I consider myself both a veteran and inveterate traveler. There are certain travel rituals that I practice that enable me to hop on a plane with little or no notice without having to think about what to pack. All I do, in advance and courtesy of a spreadsheet is combine “mix ‘n match” pieces of clothing that can cover climates from Dublin to Durban. However, there are five essentials that don’t necessarily fit neat and tidy onto a spreadsheet. I keep these in a medium-sized mesh travel bag always at the ready that is, pre-packed in my suitcase.
1. Protein bars are essential, especially if you’re crossing time zones. A protein bar can hold you over between meals, and if you wake up hungry in the middle of the night, it saves you money and calories. Avoid mini-bar madness.
2. A Pashmina shawl works in any season. It’s a perfect extra layer of clothing if you’re traveling to colder climates in winter or air-conditioned restaurants, movies, museums or shopping centers in summer.
3. A Shower Cap comes in handy especially if there are none immediately available, and calling down to reception while you’re wrapped in a towel is not an option. More and more hotels make you request amenities, so having your own saves time and aggravation.
4. Wacoal Hope on a Hanger biker shorts feel good on you and smooth out all of the wobbly bits. They’re perfect if you’re traveling light as you can wash them up in the sink at night and by morning they are ready to go again.
5. A white cotton blouse, with a bit of elastin and princess seams, looks great over dress pants or jeans and can be laundered easily in a hotel. When you send it to the laundry, be sure and call it a man’s shirt and not a blouse because it will save you money.
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