Monday, November 12, 2012

Holiday Travel Tips

Packing for a trip this holiday season?  Don't forget these hot new travel essentials!
I just LOVE the holiday season!  Visiting with friends and family are what this time of year is all about.  If you are fortunate enough to be invited over for a meal and/or extended stay, here are a few things you can pack to help make your visit extra comfy.  If you enjoy taking your holiday vacation away from home or a tropical cruise, these ideas will work there too.  (Tip: Many of these items also make great gifts for the "jet-setter" on your list!  Could that be YOU?)

Flying or vacationing in a tropical location for the holidays?  Remember to bring your sunscreen!

Aside from packing those specific occasional clothes for the beach, a holiday party or family dinner, (think "photo opportunities"), consider other things you should include to help you be extra relaxed while on your trip.

Here is a short-list of items to bring along to help prevent stress, illness and basically to avoid having a bad time:

First-Aid Travel Kit 
I like the Smart Travel by Adventure Medical Kits pictured here.  It has all of the medications you could possibly need plus a full array of motion sickness meds, wound care, bandages, tweezers, a mini blister kit plus emergency clothing repair and more.  Insightfully put together, and VERY well organized, it contains most everything to deal with aliments and issues common to travelers.  Comes with a concise traveler's first-aid booklet and a Visual Communication Tool describing a number of emergency and health related conditions in various languages. The kit can be personalized to include other medications you're on and takes up about as much space as a romance novel but will be much more useful.

Portable Tap Water Purifier
Sometimes you may find yourself traveling to different countries or simply a different state within the U.S.  If you are staying at a hotel, room service may leave a few bottles of sparking water in the fridge but when that runs out, you'll need to purchase more. I know from experience that hotel tap water is absolutely horrible and it isn't improved by making tea or coffee either!  Why hassle with all that?  I pack a Purificup Water Filter for Tap Water. There’s no need for boiling water after it is filtered and each filter provides up to 24 gallons (330 cups) of pure water anywhere you are, including your hotel room, airport and train station's public water fountains.

Travel Buddies: Purificup, Smart Travel Medical Kit, Aurora Magnesium Fire Starter & British Army Knife. (The last two items SHOULD NOT be brought to an airport due to security restrictions.)

Air Sanitizer or Disinfectant Spray
I like this Ozium Glycol-ized Air Sanitizer for its portable 0.8 oz size. It is specifically made for use in public buildings and hotels among other germy places.  It effectively removes airborne bacteria, smoke and dispels odors.  Really hotels and motels, (even many luxury ones) are some of the most heavily trafficked places on earth.  I spray my room with this stuff and hope for the best!

Multiple Vitamins  
Even if you don't usually take a multiple vitamin, consider bringing them along when you travel.  Your body will be super-stressed by changes in climate, running to make your connection and sometimes unfamiliar cuisine while being exposed to all sorts of pathogens you're not accustomed to.  Try to get quick release capsules like these Organic Multiples by Rainbow Light. They are easier to digest than hard tablets and stomach upset is the last thing you need while traveling. Since bringing them along, I no longer bring back a cold when I return from vacation.

Foot Warmers
You can bring that favorite pair of wool socks, bunny slippers or something even more high tech and soothing like these Hot Booties! These puffy slippers are filled with linseed and lavender.  Pop them in the microwave for under 90 secs and enjoy a warm, soothing spa quality tootsie treat. Perfect after a day of walking through the airport or train station.  It has been found that keeping your feet warm DOES help fight the onset of colds or at least secumming to them.  See?  Mom was right.

Travel Sheets 
When we went on our cabin vacation this year, I brought along these very luxurious Silk + Cotton Sheets by Sea to Summit.  Also called Travel Liners, you can place them between yourself and the hotel sheets for extra comfort. Talk about soft!  Mist them with a bit lavender oil for the ultimate relaxing sleep experience, no matter where you land. This set has a built in pillow case cover and the whole thing packs into a tiny travel case the size of a digital camera.

Travel Blazer & Scarf
I like this elegant women's Go There Travel Blazer by ExOfficio. ExOfficio is indisputably the "travel expert" when it comes to clothing and gear for foraying abroad or anywhere else the wind takes you.  The Go-There Blazer, kind of reminds me of a "boyfriend blazer" but is stylishly crafted from a drirelease® french terry, a functional combination of fashion and comfort. This travel friendly blazer wicks moisture, stays fresh, and dries quickly. Security zip pockets keep small essentials safe. A slight stretch in the fabric keeps the tailored silhouette comfortable, so you can pack it, take it out, wear it and look great.  If you want to wear it in transit, it is not too thick or bulky to interfere with your seat comfort. 
A Chic, Plushy Scarf in an animal print can double as a seat cover, rain or wind hood for your hair or just when you need a little extra warmth around the neck when disembarking.

Now boarding!  ExOfficio's Go There Travel Blazer paired with a silk blouse.  Easy style!

Travel mavens often recommend wearing a blazer when boarding aircraft. Why? Well, if the flight is overbooked, (as most times they are), people wearing more business like attire are less likely to get "bumped". It may sound outlandish, but this is what all airlines do. Dress smart and you might even get upgraded to first-class!  "Why Look Like a Slob When Traveling?"

Warm Travel Skirt & Leggings
Along the same line of thought as the umbiquitious travel blazer, why travel in jeans when you can be warm AND stylish in a skirt and tights?  One of the warmest, softest and toughest pieces I own is a Merino Wool Smartwool Sanitas Skirt. It has an elastic waistband so need to wear a belt that will only need be removed before passing through the airport security scanners. Pair it with a their Mirrored Footless Tights and you're set.  I even wear this skirt & leggings combo on my bicycle and am warm and comfy. If you are vacationing in a country that uses bicycles or Vespas, you'll be totally ready,  The ultimate travel package! 

Holiday shopping in Smartwool's Sanitas Merino Wool Travel Skirt
A Folding Bicycle
Don't laugh!  I've packed my little alloy Greenzone Folding Bike on a train and road it on the NYC Bike Path downtown to Chelsea Piers.  If you are traveling by car or RV it fits easily in a trunk.  Comes with its own carry bag too so you can take on board a ship and keep it with you in your cabin.  Now THIS is the way to tour the island once your cruise ship docks!

Greenzone Folding Bike goes anywhere, even on your  holiday cruise!

The Wrap
All of these tips can help you while enroute and once you arrive at your travel destination. A pair of velvet flats looks extra chic with opaque tights and are comfortable to walk in. Everything here will fit in a small suitcase or your carry-on luggage for the overhead bin above your airplane or train seat. By packing strategically, I've never had to check my luggage or had it lost. Everything I need stays with me during the flight for easy access. Dress like you mean business. Travel agents, attendants, security all respond favorably to someone who is well put together and you might even land yourself a seat upgrade.

Remember to pack wrinkle proof shirts like this 3/4 sleeve top and forget the in-room iron!

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