May 24, 2016

How I Travel: My 4 Must-Haves

There are certain items that I absolutely must have with me on my travels. These four things are included in my pockets or bag every time I go on anything from a day trip to a month away. When I've forgotten something from this list, it's been top priority to find a version of it locally as soon as I can.

1. Chapstick

I may not wear make-up, but it's impossible for me to "wear my face" without chapstick. Even if my lips aren't actually dry, if I don't have chapstick with me, they begin to feel chapped as soon as I realize it's missing.

I load up on the original vanilla scented Chapstick brand every time I go back to the USA, and I haven't run out yet!

2. Travel-size facial tissue

Between cold weather nose and warm weather allergies, I am always in need of a Kleenex. Aside from the obvious benefits of facial tissue for the face, I've also been fortunate to have tissue with me when cleaning off wet or dirty benches and in bathrooms without toilet paper.

I've never quite gotten on board with carrying cleaning wipes with me, but tissue seems to work for everything just fine.

3. Smart device

This is less about staying in touch with people and more about the GPS maps and taking photos. If I don't have wifi, my iPhone 4 is regulated to camera, calculator, clock, and map. Even without wifi, in a well-connected city my device will find me on Google Maps and I can at least compass my way around via the blue dot.


I just happen to have received an old iPhone 4 from my sister and her husband a couple of years ago. If I could choose my Apple device, it would be one of the new iPod Touches or iPad minis.

4. Earbuds

Earbuds solve any hint of boredom, need for noise-canceling, and can create an excellent "Do Not Talk To Me" look. I've mostly employed my earbuds in trains, buses, and planes to drown out loud people. I am typically an open and friendly traveler, but sometimes that creepy guy who might want to sit by you on the train just needs to see you're totally not interested in talking with him. Ever.

I prefer earbuds from Skullcandy; they are the most comfortable and last the longest!

What other items would you include on this list? Any you would omit?

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