What's Your Ideal Travel Knife Kit? Here's mine + stone.

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DitmasPork

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Now that COVID-19 restrictions have eased up, I'm finally going on my first trip since the pandemic. Packed up my knife roll and selected a stone to take. Wondering what y'all usually take in the knife roll, and what stone (if any) you toss into the suitcase?

During the last decade I've taken a knife roll on trips whenever I'll have kitchen access—mainly to Hawai'i and once to Australia.

The following parameters typically help in which knives are selected:
1] No more than 5 knives—since my roll only has 5 slots.
2] Knives shorter than 270—so it'll fit in the roll.
3] Stainless is a plus—the salty humid air of Hawai'i wreak havoc on my carbons, Maz and Wat the worse rust magnets. Although, of my carbons 52100 behaves nicely.
4] Dishes, tasks and ingredients the knives will likely be used for—poké, sashimi, raw and cooked meats, stir fries, acidic fruits, etc.
5] Gyuto and petty need to be rather robust—don't want anything too delicate that has to be babied. They'll be used mostly on a cheap bamboo cutting board.
6] Ultimately, trying to design a versatile kit that’ll be adequate for almost anything I’ll cook when on vacation.

In my roll:
1] 150 Shihan, petty, 52100
2] 165 Yoshikane, deba, V2
3] 240 Gesshin Heiji, sujihiki, semi stainless
4] 240 TF Denka, gyuto, blue

====

Stone:
Shapton Pro 1.5k

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Jovidah

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Call me a bore, but if I'm taking it out of the house - thereby significantly increasing risks of theft and loss... I'd go for something affordable and replacable.
So one or both of my Carbonext gyutos (210 / 240) and maybe my cheap honesuki + my cheap Mora filleting knife if there's a remote chance of using any of that. Sure, I have better knives at this point, but it's not like there's anything I can't do with these, while having the peace of mind that I'm not trucking around a small fortune.
 

DitmasPork

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Call me a bore, but if I'm taking it out of the house - thereby significantly increasing risks of theft and loss... I'd go for something affordable and replacable.
So one or both of my Carbonext gyutos (210 / 240) and maybe my cheap honesuki + my cheap Mora filleting knife if there's a remote chance of using any of that. Sure, I have better knives at this point, but it's not like there's anything I can't do with these, while having the peace of mind that I'm not trucking around a small fortune.
Not boring, quite sensible. I hear ya. The first knife I traveled with was a Mercer—fearing damage or theft of my more prized knives. But I since I stay at my parent’s in Hawai’i, theft is a minimal risk—everyone knows not to touch my knives! In Australia, I was more protective of my passport than knife kit. None of the knives in my kit are rare.
 
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KO88

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I usually travel light...

Mazaki duo:
180 KU Deba
240 BBQ Gyuto
and some stuff to open wine or light the cigar 😅
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KO88

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Call me a bore, but if I'm taking it out of the house - thereby significantly increasing risks of theft and loss... I'd go for something affordable and replacable.
So one or both of my Carbonext gyutos (210 / 240) and maybe my cheap honesuki + my cheap Mora filleting knife if there's a remote chance of using any of that. Sure, I have better knives at this point, but it's not like there's anything I can't do with these, while having the peace of mind that I'm not trucking around a small fortune.
Amen! Yeah I feel you too that's way I take my Mazs I'm really scared they lost it in the plane or someone steel it...
 

tgfencer

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Masashi 270 and a 150 carbon petty, possibly a cheap suji. Might sub the Masashi for something shorter and hardier if I thought other people might touch it, but I tend to prefer longer knives so I take 270s for myself.
 

Cliff

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My most common kit includes:

Small Mac Pro pairing
Ashi Ginga 210 stainless petty, or a Yoshi 180 SKD gyuto
Misono Dragon 270 gyuto -- may have been displaced by a 240 Kaeru stainless
270 Kanehide semi-stainless suji
 

Justinv

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Places with kitchens?! I have a whole suitcase for hotel kitchen gear. I bring a skillet, induction cooker, air fryer, plates, bowls, spices, cleanup, etc. No knives over $15. Pandemic takeout roulette when you don’t know the local restaurants is a sad existence. Try finding a vegetable. Or breakfast! I wish I could pack a dining table as cooking/eating on a hotel desk just doesn’t do it.
 

lemeneid

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Tojiro 120 petty and Kikuichi Elite Carbon 210.

Not bringing my expensive knives on trips. And these are knives that are “disposable” while able to do the job. Won’t be any loss if I lose them.
 

DitmasPork

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Tojiro 120 petty and Kikuichi Elite Carbon 210.

Not bringing my expensive knives on trips. And these are knives that are “disposable” while able to do the job. Won’t be any loss if I lose them.
Guess it’ll also depend on the destination?
 

timebard

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For normal travel, I'm in the cheap and minimalist camp--I don't want to check luggage or road trip with anything I'd be too sad to lose. An FKM 210 and Tojiro parer do the job just fine.

But, if I were spending a long time away from home someplace without security concerns, I'd add my Tanaka ginsan petty, Toyama 240, and SP2k.
 

Cliff

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Oops, forgot stones. My basic go-to is Shapton Glass 2K and 6K in pro case.
 

lemeneid

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Guess it’ll also depend on the destination?
Destination does not matter but I wouldn’t bring 240s. The smaller the better. Also no stones, sharpen knives before going on vacation and bring a strop. I don’t expect myself to use the knife enough for it to need sharpening. Stones are 1kg and add too much weight to baggage.
 

Hz_zzzzzz

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Konosuke HD2 Western and Shapton Pro 1500. Both not super expensive and do everything ok.
 

spaceconvoy

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I loathe checking bags, and will take months-long trips with a carry-on backpack. I'd much rather deal with laundry than managing a pile of luggage while traveling. Even with a kitchen, I usually eat out at cheap places on the street to maximize sightseeing time, and don't have the energy to cook at the end of the day (ideally). Pasta with jarred sauce if I'm still hungry at that point.

But I do love starting the day with a big full breakfast at home base. Last time I remember struggling with potatoes and wishing I had something better, but it's still not worth checking a bag. Y'all have inspired me to reconsider my options... if anything, I'd take a small handheld stone (Takeda-style) to sharpen the house knives.

edit: I just remembered the hello kitty naniwa, that might be perfect and I'm not even kidding. Small and lightweight, 1K grit is ideal for garbage steel stamped santokus, cheap enough to throw away to make room for souvenirs, and disarmingly cute to make it through security.

 
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riba

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This is an old pic of my travel kit.



The bunka has a pizza box saya. 3 credit card sized dmt's for emergency use, but never had to use them.
It's a cheap bunka with a small overgrind but surprisingly nice

My uncle in law made the corkscrew.
 

DitmasPork

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Destination does not matter but I wouldn’t bring 240s. The smaller the better. Also no stones, sharpen knives before going on vacation and bring a strop. I don’t expect myself to use the knife enough for it to need sharpening. Stones are 1kg and add too much weight to baggage.
For me it does matter—for this trip gonna be in Hawaii where I’ll be cooking some ambitious family supper parties and do need good knives. When I went to Australia I took a 180 Takamura and 240 Tsourkan gyutos, really couldn’t get into the small size, so relied on the 240. I do feel better having a stone in tow, the 1.5k shapton pro doesn’t weigh much at all—useful but not a necessity, but honestly there’s not much I’d rather do in Hawaii than hang out in my parent’s kitchen.
 

Cliff

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I also consider the boards I'm likely to have -- most are horrible. So I'll bring something on the softer side, like a UX10 santoku, that can stand up to them in a small kitchen.

Stones are only for longer trips, but the SG stones don't weigh much.
 

Jovidah

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If you want a folding knife for food and not spend a fortune I'd always consider Opinel. They are originally designed for food and are nice and thin at the edge, so as a result they cut well.
 

Ochazuke

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I loathe checking bags, and will take months-long trips with a carry-on backpack. I'd much rather deal with laundry than managing a pile of luggage while traveling. Even with a kitchen, I usually eat out at cheap places on the street to maximize sightseeing time, and don't have the energy to cook at the end of the day (ideally). Pasta with jarred sauce if I'm still hungry at that point.

But I do love starting the day with a big full breakfast at home base. Last time I remember struggling with potatoes and wishing I had something better, but it's still not worth checking a bag. Y'all have inspired me to reconsider my options... if anything, I'd take a small handheld stone (Takeda-style) to sharpen the house knives.

edit: I just remembered the hello kitty naniwa, that might be perfect and I'm not even kidding. Small and lightweight, 1K grit is ideal for garbage steel stamped santokus, cheap enough to throw away to make room for souvenirs, and disarmingly cute to make it through security.

The Hello Kitty Naniwa is life changing. I didn't know about it until you posted it, but now it's on my list.
 

rickbern

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Last trip I took involved making dinner for fifty. My first stop was a restaurant supply store, bought a Mercer millennia for twenty bucks, gifted it to my niece. TSA has taken alll the fun out of traveling with knives
 

WaTFTanaki

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OUL Y Tanaka 210 Shirogami 2. It’s a wonderful knife, but not irreplaceable at $300. I wouldn’t bring a Denka or Takada suiboku or Toyama. Usually also pack a SG 1k just in case.
 

iandustries

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My last trip to Mexico from NYC, my chosera 800/3000 got flagged in my hand carry both ways, and I was stopped and questioned about what it was
 

Delat

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My last trip to Mexico from NYC, my chosera 800/3000 got flagged in my hand carry both ways, and I was stopped and questioned about what it was
I brought an anova sous-vide stick with me on a trip once. I thought I’d get stopped for sure - come on, a metal tube with attached electronics and wires going in and out? Nope, sailed right through security. Glad to see we’re safe from whetstones, though.
 

DitmasPork

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Last trip I took involved making dinner for fifty. My first stop was a restaurant supply store, bought a Mercer millennia for twenty bucks, gifted it to my niece. TSA has taken alll the fun out of traveling with knives
Coincidentally, the first knife I bought in Hawai’i was a Mercer (culinary series) at a restaurant supply store—had grown tired of the circa 1960s Macs in my mom’s kitchen! Still have it, great beater and guest knife.
 

DitmasPork

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OUL Y Tanaka 210 Shirogami 2. It’s a wonderful knife, but not irreplaceable at $300. I wouldn’t bring a Denka or Takada suiboku or Toyama. Usually also pack a SG 1k just in case.
It was really a tough decision for me choosing between the 240 Oul ginsan or 240 Denka for my vacation. Ended up going with the denka—will be cooking a lot and that’s what I wanted to use. I only have 2 carbon clad gyutos, both edged out the carbons for consideration.
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