The USA travel checklist

Tickets, money, passport! Your essential USA to-do list and packing list.

Before you go

Your travel checklist of the most important things you need to do and pack before visiting the US.

Use the quick links below to navigate the USA travel guide or download the travel checklist here.

To do

  • Passport: Is it up to date?
  • Entry requirements: Do you have a valid ESTA or visa?
  • Vaccinations: Are all your routine vaccinations up to date?
  • Travel insurance: Are you covered?
  • Safety: Have you checked the latest safety advice on the region you're travelling to? Smartraveller now has a 'crisis page' and subscription service that allows you to receive SMS or email notifications of major incidents in the area/s you're travelling to.
  • Money: Have you told your bank you're going overseas and do you know how you'll be paying for things in the USA?
  • Booking: Have you booked accommodation for at least the first night?
  • Getting there and away: What airports to fly into and how to get to and from the airport to your accommodation.
  • Getting around: Do you know how you'll get around, and do you need to pre-book any tickets?
  • Driving: If you're planning on hiring a car, do you have the appropriate licence and are you familiar with US road rules?
  • Phone: Have you switched off data roaming and voicemail? If you're planning to use a local or travel SIM, is your phone unlocked?
  • Voltage: Have you checked that your Australian appliances will be compatible with US voltage?
  • Apps: Have you downloaded offline maps, travel apps or the CHOICE USA travel guide onto your mobile?
  • Medication: Have you checked that your regular medication is legal to bring into the USA?

To pack

Tip: When you travel, you should carry all medications (even vitamins) in their original packaging, along with their original prescription. It's also a good idea to carry a letter from your doctor explaining what the medications are (using generic names), what they're for and dosage instructions

If you're travelling to (or transiting through) countries with strict drug laws, check with the country's embassy to ensure your medication is not a restricted drug.