8 Mission Trip Hacks

We’ve all heard of life hacks, right? Things that you can do to make your life easier. Usually simple things, but genius. Like wrapping a rubber band around a paint can to use as something to wipe your paint brush off with, so that paint doesn’t run down the side of the can. Or using nail polish to paint the fat part of your keys so that you can identify them.

Well we’ve had our fair share of experiences on mission trips around here, and we’ve learned a thing or two. Here are a few mission trip hacks to make your experience more enjoyable.

backpack (1)1. Tag Your Luggage

There’s a lot of generic suitcases out there. When you go to the baggage carousel it’s easy to miss yours the first couple times around. If you take a brightly colored bandanna or some bright duck-tape and put it somewhere visible on the outside of your bag, it’s sure to make recognizing it a whole lot easier. It also clears up confusion in the rare case that someone has the same bag as you and quickly grabs it without checking to make sure it’s theirs.

2. Clothes in Your Carry-On

Put an extra set of clothes in your carry on. That way if your checked bag does happen to get lost, you will be able to have a change of clothes until things get figured out. And you can wash one set while you wear the other until you get your bag back.

3. Eat Garlic

Gross, we know. But if you are going somewhere where you are likely to be eaten alive by swarms of mosquitoes, you will thank us. While you’re in mosquito territory, eat a clove of garlic at every meal. For best results, chew; don’t swallow. You can eat a spoonful of peanut butter or something else that has a good, strong taste afterward so the taste doesn’t stay in your mouth.


Depending on where you get your research, some people say this won’t work at all and some say it will. All we know is that some of our staff say that they get less bug and mosquito bites when they eat garlic.

toilet paper4. Take Toilet Paper

You just never know when you are going to need it. We’ve been to countries where we carry toilet paper the whole trip because most restrooms don’t have any. It’s expected that you have some with you. But even if you’re going somewhere where that is not the norm, it’s still a good idea.  You just never know when a situation is going to come up where there is none and you really wish you had some available.

*Bonus Hack

Take the cardboard roll in the middle out to save space when packing. You still have toilet paper rolled up, but it can fit in a lot smaller space.

5. Roll Your Clothes

Trying to fit everything you want to take in your suitcase can definitely be a challenge. One way to save space is to roll your clothes instead of folding them. Rolled clothes fill in the extra spaces a lot better than folded clothes.

14853496367_86bb3b466a_z6. Squatty-Potty Help

In some places, all you have for a toilet is a hole in the ground. This can present some challenges. The specific thing that we want to help you out with is this: when you are squatting, keep you pants above your knees. This will keep your pants from getting wet or… well, you get the idea.

7. Top-Down Bucket Showers

Taking bucket showers can be interesting to say the least. It’s probably cold water, and trying to get all the soap washed away can be difficult. After you lather up, remember to rinse head-to-toe. That way you’re not trying to rinse yourself off multiple times.

8. Take Winkie Juice!

If you’re a YWAMer you’re probably having vivid flashbacks to the smell and taste of this infamous concoction thought up by Winkie Pratney. If you haven’t heard of Winkie Juice before, don’t feel left out, you will now. It’s basically a natural, cure-all, germ destroying, sickness killing, I-can-smell-this-from-a-hundred-miles-away mixture of potent ingredients. When we go on outreach, we take some with us in case anyone gets sick. A couple medicine droppers full of this every couple hours will help your body fight sickness. Some people also take it a couple times a day to prevent sickness. This isn’t FDA certified, but it sure is YWAMer tested and approved!

We hope these help you! What are some of the mission trip hacks you use when you go on outreach? You can leave a comment below.