I just came back from one of the most incredible trips yet. I experienced many firsts: first time in Europe, first time traveling alone, and my first jet lag. This trip was a long time in the making and it’s definitely one for the books. What was supposed to be a week-long cruise yachting the French Riviera became a trip for not only discovering Europe, but of self-discovery as well. I managed to stretch out all my vacation time into a two-week holiday. Through this journey, I became aware of a few essential travel tips. This isn’t one of those posts in which I provide tips on how to pack light because, truth be told, I always over-pack so that I’m prepared for any type of weather (hey, I’d rather be safe than sorry!).
I’ve narrowed it down to 5 essential travel tips that you must consider for your upcoming trip, whether it’s to Asia, Europe or even across the country.
1. Flat Iron
If you’re going to bring one hair tool, it has to be a flat iron. It’s an all-in-one tool that will allow you to straighten, flip your ends and create tight or loose curls. When I went to Europe, I noticed my hair was very frizzy and dried like a lion’s mane. It might have been due to the change of humidity, altitude, whatever. The point is, I always had to style my hair to tame it so that it didn’t look like I always had bed head. Rather than lugging your straightener, crimper, curling iron, and diffuser, simply pack the versatile straightener.
Perhaps it’s due to the higher heat that a flat iron gives off, but I find my curls last a lot longer than with a curling iron. I’ll go an entire day and my curls are still fresh. With that, I also don’t need to spray any hairspray afterwards (one less thing to pack!).
2. Battery pack
This is a definite must, especially if you’re going to be taking photos, videos, and Snaps. I noticed that when I do the latter, my battery drains a lot quicker. If you’re going to be out of your hotel/hostel all day and don’t want to be searching for the closest coffee shop with an outlet, have a fully charged battery pack handy so that you can connect your phone to it when you’re battery’s running low. This way, your phone will be charging while you go on with your day. Mine has saved me multiple times on my trip, and it’s a powerful one as it charges it quickly and holds up to 2 full charges. I purchased mine from Best Buy, and you can find it here.
3. Take videos
This might sound like a ridiculous tip, but when you’re caught up in the moment and in awe with the monuments and scenery, first take a few minutes to take it in and appreciate what you’re seeing. Then, take out your phone and swipe to the video mode. Take short clips of a few seconds here and there. At the end of your trip, you’ll remember those moments that you can stitch together and create a montage to show family and friends. Have a look at mine below!
4. Rubber Flip Flops
Another tip that may seem absurd, but it’s a must, trust me. I brought a pair of Old Navy flip flops on my trip, which I wore around the hostel and cruise cabin, to the deck and pool, and in the shower (hostel only). After a long day of hiking and walking in sneakers, your feet need to breathe and you just want to put on something comfy. I live by these flip flops. They feel like you’re walking on clouds and they’re so affordable. Get your pair here!
5. Reusable Water Bottle
Last but not least, bring a small reusable water bottle. As you pay to use the washroom in Europe, you also will pay for a bottle of water if you ask for a glass of water at the restaurant (so be sure to specify you want tap water). If you’re out and about all day and don’t want to overpay for a Coke, you’re better off bringing your own little canteen to stay hydrated throughout the day. This adorable small 9 oz. S’well water bottle from Indigo is the perfect size to pack in your handbag or backpack without weighing you down. It will keep your water cold for up to 12 hours. Just remember not to drink too much because you’ll have to run and pay to use the washroom!
I’d like to think that I came back a wiser person with more culture and knowledge of the world. To have seen such grand historical monuments in person is both breathtaking and overwhelming, but it’s a definite must. If you haven’t travelled to Europe yet or at all, I highly recommend you do so. You’ll definitely catch the travel bug when you get back!
I hope my travel tips will help you better pack for your next trip, and please share your travel musts with me in a comment below! I’m still a little jet lagged so it’s time for a nap…