Our last trip to Brazil was the first time I have ever been fully prepared for a plane journey. Perhaps it was because I was 30? Wise enough to know better? Or perhaps it was because this was our fourth flight of the year.
Either way, as we waited to depart from CDG and I sat in my seat, I was feeling pretty chuffed with myself as I looked around at my personal in-flight kit (who needs a first class goody bag?)
Thought I’d share my travel essentials:
1. Travel Pillow
My favourite thing about travelling… I have the BEST sleep. All it takes is for me to be parked in a seat for a couple of minutes on anything that moves and I am gone. I actually look forward to it. But the one thing I don’t look forward to is the neck ache afterwards. Over the years I have tried a number of positions and products and finally I’ve found one that works. For me, the J pillow is the best thing for my kind of sleeping. It’s not the most compact item to carry but when travelling far away and needing to head straight into a busy itinerary I’d carry anything to make the journey more comfortable.
I say my kind of sleeping because everyone feels comfort differently. When I knock out, I’m a ‘mover’ so the J pillow is adaptable to any sleeping position I want to put myself in. Hubby on the other hand is a ‘stay-stiller’ so for him the perfect sleeping companion is the Trtl Napscarf. After reading a review on a travel blog favourite, The Travel Hack, he invested in this strange contraption. And luckily it does exactly what it says on the tin, keeps you upright, strain free and provides support. It also packs up pretty neatly and most importantly, weighs next to nothing.
2. Travel Blanket
Next best thing after a travel pillow? A good snuggly travel blanket.
When Mo booked us on our Air France flight to Rio, he assumed we would be in for an uncomfortable trip, based on his past experiences of flying with the airline when he lived in France. This turned out not to be the case (we ended up absolutely LOVING the flight) but he had bought us the Travel Rest 4-in-1 blanket which we’ve found to be perfect for any journey.
Super soft premium cosy fleece material, washes well, folds into its own pouch and it actually doubles up as a pillow too.
On a not-so-smooth-sailing trip to Thailand I talked about how I fell in love with this small compact reading device and now no trip is complete without the kindle.
They’re light, compact, easy to read, glare free, I get no eye strain from staring at it (very important) and they can hold hundreds and hundreds of books. This will revolutionise your down time on holiday.
Bottom line: if you’re a reader, you need this in your life.
As an expat child living in Saudi Arabia, every year would involve at least one long haul flight where we were provided with a free bag of travel amenities. I always kept and used everything in it. But I always wondered what the reasoning behind the socks were. socks? on a plane? Nevertheless I used them.
Moving back to the UK and taking my first short haul flight, after initially getting over the shock of not receiving a free bag of goodies (I know it sounds spoilt but I thought it was a general plane thing) my second stab in the heart was the absence of those socks. I missed them terribly! So now I always make sure that without fail I carry my favourite pair to change into as soon as I’m strapped into my seat – Just make sure the ones you take aren’t tight fitting. Tight socks are not plane-friendly.
Personally, I’m not a fan of headphones that sit on your head. They give me that same dig-in-your-head feeling that glasses do when you’re lying down trying to watch something with them on. I’m all about the pop in buds and this pair from Betron are the best I’ve come across. Not because of the good sound quality. Not because of the longish cable. But because they don’t get tangled! I always thought this was a gimmick but it genuinely doesn’t. A real bonus as the last thing you want is rising stress levels when you’re 40,000ft in the air.
I also always carry my Earphone splitter and plane adaptor. When you’re travelling with another person and you both want to listen/watch something together gone are the days of sharing a set of ear buds and missing certain sounds because of it. The plane adaptor Is a recent purchase, they’re super cheap to buy on eBay. For some reason my headphone cables never fit snugly into the socket, they used to constantly fall out and this little plastic thing makes all the difference.
Et voila! Two happy travellers kitted out ready to take on a 13 hour flight.
What are your travel essentials? Is there anything you recommend I should be adding to my kit?