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Tuesday, December 06, 2022

We all have been on a trip once in a our lives and have forgotten something that you thought was so important there is no way you could forget it. It is a total bummer to arrive at your destination and be missing a necessary part of your daily life because you absentmindedly left it in the kitchen, or you were in a rush and weren’t going to pack it until the last minute because you knew you’d use it before leaving. It’s funny how these things work out in life.

When traveling, the lighter the better, but that doesn’t mean you have to leave your essentials behind. It is a common packing strategy for hikers to make a checklist of their ten essential items (navigation tools, fire starters, light, etc.) so why not transfer that idea to the art of packing for a day, weekend or week trip?


I travel a lot, as my title implies and I am used to forgetting things, over packing and losing items along the way. In order to help all of us fellow travelers this summer in their packing crises, below is a list of the top ten essentials when traveling for business or pleasure. 

1. Passport/ID

Ok, of all things to forget at home, when you conveniently live 45 minutes away from the airport is your ID or Passport. Seriously, it seems like the one thing you wouldn’t forget , but trust me it can happen. Maybe that slight chance that you used it a bar a couple nights before and didn’t put it back in your wallet after or when you checked your passport expiration you forgot to put it back in your bag; things can happen. Double check before leaving.

2.       Wallet

On that same note, don’t forget your wallet! You do not want to be stranded in a foreign country without money to your name. Wiring money is an expensive emergency backup so always remember your credit card, cash, ID, traveler’s checks and the like. If you are going to a kind of sketchy place  trade your Louis Vuitton wallet for your knockoff so gypsies aren’t tempted to steal it.

3.       Chargers/Batteries

You don’t want to pull out your phone mid 10 hour flight and find that the charge didn’t hold. Bring chargers and backup batteries for all electronics so as to avoid these unfortunate circumstances when you actually have to talk to real humans and not Siri.

4.       Book/ Kindle

Reading material is a travel necessity for me. Whether it is a new New York Times bestseller or a trashy magazine, I need something to read with me at all times. I have a kindle app on my phone so it is really easy for me to always have reading material along for the ride, but personally I like hard copies better than soft internet copies so I tend to keep a book as an essential travel item.

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5.       Journal/Pen

You never know when you are going to meet a cutie who wants to give you his or her number and honestly it is safer to hand them a piece of paper then your phone, so keep a notepad with you. I am writer, blogger a huge fan of self reflection so I need my journal with me when I travel.

6.       Reusable water bottle

Not only are these environmentally conscious items, but a reusable water bottle will save you tons of money when travelling in the airport and when you reach your destination. If you are going to a place that the tap water is not safe maybe nix his idea or bring a water purifier or iodine tablets.

7.       Phone

Um, hello our generation is constantly on their phones so I truly doubt you will forget this item, but it is a definite travel essential. Keeping connected to family and friends is very important not only for your safe, but also for  your Instagram followers. Your followers will miss you, so don’t keep them guessing about what you are eating for dinner in San Francisco, keep them updated!

8.       Toiletries

Forgetting your toothbrush would be a major setback, so lay out everything before you leave. If you wear mascara or tame your beard every day, don’t forget your essentials. I am a big moisturizer and flosser, so I always have those with me.

9.       Multi Purpose shoes

If you are going on a short trip and only have a carry on it will be really useful to bring along a pair of shoes that works for many occasions. For example a pair of white Keds can be worn with jeans when walking around the city or paired with a dress for dinner. For men, a comfortable pair of loafers or Sperry’s can work for a beach day and a dinner. These can come in handy after days of travelling and walking around.

10.   Favorite Outfit

Don’t fill your luggage with clothes you think you might wear, fill it with items that you know you wear all of the time. Your favorite pair of jeans or khaki shorts will be very lonely without you, so make sure you don’t forget your most wearable items. Be practical and don’t over pack either.

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