Even though each passenger is allowed two pieces of checked luggage on international flights, flights within China limit each passenger to one piece of luggage not weighing more than 44 pounds. Therefore, you are advised to bring only one piece of luggage to China. You can purchase another piece of luggage when you reach your last stop in China and then you will be able to check two pieces of luggage home. If you have extra luggage when traveling within China, you may have to pay an excess baggage charge at each airport.
Simply put, if you do not want to pay any possible penalty for exceeding luggage restrictions, then bring only one piece of luggage, weighing no more than 50 pounds, to China. When you leave China, you are welcome to buy another piece of luggage for your newly acquired souvenirs and then you will be able to bring both pieces of luggage home with you without extra charge.
Note that all checked luggage should be lockable.
In addition to checked luggage, passengers may carry on one or two regular pieces of luggage of appropriate dimensions as authorized by the airline. If you are traveling with a Regent group, we will give you a Regent carry-on bag when you reach China; in this case, you should bring only one carry-on bag from home.
Lightweight (canvas or nylon) luggage is the most practical. Experienced travelers often suggest this tactic for packing: lay out everything you think you will need and then pack only half of that. Another suggestion is to walk around with your packed bags for a few minutes to see how heavy they are since porters and bellmen are not always available.
Completely filling the bag will prevent the contents from sliding around and becoming excessively wrinkled or damaged. Try stuffing socks into the toes of your shoes. Roll up sweaters and underwear and pack them on the bottom of your suitcase, followed by layers of clothing that wrinkle more easily.
Above all, do not pack anything fragile, valuable, or perishable in the luggage that you intend to check.
Valuables of any kind--money, jewelry, important documents, prescription drugs--as well as matches or cigarette lighters should be placed in your carry-on luggage. Leave all expensive jewelry and furs at home in safe storage--and enjoy peace of mind in your travels.
We have created the following packing checklist for your convenience:
- Battery-operated or electrical (with converter/adapter) appliances
- Face cloth and soap
- Extra set of luggage keys
- Travel alarm clock
- Sewing kit
- Moist towelettes in packages
- Language dictionary and phrase book
- Photocopies of important documents
- Small notepad to log purchases for customs officials (both Chinese and American)
- Diary or journal to record your trip
- Copy (not original) of your address book (with room to include addresses of the new friends you will make during the course of your trip)
- Lightweight raincoat and fold-up umbrella Bathing suit
- Sunscreen lotion
- Aspirin or aspirin substitute
- Cold tablets
- Bowel regulators
- Spray anesthetic
- Bandage strips
- Antiseptic spray/wipes
- Your usual antibiotic
- Copy of your medical history, prescription duplicates, extra eyeglasses and dentures, etc.
- An elastic bandage
- Baking soda
- Orabase with benzocaine
- Medicated pads
- Cotton swabs
- Tea bags
- Toothbrush, toothpaste, floss
- Ice bag
- Sterile cotton balls
- Comforts for air flight: sweater, slip-on socks, gum or candy to alleviate ear pressure
- Neck pillow or inflatable pillow
- Camera and plenty of film
- Passport and visas
Be sure to include a pair of comfortable walking shoes with nonskid soles!
Pack some old clothes!
If you are traveling with a Regent group, all the hotels will be expensive and laundry costs could be significant. We suggest that you bring some old pajamas, socks, a worn robe, etc. Then you will not have to launder them too frequently and will be able to discard them by the time you leave for home. This serves a double purpose: by lightening your load, you have just created space for the souvenirs accumulated on your journey.
Another tip: If you are traveling with a companion, pack some of your companion's clothes in your bag and vice versa. Then, if one bag is lost, each of you will at least have a change of clothing. Also, pack toiletries and a change of clothes in your carry-on bag.