itself.

              14) Land at destination country

              15) Clear immigration at destination Airport

              16) Collect your check-in bag if any.

              17) Declare any items at Foreign Customs Counter (Red Channel)

              18) If no declaration, proceed through green channel.

              20) Exchange bare minimum foreign currency at the Airport (Keep it minimum as rates are premium at Airports).

              20) Enter your destination country.

              FAQ: What is not allowed in carry baggage for international flights from India?

              a) The usual hazardous and dangerous stuff that are not allowed in domestic flights (e.g sharp objects such as knives etc.)

              b) Items that have customs restrictions:

              i) Gold: Small amounts (e.g. a gold chain and ring). If you plan to carry excessive gold, better declare it at customs while leaving so that you don't have any trouble while coming back.

              ii) Cash: 

              a) India Rupees: 25,000 max

              b) Foreign Currency: USD 5,000 worth max

              Please note that these are limits for carrying out of India. The foreign country you are flying into will have separate limits on how much money you can carry-in. Please check these before travelling.

              c) Certain Foods: There are certain foreign countries (e.g. Australia) that restrict foods from other countries. Pls check this with the customs website of the specific country you are visiting.

              d) Liquids that are more than 100 ml in quantity: This is a standard rule across countries. Be careful with your perfumes and toiletries.

              FAQ: What to wear on an International Flight?

              Guys, absolutely no rules here. But consider the following:

              a) Carry a jacket or a travel blanket as airline cabins can get really cold, and the airline (especially budget flights) may not provide you blankets.

              b) Wear shoes and socks as they keep your feet warm. Also its better to wear them vs pack them.

              c) Wear jeans as opposed to packing them (weight and bulk)

              d) Try to dress based on the destination you are flying to If you do not want to stand out from the crowd.

              eg) To places like Dubai and Gulf where lot of people travel for work, dress regularly

              To places like Bali and Bangkok where mostly tourists travel, dress super-casually.

              FAQ: What should I do to prepare for an International flight? How to Travel Abroad for Beginners?

              Dont worry, just follow this guide. We have captured everything you need here. You'll be fine.

              International Travel Checklist

              Smooth Travels!

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