1. Melatonin. Long flights and jet lag can wreak havoc on your sleep schedule, but with a little help from my good friend, melatonin, this problem can be avoided! Make sure to get plenty of sleep on the plane, so you can land refreshed and ready for adventure! And melatonin does the trick, if you have trouble sleeping.
2. Surge protector. This sounds very strange, but nothing is worse than getting to the hotel after a long day of traveling and realizing there isn’t enough outlets for all of your electronics. A simple surge protector can double the number of outlets needed for phone charges, kindles, etc. Surge protectors are also extremely useful in airports, when everyone is struggling to find an outlet. They also don’t take up much room in your luggage, which is always a good thing! I learned this tip from my aunt and now I don’t travel without one!
3. Plastic baggies. These are life savers when it comes to small things like bobby pins, hair ties, memory cards, and jewelry. But they are universal! I use them for multiple things, especially for keeping small souvenirs that I collect along the way (tickets, coins, etc.) Keeping all of your small keepsakes in one, small baggie will save you time and effort. You’ll thank yourself in the end, when it’s all conveniently located.
4. Pens. For every international flight, there will be immigration paperwork to fill out on the plane. You don’t want to be “that person” on the plane, asking everyone around you to borrow a pen. Another reason to have one or two pens handy during travel, is because you never know if you’ll meet an awesome person and want to exchange information with them to keep in touch. And finally, because I have run into many “memory walls” or “sign your name” type of things when traveling abroad, I’ve learned to always keep a pen in my purse!
5. Info sheet. It is ALWAYS a good idea to keep an extra paper with important information (itinerary, flight numbers/times, name/address of your hotel, etc.) in your handbag, just in case you get lost in a foreign city and have to find your way back. I usually type up one page of everything I need to know and make sure to put it somewhere I’ll remember. This isn’t absolutely necessary, but it’s always better safe than sorry, right?
6. Light jacket. This may sound ridiculous or maybe obvious to some of you, but this is one of my necessities! No matter where you’re going or how many times you check the forecast, Mother Nature is unpredictable! It can be windy or rainy out of nowhere. And if you’re like me and get cold very easily, I would suggest bringing one. Especially during long flights and train/bus rides, these are usually the coldest. Having a small, lightweight jacket with you can save your shivering body. And even if you don’t feel the need to wear it, they can turn into great pillows (don’t forget, sleep is important!) No one wants to be uncomfortable or tired on vacation!