The Twenty-Something Series: My carry-on must-haves (as someone who cannot travel light)

I travel a lot - and cannot travel light. So here's what I absolutely cannot live without in my carry-on hand luggage, including my perfect wallet and bag!

This week, I'm posting some more travel-themed blog posts after my recent trip to Rio - and today, I'm going to share the must-haves in my carry-on!

First off: yes, there'll be some affiliate links.

Secondly: I am the absolute worst at travelling light. I feel sick with dread at the idea of ever having to do a 'hand luggage only' trip anywhere. (I mean, the toiletries! Think of the toiletries! And how will I manage to fit in half a dozen outfit options for a single day?!)

So please, do not expect this to be a post on how to pack light and travel with just a carry-on. I am not that person. Instead, I am the person who travels with a fairly-bulky backpack that fits bloody everything I could possibly need for a two or twelve hour flight.

Without further ado: here are my carry-on essentials!

1. A portable charger (or three.)

On airplane mode? All the better for charging! It's a bonus to find a USB port at your airplane seat, but I can never bank on it - and like to make sure my phone is fully charged when I land the other side. If you're also attached to your phone, you've probably already invested - and if you haven't, you really should. Here's the one I use, and I love it. (Also, it's pink, so easy to find in my bag!)

2. Spare earphones

After one headphone disaster on holiday, I have made sure to NEVER travel without a spare pair of earphones ever again. They're so small and light they take up no space in your bag - so don't get caught out! 

3. A large scarf

Sometimes it's a little chilly on an airplane, and the bonus of a large scarf is that you can double it up as a blanket or shawl to keep you cosy and warm - especially important it it's an overnight flight! I have a lightweight cotton scarf that's pretty thin, but does a great job at keeping the chill away. I rarely ever travel without it.

4. Mini toiletries

You're allowed up to 1 litre of liquids in your carry-on. Of course, you can buy more after you get through airport security, but who wants to pay jacked-up airport prices? 

The longer the flight, the nicer it is to freshen up. And if you, like me, suffer from dry skin and acne, carrying a few products isn't even a question.

A few toiletries I like to carry are: a miniature deodorant/deodorant wipes; perfume (usually a travel-sized Ted Baker body spray I love from Boots); moisturiser (Nivea Daily Essentials is a travel friendly size, but if you need something stronger to tackle some eczema - pop into your nearest Lush Cosmetics and ask for a sample of Dream Cream!).

Also - toothpaste and face wash, if it's a long flight. Gotta look after that skin and be ready to take some photos!

5. Some makeup

I like to wear makeup - but I also just prefer to wear some if I'm doing something once I land. Like, heading straight to the office in Germany. Rimmel London's Wake Me Up concealer and a compact powder go a LONG way, believe me.

6. Tissues and anti-bacterial

Makeup disaster? Spilt tea during some turbulence? Snotty nose? Don't panic, you've already got a pack of tissues handy. I also carry anti-bacterial hand gel with me - but my mum is more a fan of a mini pack of anti-bac wipes. Either way, you know you'll need them if you don't take them.

7. A paperback book/magazine!

I mentioned this in my post earlier this week on prepping ahead of a solo trip, but a handful of times, I've been caught out where I'm about to dig into a Kindle book, or listen to a podcast, and a stewardess will tell me with a tight-lipped smile to please, put my device away, the airline does not allow electronic devices to be used during landing or take-off.

Also, I'm not afraid to say that I'll end up stashing receipts and a printed copy of my travel insurance in whatever paperback I'm carrying around so that I don't misplace them.

8. The Perfect Travel Wallet

Oh, the travel wallet. You see hundreds of them in stores and online. Some of them are bulky and some of them are too small, and others... others are just perfect

I bought myself this travel wallet from Amazon a while ago and have never looked back. It's a staple for me now and I couldn't imagine being without it. It fits my passport, any cash, is long enough to store a physical boarding pass if the airline prints one for me. There are a couple of card slots and a zipped part - always handy. It means I don't have to carry a purse as well, and gives me more peace of mind than a blind fumble around the bottom of my bag for my passport, running loose somewhere where I tossed it in after boarding.

The one I use also has RFID blocking, and it's got a tiny little metal ring - VERY handy, I find, for attaching my suitcase's lock when I'm not using it.

9. The Perfect Rucksack

Look. Sometimes, you find things that just surpass all your expectations and that you don't know what you'd do without. Like a travel wallet. Or a rucksack.

My office is all about agile working and hot-desking - meaning you don't leave your laptop, charger, headset, etc. at your desk, because you don't have a fixed desk. So I needed a good, solid rucksack for work, to carry all my shit around. I wanted something comfortable, sturdy, waterproof, and cute (but that would also go with every outfit and didn't cost an arm and a leg). I know - I was asking for a lot.

Yet somehow, this rucksack fit my every wish, and has become my go-to for hand luggage. It just always seems to fit everything. I'm a regular Mary Poppins with it. Two bottles of water? My coat? My laptop? The book I impulse-bought at the airport? The perfume I got in Duty Free? Toss it all in! It always seems to fit!

It also gets a lot of compliments. Which is totally an added bonus. (Why thank you! Yes! I do pick good stuff!)

Anyway: point being, you need that one bag you can rely on, that will fit the hand baggage restrictions of pretty much any airline while simultaneously fitting your travel essentials - and it probably doesn't hurt to be waterproof. 

And that's it! My carry-on essentials.

Obviously, it's not all that I carry with me, but these are often things I carry around in my handbag (or backpack!) day-to-day and that I can't recommend enough for hand luggage on a flight.

What are the things you always have to have in your carry-on? Let me know in the comments or over on Twitter, where I'm @Reekles!

Keep an eye out later this week for my last travel post for now, on my travel bucket list.

No comments:

Powered by Blogger.