e-mail: info@projectcordillera.org

How to Pack Like a Pro

22nd June 2017

We’ve spent a lot of time living out of backpacks while trekking through back-country forests and wandering around cities. That translates to a lot of time and plenty of, sometimes frustrating, experiences understanding the necessities for a perfect trip. It’s taken us years to find our favorite items and pack like pros. So, whether you’re new to mountaineering and have no idea what to bring or you’re a seasoned traveler committed to your brands, you can never have too many packing suggestions.

Erin Harris – Head of Sustainability

  • Moleskine – even in the midst of the technology age, nothing can ever really replace a quality notebook. Manufactured and designed in Italy, Moleskine advents a return to the journals used by artists and thinkers, such as Picasso and Ernest Hemingway. Documenting your travel stories, saving restaurant recommendations, connecting with fellow travelers, and keeping meeting notes is just more exciting with your moleskine in hand.
  • Sun Bum Lip Balm – Lip balm with sunscreen is a must. But, this lip balm also makes it taste good with coconut, key lime, banana, and mango flavors!

Maria Ranallo – Marketing Manager

  • Oral Rehydration Salts – You’ll be very active in Peru, and if you don’t get enough water it can mean dehydration which can cause headaches, fatigue, dizziness, confusion and very serious complications if not treated promptly. Oral rehydration salts work wonders, even if they don’t taste the best. They are also good for the morning after all those Pisco sours, just saying…

Jonas Duecker – Partnerships Associate

  • Two different credit or debit cards – Unfortunately, the ATMs in Peru love to eat credit and debit cards! I’ve lost a few, so it is always a good idea to keep at least two on hand. You might consider opening a Charles Schwab checking account as they don’t charge fees abroad when using the debit card.
  •  Student ID – For those of you that are studying, your student ID will come in very handy when traveling. You’ll receive discounts at museums, Machu Picchu, and many other places in town. For those of you not currently studying, check the expiration date on your card or just bring it anyway. You never know who will be willing to bend the rules just a bit.

[RELEVANT CONTENT: Bienvenidos a Colombia! Project Cordillera Launches in Colombia]

Elizabeth Hosier – Chief Catalyst

  • A good novel – It’s great to have a novel about the place you’re traveling to understand more of the culture, and just any old book to relax into when you need an escape. For instance, don’t leave Colombia without reading the infamous, Gabriel Garcia Marquez, you’ll expand your cultural knowledge. Or, try reading Astragral by Albertine Sarrazin, it has a great energy that you need while traveling!
  • Extra packing space or a souvenir bag – Leaving space in your bag is a must when traveling to Peru. The sheer amount of fabulous textiles, art work, and strange snacks will have you stuffing that extra space quite full by the end of your journey. If you can’t leave space in your bag, bring an extra reusable tote that you can carry on the plane. You can send us pictures of the great art work later!

Sam Williams – Founder of Project Cordillera

  • Sunglasses – Mountaineering sans sunglasses is not an option. Invest in a quality pair of sunglasses that protect your eyes and offer great UV protection.
  • Sunscreen – Did you know UV exposure increases by 4% for every 1000 ft in elevation gained? Not good, especially for fair-skinned individuals. Sunscreen is pricey in Latin America and we can’t vouch for ingredient or labeling regulations, so be sure to stock up on your favorite brand before arriving in country. And don’t forget to reapply!

Sam Gibbons Frendo – Founder of Project Cordillera

  • Water bottle – how many times have you lost a water bottle or had to buy a plastis one? Try getting one that can be clipped to your backpack and you’ll never have to buy another again. Also, you’ll be able to refill your bottle, just be sure to know where you can drink the water from the tap and where you’ll need a strong filter.
  • Floss – What can we say? If you aren’t removing mango fibers from your teeth, you can use it to tie things together or cut pastries in half to share (but, who shares pastries?)

Kenji Stasiewicz – Head of Partnerships

  • Laminated copy of your passport – It is highly recommended that you carry a copy of your passport with you when you travel, for many reasons. To make sure that copy can be used for many years, laminate it, put it in a ziploc bag. For extra security and convenience, put a personal amount of toilet paper in the bag. Most public toilets in South America lack paper and let’s face it, you don’t want to get stuck in that situation…
  • NRS Bills Bag – 110L durable waterproof backpack that you’d feel fine strapping to the roof of a colectivo. Don’t spend time worrying about your luggage or it’s content. Also, you never know when you are going to get stuck in a torrential downpour.

Now, you’ve got a great starting point to help you pack like a pro! Happy Travels!

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