Woman in London in Autumn with umbrella

Your Perfect Fall in the UK Packing List

Fall in the UK is a magical season. Crunching leaves and whimsical mushrooms greet you in the forest, while the cities slow the pace after a frantic summer. If you’re getting ready for Autumn UK travel, this guide will help you build an ideal UK packing list for your trip.

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Know before you go

💷 Currency: Great British Pound (£) is used throughout the UK.

🕰️ Time zone: The entire UK is in one time zone, Greenwich Mean Time (GMT). From late March to late October, the whole country moves an hour forward to British Summer Time (BST).

🔌 Plugging in electronics: Electric sockets in the UK are unlike those in Europe or the US. If you are visiting from outside the UK, you will likely need this universal travel adaptor.

📱 Using your smartphone: If you want to use your phone data while visiting, the easiest and cheapest solution is to purchase an e-sim for your trip.

🚘 Car rentals: Americans can rent a car in the UK with a valid US driver’s license from any state. I recommend Discover Cars to find the best rental car prices. Driving in the UK is not for the faint of heart, and I recommend checking out my guide to driving in the UK before you set out!

🚊 Train booking: All major UK cities, and many other destinations in between, can be reached by train. Check train routes, ticket prices, and get your tickets directly through Trainline.

UK Seasons

When is Fall in the UK anyway? This is how it breaks down:

  • Autumn: September, October, November
  • Winter: December, January, February
  • Spring: March, April, May
  • Summer: June, July, August

Looking for a packing guide to a different season? Check out my winter, spring and summer guides!

Autumn leaves in Little Venice London

Is the Season Called Fall or Autumn in the UK?

It wasn’t until after I moved to the UK that I discovered Fall is a very American concept. Autumn is much more commonly used to name the season here, though people know what you’re talking about when you say “Fall”. Both terms refer to the same set of months.   

What To Expect From Autumn in the UK

When the calendar turns from August to September, there’s a tangible feeling of slowing down. School breaks are over and many of the tourists have gone home. 

Each month in Autumn offers something special:

  • September often brings a last hit of summer weather without the crowds.
  • October hosts UK Halloween festivities and is a great time to head to the forest for crunchy leaves and mushroom spotting.
  • November is often a preview time for Christmas before the big holiday travel times.

The biggest downside to traveling to the UK in the Fall is the weather. You really could experience anything this time of year, making it extra hard to pack light. It’s important to check forecasts close to your travel date and come prepared for variety.

Top 5 Must-Have Items to Pack for a Fall Trip to the UK

  1. A good quality coat. Autumn coats should provide a bit of warmth, but don’t need to be winter-padded. Look for something that offers windbreaker and waterproof protection.  
  2. Weatherproof shoes. No need to bring full-on hiking boots (unless you’re going on a hiking holiday). Ankle boots are a great option for Fall city touring and transition easily from a daytime outfit with jeans to a dressy evening out. I always opt for flats when traveling, but a block heel is ok if you’re used to walking in heels. 
  3. Autumn sweaters. For any unpredictable weather, it’s good to have options. An Autumn sweater should be reasonably lightweight and easy to layer over t-shirts. Cardigans are great this time of year for days when the temperature can’t make up its mind. 
  4. Compact umbrella. Especially important if you don’t have a hooded coat, you want something small enough to slip in your day bag, but sturdy enough to keep you dry without flipping inside out.
  5. Tights or leggings. Bring some cozy tights or leggings to layer under dresses so your evenings out aren’t spent shivering. They are also an easy way to turn a lightweight dress into a Fall-ready touring outfit. 

Fall Packing Hacks 

Packing hacks are more important than ever when you have to be ready for all types of weather. These are a few favorites to help you fit more in and stay organized!

  • Wear your heaviest items to the airport, like your autumn coat and ankle boots
  • Don’t leave out dresses – this is the time to layer dresses with tights and a cardigan to nail a put together look without the bulk
  • Check for laundry services at your lodging so you can pack less clothing
  • Consider compression packing cubes if you’re tight on space
  • Soft-side luggage is lighter, meaning more usable packing space in checked bags
  • Stash a designated laundry bag to separate dirty and clean clothes while you’re traveling

How to Layer Clothes for Fall in London

Creating a layered look doesn’t have to be complicated. Follow this simple method for each day on your itinerary and keep in mind you can rewear the items further from your body the most.

  • Step 1: Base layer – think short or long sleeved tee, tank top, or cami
  • Step 2: Try on a shirt – add a flannel, button down cotton top, or chambray
  • Step 3: Add a sweater (jumper) for warmth – cardigans are extra versatile
  • Step 4: Loop on a scarf – blanket style scarves give that extra cozy look and feel
  • Step 5: Throw on your coat – water resistant trench coats are the most versatile style, but consider a trendy option to mix things up

Fall is rarely cold enough to require all 5 steps, so just pick a few and play around with options that mix well together. This should help you pick out items that can be repurposed for multiple travel outfits. 

UK Travel Luggage and Organizing Gear


I bring my Delsey Carry-On along for all of my travels any time of year. It meets airline requirements for carry-on luggage, includes a TSA lock, and is expandable to fit your souvenirs on the return trip. The internal dividers are also really smart and the front opening section makes it easy to remove items for airport security. 

The hard case can handle a lot. I’ve had mine for years and it’s still going strong. Spinner wheels make it easy to bring along on London streets or across airports. 

If you plan to check a larger bag, I recommend a soft-sided bag like a SwissGear Sion Roller Bag. Most airlines have weight limits for checked bags and hard-sided bags start off heavier. Choosing a soft-sided bag like this will ensure you can actually use the space without paying surprise overweight luggage fees or doing the last minute shuffle between bags at check-in. 

Packing Cubes

Compression packing cubes are great for finding extra space in your luggage (extra helpful when adding Fall layers!). Packing cubes are also really helpful for separating your clothing items so they’re easier to find. When my daughter was younger I relied on packing cubes to separate her clothing from mine in the same suitcase. When she needed her pajamas, I didn’t have to dig through my stuff to find them.

Day Bag

In the Fall, you’re more likely to need room in your bag to stash extra layers and your must-have umbrella. I tend to carry a larger bag this time of year, and love a backpack from PacSafe. While you don’t have to carry an anti-theft bag if you keep some basic street smarts with you, I do love how easy this bag makes it to keep your possessions safe while still looking cute. 

Capsule Wardrobe

When you’re traveling in the Fall, layering is the name of the game. Weather is going to be unpredictable so you want to be able to change things up on the go. 

Keep your packing light by picking layers that work well with multiple items. For instance, I might bring a dress in a fun print, but the cardigan, belt, and ankle boots I put on with the dress could easily work with another dress or jeans look. Tights take up very little room in your bag, but can be a lifesaver to keep your legs warm and mix up your look.

Remember that London has no single style. People come here from everywhere, and you will see all sorts of fashion. Wear what makes you feel good.

Layering Scarves and Cardigans

Give yourself options on your travels with layers that are easy to add or remove during the day. Cardigans and scarves look great and are super versatile.


Dresses absolutely still work for your Fall trip to the UK. Add some tights and a layered sweater for a cute look that’s ready for unpredictable London weather.

I love this dress because it keeps some summer swing, but can easily layer up for a carefree Fall look. It comes in many colors, though this mustard yellow and the orange version are really saying Autumn Pumpkin Picking. 

Keep it cozy and simple with a pretty sweater dress. Just add tights for a chilly day.


Autumn is prime time for denim, so don’t leave your jeans at home! Jeans are also great for travel since you can get more than a single wear out of them and they are easy to match with the rest of your travel wardrobe. I love Levi’s and own more jeans from them than anywhere else. They come in standard and plus size options, which definitely helps out this mid-size mom.

Don’t come at me for my skinny jeans. It’s boot season and skinny jeans give you options that work with any boot height.

Perhaps you are cooler than me? Try some 90s style jeans and don’t tell anyone if you were also wearing these the first time around.  


Black tights are an easy way to add warmth to your dress or skirt outfit. These are opaque and well constructed to avoid rips.

Want a way to make your outfit pop without adding bulk to your suitcase? Look for these colorful tights (available in a whole rainbow of options) to jazz things up.

Ankle Boots

You can’t go wrong with a classic Chelsea boot. These are water-resistant and look great day or night.

I usually stick to flats when I travel. If you must have a heel, stick to a block style that won’t slide on wet pavement.

Countryside Boots

Wellies are not something you see commonly in UK cities. However, if you are planning time in the countryside or just fall for the aesthetic, I love these from Joules. Multiple patterns available. 

If you’re planning a hiking tour in the UK, these are the same boots I wear for all of my UK walking. Fully waterproof for soggy Autumn days out.

Cozy Hat

A simple beanie hat is easy to pack and makes a huge difference if the weather turns cold. 

Outerwear and Rain Gear

You’re going to be bringing a coat with you on every outing, so you may as well bring something stylish. This Calvin Klein coat is a classic trench that will look great for sightseeing and evenings out. Available in several colors.

A travel umbrella is also a must. It should fit easily in your bag when you don’t need it, but stand up to wind gusts and rain when you do.

Things To Pack for a UK Trip Any Time of Year

Jewelry Case

I love the flat profile of this jewelry organizer that will fit easily into your purse or carry-on luggage. Try to select jewelry that will complement several outfits, and don’t put your valuable jewelry in checked luggage.


Any liquids in your carry-on need to be travel sized. This kit makes it easy to bring many different types of product in one bag and includes useful tools for filling and cleaning the containers.

Electronics – adapters and organizer cases

Travel at any time of year with a multi-country adapter. Multiple USB outlets let you charge up to three devices with the same adapter.

Ready to get packing?

I hope this list helps you sort through what to bring along on your visit to the UK! Weather may be unpredictable this time of the year, but it’s a beautiful season. 

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