Ticking off that checklist

The YSEALI Professional Fellowship is in less than two days, and it’s a packing spree–my bedroom’s littered with things from local travels, so it would be good to have a checklist of items and errands and prepare right for the journey.

If you still haven’t packed (or if you’re procrastinating on the packing, like I’m doing), this might be a bit of help, so I’m sharing what’s on my list:


  • An envelope of all important documents: Passport, tickets, letter of invitation, ICMA instructions, and a list of the Philippine embassies in the US (make sure all documents have a soft copy on your phone)
  • An envelope for all receipts and boarding passes you will gather during the trip
  • Printed duplicates of important documents to be put in the checked-in bags


  • Formal and casual clothes
  • National costume
  • A pajama set
  • Underwear and socks
  • Formal and walking shoes, and slippers
  • Workout clothes
  • YSEALI shirt


  • Vitamins
  • Paracetamol
  • Loperamide
  • Other medicines and prescriptions, as needed

Hygiene kit

  • Hair hygiene: Shampoo, conditioner
  • Facial wash, feminine wash, soap, deodorant, wipes
  • Lotion, perfume, makeup kit
  • Small laundry soap


  • Laptop, phone, chargers, camera, hard drives / USB stick, fully-charged power bank, headset, small extension cord
  • Fix your playlists before the flight

Other items to pack

  • Country flag
  • Tokens and gifts for the host communities and other fellows (make sure these are allowable items at airports, if food, or if with local materials such as fibre and wood)
  • Umbrella (Don’t put this in your hand carried bag)
  • Ziplock
  • Business cards
  • Book / Kindle for the flight
  • Sunnies
  • Light snack and some instant local food
  • Small pillow, sleep mask, and shawl (which can be used as a mini blanket too)

Other to-do’s

  • Download apps which may be useful for travel, such as TripCase, CityMapper, Maps/Google Maps, apps of your airlines
  • Make a folder of all important travel documents on your phone
  • Weigh your bags and luggage before the flight
  • Make sure that your local telco providers and banks have been alerted to your international travel (have them issue travel advisories as needed, and make sure you have the right roaming plan if you’re not going to buy a new sim / phone in the US)
  • If your luggage has old travel barcode stickers and tags, take them off (isopropyl alcohol is very effective)
  • Get an RFID pouch for safety


That’s it for now, time to continue packing. Let me know what else if on your list.

Really excited for the fellowship. 🙂

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