Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Travel Essentials - What's in My Carry-On?

Good morning from the West Coast! I am checking in from Washington State today, where it is hotter than blazes and I am still adjusting to being three hours behind. Whew!

Business travel is intense, and I generally feel like I am constantly "on" when traveling - there is no downtime when you are with your clients from morning til night! It is exhausting, but it is worth it, too - I love meeting new people and putting names to faces instead of just seeing signature lines in emails.

All the work travel I've done in the last year or so has led to becoming a pretty succinct packer - I can fit my whole life for a week into a carry-on suitcase and a backpack and maneuver pretty well. While I'm often on little planes where they gate-check your carry-on luggage, I always have my backpack with me. I thought that I'd share a few things I always have handy to make those long days of multiple flights a little easier. Creature comforts, if you will!

1 // a water bottle - my number one tip for traveling! Everyone knows that you can't take liquids past security at the airport, but an empty water bottle is no problem. Pack it into your carry-on, and fill it from once you're past the TSA. There are water fountains near almost every bathroom, and I've found that a lot of airports have bottle filling stations these days. Love it! You save on paying for overpriced water, and you'll help yourself stay hydrated as you travel.

2 // my nook and a magazine - I load up with e-books before I hit the road, so that I have plenty of options whether I'm on the plane or passing the time during a long lay-over. I throw a magazine in my bag, too, though - you never know when your battery might die, or you just lose interest in the same story for a bit. A magazine is a light-weight change of pace.

3 // a light scarf / pashmina - good for a multitude of things! Warmth if the airport or airplane is chilly, scrunched up to use as a pillow, a scarf to dress up a plain outfit, you name it. Doesn't take up much space, and usually comes in handy.

4 // snacks - I try to avoid paying for crap in airports, both because it's expensive and it's stuff I wouldn't normally eat. A gallon-size ziploc bag with some granola bars, a banana, a single-serving package of peanut butter, and whatever else I can grab at home goes a long way, both in the airport and as I'm traveling from site to site throughout the week.

5 // an external battery pack - critical to my survival. I'm pretty sure I've sang the praises of this invention before, but if I haven't, let me start now. $20 will get you a rechargeable battery pack from Amazon, and as long as you have the right cords with you, it will definitely save you in a pinch. My phone battery dies constantly, and being phone-less on travel day is no good. Additionally, my nook battery is likely to die if I'm using it all day, too. A quick plug-in to the battery pack, and I'm good to go. Get one!

What things do you make sure to travel with? I can get away with leaving a lot of stuff at home while I'm on the road - but as long as I have these five things tucked into my bag, I'm generally a pretty happy camper. So long from the West (Best??) Coast!

1 comment :

The Lady Okie said...

Yes to the water bottle! I always carry one, and I've gotten comments from other people about how smart that is. Who wants to pay $5 for a bottle of water when you can carry one for free!