A Basic Packing List for Your Next Fishing Trip

Fishing is not only a great way to relax, but it’s also good for your health. Whether you prefer to fish with friends and family on a bonding weekend or go solo to get some perspective from the rat race of life, fishing is known to have a calming effect on the body and mind.

A Basic Packing List for Your Next Fishing Trip

It’s also a healthy choice of sports. It teaches patience and a deep love for nature. But with fishing, comes a load of equipment – and without it, you’d have a pretty hard time trying to catch a fish. For instance, it helps if you line your vehicle’s floor with a custom cargo liner. For instance, Ruff Rugs makes custom liners vs a one size fits all so if you have a Jeep Grand Cherokee, they make a cargo liner specifically for that vehicle.

So, we’ve put together the ultimate packing list for your next fishing trip so you won’t forget anything important.  We’ve also included a few packing tips and hacks so you’ll be ready in no time!

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A Basic Packing List for Your Next Fishing Trip

A Basic Packing List for Travelling

Whether you’re packing for a trip out of town or out of the country, there are a few essentials you’ll need wherever you go. Typically, these items are also the ones people tend to forget more often!

In order to prevent any of these essential goodies from being left behind, it’s vital to consult a packing list (which we’ve already done for you).

  • Passport
  • Fishing license
  • Toothbrush and toothpaste
  • Deodorant
  • Shampoo, soap and other travel-sized toiletries
  • Mobile phone and charger
  • Camera, batteries and spare memory card
  • Cash and credit cards
  • Food and water
  • Layers (jackets and fleeces)
  • A change of clothes
  • Underwear and wool socks
  • Basic First Aid kit
  • Sunscreen
  • Insect repellent
  • Umbrella
  • Polarized sunglasses
  • Flashlight or head torch
  • Painkillers and prescription medication
  • Stain remover

Fishing Equipment (Packing List)

You can get by even if you forget to pack the essentials above (to a certain extent). But there is no point in going on a fishing trip without the appropriate fishing gear.


On a fishing trip, you’re likely spending a lot of time outdoors. So it’s important you have the right clothing to keep you comfortable and protected from the elements.

If you’re visiting a cold climate, pack plenty of fleeces, leggings, and layers for wearing under a big heavy jacket. Don’t forget a hat and gloves!

If you’re visiting a warmer destination, then pack a sunhat, water shoes and a lightweight shirt that covers the back of your neck. A bandanna is also helpful for keeping your hair and the sweat out of your eyes.

Rod and Reel

Don’t forget the most important item when it comes to fishing – the rod and reel!

If you don’t already have your own equipment, you could borrow someone else’s, rent from the place you’re staying at, or buy a new one from a nearby store. Check out these good rod and reel combo to find your perfect fit!

Lures and Baits

Some anglers prefer to get their fishing bait from the local store close to the fishing destinations, whereas some prefer to pack them from home. If the journey from home is a long one, don’t pack raw bait as they’ll smell out your luggage.

However, if you’re in favor of plastic lures and tackles, these won’t spoil on the way so it’s good to have them just in case. Get in touch with the local bait store before you leave home and get advice on the current fishing conditions and what bait or lure techniques work best.

Line and Leader

Always have a spare fishing line on you as well as leader material if you’re using your own fishing gear.

Life Jacket

If you’re fishing from a boat, you may need a life jacket. This is not as necessary if you’re only going to be fishing from the shore. You can usually check what the fishing situation will be like at your destination before you leave home.

A Heavy Duty Inflatable Dock

For those wanting their own taste of freedom and adventure, I recommend buying a heavy-duty inflatable dock. This way you can fish to your heart’s content on your own platform.

Waterproof Gear

The weather can be unpredictable in a new location. Therefore, being prepared is key. Pack a poncho, raincoat, waterproof trousers, a pair of gloves, waterproof underwear, and Wellington boots. As they’re all likely to get wet, have a couple of spares if possible.

Other Essential Items (Packing List)

Although you’ll be fine with the items above, having a few additional items will make your camping trip more comfortable. So, if you have space, bring the following along:

  • Biodegradable toilet paper
  • Spare rope
  • Shaving kit
  • Body lotion or aftersun cream
  • Penknife
  • Pajamas
  • Swimsuit
  • Eye mask and earplugs
  • T-shirts
  • Jeans or leggings
  • An extra pair of shoes
  • Socks
  • Sleeping bag
  • Pillow
  • Lip balm
  • Folding table
  • Snacks
  • Books
  • Water bottle
  • Maps and guidebooks
  • Insect repellant
  • Scissors
  • Hairbrush
  • Hat
  • Towel
  • Tissues or wet wipes
  • Laundry bag

A Few Tips for Packing

There’s a lot to remember and pack for a fishing trip. We’ve got some handy tips and tricks that can make packing a lot easier:

Take and Drink Less Liquids

It’s best to leave most of your liquids at home. If you’re flying or traveling by train, you’ll be provided with food and drink. If you’re traveling by car, take an empty water bottle with you that you can fill up along the way.

The reason for drinking less fluid is to reduce the number of times you have to take toilet breaks.

Label Your Luggage Appropriately

Label your luggage with your name and address as well as a detailed description of what’s inside. Labeling your bags is not only helpful if you happen to lose your bag, but it’s also helpful for you to determine what’s in it at a quick glance.

This way you don’t have to upturn every bag when you’re looking for something. By having all the fishing equipment in one bag, toiletries in a different one, food in another, and the rest in their own sacks, you’ll be much more organized.

Packing Hacks

If you’re short on bag space, rolling your clothes takes up less room than folding them. Pack your socks and small items such as electronics inside your shoes to maximize your space. Packing cubes are a lifesaver for organizing your belongings in a backpack or suitcase.

If you’re flying, wear your heaviest items on the plane and remove them after you get through security. If you’re checking in your fishing gear in your checked-in luggage, make sure they’re well-padded and ask the airline staff for a fragile sticker.

Save Some Bag Space

Make sure you leave some extra space in your bag or take a spare empty bag just in case.

Extra space can be used for storing dirty laundry or you can fill it up with bait and lures when you get there. If you’re traveling to a new country, you may want to pick up a few souvenirs!

In a Nutshell

Packing for a fishing trip is no easy feat. A fishing rod, reel, bait, and tackle are bulky and complicated items to lug around. And on top of that, you still have to pack up your daily essential items.

A packing list is a great way to ensure you don’t forget anything vital. After all, you don’t want to drive five hours to your destination only to find you left all your rain-gear at home and it’s pouring with rain. Or worse yet, you’ve forgotten a vital piece of fishing equipment!

So, start off small and tick off one item at a time. You’ll have your packing organized in no time!

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