Advice: Essential Surf Trip Preparation

So, you’ve saved your money, booked that ticket and now all you have left to do is dream of those thousand shacks you’re going to enjoy right? Wrong! No matter how experienced a traveller you may be you should always take the extra time out to plan and prepare for your trip of a lifetime. With this in mind, we bring you the essential surf trip preparation guide. (For the purpose of this article we’re assuming you’re going somewhere hot as cold weather opens up a whole separate can of worms.)



  • Passport
  • Money (cash, travellers cheques and credit card)
  • Travel insurance
  • Visa, if necessary (check at
  • Camera (plus film/memory card) and maybe a disposable waterproof camera
  • Pen and paper (great for completing arrival/departure cards)
  • Destination information (and contact details). Give this information to your family/friends so that people know where you are.
  • Medical kit
  • Tour/boat operator contact details if applicable
  • Maps/travel guide
  • Remember to store email addresses of your mates / family if you’ll be using a remote email service (like Hotmail) and you usually use a work address – you may not have an address book set up.

Definitely take a medical kit if you travel here – Chopes looking perfect


  • Sunscreen and zinc
  • Cap or hat
  • Condoms (you just never know)
  • Mozzy repellent (there is a new Tropical Strength Aeroguard Roll on – we like!)
  • Ear plugs



  • A good medical kit with all the bits and pieces that you may or may not know how to use.
  • Anti-fungal cream for those nice rashes
  • Betadine
  • Stingose (helps so much when you get eaten by mosquitos)
  • Aftersun spray (we like Banana Boat Aloe Vera Spray)


Surf Stuff

  • Wax
  • Ding repair tape (bring a small kit if you like)
  • Boards (obviously!)
  • Boardies x 2 or 3
  • Rash vest (thermal is good to counter wind-chill)
  • Swell/tide charts (may help if you are going somewhere really remote)
  • Reef boots



  • Thongs
  • T-shirts
  • Hoodie / jumper



  • Razor (also helps to shave the area around reef cuts)
  • Tampons for chicks (or experimental dudes)
  • Wet wipes or similar (we tried the antibacterial ones which were great for cleaning reef cuts)
  • Shower gel (just because you’re going on a trip doesn’t mean you have to be feral)
  • Toothbrush and paste (as above)



  • MP3 player
  • Laptop and video camera (if you’re going all out)



  • Gifts for local people if you’re going somewhere remote (though money often does the trick)
  • Camera cleaning kit
  • Second wallet (sometimes it handy to keep small change in this one and keep your big notes and cards secure somewhere else)


Getting fit

Most people don’t get to ride perfect surf every day, so chances are you may not be 100 per cent surf fit. Preparation can make the difference between being king of dork and king of pork (?!) in no time. Swimming is good for cardio and to get those shoulders turning. A few resistance weight sessions will inject a bit more beef into those arms and chicken legs. Do some aerobics classes. Yeah dude, not only do you get to perve at all the tasty chicks but the jumping around gets you fit – fast. And if any dudes look at you funny from the weights room, well, fuck ‘em – you’re the one who’s gonna be getting shacked in perfection in a few weeks (and they’ll still be lifting bits of lead in a room full of blokes). While preparing for your trip remember one key thing – don’t get injured. So no lifting 100kg on the bench, ok.



Personally, I think purity, rest and fitness training should precede the trip of a lifetime, especially after my last Indo adventure, which commenced after a night of dancing with crazy Brazillians, meaning I didn’t attack Kuta Reef with the finesse I had mind-surfed. In practice however, I know (from experience) those big farewell nights do happen so just drink plenty of water and don’t miss your flight.