Heading anywhere special for the holidays? Planning a visit to grandma’s house? Hey, unless you’re living a real episode of Everybody Loves Raymond and your in-laws live two doors down, chances are you’ll be partaking in some sort of travel in the next month or so. And whether it’s by plane, train, bus or automobile, solo or with your family, I think it’s fair to say that travel is generally equated with a certain level of stress. Am I right? Yes. That said, I do find that I can cut said inevitable stress when I know I’m prepared for a possible snafu. I guess that’s the hard, cold lesson you learn from having your luggage lost not one, not two, but three years in a row during Christmas time. Yes, that really did happen to me. As such, I present to you my personal list or, rather, travel bible for the Top 10 Must-Have-With-You-At-All-Times-In-Case-Of-Emergencies List (in no particular order)
1. Ballet Flats: Holidays or not, I’d have in these in your purse at all times. They’re cute and are well worth every penny before, during and after the moment you realize you have no other footwear alternatives until the airline locates your duffel bag.
2. Mini tooth brush & paste: Being stranded at the terminal is already bad enough. Come midnight, nobody likes to wear sweaters on their teeth.
3. Cashmere or Cotton Wrap/Pashmina: Trust me, this is a much better alternative to one of those bulky, wrap-around neck thingies. It’ll double as a pillow and a blanket, and is twice as chic (and sanitary) as one of those Saran wrapped, polyester, static-inducing blankets the flight attendant will hand to you…with her head down because she knows all too well where it’s been and what’s gotten on it before it was gifted to you.
4. Baby Wipes: Love these because they’re gentle on your skin which means you can use them on your hands and your face.
5. Fold-Up Brush: Easy, compact and great for remedying un-showered snarls.
6. Cash: No, not your credit card, (though you should have that, too). I’m talking bills. And, if you can, a couple of each amount (i.e. two 5s, two 10s, two 20s). God forbid something bad happens, cash is always king.
7. Change of Underwear & Socks: Does this really require an explanation? The socks will keep you warm (and perhaps fake you into the illusion that you’re resting comfortably on your couch) while the underwear are for, well, freshness.
8. Cell Phone Charger: Another obvious one. Don’t get caught in an emergency unable to call/email/text/ping/Instragram/Facebook message/Tweet someone who can help.
9. Evian Face Spray: Seriously, just give it a try. This stuff is inexpensive, compact and so unbelievably freshening, especially when you feel like your skin is going to crack like the Grand Canyon from dryness.
10. Carmex: This is not just any chapstick. In fact, Carmex is, in my opinion, a god among lip balms because it immediately relieves, and medicates, the awful burn associated with chapped lips.
Did I miss anything? I’m always interested in adding to my arsenal so share your favorites, too!