How we prepare to travel and be away from home for months at a time

How we prepare to travel and be away from home for months at a time

Since the beginning of 2023, we have spent quite a bit of time in America working with Bailey Cole and racing desert, short course, and rock races. We quickly worked out some simple SOPs (standard operating procedures) which allow us to get through long haul flights, pack with greater efficiency, and travel with a bit more confidence.

Long haul flights

  • All necessary cables and chargers for any devices we plan to use on the plane
  • Charge the devices you plan to use on the plane prior to the flight
  • A few pens (we’ve been the people borrowing a pen to fill out the declaration, so now pack a few extras!)
  • Determine which bag and which pocket of that bag the passports and plane tickets will live in, never put them anywhere else (even for a ‘moment’).
  • Triple check ahead of time that your seats are together
  • Pack in carry on, items that will get you by if your checked luggage fails to meet you
  • Dress in comfortable clothes and layers which you can add/remove easily while seated. We like to wear crocs which you can kick off or quickly slip on during the flight.
  • Pre-plan and arrange how you are getting to/from the airport, are people picking you up, are you catching a taxi etc. It is so much easier to get to your first destination with these travel plans organised ahead of time, instead of trying to work it when you’re tired and quickly losing the ability to deal with other people.
  • Get cash in the local currency at the airport



  • Luggage that you can carry comfortably, or wheel/push/drag easily. You never know what kind of indoors or outdoors 'obstacles' you may come across or how far you might actually have to go with your luggage without assistance.
  • Know the weather you are headed to and the main activities you’ll be doing on your trip. For us, it is always the opposite season but we’ll still be working on cars and racing
  • Start with the basics undies, socks, singlets and then the bigger items to fill out your suitcase
  • Chuck it all on your bed/some flat surface and then pack it, this helps you see everything rather than forgetting what you may have already put in your bag
  • Test that your bathroom items are travel ‘safe’ e.g. can they pop open too easily, are they at risk of breaking when squashed.
  • We pack and then use our bathroom bag a few days ahead of time, this helps us see what we’ve forgotten!
  • Any medications or other things you use every now and then, such as lip balms, rash cream, allergy tablets. Items that may be available where you’re going, but will no doubt be different than what you’re used to.
  • A wall plug that will allow you to plug in your items in the country you are going to
  • Printed copies of any border documents and travel documents in case you need that info but don’t have internet access
  • Amy wears glasses, so we take a spare pair (just in case!)
  • A homesickness cure a.k.a small jar of vegemite


Other things we do:

  • Notify your bank you are travelling overseas
  • Send all your travel docs and info to a trusted friend or family member as a ‘just in case’ measure
  • At races we are given stickers from other racers, so we take a stack of our team stickers over to trade and give out as well
  • Now that we know we are travelling back and forward a bit, we have a bag of things we have left in America. This saves us taking more stuff than we need back and forth.
  • Always arrive early, we’d much rather hang out at the airport than stress in traffic, and join long lines at check in and security when we’re running out of time.
  • Miss our dog quite a bit while we are away!


This isn’t comprehensive but hopefully there is one or two things you can take away and use for yourself next time you travel!

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