Traveling can be an exciting adventure. A new destination, sights to see and local culture to take it. But as we all know, it can have its downsides too. For me, it's a transatlantic flight. There is nothing I dread more than stepping on that plane and knowing that I will be sitting for the next 6+ hours with little leg room and whichever character that sits next to me. After my last trip to Italy, I learned that there is a need, for me at least, to travel with a handful of luxury items to make the long flights, layover connections, and arrivals in new destinations bearable. Here is my list of must-have travel items:
For many years, I traveled with an insanely uncomfortable laptop bag, stuffed to the brim with everything I need, along with whatever else I can fit into my hands like a cup of coffee or a book. Since upgrading to this fantastic duffle, my life has become so much easier. It's spacious enough to fit my laptop, and all of the items I'll be covering plus the straps make it easy to carry without any shoulder ache or red marks. It's also leather. Ahhhh the smell of leather. Not only is it pretty but with a high-quality leather bag, it's bound to last for several years and through many flights.
I swear, as a woman, we are born with the need to have as many shoes as possible like it's almost a contest to see who can have more in their closet. Well, have no fear, here are two more pairs of shoes that you will love! After countless hours running/walking and standing in airports, I abandoned my flimsy flip-flops for one of these two pairs of shoes. They are easy to get on and off and are great for dressing up or wearing casual.
Noise Cancelling Headphones:
I know, I know. This very point makes my blog a bit cliché, but it is a valid point. Invest in a good pair of headphones! It makes all the difference when you want to block out screaming kids, loud talkers, snoring and of course, engine noise. If you don't like the idea of massive headphones, opt for a pair of high-quality wireless like this Bang & Olufsen set.
Using a shawl to travel with is the best thing since sliced bread. You never know how cold the plane is going to be so using a shawl that doubles as a blanket can keep you warm and comfortable for the duration of your vacation. When I flew to Vegas a few months ago, I took this shawl with me just in case it was going to be a cold plane. I was happy I packed the shawl. After a weekend of adulting it up, I was slightly worse for the wear, and this little puppy made me feel relaxed and warm the entire flight home.
When you book a flight with more than one stop, you never know if those connections will stick or if you'll get stuck with a long layover (Raise your hand if you've ever experienced a day stuck in Schiphol airport....11 hours for me). Having a quality set of toiletry options helps you feel refreshed and clean, even if you have to use a bathroom sink to get the job done. Another bonus you can count on and should purchase is the Chanel Le Lift Firming Anti-Wrinkle Eye Revitalizer. This stuff can work wonders. During my love/hate relationship with Schiphol, this little bottle helped me avoid the dreaded jet lag look.
While we are on the subject of feeling clean, dry shampoo is honestly the best invention for women. Even if you aren't stuck with a massive layover, a quick spray of shampoo after a flight helps keep you looking and feeling fresh.
Last but not least, we come to what you should pack in your carry on. I'm not a fan of packing my entire vacation wardrobe in a carry-on. I like my options and the space to add more items if shopping is on the agenda. I've learned the hard way that flying with all my clothes packed in my checked bag is a HUGE mistake. Now, I always pack a few items that will help me get through at least a day without luggage or if I get stuck in an airport for more than five hours. My top four things I pack? A lightweight jacket, a pair of pants, a t-shirt and of course garments. If I'm traveling in winter, I throw in a thin sweater as well.
Traveling doesn't have to be a chore if you pack a few luxury items that help make the journey comfortable and relaxing. If I could tell you to invest in only one thing on this list, it would be the travel shawl. I mean, it is cashmere.