Travel tips for the nosey: what is inside my travel bag

Jul 9, 2014

Two weeks from today and I will be clutching my passport with almost youthful glee at that thought of getting on Mr British and Mrs Airways for our early afternoon flight to Boston. I have been doing this journey for over 21 years now and I still get that “clappinghandsaren’tweexcited” feeling about this time in the pre-trip run up. Our dinner conversations are now wrapped around swimming holes the kids want to invade, shopping that they want to do (they love Target-how high class!), people and family we are going to reconnect with and the easy comfort that going home brings me.

Having done this journey so many times, I thought I would share with you what goes in my bag when I get on the plane and also a few things not in my bag but worth knowing about (seriously, some of these are lifesavers!):

Tech, smells and meds for easy travel

Tech, gear and app stuff  (because we all use our phones as our third arm):


: fully charged iPhone with earphones.  I also have a real good sweep on my phone of all the apps I don’t need (delete!) or need upgrading (upgrade!) to free any memory that I might need for later.

: I have discovered that my iPhone seems to practically sprint through its battery life compared to when I first got it. I thought at first it was the battery just giving up the ghost but then I did a bit of research and it is do with with all the stuff that is going on in the background while your phone is just sitting there.  You don’t always need these things to be running so you need to shut them down – here is a list of what you can shut down and how (and you can use this list even if you aren’t travelling to get the most out of your phone).

: it goes without saying, if you are travelling anywhere outside of the UK, check your data and roaming charges for your phone.  Here is the master Martin Lewis and his input on how to make sure you get the right package for where you are travelling and what your usage is.  Me? I know that in the States free WiFi is everywhere so I plan to just ride on the back of that as much as possible and there are websites that show you where the wireless spots are to help you plan your data usage around that. It involves a bit of discipline in NOT checking my phone all the time but I am on holiday so I just switch gears and use my phone as a camera and not a distraction.

Potions. Lotions and Meds

: a spritzer water bottle (regulation size!) of water with a bit of rose water, bergamot and ylang ylang (thanks Sue Lacey for introducing me to these luscious smells!). I use it to keep my face from drying up like a prune when in mid air (someone mentioned forgoing alcohol mid flight to keep your moisture levels up – I would rather use my spritzer thank you…) plus the smell is lovely (mine are from  Neals Yard in case you are wondering).

:Vaseline as you can use it for dry lips, dry bits and everything in between.

: aspirin or ibuprofen – ever been somewhere with a headache (or a neck ache from the oh-so-comfortable seats in cattle class) and no pain relief at hand? Not nice so get the pain relief (only a few pills are needed for keeping your bag from getting overfilled) and be smug in your preparation.

:anti sick meds for my kiddos…no need to explain that one!

:toothpaste – I am a stickler for dirty teeth and stale breath so I pack a regulation size tube of toothpaste. If space allows – a toothbrush as well – but if not, a finger will do (come on, it reminds you of it what as like to have a night out at a place other than home where you got up, fixed your hair, gargled with toothpaste and walked out like you didn’t care!).

Comfort things

:spare pare of ped socks as I hate cold feet in flight

:a Pashmina given to me many moons ago  – it is a great blanket, light-blocker-outer and even classes up my in flight outfit.

:my latest crochet project

:a small paper notebook (this one is from the Lyndsey James photo workshop I took last Autumn) for taking down ideas of moments of inspiration. And my Bic pen of choice for flights.

: my Kindle fully charged and downloaded with some holiday  literary goodness.

Hope that helps those of you going on your travels this summer…..if you want to post any travel hints that have been helpful to you, feel free! signature