I love to travel and visit new cities, explore the streets, snap a few awesome shots and make great memories. It doesn’t even have to be a new city. I can happily revisit NYC a hundred times but there are so many other places to visit and so little time (or freakin’ money.... Ugh)
Boarding a plane and flying around the world has not been part of my itinerary for a long time. While I waited for the approval of my Canadian Permanent Residency I was pretty much stuck in Canada (which is not a bad thing at all).
It’s getting down to the wire now. Well, not really actually. I’m still a few weeks out but just getting more and more pumped for my trip back home. The countdown is definitely on!
4 years have come and gone since I moved from Holland to Canada.
4 long-ass years!
I have to admit that I lost my flying mojo when a flew to Houston, Texas last year. I was out of the game for too long and forgot about the ‘joys’ of flying. My rule for traveling has mostly been: if you have your passport, visa (or in my case permanent residency card) and a credit card you’re golden. Whatever you forget to pack can be bought. There is no need to stress when you have those essential items.
It’s still nice to have some form of comfort when flying. Especially when you’re hopping flights and in for a 24+ hour travel day.
Comfy shoes + extra warm socks
You can’t run around in 4-inch heels after the plane makes a crash landing, can you?! Nah, toss that. That’s not why I don’t wear heels on a flight, I generally never wear heels anymore because I tower over my husband when I do. I wear comfy shoes because A. They’re just way nicer to run in when you’re trying to catch your next flight and B. they're easy to kick off during that long haul flight. This is also your cue to grab that extra pair of thick socks you packed. Seriously, for some reason, the temperature on the plane goes from a nice warm level to below freezing within a moments notice.
As I said above, when you board a plane they blindside you. You might think the temperature is nice until you get an hour into the flight and your fingertips and lips turn a nice shade of purple-blue. So layer up and ask the flight attendant for an extra blanket.
Within the last 4 years, I’ve come to realize most airlines are charging for absolutely everything. I know, I know anyone who travels more than I have recently is well aware of this. Good for you. Enter my absolute state of disbelief when I boarded a plane to the US and had to pay for the onboard entertainment system. :-O Really you guys, REALLY?
Don’t sweat it, though.
My trusted Mac was by my side with a full season of Suits to delve into. Plus, there was a handy electrical outlet right near my seat to keep me going during the 6-hour flight. (When will they start charging for electricity?! I’m just curious…)
While I'm at it, pack a good pair of headphones!
Netflix and Chill
My husband brought this sweet tip to my attention. Netflix episodes can be downloaded and watched offline! Contrary to what many Netflix dislikers might think, they do have some pretty awesome original content! The downside? It can only be downloaded on iPhone and Android mobile devices…
I’m a person who gets grumpy when she’s hungry. Airline meals are just not enough to keep me going. Plus I’m cheap as can be at times. When I'm on a plane and starving I usually pass on the $8 mini tube of Pringles or $14 for some nasty pre-packaged sandwich. This time around I’m packing my carry-on full of snacks!
A few other must-haves
Ear plugs. Because those bad boys block out a lot of noise. They're all I need to fall asleep. Cue jealous husband who flies all the time and is never able to sleep. Not even sleeping pills do the trick for him.
An empty bottle is a must since they restricted the amount of liquid you can carry all those years ago.
Books and magazines are great to have access to if you’re just done with watching tv or can’t sleep.
While we're on the topic of travel read these 5 reasons why you should take your kids on a road trip.
The No-shit-Can’t-Forget-These essentials
Obviously, when traveling you have to think about the downright boring but highly important things. Do you need a travel visa? Is your passport up to date? Do you have travel insurance, etc. etc.... etc. I’m sure you can figure this out on your own.
But don’t skimp on this.
You’ll end up stuck in Mexico because you forgot your permanent resident card and the airline won’t allow you to board. Yeah, real story. My husband and I were listening to this on the radio. He was all up in arms. I agreed, to some extent. But on the flip side, it states pretty darn clearly that you need to have your permanent resident card on you when entering Canada. That's kind of like forgetting your passport. I totally get how it can happen, there is a lot to think about when traveling, but that's not a situation I would like to find myself in.
What do you take with you when traveling? I can use some tips and tricks for my upcoming trip! Let me know in the comments below.