Essential travel accessories
Travel accessories are vital to make a trip go smoothly. It’s not long until my next holiday so I was gathering my must-have items and thought I’d share them with you. Some may be obvious but I’m sure there will be a few surprises too, and hopefully some helpful ones which will make your travels easier.
There are links to the products throughout the post, but if you’d like to view them all on a separate page then click here
1. Power bank with cables
We take so many devices away with us these days and it’s difficult to keep them charged up on a long flight. So, to be on the safe side, I always carry a power bank with me, and keep it in a handy (homemade!) carrying case along with the cables to charge the devices and the charger itself. There are so many different ones on the market but I would recommend one with multiple USB ports so that you can charge more than one device at a time, especially if you’re travelling with family. You never know when you need it so keep it fully charged.
2. Ear plugs
These will really help you sleep on a plane as they cut out all background noise. They were originally recommended by a friend and now I carry them everywhere when I travel. They are made from silicone and mould to fit your ears and are therefore very comfortable. They are also good if you don’t want to get water in your ears when swimming. I’ve bought them in Tesco before, but they’re also available on Amazon (scroll through the products below).
3. Tiny pots
I bought a collection of these from Amazon and they are SO handy, and very cheap! You can store small quantities of creams and cosmetics in them, as well as tablets, earrings and vaseline. I decorate mine with buttons to help me remember which cream is in which pot!
4. Dual jack for earphones
If you’re travelling with someone else then it’s quite nice to share a film or TV programme together on the plane. I always download lots of movies onto my iPad and then I can use the splitter to watch with my husband. It is a really cheap accessory and fits into a standard headphone jack.
5. Case for earphones and earphone jack
My next accessory isn’t available in the shops so you’ll have to find a friend who knows their way around a sewing machine or contact me and see if I have any spare ones tucked away that you can buy! These are just SO handy and I keep them in my bag all the time, regardless of whether I’m on holiday or not. They are the perfect size to fit some earphones inside, but I keep my dual jack in there too so that I can always share some music or video with a friend.
If you’d like to make them yourself, then they are very easy, here is a link!
6. Waterproof phone holder
Last year we went to Niagara (read about it here and here!) and visited the Cave of the Winds and the Maid Of The Mist attractions, which involve getting very wet! But I still wanted to be able to take photos so a friend recommended this phone case. It’s ideal as it’s completely waterproof. You can even take it swimming to get some underwater shots. It comes on a lanyard so you can carry your phone around your neck. It’s relatively cheap but great to keep in your case or bag in case you need it, so is one of my favourite travel accessories. And as a friend pointed out, it stops sand getting into your precious phone too!
7. Trtl neck support
As you can see, I’m obsessed with being able to sleep on a plane! I came across these last year and thought they were a more stylish and compact option than a standard neck cushion. I took it on my last holiday and they work well, especially at airports if you need to just ‘rest your eyes’ for a few minutes. They work by having a plastic ‘frame’ inside that you can tilt your head onto, and you can have it on either side depending which way you want to tilt. The Turtl is extremely soft and snuggly and much more discrete than a normal neck pillow/cushion.
8. Blow up neck cushion
This is another type of neck cushion that I always take away with me as it takes up very little space and I can whip it out and blow it up when I need it. I originally bought it from Ikea but you can get them on Amazon (and many other places, I’m sure!).
9. Multi USB plug
Another tip for device charging! As we take away so many chargeable items with us, and plugs are often scarce in hotel rooms, this is one of the handiest travel accessories. It has a US and UK plug socket too, so you only need an adaptor in Europe. Although if you check out my Amazon links on this page then the one I link to has a European adaptor too!
10. Multi plug socket
This is a compact multi-plug and doesn’t therefore take up much room in the suitcase, but is so handy in a hotel especially if you don’t have a USB multi charger like the one in the previous tip. You only need one foreign plug adaptor to be able to plug four UK electrical items or devices into.
11. Buddy Pouch
This is super handy to carry money, phones and other valuables on your person. It works with magnets with the back tucking inside your trousers/skirt and the front staying on the outside. My running friend recommended it for going out and exercising, but it’s perfect for a holiday too, and much neater than a standard ‘bum bag’ (or ‘fanny pack’). It doesn’t jiggle about when you’re moving and they come in different sizes, with larger ones being available for plus-size phones.
12. Travel blender
OK, so I know a blender isn’t top of most people’s essential list of travel accessories, but I really like having Herbalife shakes for breakfast and if you have the blender then all you need to add is water and ice to make a delicious, thick shake. I took this particular model away last summer and it had some pros and cons. The pros are that it’s cordless once it’s charged (using a USB cable) and is compact. It is really powerful too and can blend ice without breaking sweat. The cons are that it’s not light, and it has a few parts to wash when you’ve finished so is a bit of a faff in a hotel basin.
Some friends also recommended the Kenwood Smoothie to go, which is slightly more expensive but has fewer moving parts to wash up every time! Link below or in my dedicated travel accessory page here.
13. Selfie stick
I know these are SO cheesy and you feel like a complete idiot using one, but when I looked back on our holiday photos last year I realised we had hardly any of the whole family. Using this means that you can get surprisingly good shots, from afar, with the relevant landmark in the background.
14. Herbal sleeping tablets
Another recommendation, from an American friend, so I always buy these when I’m out in the States. There are equivalents over here, and they can be bought on Amazon or in health food shops. Note : you should always check with your doctor or pharmacist before taking any tablets.
15. Eye mask
This is one of the obvious ones, but it’s amazing what difference it makes when you’re trying to sleep on a well-lit plane. They also come into their own when you arrive at your destination, if the time difference means that you need a lie in, or the hotel curtains are just letting in too much light. They’re cheap to buy, and many airlines supply them free for overnight flights, but it’s worth getting some just in case they don’t!
For links to all of the travel accessories see my Travel Accessory Shop page here
And so concludes my top travel accessories – do you have a list of items you take on holiday? I’d love to hear your tips! Please comment below and I will add useful ones to the list here.
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