Travel Tips

The one item you can’t afford to forget in your suitcase

The one item you can’t afford to forget in your suitcase

Regardless of whether your packing style is to make a list, fold and organise a week ahead or stuff a few things in your suitcase the night before you leave, there’s few of us who haven’t been caught out leaving behind something crucial while travelling. These are the items seasoned travellers insist they will never leave home without – make sure you make room for them in your suitcase!

1. Eye drops

Whether it’s the moisture-sucking atmosphere of an aeroplane, too many inflight movies, or exploring exotic but dusty or smoggy locales, dry irritated eyes often seem to go hand-in-hand with travelling. But they don’t have to, if you stash some good quality eye drops in your luggage, such as Refresh® Eyes Drops, which offers relief for everything from dryness, stinging or burning, grittiness and blurry vision to watery eyes. Let’s face it, you want comfortable eyes to take in all those stunning sites you’ve travelled to see.

2. Medicinal supplies and First-Aid kit

Headaches, upset tummies, insect bites, cuts and splinters are a reality of travel, but travelling with a good supply of basic medicinal and first-aid supplies means none of your precious travel time is wasted suffering or hunting down a chemist in a foreign destination.

3. Petroleum jelly or lip balm

In dehydrating aeroplane cabins, your lips are often the first to suffer and if you start licking them in sympathy, you’ll only make things worse. Be sure to pop some Vaseline or other lip balm in your carry-on luggage and apply generously to avoid dry, cracked lips on arrival.

4. Hand sanitiser

A nice clean bathroom with a full soap dispenser just isn’t always on hand when travelling, so hand sanitiser is a must-have travel essential. Use liberally after taking public transport, before meals, public toilets that don’t have soap, or whenever necessary to help avoid such inconveniences as a virus or bout of gastro.

5. Earplugs

Trying to sleep on a long-haul flight is challenging enough without the cacophony of crying children, clattering trolleys, flushing toilets and that overall aeroplane drone. Even when you’re on terra firma, noisy neighbours, traffic sounds and other random rackets can spell disaster for a good night’s sleep and an enjoyable getaway. Help is at hand with a good pair of ear plugs – be sure to choose soft squidgy ones you can fit comfortably in your ear.

6. Travel pillow

Now you’ve conquered sound, it’s time to consider comfort! There have been amazing innovations in travel pillow technology aimed at helping you drift off to sleep in the air, from neck pillows resembling thick scarves, to others you can attach to your wrist and lay your head on. Do your research and find one to suit your preferred aeroplane sleeping style!

7. Baby wipes

Baby wipes aren’t only restricted to parents with tiny tots and have a myriad of uses when travelling, from wiping hands before and after eating, to refreshing your face, taking off makeup, removing stains from clothing, wiping over doorknobs and light switches in hotel rooms or cleaning public toilet seats … and even using as emergency toilet paper if you’re ever caught out!

8. Portable hotspot

Whether you need to be logged in for work or just can’t bear the thought of not having Wi-Fi access on demand, if you pack a broadband hotspot, you’ll be able to connect to the internet whenever you want. Of course, maybe you’re travelling in the hope of enjoying a digital detox, in which case, skip this and save some room in your luggage for shopping and souvenirs.

9. Smartphone or tablet

On second thought, who are you kidding? Even if you want to switch off while you’re away, you’ll probably still be wanting to take either your smartphone and/or tablet. Not only will they ensure you’re contactable in case of emergencies, they will also serve as your camera, GPS, calendar, diary, entertainment … the list goes on. If travelling internationally, be sure to also include a travel adapter and/or converter and battery packs. Otherwise, you can guarantee your phone or camera battery dying just when you’ve arrived at some unforgettable wonder of the world, or when you’re hopelessly lost and unable to find your hotel.

10. Book or Kindle

There’s nothing better for a long plane ride than losing yourself in a good book, whether it’s the old-fashioned paper kind or one stored on an e-reader. But if it’s the latter, make sure you have sufficient battery power!

11. Day bag

An easily flattened backpack or tote comes in very handy when you’re heading out for the day, whether you’re visiting the beach, hiking or site-seeing. Perfect for stashing a water bottle, maps, hats, umbrellas and other essentials.

12. Zip-lock plastic bags

These can have multiple uses, from stashing your wet swimming costume after you’ve tried to squeeze in one last swim before departure, to storing toiletries that run the risk of spilling during transit. (Who hasn’t had the pleasure of reaching their destination only to find shampoo seeping through their belongings?!)

13. Hat

When you’re spending your days out and about, a hat (and sunscreen) is crucial. Choose one that stashes easily without crushing and is in a neutral shade so it goes with the majority of your travel wardrobe.  

14. Travel detergent

No matter where you are, if you travel with a small sachet of washing detergent in your luggage, you always have the option of being able to wash your clothes in a sink should unforeseen circumstances arise. Which they invariably do, usually when you’re wearing white.

Purchase Refresh® Eye Drops today at Chemist Warehouse. Sponsored by Allergan.