Packing for Bali is luckily pretty simple, mostly because of its beautiful weather. No need for giant coats in Bali, which makes it the perfect destination to pack carry-on only. If you love packing light then you’ll love packing for Bali, but if packing light is new to you, Bali is a great destination to try it out.
Changing Your Mindset To Pack Light
The first time we went to Bali we took checked luggage. Even though there was no need for us to pack that much, I think we sometimes just expect that’s what we need because that’s what our baggage allowance is.
The first time we tested out having carry-on only was during another Bali trip, where we left our checked luggage at a hotel in Bali, and just took our small backpacks to Lombok and the Gili Islands. I was shocked at how little I needed. I didn’t even use everything in my backpack on that trip.
So the next time we went to Bali, we went carry-on only, and it was so much easier. Sure, it takes a while to figure out what’s necessary to pack and what you don’t need at all, but once you start getting the hang of it, you just keep getting better and better at packing light.
Why Go To Bali Carry-On Only?
Packing light isn’t for everyone, but there are so many benefits of going carry-on only. Here’s a few:
- Your bag isn’t as heavy.
- You don’t have as many bags to carry.
- No need to wait at the airport for your bag, as soon as you’re out of customs, you’re on holidays!
- You know your bag will always be at the other end of your flight.
- On some airlines, you can save money by not checking bags.
- You have everything you need, and nothing you don’t.
You can also buy a lot of things in Bali, like sunscreen, toiletries etc, so it’s not necessary to bring it all with you.
Packing For Bali: The Carry-On Only Bali Packing List
So here’s what I packed in my carry-on for our Bali trip…
- Summer/Casual Dress x 2
- Day/Night Dress x 1
- T-Shirts x 5
- Top x 1
- Shorts x 2
- Kaftan/Light Dress for over Swimmers x 1
- Leggings x 2 (can be interchanged with other light long pants or just taking one pair)
- Jeans x 1 (can be easily interchanged with a dress – I only wore these at night)
- Light cardigan x 1 (only needed occasionally for night or if visiting inland mountain areas that are cooler)
- Pyjamas x 1
- Bra’s x 4 (including sports bra if going to be more active)
- Underwear x 7
- Swimmers x 2
- Thongs/Flip-flops x 1
- Flat Sandals x 1
- Joggers x 1
- Hairbrush + Comb
- Hair Treatment (I bought this, but it’s not needed) – packed in Go Toobs (I love these!)
- Hair Ties
- BB Cream
- Rollerball Perfume
- Things we bought in Bali:
- Camera + Memory Card + Spare Battery + Charger + External Microphone
- Phone + Charger
- MacBook Air (we take these for blogging whilst we travel, unless you’re working in Bali you shouldn’t need them
- Hard Drive (again for blogging and backing up photos)
- Electric plug/adaptor
- Cotton Tips
- Bushmans Insect Repellent
- Hand Sanitizer
- Betadine Antiseptic Liquid
- Things we bought in Bali:
- Vitamin C
In The Handbag
- Mini tissue pack
- Flight/Compression socks
- Clear zip-lock pouch for documents
- Business Cards
- Travel Wallet with Passport + Money + Cards
- Flight Tickets
- Travel Insurance Card
- Credit Card + Debit Card + Indonesian Rupiah
- Drivers Licence (for photo ID)
- Accommodation Booking Receipts (I usually don’t print these anymore, but just access it on my phone)
- Photocopies of important travel documents
- Check if you’re eligible for visa-free entry to Indonesia here.
So packing for Bali carry-on only is definitely doable! We packed the list above for one month in Bali and had everything we needed :)
This is so helpful, Thank you! Do you have any tips for how to pack all the souvenirs on your way back ;)
Hi Samantha, thanks so much! haha, even packing carry-on only, you will find you can still leave free space when you pack, so you have plenty of room for things like this :) Other than this, you can always mail things home! I think packing light also helps you to buy only the souvenirs you really want too. Have a great trip :)
Thank you for the great information. Do you recommend probiotics? I’m a nurse and traveling to Bali in May definitely afraid of tummy upset. Have they helped you? Thanks!
Hi Jaclyn, I always travel with probiotics, or have Yakult, and I think it helps but I am no doctor or nurse ;) Have a great trip!
Great blog post. Just wondering where you got your white hard case suitcase from? And obviously it is considered the proper size for carry on luggage only?
Thanks Kristy, my white hard case is an Antler Juon cabin size luggage. It’s the proper size (but on the bigger end of the range) for cabin luggage and I absolutely love it! Here’s a review I did on it: https://almostlanding.com/antler-luggage-review/
This a wonderful blog.My husband and myself are going to Bali this weekend and this one is real save for us.Thanks guys!!
Hi Rupanjali, thanks so much, that means a lot :) Have a great time in Bali!
This is brilliant! Just a quick question, do you have any issues with taking your toiletries as carry on?
Hi Tara, thanks! No problem, just make sure they are under 100ml, and all fit into one clear zip lock bag (sandwich size). I sue Go Toobs to decant some of my products, otherwise some just fit straight in. I buy some of my toiletries in Bali too.