Written by Shanie
Traveling is a wonderful way to see other cultures, learn about people and see strange lands.
Everyone should take time to travel. It doesn’t matter if you are traveling near or far, to foreign lands or staying local, traveling has certain characteristics that put a smile on a person’s face.
Knowing that travel is so great for the soul, let’s talk about what to include to make it that much better. Here are my top fifteen items that a person should include on any trip.
1. The Travel Guide: this can be any of the travel books out there. My personal favorites are the Footprint and Travel Guide series. These books are helpful insight and can make a trip much more enjoyable.
2. A Journal: a journal is a great place to record the sights, lessons and experiences learned on a trip. It is also a great way to remember the name of the helpful local ten years later.
3. Business Cards: this is a great, easy and small item that helps build contacts and friends when traveling. You never know when you might meet that interesting person that has a new insight into something you have interest in. The card can also be an impressive way to introduce yourself to others.
4. A Pen: this might sound silly but I have been on a trip once or twice before where I realized that I didn’t have anything to write with and was in a bit of a bind because of it.
5. Vaseline: this might sound like a funny item but can actually come in handy for a couple of reasons. Of course, there is the obvious reason: it is good for moisturizing the lips. Another is that it is a great way to protect you from getting sick when flying in the airplane. It also moisturizes the air, helping the nostrils from drying out.
6. Travelers Insurance: this is often overlooked but an extremely important element to the worry free vacation. Even though you may have insurance that covers you outside your homeland, those other countries may not accept your insurance as a form of payment. The travelers insurance is always accepted. I have heard and experienced some horrifying stories of people not being treated in a timely manner because of not being properly covered. Be sure that you take the needed to precautions to protect yourself in case of injury or accident. You’ll be glad you did.
7. A Photocopy of your Passport: this is a simple thing to do that can help avoid huge headaches in case of theft or misplacement of your passport. Without it there could be major time issues and stress providing concrete evidence of your identity.
8. An Inflatable Pillow: this is a neck saver for those times when a cramped space (such as a bus or plane) is the only option for sleep. It works great because it is easily packed away but then a comfortable head rest when needed.
9. A Water Bottle: though you can’t have it containing any liquids before entering the gate terminal (in the United States anyway), a water bottle should be filled up before take-off to insure proper hydration during flight (the small, plastic cups really don’t offer much) and then, again, anytime during travel.
10. A Compact, Water-Resistant Wind Shell: this light, small item can be a life saver. It is never fun to be caught in the middle of a storm without proper protection. The best space efficient models are the ones that pack into themselves.
11. The Hidden Purse: this is a light or skin-colored pouch that is big enough to carry a passport and money in. It is hidden well underneath clothing and creates a safe way to travel in busy areas.
12. Unique Baggage: it is all too common to see black luggage after black luggage coming through the baggage turn-style. To help mistaken identity of the wrong bag, tie a colorful ribbon to the handle or sketch initials into the handle. When shopping for travel luggage keep in mind that a more original design and fabric will help your stuff to be easily identifiable and less likely to be lost.
13. Emergency Contact: It is important to have an emergency contact number on your person (usually with the photocopy of the passport is best) at all times. In the case that you are unable to speak for yourself, this can prove to be life saving.
14. Vitamins: traveling can be hard on the immune system so it is important to carry extra vitamins on the trip to insure a healthy body. Such companies as Airborne have created travel handy doses.
15. Comfortable Walking Shoes: if you are traveling then now is not the time to break-in the new pair of hiking boots, running shoes or ski boots that you just bought. I have seen too many people bring new footwear on a wonderful trip, only to be hating life later because of the blisters on their feet.
I hope these fifteen items help your next journey! When abroad, a few small items can make a good trip great.