What’s In My Suitcase? My Travel Favorites.

Location: Around the World

When we head off again in September for another year of travel our suitcase will not look the same as when we left last year.  We have learned what works, what doesn’t and what are our favorite things.  So here are some of my travel favorites in my suitcase.

We added a foldaway lightweight nylon hammock from REI.  We have seen many people using these on beaches or at resorts and we think we can put it to good use.  It’s big enough for two!

Travel Favorite Hammock
Eno Hammock REI

For three years I have been using a beach towel as a yoga mat, but this year after much research I purchased the lightest weight yoga travel mat on the market.  It’s foldable and weighs just under one pound.

I’m always in search of an iron so this year I purchased a travel size steamer iron by Steamfast.  Dual voltage is essential for international use. Review coming on this later.

Travel Favorite Iron
Steamfast Mini Travel Iron

We have loved the collapsible colander we have had and this year added two small collapsible bowls with lids.  We think these will come in handy both in the kitchen and elsewhere.

Battery Power Pack – possibly our most used and most valuable item. Mophie is the brand we have and we spent $40 on it. We use it everyday  it fits in a purse or pocket and holds enough charge to keep our phones charged for several days. Definitely one of my travel favorites in my suitcase.

Packing cubes – not sure how I traveled all those years without packing cubes because they are now my best friend.  Especially as a fulltime traveler it’s so great to keep kinds of clothes and other items categorized in my suitcase.

Travel Favorite Packing Cubes
Packing Cubes

Cooler – our collapsible portable lunchbox size Igloo cooler was a gift from our niece and it is just perfect for our travel life, picnics and beach days.   We have even used it to keep things (Mayo, cheese, eggs) cold as we traveled by car from one lodging to the next. A very handy item and portable and one of my travel favorites in my suitcase.

Ice pack – purchased for $2 this ice pack fits perfect in our little cooler and really changed the way we travel.  Such a simple item with a big impact.

Freezer Bags and trash bags – with endless uses for storage and packing we have used gallon size freezer bags and kitchen size trash bags to keep things dry, to keep things wet, to organize, to protect and to store. From wet shoes to dirty clothes and olive oil to medicines plastic bags make our life easier.

Travel Favorite Collapsible Cooler

Notecards and post it notes – having a package of notecards with envelopes and post-it notes has come in handy. I like to leave notes for our Airbnb hosts or tuck notes in a package I’m mailing or a multitude of other uses these small and simple items are one of my travel favorites in my suitcase.

Packing tape – our roll of packing tape has done a lot more than wrap up boxes.  We used it to fix a splintered iPhone cord and to make a cardboard sleeve for our butcher knife. We repaired a book binding and even a hat.

Clothespins – I initially packed these to use on the Camino but they have come in handy in so many ways.  As hangers when we don’t have any, to secure and close bags, to hold back mosquito netting on beds and of course to hang our laundry.

Manicure kit – it’s not always easy to find a place to have a manicure, and I’ve learned over the years I need to care frequently for my nails or they get cracked and nasty.  So I carry a small manicure kit that serves my needs while on the road.  It takes no room at all and is one of my travel favorites in my suitcase.

Scrabble – since leaving the USA in November 2016 we have played more than 550 games of Scrabble. Wow that sounds crazy!  But we love the game and the only problem is we are now both really good at it and we find ourselves occasionally in a bit of a stalemate!

Travel Favorite Headphones
Bose Noise Cancelling Headphones

Noise cancelling headphones – this is Arne’s favorite item on this list.  We both have Bose headphones we use on the plane. Arne also uses his sometimes to listen to music off his iPad or watch movies.  He votes this as his travel favorite in his suitcase.

French Press – we have a small REI VERY LIGHTWEIGHT titanium French Press and I love it.   Almost all the places we stay have a hot water pot and we love to make French Press each morning instead of drinking the usual Nescafé.  Traveling with a French Press is one of my travel favorites in my suitcase.

Foldaway daypack – A few months into our journey we added this item and have used it a ton. It folds up into a little square but when open it is perfect for hikes or city walks when we want to carry a sweater, beach towels, water or just about anything for the day.

We have a flat lightweight plastic cutting board and one small knife to use for picnics.

Travel Favorite French Press
Titanium French Press from Snow Peak for REI

What’s in my suitcase? My travel favorites, the bare necessities and the tried and true.

Watch for a blog this coming FRIDAY all about MY TRAVEL WARDROBE! Countdown to lift off 16 days!

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My Travel Favorites
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  • Reply Debra Sidor Tanner

    Loved this latest installment- what’s in my suitcase! A wealth of knowledge!!

    August 26, 2019 at 9:07 am
    • Reply Laureen

      Thank you! Watch for travel wardrobe post on Friday!

      August 26, 2019 at 9:12 am
  • Reply Dennis White

    A great list! I was lucky enough to find a set of heavy-duty canvas wheeled bags about 20 years ago. (carry-on, baggage compartment size, daybag and duffle (with wheels and handle. Somehow they are just as good as when I bought them…and they all have heavy duty zippers. For me my carry-on bag/luggage MUST be collapsible and with enough “give” to cram into one of those “your carry-on luggage must be smaller than this size” baskets near the check-in counter. I’ve even had airline employees help me make my carry-on bag fit! I still haven’t found a neckbrace/pillow that works for me and I’ve never seen a metal French press. It will be a must on my next trip!

    August 26, 2019 at 12:52 pm
    • Reply Laureen

      The frenchnpress is one of my favorite things and so
      Light weight!

      August 27, 2019 at 2:32 pm
  • Reply Geri

    Thank you for sharing your packing musts. Some priceless info here. Love reading your posts. Eagerly awaiting your new adventures!

    August 27, 2019 at 1:27 pm
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