Missions Trip Packing List—2016

Packing for a missions trip requires careful planning. With 43+ years of short term missions experience, the Official Teen Missions International trip packing list is one of the best.



Download and print the Official Teen Missions Packing List:  2016 Missions Trip Packing List
Download and print the  Official Teen Missions Peanut Kids Camp Packing List

Packing List Explanation: In most cases you will need everything we suggest, but don’t forget there is a weight limit (35 pounds—flying teams, 45 pounds—non flying teams; includes sleeping bag) The tool that you bring to Registration is not included in the weight limit. Dress requirements will be strictly enforced. Unless the weather is expected to be cool/cold, bring lightweight clothing to help keep your luggage weight down. Check the weather section of your Specific Team Fact Sheet, (mailed in the spring), for details on the climate to which you are going. Lightweight clothing dries better at Boot Camp. White or light-colored clothing is difficult to keep clean. Label everything with your name and team number.

All your belongings need to be brought in a sturdy cardboard box or plastic tote that is labeled with your name and team number. A duffel bag will be issued to you. Each person is limited to one duffel bag—total weight limit is 35 pounds (45 pound for non-flying teams) including bedding (sleeping bag or blankets, sheets and air mattress).  A waist pack is recommended for camera and personal items.  Teen Missions will also issue a carryon and NO other hand luggage is permitted. Personal backpacks are helpful at Boot Camp, but must be emptied out and placed in your duffel for travel or left behind. Bible, boots, jacket, and the travel clothes you will be wearing are not included in your weight limit.

Clothing Exchange: You are required to bring to Boot Camp everything you are taking on the team. No one will be permitted to exchange clothing at Boot Camp, airports, homes, etc. What you bring is what you take. If visitors bring you additional clothing, you will not be permitted to receive it. Any clothing that you bring with you to Boot Camp that does not fit into your weight limit or that you don’t want can be donated to the Missionary Barrel or left to be picked up at Debrief.

Teen Missions Trip Packing List

Bible—with both Old and New Testaments), which can be written in for Bible marking and study. You may want a Bible cover to protect your Bible.
Dish bag—a hand-made bag of light-weight cotton fabric with a drawstring. A pillow case cut in half with a small hem to hold a drawstring can work. (No mesh please) BIG ENOUGH TO HOLD DISHES/CUTLERY
Boots—Teen—One pair 6” to 8” (8” preferred) all-leather lace up construction boots.
Dishes/Cutlery-lightweight but sturdy bowl and tray/plate, and knife, fork, and spoon
Boots—Preteen One pair all-leather lace up boots that cover the ankle.Glasses safety strap—required for those who wear prescription glasses
Teen Travel Jeans—1 pair new dark blue jeans (no frayed hems)Toilet paper —One or more rolls
Preteen Travel Jeans—2 pair new dark blue jeans (no frayed hems)Stuff bags or Zip Lock bags (one or two gallon size) to
organize and pack items in (optional)
Boot polish and/or mink oil or other water repellant itemsPhone Card or quarters (optional) for the allowed call before leaving the US and upon arrival back in the US
Six to ten pairs socks—tube or heavy-type suggestedSleepwear
One jacket (lightweight or heavy depending on climate at team site)Towels and wash cloths—one or two, lightweight
Dish bag—a hand-made bag of light-weight cotton fabric
with a drawstring. A pillow case cut in half with a small hem to hold a drawstring can work. (No mesh please)
Bucket—plastic, 5 gallon (for laundry and bathing)
Swimsuit— Swimsuits are for swimming or bathing only. (See Notes Below)Scrub brush; clothespins; 20-25 ft. clothesline; laundry detergent or bar (enough for Boot Camp)
One to two sweatshirts (for cold climates only)Toothpaste, soap and other personal items such as baby wipes, hand sanitizer, medicated powder (extra- large sizes add to weight limit).
Sturdy work glovesBandaids—One large box
Air mattress (good quality) or waterproof sleeping pad (no air pump available)Mosquito repellent—for Boot Camp and field as necessary
Sleeping bag or sheets and a blanketFlashlight—lightweight but sturdy; extra batteries
Camera & case but no large bags or extra lenses

3 work outfits—lightweight work pants or jeans, and shirts
1 or 2 dress outfits—slacks (not denim) and collared dress shirts for church
1 pair travel jeans—(2 for preteen teams)
* ALL boys must bring a belt *

3 work outfits—lightweight work pants or jeans, and shirts
1 or 2 dress outfits—dress, blouse and skirt, or jumper (not denim) for church (knee-length slip)
1 pair travel jeans—(2 for preteen teams)

3 casual outfits—cotton pants or jeans and shirts (not worn for work)
2 work outfits—for Boot Camp (lightweight pants or jeans, and shirts)
1 dress outfit—slacks (not denim) and collared dress shirt for church
1 pair travel jeans—(2 for preteen teams)

3 casual outfits—cotton pants or jeans (skirt/jumper) and shirt (not worn for work)
2 work outfits—for Boot Camp (lightweight pants or jeans, and shirts)
1 dress outfit—dress, blouse and skirt, or jumper (not denim) for church (knee length slip)
1 pair travel jeans—(2 for preteen teams)

The following items must be readily available upon arrival at Boot Camp.  They are needed for Registration, collection by the team leader, or for immediate use.

Passport—unless already mailed with visa application. (Do not mail passport unless notified to do so)Airplane ticket home, or explanation of how member is getting home, and transportation card if not already mailed
Balance of your support WITH DONOR COUPONS FILLED OUTUnaccompanied minor fee, if applicable
Shot Record—record of immunizations — childhood and/or
international immunizations as applicable
Travel home baggage fee
Deposits—(Tent deposit, literature deposit, and air/departure taxes - see Specific Team Fact Sheet)Tool or Gift Card — Listed in Specific Team Fact Sheet. Gift card from home improvement/hardware store can substitute for tool
Visa money, if required. See Specific Team Fact SheetDish bag with silverware in it. The bowl and plate/tray can be packed in your box
Personal spending moneyConstruction DVD — or $15 non-refundable fee
Copy of list of contributors with addressesWater shoes — For swimming and bathing only, one piece molded rubber and stretch fabric shoes that completely enclose the foot —no flip-flops, canvas/lace-up shoes, or crocs.
Copy of green financial record


Dress outfits—guys: For church or evangelism—dress slacks (no denim),

collared button-down shirt. Dress jeans and T-shirts may not be worn to church. Ties optional unless otherwise stated in Specific Team Fact Sheet. No suits or banded-collar shirts. (No polo shirts for church)

Dress outfits—girls: For church or evangelism—dresses or skirts (no denim) must be below the knee. A knee-length slip must be worn with thin skirts/dresses. No sleeveless tops or blouses permitted. (No T-shirts for church)

Work outfits—Lightweight work pants (weigh less than jeans and are cooler and easier to wash). Consider the climate of the country where you are going when deciding on weight of clothing. T-shirts are good to work in.

Casual outfits—Khakis, cargo pants, cotton slacks, jeans and clean shirt—not ever worn for work.

mission trip packout

Teams weigh each duffle on pack-out day at the Lord’s Boot Camp… Work your plan!

Boot Camp clothing—You may want to bring clothing to be worn only at Boot Camp, then donate it to the Missionary Barrel before leaving for your project. This will enable you to keep clothing for the field clean and packed away. It can also help you to accurately determine the weight of your belongings prior to Boot Camp. This is optional. You may also leave clothes behind and pick them up at Debrief.

Clothing Must Be Modest and Neat

Neither males nor females may tie up the bottom of their shirts to expose the midriff, nor can they roll up their sleeves to create a sleeveless shirt. DO NOT BRING TIGHT CLOTHES that give the poured-in look—you will NOT be allowed to wear them.  The following clothing guidelines apply the moment you enter Boot Camp, arrive at the airport or bus station and apply until you reach home.  Please come prepared and do not bring any of the following items, as you will not be permitted to wear them in order that we may uphold our witness both as a ministry and as Christians.


  • You are to wear shirts at all times (with the exception of swimming).
  • Trousers must be at the waist with no undergarments showing.
  • No skimpy swim trunks
  • No skinny jeans


  • Girls must wear bras. The midriff should not show when bending over or raising your arms. When either standing or bending, you must be modest on top.
  • ALL trousers/pants need to touch your ankle
  • Do not bring two-piece swimsuits (no French-cut high cut legs, thong, or tankinis)—swim shorts may be worn and you will be asked to wear a T-shirt if the top is not modest (swim shorts and a T-shirt are NOT considered a cover-up).
  •  No split skirts that look like shorts or capris
  •  No sleeveless shirts, blouses, dresses or tops— All shirts/tops, dresses must have sleeves  (no cap sleeves)
  •  No sheer or see-through skirts or dresses unless worn with a knee-length slip
  •  No dresses or skirts above the knee—slits cannot go above the knee
  •   No sun dresses
  •  No low-cut (front or back) dresses, blouses/T-shirts including V-necks, scoop necks and any deep front cut in which any cleavage shows
  • No skinny jeans
  • No tight tops or pants

Clothing NOT to Bring

  • Any footwear other than boots and water shoes
  • Tank tops
  • Shorts (unless used as sleep wear or over ladies’ bathing suits)
  • Jogging-type pants or sweat pants
  • Military-like clothing
  • Oversized or baggy jeans or pants—unless elasticized or worn with a belt
  • Clothing or other items that may be offensive to our Christian testimony are not permitted.  This includes screen-printed/decaled items like Hard Rock Café, cigarette and beer advertisements, secular rock groups, rude or suggestive phrases, or anything that would be a poor Christian testimony. This also includes those resembling cigarettes, beer or rock groups even if they may be Christian.
  • Skinny jeans
  • Tight clothing (shirts or pants)
  • Pajama pants unless they are dark, striped, plaid or plain. Pajama pants can only be worn at Boot Camp and Debrief—they CANNOT be worn on the field!

Items NOT to Bring

  • Extreme trendy-type reflective sunglasses
  • Valuables, jewelry, expensive clothes, excessive makeup
  •  Electric, butane gas, or battery-operated curling irons, hair dryers, or shavers
  •  Christian or secular books and magazines (this includes any books that you may have been assigned by a school to read over the summer)


There is nothing wrong with owning these things; however, they are not permitted while serving with Teen Missions as they tend to distract teens from the purpose of the team.

The following items will be confiscated upon your arrival at Boot Camp, as you will not be allowed to have them at Boot Camp, on the field or at Debrief.  You will be required to sign a statement in the presence of a witness stating you do not posses these items:

  • Hunting Knives
  • Switchblades
  • Guns
  • Weapons of any kind
  • Lighters
  • Matches
  • Fireworks
  • CD players
  • MP3 players
  • Radios
  • Tape Recorders
  • Video Cameras
  • Cell Phones
  • DVD Players
  • Laptop Computers
  • Tablets
  • Electronic Games


  1. I just have one question right now xD I’m trying to find out more info about the Ethiopia trip but I can’t seem to click it at all… is there information on it anywhere or is it not posted yet?

  2. Kimberly Moteberg

    My daughter and I are praying about her going on the 2017 trip to Japan. Would you be able to elaborate on the shot record that is mentioned? We are a family that chooses not to vaccinate, as is allowed here in Minnesota and the US, however, we are open to doing so, should a trip overseas necessitate it.
    I’m wondering, #1, are there any vaccine requirements that TMI has specifically and, #2, do you know what, if any, requirements Japan has. Thanks for any help you could give!

    • Kimberly, Teen Missions does not require any immunizations; however, we do need to know what you would like to do in the case that she may need a tetanus immunization. I have not check to see if Japan requires any immunizations.

  3. Okay, so for the trip that I want to do in 2017 is for Ethiopia… But I can’t click on it so if you could help with that and also if you are taking away my iPod, not out of any disrespect, but wont i get bored on the 36 hour plane ride? Or can i get it back for the ride? Because lets be real, wed all get bored

    • DoctorGirl, You will not be allowed any electronic devices except for a camera while you are on a team. You will spend the time talking with your teammates, other passengers, sleeping, etc.

  4. Are we able to go ahead and register for the 2017 trips?

  5. Do you know when the 2017 trips will be posted?

  6. Is the carry on the only luggage allowed or will there be checked baggage? And, if so, does this mean I need to buy the smaller, travel size things like deodorant, shampoo and such? Thanks!

    • Olivia, We will provide a carry-on and a “bag” as your second carry-on. Most of the space will be filled with your clothes. I would take a small tube of toothpaste and deodorant and put your shampoo, deodorant and other toiletries in your checked duffle.

  7. And when it says ’email copy of picture page’ can i send a picture of the picture page of my passport with my camera or does it have to be scanned like with a printer then emailed?

  8. Can I bring my Visa for Zambia fill out form to boot camp the day of or does it have to be mailed in earlier?

    • Ryan, As stated in the instructions, it can either be mailed or brought with you. Don’t forget to bring a copy of your birth certificate with both parents’ names listed, two visa pictures and copies of your parents’ driver’s licenses or passports.

  9. So if we bring our stuff in plastic tote, we leave that at BC?
    And we have a duffel and a carry-on backpack to take overseas?

  10. Oops, that should say plastic footlocker. Can he just bring his hiking backpack or a suitcase?

  11. What kind of boxes should they pack in? I had planned on having my son use his Olastic footlocker that he used at Scout Camp but it’s an inch too large to check on the airplane. I’m worried that just a tub, the lid would come off. What do most kids do who are travelling by air?

  12. Hi! I just had a question regarding work and evangelistic pants. I’m on a team that is doing both. It is my understanding that khakis, cargo pants, jeans, etc. are okay for evangelism as long as they are ONLY worn for evangelism. Are khakis, cargo pants, jeans, etc. okay for working as long as they are only used for working? As I was researching this, most “lightweight work pants” for women basically are khakis and cargo pants.


    • Lauren, If you are on both a work and EV team (which are most teams), then use the “work team” list. If they are clean, they can be used for both. However, you cannot work in your travel jeans at any time.

  13. May I bring a solar charger for my camera?

  14. If i want to go on this trip how will i be able to contact my family if my phone is confiscated?

  15. Can you please explain pajamas to us? 🙂 I see that they are only allowed to wear pj pants at debrief? What do they wear on the field. Thank you.

    • Kari, Some choose to wear pajama pants at Boot Camp and Debrief because they are light weight and dry quickly. However, many don’t. You can wear jeans, regular cotton pants, nylon pants, etc. on the field. Look at the pictures on our website to give you an idea.

  16. Hi! I was wondering, since we can’t be certain of how many on our team are bring guitars, if I could bring both my guitar and ukelele to boot camp, and leave one behind when we go to the field. My ukelele is very lightweight, so if I can’t bring my guitar I’d like to try to at least bring that. Would it be possible for me to do that?

    • Tiffany, You can bring both. We cannot guarantee whether or not you will be able to bring one or both to the field. Make sure you bring a hard case.

  17. Are we allowed to record with a small camera on the field or just take pictures?

  18. Is this list the same for a gap year?

  19. What are we eligible to do with a guitar at boot camp or on the field?

    • Lorena, Yes, you may bring a guitar. Depending on the baggage needed to go over and the number of kids on your team who bring a guitar, it may not be able go with you. You would leave it at Boot Camp and pick it up on return to Debrief.

  20. Are we allowed to bring an acoustic guitar?

  21. Do you know when the information and trips will be posted for 2017?

  22. So Can we not use our phones to take pictures?

  23. I went on a 2015 mission trip and used this list to pack, but I was just wondering if anything on it will be changed for the upcoming 2016 teen trips…. I’m assuming probably not, yet I wanted to make sure before I used it again. Thanks!

  24. If you physically are unable to pass obstical course will you not be allowed to go

  25. so are we allowed to wear simple makeup (ex. a little eyeliner, mascara)
    as long as its not a ton?

  26. It says that the only shoes that are allowed are boots and water shoes, are there no nicer shoes allowed for dressing up on Sundays?

    • Sarah, We set a new stye trend with our boots with dresses! You should have seen the Chinese “rubber neck” us as we walked by them! 🙂

  27. Are we allowed to bring blow dryers or straighteners

  28. Are any cameras allowed? I am considering going on a mission trip but would like to share the trip with myfamily.y

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