Thursday, June 16, 2011

travel buddy

I am by no means a travel expert, but it my short years of "traversing the globe, I have perfected a list of things that I think are must-have on any flight, especially trans-Atlantic. With summer in full swing, I hope you guys are getting away on a trip or two. So, in preparation for your big vacay, here’s a list of things I take in my carry on bag to make sure my trips to and fro are smooth as can be.
*Pre-flight I always charge up my phone and make sure I’ve located all my stuff the night before. Nothing is worse than rushing around the morning of a big trip still searching for things. I hate packing, but it’s always a lot easier than I expect it to be. Especially if you have already made a list. To get you started, this is a great resource to help you think of things you’ll need on a trip.

Eye mask. To catch some z’s on a flight I need an eye mask to block out all light. Also a great notification tool for the flight attendants to leave you alone. ;)
A warm pair of socks. Nothing is more miserable then being cold on a flight, and keeping your feet warm is the easiest way to ensure you won’t be chilly. Plus, socks are much easier to carry on then, say, a sweater.
Toothbrush/toothpaste. Nobody likes bad breathe. Period. Bonus points if they’re travel size. (Also, Colgate wisps are great travel companions. Check ‘em out.)
Reading material. Splurge on a couple last minute magazines at the airport or bring along your favorite book. You’ll want something to read during the inevitable downtime while traveling, or especially if there are no in-flight movies.
Gum. I still chew gum at take-off and landing to help with ear popping issues. Also, I’m a slightly nervous flyer, so it gives me something to do during those two times I absolutely hate.
Phone charger. I always pack my phone charger in my carry on, just in case my phone needs a little power on a layover. Especially handy if you’re using your phone as a music device in-flight.
Small makeup bag. Bring only the essentials, but you’ll want it for touch ups. Remember to pack the liquids in a clear zip-lock bag. Things I include in mine are: foundation, blush, mascara, concealer, and lip gloss. I pack away all the other stuff.
Things I avoid:
I never travel with my computer unless I really have to. Lugging around a laptop is a pain and in this day and age of smartphones, you should have all you need right at your fingertips.
Food. If the flight is going to be short, I know I’ll survive on the tiny bag of peanuts given during the drink service. And if it’s longer, you’ll most likely be getting meals in there somewhere. But if you know you’ll need a snack, think small, not messy and odorless— there is nothing worse than bringing a tuna sandwich on a plane.
Neck pillows, unless it’s a flight where I switching time zones and I have to sleep. In which case, my family and I love this one. We passed it between us during our flights to Thailand and it really helped us all sleep in those rigid plane seats. Pain to carry, but worth it in the end.
What about you? What’s on your list of must-have carry on items? Anything I’m missing?

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