In the coming weeks I am going to be sharing lots of great information, tips and of course pictures from my European vacation this summer. I visited Croatia and Italy and was in awe of both places, and easily fell in love with them. But before we dive into the trip itself, we have talk about preparation. Packing for a trip, especially an overseas one, can be challenging. You worry about the comforts of home you will need that you may not be able to buy wherever you are going, should you not have them with you. A few years back I shared my best tips for packing your suitcase for a long trip (which I still swear by), but now I want to focus on the essentials of what you carry with you on the plane. So, I am sharing exactly what’s in my travel tote!
I travel almost weekly for work, so I have it down to a science of what I need and what I don’t. Having a list or a picture of your essentials is a saving grace. If you aren’t able to always keep a travel tote packed and ready to go, you can reference the picture/list and make sure you have everything you will need (and sometimes some extras you might not). This helps take a lot of stress out of the process of packing. Buying things in advance and having extras on hand and ready to go before a trip is also key. This way, if you are packing the night before, you won’t have to worry about last minute runs to the store. Another key tip – charge all of your electronics before you pack them. Once you get on the plane, or to your destination, everything will be full of power and ready for use.
For Health & Beauty:
All of this may seem like a lot for my carry on bag, but you never what you may need, especially on long flights. It’s best to have the most essential items at hand and ready to grab as needed. Here’s what I consider must haves…
- Mini Sunscreen – to avoid burns, as a sunburn is a good way to ruin a vacation.
- Love Anybody Anti-Chafe Stick – another bummer on vacation, legs so raw from chafing, you don’t want to explore. In summer months, this is crucial. It also works well on your feet to avoid blisters from shoes.
- Hand Lotion – planes are dry, hand lotion helps. Build your options by taking the small bottles from hotels. They are the perfect size for your purse.
- Mario Badescu Rosewater Spray – again, planes are dry, so keep your face hydrated with a spritz before take off, one mid-flight, and one at landing. Your skin will thank you, and it will look refreshed. (Throw in some eye pads too, to help with puffiness.)
- Sara Happ Lip Balm & Highlighter – not to sound like a broken record, but planes are dry. Lips are thin and will dry out quickly, so keeping a good balm on them throughout travel will help prevent chapping. Sara Happ makes the creamiest balm that lasts (no joke) for a full 8 hour flight. Once you land put on some lip color and add Sara Happ highlighter and your lips will be fresh and fabulous.
- Vaseline & Eye Drops – will help with dry eyes, lips and noses. If you are prone to bloody noses from dryness put some Vaseline in your nostrils before take off and you will be a okay.
- Rolaids & Aspirin – in case tummy troubles or headaches arise, best to be prepared.
- Clinique Moisture Surge Mask – back to that dryness issue, this is another product that helps fight it for your face (use it on your hands too). Just slather it on at the start of your journey and you’ll help your skin fight the dryness from the start.
- Mascara, Blush & Blotting Pads – just a few essentials to make touching your face up before landing a cinch.
- Comb & Bobby Pins – just in case you get a good nap and need to fix bedhead.
- Band-aids and Safety Pins – always, always, always good to have. No matter if your trip is overseas or to the grocery store.
- Vitamins & Medicine – something you take regularly can easily go with you on a trip. It’s easiest to get a weekly pill holder so you can have everything ready to go for each day and don’t have to take multiple pill bottles.
- Bondi Beach Day Roll On Perfume – smelling like vacation never hurts, especially after a long flight before you have chance for a refreshing shower. This perfume literally makes me feel like I’m on a beach, even in the middle of a city. It smells tropical and heavenly, and is so easy to tote for travel.
- Ouai Texturizing Hair Spray (mini) – small enough to keep in a carry on (and under the airline limit of 2oz.) but big enough to make an impact on limp hair that’s been traveling for a while.
- Nail file, floss and mints – just to have in case needed!
Entertainment is needed on any type of trip. Whether you will be on a plane, a train, in a car, or even thinking about lounging poolside once you arrive, you likely will need something to help pass the time or simply entertain you.
- Book – I like to get my books either from the library or from the sale tables at Barnes & Noble. Since I know myself, and know I will only read a book once, even if I love it, I figure there is no point spending a lot. And, even though people always say not to judge a book by it’s cover, that’s exactly what I do. A book with a beach on it, perfect for summer!
- Magazines – I usually take a couple. When you don’t want to focus on a book or be on an electronic device, these are the perfect alternative. I prefer ones with puzzles in them too, so they provide extra entertainment.
- iPad & Headphones – I fly Southwest for most of my flights and they offer free movies and TV from their website while in flight, you just need your own device. One of the best tips I can give you though, is to have a couple movies downloaded on your tablet, as well as games. Sometimes WiFi on planes doesn’t work, and you don’t want to be stuck staring at the seat ahead of you (in case you forgot your book and magazines).
- Notebook – I always take a little notebook with me so I can jot down highlights of a trip, favorite restaurants, etc. It’s a great way to “store” memories from vacation!
Some of the things in my travel tote can only be described as items that keep me sane. We all have them, and ensuring we have them during travel will make our vacations all the better.
- Snacks – I usually take a bar of some sort. They are easy to pack, and can give you a healthy option when there might not be another one.
- Mint Tea – if you suffer from any sort of tummy trouble, mint tea will be a godsend for you. I drink a glass of it any time I feel a tummy ache coming on, or even just after a day of eating more food than I normally would at home. It aids in digestion really well!
- Wet Wipes – yes, I am the person on the flight wiping everything down. The seat, the seat belt, the tray table, the armrest, and yes, event he area near the window I will rest my head. If you don’t know why I would do this…Google germs on planes and you will understand immediately.
- Fan – it may seem old school, but in Europe, fans are a common place. When it’s hot as heck, keep one in your purse and you’ll basically have your own air conditioning.
- Inflatable Neck Pillow – planes are the perfect place to nap, and naps are made better with a pillow of course. I prefer an inflatable one because it doesn’t take up nearly as much room as a regular neck pillow.
- Camera – documenting a trip is a key way to remember everything about it. I have an amazing point and shoot camera that is small enough to fit in a purse, but takes high quality pictures. Be sure to have extra batteries, a battery charger and extra SD cards in case you max out on memory.
- Wallets & Wristlets – obviously you will need money for any trip, and knowing it is secure will absolutely help keep you sane. I prefer to put gift cards and coupons in one little wallet, and put money, credit cards and ID in a wristlet I can attach to my purse.
- Sunglasses – while I forgot to include in the “sanity” picture,these are a must. I have sensitive eyes, so without sunglasses am basically blind and destined to have a headache.
- Compression Socks – I also forgot to include these in the picture, but I swear by compression socks when travelling by air. I unfortunately get a lot of leg swelling when I am on a plane, and these help exponentially. I still remember to get up and walk during a flight and do circles with my feet to keep blood flowing, but the socks are a good added bonus.
Well, I am packed and ready to go! Are you? What are you waiting for, grab that travel tote and hit the road (or plane, or train or whatever you are riding on!).
(P.S. If you are loving my tote, it’s from Spartina. It’s my favorite pattern, in my favorite colors, and perfect for summer trips. And the best part, it fits my laptop, so works for business trips too.)
Signed with Style,