Adding on as promised to my first post about must have travel essentials to make jetsetting more convenient and comfortable, I bring you my latest list after a four day trip to Germany for Oktoberfest… that’s a 12 hour flight.
1. iPod Adapter Cord. It’s so frustrating when you get in your rental car or are at a pool hall with terrible music and you have your iPhone or Ipod with you, but nothing to plug it in with–all you need is a simple, $1.75 cord to get your tunes playing.
2. Tea bags. I bet you have a favorite type of tea that you just love. It reminds you of curling up at home on a rainy day with a good book… so why not bring a few bags along with you when you’re reading on a plane for that cozy feeling? You can always ask a flight attendant for hot water. I am personally obsessed with licorice mint tea–it totally cures my sugar cravings. My old book club member Tonya introduced me to it and now I buy it whenever I see it… I actually stocked up by way of Amazon before the move out here. I also love Bancha’s Toasted green tea.
3. Jump rope… for heart. Remember that good old elementary school contest? No matter where you are, no matter what the weather is like, you can always break a good sweat if you have a jump rope with you. It’s so hard to work out when you’re traveling, but the truth is nothing is better for jetlag. Even jump roping for five minutes will really wake me up and help my swollen legs recover after a long flight.
4. Resistance bands. You can actually work out almost every muscle in your body with one or two bands. They take up no weight and almost no room and they cost next to nothing so you really have no excuse to not get in a little toning on the road. When I can’t find a tree or pole or a Mr. to loop the band around to get in my chest presses, I’ve been known to loop them around the metal casing of an open window. I like to alternate a few minutes of jump rope with a series of band exercises that way you really cover every base.
5. Jurlique rose hand cream. My friend Cynthia nicely recommended this great product. I am a total sucker for anything that comes in a metal tube–I love that you can squeeze the last drop! It has a great scent and is super thick and concentrated, without being greasy. Your hands do get so dry on flights! You should find a scented cream that really makes you feel refreshed just when you put a little (you don’t want to overwhelm your fellow cabin mates) on. Although this is quite expensive, it is nice to have something ‘special’ to look forward to during that 11th hour!
6. Saline nose spray. This is probably the most helpful thing yet on my list and I would never have tried it had it not been for the Mr.’s strong advocacy because leaning your head back and jamming plastic up your nose and then waiting for the dribbles that inevitably follow is not exactly a ladylike maneuver! Your nose does get so dried out on the plane and this salt water spray that you can get at any drug store for a couple of dollars completely prevents that. Not only that, but keeping your nasal passages moist actually really helps your immune system fight invading bacteria, meaning you are much less likely to get sick. This is especially true on long flights where the air filtration system breaks down after about four hours. I’ve taken to following the Mr.’s lead and spraying pre, during, and post flight. It’s also great for extremely air-conditioned hotel rooms and the inevitable exhaustion, sickness cycle that comes with being on the road.
7. AirPort Express. Another great idea from the Mr. If you’re staying in a hotel room, they will often charge you for every electronic device you connect to the Internet… and sometimes it’s simply highway robbery (20 Euros per day, seriously?) If you bring your wireless adaptor from home however you can connect as many devices (work computer and personal computer x 2, iPad, iPhone, etc.) for the cost of one.
8. A chic, clear cosmetics bag. After all that serious talk, we needed something a little lighter! My friend Gina got me this adorable Kate Spade toiletry bag for my honeymoon and I just love it–great shower idea, by the way! Nothing has made traveling more enjoyable for me than having an entire set of toiletries, cosmetics, and–this is key–makeup and makeup brushes dedicated just to traveling. It is so nice to know that this is just ready to go whenever you need to go. It’s hard to enough to coordinate your clothes, shoes, etc. So do yourself a favor and make this easy! I collect all hotel toiletries and cosmetic samples in one place. I also try to force my self to refill anything that needs refilling after a trip so I’m ready to go on the next one.
9. Clear card. So before Clear went under last year they were my new best friend… but I’m including them here because they are back! So if you were a member before they folded, make sure to re-register–they’re honoring your previous membership. And if you weren’t a member before I would wait until they hopefully get up and running in more airports. It was such a blessing to waltz through security and I believe the $99/year actually saved me money because I was able to take the train/BART/subway so much more often knowing exactly how much time to budget for security… sparing me the expense of a cab ride, which often equals the annual membership of this card. Here’s to hoping that they’re back for good the second time around! TSA could sure use the help.