Travel Tips – Seven Things I Always Travel With!
Here are a few things that in my almost 3 million miles of flying, I can’t live without.
We all travel differently and need different travel accessories. Here are a few things that in my almost 3 million miles of flying, I can’t live without. I’d love to hear about things you never leave home without!
1. An extension cord.
What? Really? An extension cord? Yes. In today’s hotels (and apartments for travelers) outlets are often hidden behind furniture, or far away from where I want to plug in my phone, batteries and computers. My life is much easier now that I always bring an extension cord, or even two, that also allow me to plug in multiple devices.
2. Portable Chargers and International Power Plugs. If you are out for a full day, exploring and taking lots of photos with your phone, it’s not uncommon to run down the battery. I always travel with two portable chargers (that I recharge at night) to make sure I don’t miss a great photo opportunity, only because I’ve already taken too many photos. Plus, a full battery is also useful for when you need to use your phone for directions or have to make an emergency phone call. International power plugs are essential, too. There are lots of models now that also include USB and USC ports.
3. Bathing suit. You never know when you’ll be presented with an opportunity to swim. Just this past week during an Oldways Culinaria in Sicily, the last part of our trip was in beautiful Ortigia, a small island that’s part of the city of Siracusa. In Ortigia, it is possible to climb down into the spectacularly clear water and take off for a refreshing swim. Similarly, the hotel where we stay in Athens during Oldways Culinarias – the Electra Palace -- has a rooftop pool, where you can float around while gazing up at the Acropolis. You won’t want to miss out!
4. A small tube of Aquaphor. If you don’t know Aquaphor or any of its cousins, it is a miracle product. My hands and nails dry out and suffer with traveling. Aquaphor is a healing ointment that restores skin and keeps it from drying out. They even make a balm for lips. Look for the size that TSA approves.
5. A jacket, walking shoes and a hat.
No matter where you travel – warm or cool – a jacket is key. My favorite travel jacket is a bright green one that helps Oldways travelers easily find me. The green jacket doesn’t go with all my clothes, but it serves its purpose. Shoes that are comfortable for walking distances and for wearing all day are equally important. It’s no surprise that sandals, sneakers, boots – whatever they may be – will make your travels all that more comfortable. My favorite Oldways Culinaria footwear is a pair of red boots that I’ve owned for 20 years and have had re-soled, mended and shined more times than I can count. Hats are a matter of preference – baseball hats, fedoras, and straw hats all do the trick. The real trick is to not leave your hat on the plane.
6. Playing Cards.
I started carrying playing cards in my purse when my children were young and it seemed that every time we went to the doctor’s, we had to wait a long time. The three of us played a variety of games – UNO, Phase Ten, Gin rummy, and Hearts – making the time fly by. The same goes for travel delays, long layovers. And if you’re alone, there’s always solitaire!
7. Portable flosser. I use one at home and found that a portable flosser is just as useful on the road as it is at home. There are lots of models, and since they have lithium batteries, I carry the flosser in my carry-on.
I’d love to hear what you can’t leave home without!
Upcoming Trip: Parma & Emilia Romagna, Italy
April 7-14, 2024
Learn to cook with Italian chefs—in Italy!
In April 2024, experience a week of cooking, sightseeing, and eating in beautiful Parma, often called the “gastronomic capital of Italy.”
This curated, chef-led experience is hosted by us at Oldways. You’ll also be led by Chef Michael Lombardi, chef and owner of SRV in Boston and Si Cara in Cambridge.
There’s so much in store: through hands-on cooking lessons at Academia Barilla, you'll be immersed in Italian cuisine, and return home with recipes you'll cherish for a lifetime. Plus, throughout the tour, you'll learn how top-notch ingredients are made, through tours with producers of Parmigiano Reggiano, Prosciutto, and Aceto Balsamico.
This is the perfect trip for couples, mothers and daughters, siblings, friends—and solo travelers who want to meet new friends who love food just as much as they do.