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Opodo Travel Blog
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Together with our offices throughout Europe we interviewed over 1,000 people about the things they have forgotten to pack on holiday. Besides the UK, the survey was conducted in France, Germany and Italy.

It’s happened to most of us: you’re on your way to the airport then that horrific feeling of having forgotten something comes over you. What is it this time…wallet, tickets, passports, luggage?

Most often, those polled had to turn back because of their passport:  12.2% of the French left it at home. Closely followed by the Italians, 11.8% of whom forgot this important document. About 10% of Germans had to turn around to collect it. But here in the UK we keep a firm hold of our passport: only 7.8% have ever forgotten it.

So, you’ve made it to your destination and you can start to relax, right? Wrong!

In the hectic travel arrangements already 52.9% of Italians, 38.6% of the French, 37.8% of the English and 29.9% of the Germans have left behind their toothbrush in their bathroom cabinet. So the toothbrush is officially the most commonly forgotten everyday commodity in Europe!

But there are also other, even more private goods the travellers never would go without, or at least one would think so…

Our European neighbours share with us a common forgetfulness when it comes to contraceptives: 19% of the French, almost 12% of the Italians and at least 7.8% of the English had to make other arrangements in this regard on holiday. The Germans, however, make sure they don’t forget this important item with only 6.5% forgetting to pack a contraceptive.

So far so good in terms of the UK remembering to pack the important things. But before you start waving those Union Jacks we should point out that 37.8% of us have at some time neglected to pack underwear for our holiday. We know you’re meant to relax on your break but going commando – really?

The people we surveyed have, however, declared war on forgetfulness. The approach for remembering varies between countries. 82.4% of Italians, 46.2% of the English and 33.7% of the Germans create ‘Don’t forget’ checklists whereas the French approach the matter differently: 43.8% decide to start packing at least three days prior to their holiday.

Oh, and for those 1.7% of Brits who forgot their toupee – just remember to apply suncream liberally up there.

Here’s the results:

What do people in Europe forget?

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