Travel Packing List

What to Pack for a France Trip

Make that next trip to France (or elsewhere in Europe) go as smoothly as possible. These are items that you simply must have before you travel to France. Check these out and you will enjoy a worry-free vacation with this list of what to pack for a France trip.

Edited by Mary Anne Evans

  • 01 of 08

    Lingo Voyager Talking Translator

    Talking Translator for Travel Packing List
    ••• Talking Translator for Travel Packing List. Magellans

    One of the single most important things you will need in France is the ability to speak French. You are bound to need to ask directions or read a sign or a menu that is only in French. If you don't have a translator, you could truly regret it! You can try learning the language before you go, but you'll find that when faced with rapid-speaking French people, your mind will go blank.

    What I like about this particular translator is that it is a talking version, so you won't have to deal with blank stares when you mispronounce a word. It also features a currency and metric converter, calculator, alarm clock, calendar, voice memo recording and eight travel games.

    Buy from Amazon

  • 02 of 08

    Voltage Converter with Adaptor Plug Set

    Adapter and Converters for Travel
    ••• Adapter and Converters for Travel. Magellans

    If you plan to plug in anything you bring with you, it won't fit in the holes unless you bring an adaptor (and these are surprisingly hard to find over in France, particularly in small towns), and it just might get burned out if you don't convert the electrical current. This is the best investment you can make: a few bucks to save (and be able to use) your electronics worth hundreds of dollars.

    Buy from Amazon

  • 03 of 08

    Comfort Walking Shoes

    Comfort Travel Shoes are a Must-Pack Item
    ••• Comfort Travel Shoes are a Must-Pack Item. Shoebuy

    In France, you walk. You walk to shop. You walk along the Seine. You walk to attractions. And when you get to those attractions, you walk up 10 flights of spiral stairs. This is the best investment you can make before your trip. Get a nice pair of high-quality walking shoes. If you don't have the cash, at least get a couple pairs of walking inserts. Trust me. You will thank me later.

    Buy from Amazon

  • 04 of 08

    Earplanes For Ear Pain

    Earplanes for Travel Packing List
    ••• Earplanes for Travel Packing List. Magellans

    Avoid ear pain on the long flight to France with these wonderful, inexpensive Earplanes. I've used them many times personally to avoid pesky popping and pain. Just stick them in your ears on the departure and for the descent. They even come in versions for children, which could make for a much more peaceful flight for everybody concerned.

    Buy from Amazon

    Continue to 5 of 8 below.
  • 05 of 08

    France Maps

    ••• Maps are Essential for France Travel. © Ossi Laurila

    The worst feeling is to be in France, lost, and only have a limited grasp of the language. Avoid such mishaps with a very good France map, which is absolutely crucial if you plan to drive at all. Buying a map while in France, it will be tough to find one in English, so get it before you go. Consult this list of top road maps of France.

    If you're driving I recommend that you buy two kinds of maps. Try the Michelin maps in book form for very detailed journeys. And also get the large map to show the whole country in one easy way and work out where you are going. 

  • 06 of 08

    Door Stop Alarm

    Door Alarm for Travel Packing
    ••• Door Alarm for Travel Packing. Magellans

    For increased security in a foreign land, many people feel much better having an alarm. Wedge this under your hotel door or train compartment door and, if it opens, an alarm will sound. it just gives you extra peace of mind when traveling abroad.

    Buy from Amazon

  • 07 of 08

    WindPro Flatwear Vented Auto Umbrella

    Umbrella for Travel Packing List
    ••• Umbrella for Travel Packing List. Magellans

    This may not seem crucial, but trust me on this one (especially if you are planning to visit Paris during the rainy/windy season, which some years can seem to run from January through December). It is also quite important to get a good umbrella. I've had plenty of compact, travel umbrellas bite the dust under Parisian winds. This one is sturdy, and specially vented so the wind won't flip it inside out.

    Buy from Amazon

    Check out the weather in France throughout the year

  • 08 of 08

    Samsonite Underseat Tote

    Samsonite Underseater
    ••• Samsonite Underseater Bag. Samsonite

    As anyone who has traveled around France by train knows, versatile luggage is crucial. I prefer the rolling tote because it can be carried on your shoulder or rolled through the airports or train stations when your shoulders feel like they are about to burn right off. This model is nice because it is compact enough to fit under the airplane seat, but also has side pockets to quickly reach passport and boarding pass.

    Buy from Amazon