I am currently on a plane to Seattle. I’m trying my hand at mobile blogging on my phone. I am going to write up this post now and then publish it once we land. So if there’s a bunch of spelling errors or weird formatting, I apologize. I’ll go back and fix them later.
As I said in my last post, I am headed to Seattle today for my friend Suzanne’s wedding. Three of my other good friends from college will also be there. And it’s funny because we all live in different places across the country. Seattle, Denver, Kansas City, St. Louis and Virginia (sorry Em I’m not sure exactly what city you live in!). So we don’t get to see each other very often anymore. The last time we were all together was over two years ago at another wedding. So I am really looking forward to spending time with these girls.
Anyway since I’m traveling I thought I would write up some travel tips. I quite enjoy traveling, though I only do it a few times a year now. I was forced to become a minimalist traveler two years ago when I had a multi-destination business trip. I left on a Sunday and spent two days in Vegas at a seminar. Then I flew from Vegas to New York for three days of meetings, finally getting back to KC on Friday night.
The flights were such that I didn’t have time to wait on checked luggage and once I met up with my coworkers in NY, I didn’t want to be that girl with the big, giant, checked suitcase slowing everyone down. So I carried everything on in one rollerbag and one laptop bag.
It took a lot of planning up front, but it was totally worth it. Since I didn’t have much space I couldn’t overpack. I could only take what I absolutely needed. Without heavy luggage weighing me down, I zipped on and off flights and in and out of airports quickly and with ease. After that successful trip I vowed to never check luggage again! And I haven’t. When Benzo and I went to Hawaii for 8 days last summer we carried everything on.
So with that in mind, here are some travel tips from me to you:
1. Pack clothes in one general color scheme. I always pack clothes that are gray, black and white, especially for business. That way almost all pieces are interchangeable and you only need one or two pairs of shoes max. It sounds boring but it is so worth it to not have a bunch of extra stuff weighing you down. And you can always dress up your outfits with accessories, which are small and don’t take up a lot of space. On this trip I packed a bright yellow purse and a multi-colored scarf.
2. When it comes to shoes I like my black flats the best. Easy on and off and can be dressed up or down. Comfortable for walking around the airport.
3. If my skin looks a little dark in the picture above it’s because I’m wearing compression or circulation hose. I always wear them when flying. You might think they are just for old people but they’re not! They keep my legs from feeling tired and heavy after sitting for so long.
Fancy compression socks or sleeves are popular among runners but I just wear the boring knee-high kind that you can get at the drugstore. I think I paid about $15 for them.
4. Snacks are essential when I travel. I HATE getting stuck in an airport with nothing to eat except expensive, crappy airport food.
One of my favorite snacks to pack is Clif Bars. I got turned on to them last year when we went to Hawaii with some friends. We always took them on hiking trips but they are good anytime really. They have a few more calories so they can serve as more of a meal replacement. And you can throw them in the bottom of your bag and it doesn’t matter if they get smashed.
I also like to pack fruit but you have to be more careful as can get smashed easily. Apples and oranges hold up well but bananas do not. I’ll have to eat this banana soon as it’s getting pretty banged up.
I also packed a tangelo, a couple of Larabars, a bag of raw almonds, more Clif Bars and a couple of Kashi bars that are not pictured. I told you I need a LOT of snacks. 🙂
5. I pack something to keep me occupied. This is where I still tend to overpack a little. For some reason I think I need 5 different things to keep me busy on flights. Really all I need is a book because all I ever want to do is read.
On this trip I brought a book and a magazine. I also have games and music on my phone and my journal to write in if I want. Probably still too much!
6. I always bring my multi-purpose purse/wallet. I bought this last summer (again for the Hawaii trip) and I love it.
It holds all my wallet-y thing like money, ID and credit cards. And it has a zipper pocket that my phone fits in. Finally it has a detachable shoulder strap or a wrist strap. So I can carry it as a wallet in my backpack while en route, then attach one of the straps and carry it as a purse once I arrive.
I usually carry on with a suitcase and some kind of backpack/tote bag/laptop bag. So I never have a separate purse. This wallet serves that function and solves the dilemma of what to do when you can only have 2 carry-on items. Though on this trip I did pack an empty purse in my suitcase because I had some extra room.
7. Finally being pregnant while traveling, here are a few more suggestions for flying while pregnant:
- Sit on an aisle if possible for frequent bathroom breaks.
- Don’t sit with your legs crossed (this one is from my doctor). Pregnant women are more prone to blood clots so keep legs uncrossed and…
- Get up out of your seat every so often and…
- Wear compression socks or hose. These things will all help to keep blood clots at bay. I asked my doctor about the compression hose and she said they were a great idea.
- Finally drink lots of water! This is good for everyone but especially pregnant women. I bring my empty water bottle and fill it up whenever I get the chance. Dehydration is not good for the baby!
So this post is long enough and it’s time for me to get up and stretch! If you have any travel tips of your own feel free to share. And if you are looking for a fun travel blog, check out my friend Jenn’s blog. I always enjoy reading about her adventures, including her recent trip to Liberia!