The Christmas travel season is upon us. But before you get your bags packed and hit the road, the air, or the rails you are going to need to get organized for the adventure ahead. If you don’t. you might wind up like the family in Home Alone and leave your “Kevin” behind. To help you prepare for the journey, I put together a list of 8 important holiday travel must haves to make things simpler before you head out the door and hit the road.
Travel Must Haves
- Travel Itinerary App – download a Travel Itinerary App. There are several great apps out there. A couple of my favorite go-to travel apps are: TripIt, which allows you to keep all the details of your trip in one convenient location; and Wanderlog, which is similar, but I believe has a few more features, such as a group travel collaboration tool.
- Packing List – start with a packing list for each person who will be going on the trip. Make your list and check it twice. But if you don’t know where to begin, I’m including the Ultimate Trip Packing List that will help you get started, as a travel must have.
- Packing Cubes – We purchased luggage as Christmas presents for the grandboys this year. (Shhhh! Don’t tell them. They don’t know yet! LOL!) The luggage set my daughter picked out for them is pretty fabulous, as it is hard-sided and comes with two pieces of luggage and 2 packing cubes. Packing cubes are great becayse they keep things neat and organized and prevent loose items from slip-sliding around in your luggage.
For the Techies
- Technology Case – Keeping all the cords, chargers, earbuds, etc. organized for all the electronics that go with us can be a real challenge when traveling. This Accessory Organizer is the perfect tool to ensure you have it all together and can find it at a moment’s notice.
- Money Belt – Whether you are traveling only a short distance to grandma’s house, or a long distance to visit “the homeland” this holiday season, I believe a money belt is an essential item for traveling. It keeps important items safe, secure and out of other people’s hands. This is the one I have. I love it because it has separate pockets for money and passports or other IDs.
- Toiletry Kit – If you are traveling by air, you know what a pain it is to pull your bag of toiletries from your luggage when going through TSA. That’s why I love this 6-piece set of clear bags for traveling. See through. Light weight. Small. Take what you need. Divide and conquer among multiple people. Perfect in every way.
- Car Seat Organizer – Now, if you are traveling by car, you also know how important it is to keep the kids entertained on the journey. My daughter has these fabulous back-of-the-seat organizers that keep all the boys’ gadgets, snacks, and accessories off the floor (when they use it properly) and helps prevent the bickering that can happen between 2 “tween-age” boys.
Final Travel Must Have
- Handheld Scale – Again, if you are flying, a handheld scale for your luggage is a MUST HAVE to avoid overweight charges with the airlines. This one is small, lightweight, and inexpensive.
Carry-On Bag Travel Must Haves
Now, before you head to the airport, be sure to have essentials in your Carry-On bag. You never know when your luggage will get lost, or you will have an unexpected delay overnight somewhere. (Trust me. This happened to us last Spring on our way to Puerto Vallarta!) Here are some items you should have in your carry-on bag:
- Your Technology Case, complete with your chargers and cords for phone, laptop, etc.
- Your Cell phone/iPad/Laptop, etc.
- Your Money Belt with your cash, cards, passport, and other ID cards
- Any Travel documents and information (including TSA Pre-Check number) needed for your travels
- Extra change of clothes and a pair of Pajamas
- Sweater/scarf for the plane (just wear them!) so they don’t take up space in your luggage
- All prescription medications/over-the-counter medicines/medical devices including glasses, extra contacts, contact solution, hearing aid batteries, etc.
- Snacks, gum, mints, and a reusable water bottle that you can fill once you are through TSA
- Wipes, hand sanitizer, lip balm, lotion
- Small toys, if traveling with children
- Extra diapers, if traveling with infants
Wherever you are headed this holiday season, I hope you find this useful to make your trip less stressful and more enjoyable.
Here’s to holiday travel must haves… or any time of year… and RESETTING your life!
Organization isn’t about perfection; it’s about efficiency, reducing stress and clutter, saving time and money, and improving your overall quality of life.” – CHRISTINA SCALISE
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