35 Travel Essentials (What You Can Bring)

When I travel, there are 35 essentials that I pack in my bags.  These must-have travel items should be on every packing list.  I pack these 35 essentials for every trip so that I do not forget important travel items.  Airport security will allow these essentials in your carryon bag.  Several subscribers asked me to make a video about what you SHOULD take when you travel.  I have an older video about 29 items you cannot take through security.

My name is Laurie and I want to thank you for visiting my Travel Tips Channel.  These are only travel essentials from my perspective that will hopefully help you when you pack.

The #1 travel essential for me is my power bank.  I have just ordered a stronger one because we’re going to Europe, and I’m scared my phone will go dead. It can give my phone 2 full charges and is not too much larger than my first one.

phone-chargers
Left=one charge; Right=two charges for my phone

This black one will give my phone a full charge.  But sometimes my phone goes low on battery so fast on the airplane.  I like the look of this white power bank, and I think it is easy to pack even though it gives me twice the charge for my phone

Remember that these are my essentials; I do pack other items, but this post is geared toward travel essentials.

I pack these Apple headphones iphone-headphonesfor the airplane and I pack them in a container.

I used to take over the ear, they broke, then I ordered Skullcandy ones and cannot stand them because they fell out every time I moved.  But these headphones have the same feel as my son’s air pods…very secure in my ear. Some airplanes have entertainment on the plane and sometimes they do not have the free headphones they used to pass out.

Another travel essential is my own deodorant, not the wipes.  Although you save space, they do not work for me.

A travel essential for us is every airline’s app onto our phone.  Some show you where the plane is coming from, what gate it is departing from, how full the airplane is…helpful info.

We pack one dollar bills for shuttle tips for drivers or someone who helps with my suitcase. 

My essential is to pack my usual moisturizer; when I am away from my doctor is not when I want to try a new skin care product.

When I travel to a foreign country I make sure to have my credit card phone numbers listed on a piece of paper or in my phone in case I need to call them for a pickpocketing situation.  I have a 9 Safety Travel Tips video I will link up here or below in the description box.  While you’re down there, hit the bell beside the Subscribe button.

For makeup essentials only, I pack my own foundation and a light eyeshadow with at least one accent color, my eyeliner and mascara. I sometimes take a lot more makeup than these essentials; you can watch that video as well.

pack-shampoo-travel-essentialI pack my own shampoo. Some travelers save space by just waiting until they get to a hotel to use their travel size shampoo. I have to use my own shampoo because my scalp is sensitive.

I also pack a hoodie in my backpack, but one you may prefer is a scarf.  I pack polarized sunglasses because – midlife eye health.

I have learned to not forget to pack a nail file when I travel.  Do you have a case for your nail file? pack-fingernail-file

I just bought one on Amazon and I love it.  Look at the sleek design.  My husband laughed out loud when I told him I wanted a case for mine because it scrapes my hand when I’m reaching for something in my bag or purse. nail-file-container

Another travel essential is a screenshot of my ticket to get through security and onto the airplane.  It’s faster than trying to pull up the email to me or even getting it off of the app.

I love taking a phone prop since I do not use popsockets anymore. phone-prop

I pack a crossbody bag or purse especially if my husband isn’t going to be there because I will need the keys and my reading glasses case needs to be able to fit in there. Also when we go to Europe, they need to be off of me because I will most likely be wearing a down jacket, bulky scarf and a hat.

crossbody-bag
It ain’t pretty, but it holds alot!

I always pack Equal packets.  I can tell the difference between that and Sweet n Low.

Let me know your travel essential below in the comments section.  For more toiletries, you can watch my video about packing toiletries.

I always, almost always pack a pen.  One time I needed it and didn’t have it or my journal…I always pack a journal.  It’s more enjoyable than typing something in my notes section of my phone.

An essential I have used for years is my thick Gold Bond Diabetic Lotion.pack-lotion

I pack it in these essential containers. travel-container-for-lotion-and-vaseline  I usually pack one filled with vaseline too.

I always pack my ID and insurance card.

Another essential is my vitamins and supplements, and I was just gifted this pill travel case with a very sleek and professional design. travel-pill-case-organizer

You can use a 20% discount  if you use code TRAVELTIPS20.

Very professional looking!

One of my most needed travel essentials is an extra pair of socks to wear around the hotel room or the house we will vacation in.

I always pack kleenex.

A smart travel essential is to take worn in shoes – not new shoes because blisters.  Just ask my brother who wore new sneakers to walk around DC all day when he visited us.

One of my favorite travel essentials is to pack outfit pieces that can mix and match. outfit-pieces-mix-and-match

My husband is a pilot, and he has a lot of charging cords and plugs and etc.  He and I both take a container for our charging cords.  Mine is a cute bag.  But let me show you what we found to travel with. cord-winding-organizers

There are these cord winding things which are my favorite.  The large is for your laptop long cord or iPhone.  A hack is to wrap your cord around a business card or a cut-in-half note card. larger-cord-organizers-recoil

I bought these (they come in different sizes), but we use the smallest recoil cord winder for just the phone.  One end goes into my phone, and the other goes into the block plug.  We found that we do NOT utilize the recoil thing but a pro is that we do not have to re-wind the cord with every use and every time we pack it away.  We just pull them out a little bit.  We store the blocks that plug into the wall separately.  I have used this hard shell container a few times, and I only need this if I’m taking my laptop; I do not take it as often because it’s a hard shell case. travel-tech-cord-organizer-hard-shell

I find that I can fit these pouches more easily than a hard shell cord organizer that is this large.

I hope these 35 travel essentials will help you when you make your packing list.  These are all allowed on the plane and through carryon security.

Other videos you may like:

33 Travel Hacks

What NOT to Do When You Travel

29 Items You CANNOT Take

I do use affiliate links, but all opinions are my honest and tried ones.

32 Tips for What NOT to Do When You Travel

I’m sharing 32 Tips for What NOT to Do When You Travel. These are tips on what not to do at the airport, what not to do in the airplane, what not to do in a foreign city, and what not to pack.

airport-security

The number one tip for what not to do when you travel is do not over pack.  I have many travel tips to help with packing methods and for packing toiletries. Do not take an outfit for every day of travel.  Mix and match your clothes that you pack.suitcase beside backpack

Do not pack too big of a personal item bag.  Your travel personal bag is supposed to be able to fit under your airplane seat.  Your airline’s website has a luggage size requirements that will help.  Mostly if you use common sense, your bag will be fine.  I travel with a huge back pack, and it fits all sizes of airplanes that I have been in here in America as well as in Europe.

Do not keep travel documents put away in your bags until it is your turn.  Have them out; you can have them in your pocket when 4 people are in front of you in the security line.  Or you can have them in the closest pocket that is easiest and fastest to get to.

Do not hold up the line in security.gray-bin-security-line-airport

So do not wear a belt.  Do not wait until the last minute to untie your shoes. Do not wait until the last minute to take out your liquids bag.  Have the zipper of your carryon unzipped so you just have to take out the liquids bag and then put your backpack on the security conveyor belt.

Do not try to be funny with TSA by saying, “what do you think I could do with a knife that size!” and then use a terroristic idea.  You most likely will not fly that day if you do AND you will hold up the line for other responsible travelers.

Do not wear lace-up shoes into the airport through security if you can help it.  It takes too long to untie them and then tie them back.

Do not be in a hurry.  You have paid for this trip.  You are being responsible and planning wisely before you even get to the airport. Passengers tend to make mistakes like lose an ID or their ticket when they get in a hurry.  If you make a mistake in the security line, it’s okay. Take a breath, keep your thoughts together and keep going.

Do not be rude to gate agents who are telling you your flight is delayed again.  They have no control over it, and they have no control over the screens being updated.  The communication sometimes is so bad, and they are just the messenger.

Do not expect the flight attendants to put your bag in the overhead bin.  Ask them nicely as you are getting on the plane.  You could also ask a nice gentleman sitting near your seat if he will help you. Do not say, “I can’t lift this up there.”airplane-seats-and-overhead-bins

Do not wear tight clothes on the airplane.  Sit and see how much the button is poking into your belly.  Also, be careful of tight trousers or jeans around your calves.  They can constrict blood flow and cause awful blood clots for some people.  I can recommend compression socks or leggings.  There are also compression sleeves-footless compression sleeves for your calves.compression-socks

Do not keep ringing the flight attendant call button.  They are not waitresses; they are there for your safety. The free drinks are bonus.

Do not leave home without Tylenol; if you have a fever, it will help stave off some of the effects of an infection until you can get to a doc or get through the flight home.

Do not expect to sit with your family even if you have chosen seats.  Just check when you check in and print your tickets.  If you’re not together, tell the gate agent.  Usually the flight attendants are the ones who will correct the problem.  You can also ask someone to move.  It is kind of like that Seinfeld skit where he rents a car online and gets there and there is no car available.

In a carryon suitcase do not put containers in your liquids bag that are larger than 3.4 ounces /100 ml.  Like you cannot carry a large shampoo bottle even though there are just a few drops of shampoo in it.  The containers and the amounts that go in the liquids bag must be no larger than 3.4 ounces.

Do not forget that you can sign up easily for the State Department for updates to your phone if civil unrest or if there is a family emergency.  In my 9 Safe Travel Tips video, I also give you an app for finding out the emergency numbers in 70 different countries.  I’ll link that video below in the description box.  Lots of safe tips!

Do not talk loudly on the park and ride bus or in the boarding area.  It makes you look uneducated technology-wise which is something pick pocketers love.

Do not take bulky headphones.  There are so many loop over the ear kinds now that save you space in your travel bag.

Do not take a tupperware of tuna salad.  The smell is awful to other passengers, but you’re stuck with the tupperware the whole trip.  But I have done it before and just throw away that tupperware.  It’ll show up in the cabinet days later anyway!

Move to the side of the terminal if you want to stop and pull out your documents or ticket to see where your gate is.  Those terminals are narrow and passengers need to be able to keep traffic moving.terminal-narrow

At every airport there are now really good water fountains that you can fill an aluminum or plastic water bottle.  Tip: you can bring a water bottle through security that is filled with ice.  If some has melted, just drink the melted part before getting in line.  Solid ice packs are also allowed but not if they’re room temperature.

There was an article recently that talked about how flight attendants do not want you to order a Diet Coke or any soda because it took so long for the bubbles to dissipate, but I do not think that is the case.

Don’t let airline’s booking system give you a tight connection.  An example would be less than one hour for domestic flights.  For International flights, try not to have a tight connection if it’s the last flight of the day.  I remember people would come in to Dulles Int’l Airport from Germany, landing at 4 and running down the terminal that I was on for a 5:35 departure to Phoenix.

Do not pack any liquids in your personal bag or carryon bags that do not fit in your liquids quart size bag that will be pulled out when you go through security.  All liquids have to fit in one quart sized bag.

Do not feel bad if you need to use the restroom on the airplane, and the person beside you has fallen dead asleep.  It happens, and you will never see that person again.

You do not need to pack a travel inflatable pillow according to this pro packer.

Do not throw all of your clothes in.  Choose a packing method – rolling, packing cubes and there is even the kon mari folding method

Do not put all of your belongings back in your carryon at the conveyor belt in security.  Take the little bin over to the bench; then you can put your belt on, put your documents away securely and you do not delay the people behind you in line. police-house-check-when-travel

Do not forget to sign up for police house check program for your state.  Check your county.  I would google police house check montgomery county.  They ask you a few questions, and will periodically-not set times or days-drive by and maybe walk around your house to make sure all is safe. If you have not seen my 9 travel safety tip video, I list 9 other ways.

Fo international travel do not stand out for pick pocketers.  I have heard this from Love and London and Welters World – writing on your sweatshirts and graphic tees are not a thing over there.  Do not pack all of your money in only one place.  Hide it in some places like in my 19 Life Hacks video.  Do not wear bright white sneakers; if you do not have Converse, you can wear gray tennis shoes or Merrells or Skechers or Sofft shoes my new fave.

33-travel-hacks

Check out some of my other travel tip videos like the one above. Come say hi on Instagram too!

Occasionally I use affiliate links, and all opinions are my own.

7 Travel Tips to Pack Light

Hey there; here are 7 travel tips for packing light.  When you pack light for travel, you save space in your suitcase. I am showing you how to maximize your space in your suitcase and travel bag by packing light with these 7 tips.  I have 7 tips, but I’m breaking down each tip into details on how you can pack light.

The #1 Travel tip for packing light is: Pack so that your travel outfits do double duty

I wear a pair of jeans and pack one pair of pants in my travel bag. I’m saving space by only packing one pair of pants in my suitcase. One of my jeans looks dressier so it can be worn both in the day time and at a nice restaurant or show.  All the tops that I pack can mix and match with these two pairs of pants. I can easily have 7 travel outfits with space leftover in my suitcase.

The #2 travel tip for packing light is to use a backpack or duffle bag that can fit under your airplane seat as your personal item instead of just a purse.  I use a backpack as my personal bag because there is maximum amount of space, which means more space in my suticase.  1. Depending on where I go, I will use a light-weight cross body that can be rolled and stored in my backpack and pulled out when I get to my destination.    2. I can pack a sweater or jacket in the bottom of the backpack because there is more space than if I took a purse.  I recommend rolling that sweater or jacket.  And now if I get cold, I do not have to pull my suitcase out of the over head bin looking for my jacket.  It’s in my personal item backpack. 3. I pack my liquids and medicines in that backpack that is right underneath my airplane seat.  That equals 3 items that are now in my backpack, leaving more space in my suitcase.

The #3 travel tip for packing light is to blend travel outfit colors (Monochromatic on some days, black, blue, gray)

I recommend black pants or gray jeans and blue jeans. I recommend red top, white or light gray top, and a black t-shirt.  All tops match with any of those jeans.  Scarf and cardigans can dress up an outfit, and they take up minimal space in your suitcase. A scarf and jewelry are light weight, and they add color and personality to your travel outfits.  Blending colors does not mean boring.  Even your fingernail colors can add some personality to your blue or black outfit.

The #4 travel tip for packing light is to wear your heaviest clothing and shoes onto the airplane so those items are not taking up space in your suitcase.

I wear my tall boots.  I wear my thick cardigan.  I wear jeans.  My mom wanted to wear leggings for her long haul flight to Israel, but I encouraged her to wear jeans.  She had enough space in her suitcase, so she opted to wear leggings and not take my travel advice. Humph!

I really think this 5th tip is key to packing light: write down each outfit per day after I lay out outfits.  Visually, it helps you see what can be mixed and matched.  I was going to add in this cute sweater from Nordstrom.  It doesn’t really go with black jeans so it’s taking up extra space.  If it’s not a multi-tasker, the item will not help you pack light.  Toss it.

Pack a small amount of basic makeup items with one deep accent color for your eyeshadow or lips.  I pack a burgundy color as my accent piece.  To save space you can pack small pallets like this Mary Kay one that contains blush and three of my neutral eyeshadows.  Then There is a deep brown and blue here for accents.  I pack this Japonesque pallet because it’s flat and matte.  But I am allergic to red dye on my eyes so that’s why I bring this dye-free burgundy from Young Living. This makeup pallet saves space because it’s basically the thickness of my travel pouch where I pack makeup.  I can use 2 of these colors for my blush. I TRY to only bring a few brushes, but do not take for granted the little brushes that are in those supermarket eyeshadow palettes.  They’re small and great space-savers for travel. I never throw those brushes away.  I can use them for 5 days.

The 7th tip for packing light is to use cubes.  They squish and smush your items into compartments that really do give you more room in your suitcase.  The packing cubes are moldable; it’s not like you’re putting shoe boxes in your suitcase.  They shape to what you need. I made a video about that comparing rolling method vs packing cubes; you can check it out by clicking any of the i cards at any time during my videos.

There you have the 7 travel tips to help you pack light.  If you have a packing light tip, let us know.  We are becoming a little community here on Travel Tips by Laurie.  So join in! Thank you for watching!