Before you embark on any journey, there is a task that must be completed that can be an utter nightmare: packing. Packing the right amount and type of clothes can be a fairly straightforward task, but what about everything else? Do you need to bring a neck pillow? Eye mask? What about that water purifying drink bottle? Over the years of travel, I have tried and tested many different traveling gadgets and finally came up with a list of things that I don’t leave home without. In no particular order…
This little, magical device has saved my sanity on many an occasion. You have access to millions of books, the battery lasts for days and it is extremely compact. It makes any long plane, train, bus or boat journey fly by. Before the advent of this little device, you would have been forced to either load up half of your bag with books or hope that you could find something good to read along the way. These days are gone.
No, this is not for self protection or anything quite so sinister. You would be surprised by how many times that you find yourself in need of a knife or corkscrew. The knife is very handy for preparing a picnic in the park and the corkscrew will open up that bottle of wine to go with it.
You don’t have to be traveling for months to find a clothes line useful. Most hotel rooms don’t have a place where you can hang up your clothes to let them dry. There have been countless times, when I had to wash some clothes, but didn’t have access to proper laundry facilities or didn’t want to pay $25 per item. I had to hang my clothes off of chairs, door knobs and anywhere else I could. A simple piece of rope made this task so much easier.
Dirty Laundry Bag
When you are traveling, washing your clothes is always a bit of a hassle. You need to try and make your clothes last for as long as possible. If you throw your dirty clothes on top of all of your clean ones, everything will start to have a bit of an odour. At any local sporting goods store, you can pick up a drawstring, polyester bag. They are perfect to use as a dirty laundry bag.
I know that this item might sound a bit silly to some people. Coffee and tea is very easy to come by everywhere on the planet. True, but if you are like me, you need a caffeine hit first thing in the morning and sometimes getting your fix can be a hassle. An added bonus is that you can buy some breakfast supplies to eat in the room,which could save you a bunch of money.
WiFi is so easy to come by that you can use your smartphone almost anywhere. It is useful to stay in contact with people, do research on your next destination, find out what the weather is doing, etc. They also give you a secure place to do your internet banking. Having your bank accounts hacked into after using a public computer is an experience no traveler wants to have.
A portable safe can provide you with the peace of mind knowing that at least your passport and wallet are safe and sound. Many different companies make them, but they are essentially a small, tough canvas bag woven with a wire mesh making them impossible to cut. They can be attached to a bed frame or any other sturdy bit of furniture in your room. They are great, especially if you are staying in a room without a built in safe.
Every traveler is slightly different and will have other items that they absolutely must take with them. The important thing is to try to get this list as small as possible. You don’t want to take an enormous suitcase with you everywhere you go.