Photo Illustration for Denizen by Elaina Natario
One of our readers said it best: You know you’re a global nomad when you flew before you could walk. For me, moving repeatedly has taught me to pack light, but there are a few items I just can’t travel without. For our TCK readers gearing up for summer travels, here’s a peek in the carry-on of a bona fide travel geek.
1. Anti-pickpocket purse. Blame it on traveling in Hong Kong, but I’m paranoid about pickpockets. I always make sure I use a zippered bag because it closes all the way, discouraging wandering hands from snooping around in your purse. Be smart about your stuff when traveling to new places. Zip up! For anyone super paranoid, definitely check out PacSafe, which sells travel gear with locking mechanisms.
2. Travel wallet for multiple passports. I love how organized I feel with this. My wallet fits two passports, four mileage cards, permanent residency cards for two countries and a boarding pass. I’d be a mess without this.
3. Trusty water bottle. Not only does water cost upwards of $4 a bottle at the airport, but flight attendants love to serve water in a tiny cups, filled halfway. My solution? Bring my own empty water bottle, and ask the flight attendant to fill it up! Vapur’s collapsible bottle is really great for traveling because it folds up easily in a hand-carry bag.
4. One word: Kindle! It’s a library in my pocket. I don’t know what I would have done without my Kindle during my most recent 12-hour flight from Beijing to San Francisco – I finished The Hunger Games in one sitting!
5. Noise-canceling headphones. Nothing makes a long-haul flight go by faster than sleeping through it. My secret to getting those much-needed Z’s? Benadryl and noise-canceling headphones — they work every time. These special headphones emit an inaudible, high-frequency sound wave that drowns out crying babies and noisy plane engines.
What are your must-have travel gadgets? Share with us in the comments!