Spending 14 to 21 days in a hotel quarantine can be overwhelming for anyone. I’ve done three quarantines so far and I found out that there are many variables that could make or break the experience.
For example, booking an excellent hotel with great amenities and services that are specially catered for quarantine would make the experience feel a lot more like an extended staycation.
But what if budget or hotel availability is not within our control?
Whether you’ve booked a highly-raved hotel or not, packing the right essentials that will definitely help you throughout the quarantine and make your experience a lot more comfortable.
Here is the ultimate packing list for hotel quarantine:
Food & Beverages
Even though meals are served at quarantine hotels and getting your own additional food delivery is common, these are some items that might make your day-to-day quarantine life much more comfortable when you bring them along first.
Your favourite snacks
Your go-to condiments and seasonings
Quarantine meals usually taste uninspiring. Bringing along your own condiments and seasonings will help to spice up the meal.
Reusable cutlery and/or chopsticks
You can tell your quarantine hotel to not provide disposable cutlery and play your part to take care of our Mother Earth.
Reusable mug, bowl, plate
Having your own mug, bowl and plate will help you to feel more at home.
Reusable food containers
Nice to have if you want to keep leftover food for the next day. You’ll need a food warmer or microwave to reheat them.
Steamer, food warmer, multi-cooker, rice cooker, mini crockpot or even an air fryer
Nice to have if you like your quarantine meal warm. Some parents who went the extra mile rave about having an air fryer to cook nuggets and reheat meals for their kids.
Thermos water flask or a reusable water bottle
Coffee pods, French press, or tea bags
Some hotels may provide fruits and they are uncut. Having your own fruit knife will be very handy not only to cut fruits but also any other food that you want.
Mini chopping board
When you have a fruit knife, you’ll need a chopping board… but make it mini.
Your favourite beverages
Really nice to have if you can’t finish a full bottle in one seating.
Even if the hotel swears by having top-notched sanitisation practices prior to your arrival, you won’t get daily housekeeping services during your quarantine. Keeping your room clean plays a big part in your mental health. That’s why this particular category is extremely important.
Sanitising wet wipes
Gloves for cleaning/washing
Dishwashing liquid or dish soap
Multi-purpose surface cleaning spray
To clean surfaces or dry your reusable mug, plate and cutlery.
Toilet bowl freshener
This keeps your toilet bowl smelling good when there is no air ventilator or open window available for an extended period of time. You’ll feel better.
Some hotels rent/loan this but some don’t. Your sensitive nose/eyes will thank you if you have a vacuum cleaner during your quarantine.
Extra trash bags
Gah. Washing your own clothes during the quarantine can be a hassle. Prepare well or don’t wear anything at all.
Laundry detergent or powder
Foldable pail for laundry or washing
Foldable because it will save you a lot of space and it can double up as a laundry basket.
Portable washing machine
Extremely useful when you have a lot of clothes to wash. Most parents swear by it.
Clothes pegs or clips
Nice to have or if you’re living with more people. I used an iron board to hang my clothes when I was doing quarantine alone.
Clothes / To Wear
Dri-fit or easy-to-dry clothes will make your laundry life easier.
Some hotels may not provide disposable slippers and you might want to feel more comfortable and clean with your own slippers.
Presentable clothes for work if you have to show up on video calls
Skip the pants. 😛
Electronics / Tech
Local SIM card
Mobile phone + charger
Laptop + charger
Travel adaptors or converters
Portable hard drive
eBook reader / iPad / Tablet
HDMI cable to connect your laptop to the TV
Bluetooth keyboard and mouse
It could also be used on the TV as your second monitor
Great mood lifter when you watch a show or listen to music. I place my Bose Bluetooth speaker behind me when I watch a movie on Netflix and it feels like a surround sound system.
Nice to have – just in case the Wi-Fi is slow and you need high-speed internet.
Back up charging cables
Health & Beauty
One type for safety and the other type for beauty.
Sanitising hand gel/spray
Who doesn’t carry them these days?
You’ll realise how fast your nails grow during the quarantine.
Even if you don’t take supplements, it’s good to take Vitamin C and Vitamin D during your quarantine to make up for the lack of sunlight and to boost your immunity.
Or basic medication like painkillers, charcoal and medication that could ease stomach ache, allergies, etc.
Basic first aid kit
Such as plasters, a thermometer, disinfectant liquid, etc.
Sanitary pads and/or tampons
Bring some along even if your menstruation dates don’t clash with your quarantine. You’ll never know if you might need them out of the blue.
Your skin will feel dry when you’re in an air-conditioned room 24/7 and have no control over the on/off of the air-conditioner. You’ll need it.
Facial wash, toner, day/night cream, etc
Makeup remover and cotton pads
Shampoo and body wash
If you have sensitive skin, you’d want to bring along your own. This is a great way to feel at home when you’re using your own shampoo and body wash too.
Essential oil diffuser and/or scented candle
If the windows in the hotel room can’t be opened, you’ll need something to “freshen” up the air and these will come in handy. Make sure that your candle is non-toxic.
Lighter for the scented candle
Or simply having enough match sticks. Take care when burning a candle. You do not want to trigger the fire alarm.
Nice to have if you have a bathtub.
Being in a room for an extended period of time is not fun for anybody. That’s why you need to incorporate movements such as working out into your routine. There are tons of free yoga/workout videos which you can follow online.
Even if you don’t usually exercise, your mental health will thank you when you work out a little during the quarantine. Disclaimer: Please take care and do not overexert yourself.
Jump rope or skipping rope
Yoga or exercise mat
Books or e-Books
Stationery (pen, pencil, colour pencils)
Handicraft items (knitting, painting, colouring, etc)
Even though these are listed under Miscellaneous, they could be as important as everything else listed above.
Your emotional support
This could be a soft toy, pillow or something sentimental that you lean on. Otherwise, having a framed photo of your loved ones could help to make you feel more at home.
Dang, I’ve listed this under Food & Beverages but I just have to repeat this. It. Is. Important.
Swiss army knife
Nice to have and multi-purpose.
Nice to have when you receive flowers or like to get flowers to brighten up your room. There are florists who sell flowers that come in a vase as well.
This ultimate packing list ultimately serves as a reference as everyone has different needs and every hotel provides different amenities.
To lessen the weight of your baggage, find out what is provided by your hotel prior to your trip first. You can also purchase what you need/want online or get your family/friends to deliver certain items to your hotel room.
If you find this list helpful, let me know in the comment box below and share this article.
Good luck with your hotel quarantine!