Are you headed home for the holidays or taking a break from being cooped up inside all year? Either way, it’s time to start planning what to pack. Besides the basics of clothes, toiletries and gifts for loved ones, you might want to consider packing a few extra things this holiday season. Here are six must-have items for holiday travel to keep you comfortable, safe and sane — from AirTags to monitor wandering luggage to moisturizers to take care of cracked lips and skin during the brittle cold months of winter.
1. AirTags to Keep Track of Luggage, Bags and More
If you plan on flying, keep tabs on your luggage’s whereabouts with a set of AirTags secured inside an AirTag case. This is especially true if you plan to do a little holiday traveling in areas where luggage tends to walk off. At the very least, an AirTag can be attached to a backpack or bag in case you walk away and forget it behind.
AirTags also work wonderfully on a keychain. This can help you track down a pair of lost keys, whether they are yours or the keys to a rental car. Another way that AirTags can come in handy is by placing them inside a sticker case that can be attached to an electronic device. This can be super convenient if you tend to lose track of where you last set a device.
2. Your Electronic Devices (and a Power Bank)
We carry our phones with us everywhere, but for traveling a long distance, it helps to pack a few extra things to keep us entertained. For your flight or car ride, offline and download some movies to watch on your tablet. Leave the heavy books at home and download them to your e-reader (after all, your e-reader is easier to sanitize than a paper book). If you need to tackle some heavy work, bring along your laptop, too. However, at the very least, bring your earbuds to listen to a podcast.
As you pack your electronic devices, remember to pack all the chargers — a fast-charging USB PD is even better. Above all, don’t forget to pack yourself a portable and slim power bank that can slip right into a carry-on case’s front pocket or purse. With a power bank accessible and within reach, complete with several USB ports to charge multiple devices, you never have to worry about running out of battery on a long flight or drive.
3. Comfortable Pillows and Blankets
Whether you’re taking a road trip to see the grandparents or catching a flight to get away from the holiday bustle completely, you might as well settle in and make yourself comfortable. On a plane especially, it pays to bring along a few extra items to help get some shut-eye and prevent jet lag. A neck pillow and portable blanket is an excellent place to start. Neck pillows can save you from a stiff neck, but instead of choosing a standard U-shaped pillow, select the more modern infinity pillows or something with extra body support you can lean and cuddle into.
A compact travel blanket is also a swell idea for holiday travel. Get yourself a travel blanket that can compress down to hardly anything or, better yet, wear a large scarf to the airport that can double as a light blanket to provide some extra comfort and warmth when the cabin gets chilly. Another thoughtful must-have item is a pair of cozy socks!
4. Earplugs and Noise-Cancelling Headphones
Aside from a pillow and blanket, also consider other items like earplugs or even noise-cancelling headphones. These must-have items can block out noisy children or even the noises of the plane itself, letting you get some rest or at least concentrate on a book you’re really into.
In fact, these items might come in handy once you land, too! If you know you’re headed for a house full of kids and family members who are night owls or wake up way earlier than you, just stick in a pair of soft earplugs and draw the blanket up over your head. Noise-cancelling headphones might be too large for the bed, but they can save you when you find yourself tackling last-minute work emergencies as you try to huddle away in the guest bedroom for a bit.
5. A Skin Hydration and Moisturizing Go-Kit
Traveling during the holidays can lead you to colder destinations — and chapped lips and cracking skin is no fun. So while you are away from home, remember to pack a small travel-size kit of your moisturizing essentials to keep your skin soft and supple. Some essentials you should consider are an anti-aging moisturizer for your face, an SPF lip balm and a hand moisturizer.
If your hair tends to go frizzy or pick up static in cold weather or while wearing a wool hat or beanie, make sure to pack some hair moisturizer, too. Of course, one of the best ways to prevent dry skin is to drink plenty of water throughout the day. While traveling, it’s super easy to forget to drink water, so pack a water bottle and refill it whenever you can.
6. A Germ Protection and Prevention Bag
Sharing a plane cabin, car or even a table with others can spread germs. By now, we don’t have to remind you to pack the hand sanitizer, disinfectant wipes and face mask. But beyond Covid-19, you can pick up many other kinds of germs, from the flu to a simple cold. So the best way to avoid picking anything up on your holiday travels is to be prepared and take extra precautions. How? By packing a few extra items for germ prevention and immune support. So grab a small bag and store a few packets of Emergen-C or some immune support tablets or even gummies. This should get you through the holiday travels safe and sound.
Have a safe and happy journey this holiday season!