My travel schedule this year has been near non-stop. After countless flights and hotel stays, I’ve discovered exactly what I need to take with me in order to stay sane, grounded, and nourished––often difficult when plucked from routine and in unfamiliar territory.
My Virgo nature depends greatly on daily rituals. For example, the early hours of the day are most sacred to me, and since the pace at which I move in the morning sets the speed and flow for my entire day, when I travel, I try to book meetings in the late morning and afternoon. This allows me to maintain my routine and also get plenty of rest…Jetlag and I do not get along.
Maintaining a semi-regular eating routine is also a must. To avoid getting caught in airports with limited and generally unhealthy food options, I pack a flight meal and snacks in my carry-on.
With holiday travel quickly creeping up, I felt it might be beneficial for me to share my packing must-haves and best travel tips with you. Perhaps you’ll pick up a few new tricks to help you be a happier and healthier traveler.
1. Check or Carry-On?
Choosing to check a bag or carry-on comes down to personal preference. Some trips don’t require me to race out of the airport. For those times, I check my bag so I can feel free as a bird. If I have a meeting to be to, a car to rent, or if time is of the essence when I land, I will opt to carry-on.
2. A Perfectly Packed Suitcase.
I used to pack an outfit for every occasion––dinners out, client meetings, casual wear for wandering the city, site seeing, etc. I have even attempted to use travel as an excuse to wear those “great pieces” that I never wear back home. Bad idea…all they serve to do is take up space. Now I only pack the clothing I wear in the normal course of each day.
Feeling comfortable is of utmost importance when I’m on the go and selecting each day’s outfit needs to be effortless. To ensure ease, I pack basics made from wrinkle-free fabrics or those that can quickly be steamed in a hotel bathroom.
For most trips, the clothing you will find in my bag include:
(2) pair of jeans (one is dark and dressy, and the other light and casual)
(1) pair of denim cutoffs if traveling to warmer climates
(2-3) tank tops to lounge in or to layer
(2) blouses or sweaters depending on the time of year and climate
(1) long sweater duster (usually wear this on the plane so I can feel cozy)
(2) pair of socks
(2) sleep/lounge wear pieces
(1) cozy hoodie or sweatshirt
(1) neutral dress or skirt
(1) pair of athletic shoes for walking the city, hiking, or running
(1) pair of flip-flops for warm climate travel, and for cruising through the hotel
(1) pair of heels or dressy boots (depending on the season and climate) that can dress up a pair of jeans or accompany my dress or skirt
(1) slip on shoe that I wear on the plane (such as my Toms, Converse, or my flat, “wear with anything” boots.)
(1) Jacket––I have a ton of outerwear so depending on where I am going, this piece might be my tinsel army green lightweight jacket, long featherweight down coat, a motorcycle leather, or denim jacket.
(2) workout/yoga outfits
(1) yogitoes Towel––I leave my full-size yoga mat at home. The towel works just as well and takes up significantly less space.
How does all of the above fit in a single suitcase?
Over a decade ago, I learned a secret to maximizing luggage space. ROLL YOUR CLOTHES! You will fit nearly two times more and reduce the heavy creases that result from folding.
Electric Toothbrush––for a while I tried to take my stick brush to save space, but I could never get my teeth and mouth to feel as fresh.
DoTerra Lavender Essential Oil—a few drops on my pillowcase helps to relax and ease tension.
DoTerra Citrus Bliss Essential Oil—energizing, and diminishes the stale smell of some hotel rooms.
DoTerra OnGaurd Pellets—they freshen breath and ward off viruses (I keep one in my carry-on too.)
Unfiltered Coconut or Sesame oil—I use the oil as a body moisturizer, for oil pulling, and to keep my nasal passages lubricated. Hotel rooms and airplanes can dry our mucus membranes.
Floss singles (I pack some in my carry-on too)
Himalayan Travel-Sized Neem Toothpaste
Gaia Sleep Thru—Herbal Sleep Remedy
Magnesium Oil Spray—helps regulate digestion, promotes restful sleep, calms the nervous system, and eases achy muscles.
Bach’s Rescue Remedy—stress relief spray
Simply Divine Botanicals Eye Gel—works wonders to reduce puffiness and under eye circles.
Common Sundries—shampoo, condition, face wash, moisturizer, toner, body wash, body cream.
Travel-Sized All Natural Laundry Detergent Pouches—when I work out, I sweat and my clothes need to be cleaned after each wear. It took me using the hotel laundry service only one time to determine I never again want to spend $22 dollars on the laundering of one sports bra and pair of leggings.
Protein, Fiber, and Whole Fat Snacks
I frequently travel late in the day and am hungry by the time I check into my room. Rather than ordering room service or raiding the minibar, I will snack on a few goodies I’ve brought from home such as:
Avocado (I pack a plastic knife for cutting and spoon for scooping)
Hemp & Sachi Inchi Seeds
Artisana Coconut Butter Singles
Granny Smith Apples
Variety of herbal teas (chamomile, ginger, licorice, peppermint, nettle, dandelion)
Guaranteed to be in My Carry-On:
Bose Noise Cancelling Headphones
Lacrosse Ball for pressure point massage on my back, neck, and legs
Yogi Brand Ginger Tea
Homemade Rose and Lavender Facial Mist (using DoTerra Essential Oils) to keep my skin hydrated, and complexion nice and bright.
DoTerra OnGaurd Pellets to ward-off viruses, and to freshen breath.
Portland Bee Balm to keep my lips hydrated and smooth.
EO Lavender Hand Wipes for added sanitation or clean up of food and drink spills.
Little Giraffe tiny blanket to keep me feeling cozy on long flights.
A Long Duster sweater to wrap myself in comfort.
Progurt Probiotic Sachets to keep my belly happy.
Plush Socks to toasty and comfy toes.
Swell Water Bottles that I can refill at water stations after passing through security.
Dark Chocolate to snack on of course.
Crystal Essence Chamomile & Green Tea Deodorant Towelettes for freshening up.
Simply Divine Amazing Face Moisturizer
Home prepared lunch that is packed in a Stainless Steel Lunch Box
Ipad mini with iBooks and movies
Moisture rich snacks like raw veggies and fruit
Hemp and Sachi Inchi Seeds
I hope you’ll find some gems in these lists to support you in being a happier and healthier traveler!