1. Compeed pads
I discovered these while traveling in Europe and they saved my poor feet. I thought my shoes were broken in enough, but the backs of my feet were dripping blood two days in. These pads create a tiny puffy spot above your blister which allows you to walk without discomfort.
I wouldn’t have made it without these
2. Noise canceling headphones
This is a MUST if you are sensitive to noise, like I am. If you are visiting a big city like London or New York, you will need these to hear your music. Also, you can keep these in your ears to sleep.
3. Photocopies of EVERYTHING
I can’t stress the importance of this enough. For each hotel reservation, flight itinerary, or passport photo, I made at least three copies each. While traveling into London, the immigration officer wanted to see my flight itinerary back home to the United States. I left the original at home and brought a copy with me. I hate to think what might have happened if I didn’t show them my copy!
For allergy suffers, like myself, having an extra kick to the system will help any discomfort you may encounter. For me, traveling can trigger my allergies and this is a staple in my travel bag. It also aids in sleeping if you are working through different time zones. And if you are traveling outside of the states, it may be harder to find.
5. Written phone number and address of my emergency contact
While traveling, I write my mothers full name, address, and phone number on a piece of paper and stick it in my purse I use during the day. God forbid anything happens to me, it saves any confusion about who I am and who to contact.
Usually I bring books if I go to the doctors office, so it is important for me to bring books everywhere on a trip. It saves any boredom you may encounter waiting for a train or on a long flight.
7. First aid kit
Many of the places you travel to will have pharmacies to help with any minor cuts or bruises, but I carry one for the in between travels, such as trains and airplanes. It is just an extra precaution for those “just in case” moments.
8. Hand sanitizer
When traveling, you may not have access to many bathrooms and you will want to clean your hands before eating. I carry a few small hand sanitizers for street foods and the snacks in my pack.
Imagine you are riding on a train through India and you begin to write in your journal, but you realized you forgot pens! I can’t think of anything more frustrating. I buy a new pack before every trip so that it motivates me to write more.
This is personal preference. I am a picky eater and my biggest fear is boarding a plane or a train and finding out that there isn’t anything for me to eat until I arrive 5-8 hours later. So, I buy different snacks in the airports or train stations just in case. Plus, it give you an opportunity to visit the local grocery stores.
Without a doubt, the most important travel essential. Most people believe that nothing bad can happen while they are traveling. As if traveling creates a shield from the “real world.” But, I’ve found it to be the opposite. Traveling means there is more opportunity for things to fall apart. So, it is important to pack patience and realize that it will all be okay if your trip doesn’t run on time!