Packing Tips for a Summer with Camp Canada

Getting started

Make sure to check the NYQUEST Handbook for what to pack suggestions.


Don’t over pack

Don’t pack things you can buy here! Remember, Canada may not be your home but we still have the important stuff like shampoo, soap, extra socks, sunscreen, toothbrushes, snacks, and much more.  Your camp tuck shop will have stock of the essentials!


To save on weight and space DON’T pack things like a big water bottle (you will get one free at your orientation), a life-jacket, big bottles of shampoo, too many clothes, your best friend.


Essential Airport Info: You may not pack liquid or gel substances in your carry-on unless they are in individual containers of 3.4 ounces or less and enclosed in one clear, quart-size, plastic, zip-top bag per passenger. Any larger containers of liquids and gels must be packed in your checked luggage. For more information, see Airport Security Q&Aand check your airline’s website for specific details.


Medications: It is recommended that prescription medications be in their original labeled containers to expedite the screening process. The TSA also makes exceptions for other medical necessities such as insulin, eye drops or syringes; see the TSA Web site for more details.

Know your weight limits and use a home scale to weigh your bag (tip: weigh yourself, then step on the scale with your check in luggage, subtract your weight = your luggage weight).


NYQUEST Staff Tricks & Tips


My first summer as an international staffer at a summer camp I packed so many clothes that I didn’t end up wearing, which was so annoying to have to drag around. All I wanted to wear at camp were comfy shorts/T-shirts/sweatpants/hoodies (which is definitely not what I wore at home) for chilly mornings and nights. Don’t pack too many nice things!


No sock shoes (e.g. Crocs, Tevas, Keens) is the best – less laundry, no dirty/wet socks, you can walk in creeks whenever you feel like it, and when it rains you won’t need to worry about soggy shoes. Also less smelly.


I never pack full toiletries because they will always, always leak. Buy it here. For sunscreen and bug spray, always buy it here.


I personally advocate for backpacks over rolling suitcases because camps don’t usually have real paved roads and nice smooth paths. You might end up moving around a few times in the summer, and being able to put your life on your back is pretty liberating.



A headlamp and a good attitude ready for adventure are all I need.



Need to freshen up for that counselor crush?  Or feeling the burn from uncomfortable chafing? Baby powder has your back (and feet, and thighs…).


Wool socks.  Warm, quick drying, and stylish… what more could your feet need?



If you’re into photography (and I don’t mean the iPhone kind), carry all film with you onboard, as screening equipment for checked luggage can damage undeveloped film.

Books! Soft covers and magazines are the best, and it’s always a good idea to bring books you don’t mind parting with in a good book swap!

Important documents:  taking a picture of passport/important documents and email it to yourself



Rolling your clothes/ fold clothes together: backpackers swear by this method.



Zip Lock bags of all shapes and sizes are your friends!  7 pairs of underwear? In a ziplock.  Undershirts? In a ziplock.  Socks? In a ziplock.  Important documents? In a ziplock.  Lotions & liquids? In a ziplock.  You get the idea!  I find zip lock bags useful as a dresser drawer replacement when you’re trying to keep your clothes from ending up as one big tangle.  Not into the plastic, try cheap mesh bags instead.


Wet-wipes: Ever gone weeks without a shower?  Been packed in a crowded van on a hot and dusty road and emerged caked in sweat and dirt?  Have to put in contact lenses but your hands are so dirty they shouldn’t be anywhere near your eyes? Wet wipes are a life-saver when you need to feel refreshed and do a quick clean up.  For the environmentally friendly, a reusable facecloth works just fine.

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