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  1. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by carrot View Post
    I totally agreed with your caveat in my above post! I always plan on taking two of each of the most commonly needed pharmaceuticals (allergy, digestive, pain, motion sickness) just like Noah's Ark. On some trips some of these things can be difficult to get on short notice, and I will carry more of them.
    I saw that your examples bore out my caveat, so I didn't think you disagreed, but I wanted to spell out the principle to make it clear. Maybe "caveat" wasn't quite the right word.

  2. #32
    Forum Member haraya's Avatar
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    I responded to the "caveat" posts and neglected to respond to the original query, which was about favorite hacks and organizational tips.

    Not so much about hacks, but I always take a pashmina-type shawl on the flights with me. I hate being cold on airplanes. Also a hat or at the very least I wear a hoody so I can cover my head while sleeping.

    For organization - since you said you would be moving every 3-4 days, a Travel Tray might be worth the packing space it will take up. I really love the bright color of my TT, and the fact that it gives me a target in a hotel room for where to keep all my essentials (flashlight, iPhone, eye drops, room key, passport etc.). Plus, in the middle of the night, in a strange hotel, I don't have to worry that my lip balm or glasses will fall off the nightstand and get left behind.

    Speaking of flashlights - I keep one of these (Photon X-Light Micro LED) on my keychain at all times. (I should probably go put another one in my travel kit right now!). Or if I'm in transit, I keep it on a breakaway lanyard around my neck. I also try and remember to put a headlamp in my Travel Tray when we're traveling. Italy does get earthquakes from time to time, you definitely want to be able to see (oh, and keep your shoes next to the bed every night!) if you need to get out in a hurry.
    Last edited by haraya; 01-15-2019 at 10:48 AM.

  3. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by Izzy View Post
    That's phenomenal!

    If you could do photos or a video of that, THAT would be amazing.

    (Off to check out travel jeans from Rohan)
    Thanks! The TSS4 did a little bit of compression on everything so that helped. I compared the travel jeans to my regular jeans and there wasn't a huge difference when putting them away in the house but that inch here and there does make a difference when packing. Here is everything except my undies, stacked up, socks on top:


    Here is everything. The socks and undies are next to the bag because they go on top, obstructing the view of the tops and jeans:

    Another similar view:


    I would say that I save a lot of space with wool socks compared to cotton socks. I prefer a style that is slim on top and only padded on the bottom. Mine are Rohan but I'm sure there are some American ones that are similar.

    Fabrics are a big space saver generally. I have switched my hoodies from poly-cotton to merino, which are a lot warmer as well. I don't travel with waffle-weave, flannel, or corduroy, though I do love them at home. All that lovely texture takes up space. I like thin jersey inner layers and thin merino outer layers.

    There are threads here somewhere about specific travel clothing, but for me once I started to travel with my kids I just started to buy regular clothes that also happened to fold small and dry fast, and now it's quite easy to pack.

  4. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kaadk View Post
    Book? iPhone. e-reader? iPhone. Noise cancelling headphones? turn up the earbuds. HDMI Cable? watch movie directly off iPad. Separate chargers? iPad charged during day, iPhone at night, watch while getting ready in the morning. Sunglasses? conference was indoors. Mouse? laptop's trackpad.
    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    I'm a technology addict, so this piece of your older post stuck out to me. Whenever I fly I always bring: Noise Cancelling Headphones, e-reader, cheap tablet, 3ds or Nintendo switch and a multi charger. I want to be ready if there is a long layover, flight delay or I have a sudden urge to do a particular activity.

    I realize that everyone is different, but I find that we're not quite there where phones or tablets can replace all technology. Reading for a long time on your phone isn't comfortable, watching movies on your phone is fine for short bursts, but when you have a long flight, a tablet offers you more offline storage to store movies and a larger screen. I also don't count on airlines having entertainment. On my trip to Italy, the plane had a great movie selection and I used it a good chunk of the trip, but on the way back, they had maybe 5 movies.

    Gaming on a phone or tablet is a mess. A poor selection of games riddled with ads and micro-transactions and inferior controls.

    If it's a short flight, earbuds will do, but they're not as comfortable as an over-ear pair for longer flights.

    All together my electronic stuff doesn't take up much space or weight and it goes into a personal item bag for the plane, so it won't eat my bag allowance if flying internationally.

    I care about my electronics and entertainment so I compensate by trying to bring less of things I don't care as much about. Clothes? As long as they don't smell, I'll re-wear them. I don't need to bring a bunch of shoes and outfits with me. The one time I did, it was because it was a "girls outing" and everyone wanted to get dressed up one night. I was miserable having to bring a pair of dress shoes and a dress I was only going to wear once. My companions did make fun of me for my limited wardrobe, but at least I wore everything I brought. One girl brought 12 pairs of shorts just because she had the room in her suitcase.

    Sent from my SM-G950U using Tapatalk

  5. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by nolegrl View Post
    I'm a technology addict, so this piece of your older post stuck out to me. Whenever I fly I always bring: Noise Cancelling Headphones, e-reader, cheap tablet, 3ds or Nintendo switch and a multi charger. I want to be ready if there is a long layover, flight delay or I have a sudden urge to do a particular activity.

    I realize that everyone is different, but I find that we're not quite there where phones or tablets can replace all technology. Reading for a long time on your phone isn't comfortable, watching movies on your phone is fine for short bursts, but when you have a long flight, a tablet offers you more offline storage to store movies and a larger screen. I also don't count on airlines having entertainment. On my trip to Italy, the plane had a great movie selection and I used it a good chunk of the trip, but on the way back, they had maybe 5 movies.

    Gaming on a phone or tablet is a mess. A poor selection of games riddled with ads and micro-transactions and inferior controls.

    If it's a short flight, earbuds will do, but they're not as comfortable as an over-ear pair for longer flights.

    All together my electronic stuff doesn't take up much space or weight and it goes into a personal item bag for the plane, so it won't eat my bag allowance if flying internationally.

    I care about my electronics and entertainment so I compensate by trying to bring less of things I don't care as much about. Clothes? As long as they don't smell, I'll re-wear them. I don't need to bring a bunch of shoes and outfits with me. The one time I did, it was because it was a "girls outing" and everyone wanted to get dressed up one night. I was miserable having to bring a pair of dress shoes and a dress I was only going to wear once. My companions did make fun of me for my limited wardrobe, but at least I wore everything I brought. One girl brought 12 pairs of shorts just because she had the room in her suitcase.

    Sent from my SM-G950U using Tapatalk
    Yep, I agree, what works for me doesn't work in all situations. I pretty much do all my e-reading between my iPad Mini or my iPhone X, my wife on the other hand, has to use a Kobo. Kids each have iPads and we travel with a Nintendo Switch on family vacations. I even hooked up an extra dock in our Fifth Wheel camper so they can connect the Switch to the onboard TV when we're out "camping".

    Similarly, what works for you (and many others on here) regarding reusing clothes doesn't work for me. Most of my "by the air" travel is for work. You really can't present a professional look when the clients recognize you re-using your dress shirts. I can pretty much only get away with re-using the same pants for 2 days in a row when I'm at a client site. Again, you work with what works for you.

    What I hoped to invoke in that previous post, both when I originally brought it up as well as my recent re-posting of it, was to get people to stop and really evaluate whether or not they really need to bring that extra along.

  6. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by nolegrl View Post
    Reading for a long time on your phone isn't comfortable
    Try changing the background color in ibooks on your iphone to black. Changed my world. I can now read for hours on my iphone when I never could in the past due to the eye strain of even a dimmed down white screen.

  7. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by anna2222 View Post
    Try changing the background color in ibooks on your iphone to black. Changed my world. I can now read for hours on my iphone when I never could in the past due to the eye strain of even a dimmed down white screen.
    I have an Android phone, but I wonder if the Kindle app has the same functionality.

    Sent from my SM-G950U using Tapatalk

  8. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by nolegrl View Post
    I have an Android phone, but I wonder if the Kindle app has the same functionality.

    Sent from my SM-G950U using Tapatalk
    It does!

    Sent from my SM-G960U using Tapatalk

  9. #39
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    I have three pieces of travel advice, after years of continuous, full-time travel.

    1. Bring 4 cards: 2 ATM, 2 credit. Store them separately. Have them linked up where you can move money online. That way, if you lose one credit/ATM pair, you have a backup. Losing your ATM/debit/credit cards is arguably a bigger hassle than losing your passport, because it's hard to have them shipped internationally on a moment's notice unless it's American Express -- and even then, it's quite an ordeal and you have no ability to spend or receive money until you get a replacement. IMO, your biggest risk when traveling is not being able to access the money you have back home.

    2. Don't sweat the rest.

    3. Bring less than you think you need.

    Really, don't sweat the rest. Don't bring an umbrella unless you know it's going to rain -- you can buy one. Ruin some flip flops? That's a fun story. Beard trimmer overheat on 220 volt electricity? Great! You can experience a barber shop in another country (obviously this advice only applies to men with beards, but you get the idea). Don't sweat anything but those payment cards, because they're basically the only thing you can't easily replace abroad. The only thing arguably as important is a passport, and even then, it's not that hard to get a temporary passport at a consulate when traveling.

    That's my advice. Everything else is just personal preference, travel style, etc.

  10. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by bouncing View Post
    ...The only thing arguably as important is a passport, and even then, it's not that hard to get a temporary passport at a consulate when traveling....
    Actually, I do have a horror story about that.

    Many, many years ago, at my previous employer, I used to travel to Europe occasionally. With all of this travel, my passport was starting to get a little worse for wear. I was at the airport in Madrid, checking in for a flight to the US, that had a layover, before catching another flight to Detroit, where I would then have to catch a ride across the border back to Canada. Not a problem, I did this kind of trip all the time. Except, that there was a problem. It seems the airport staff wouldn't accept my passport. One of the pages was frayed. This is now within 3 hours of departure. I had to leave the airport, catch a taxi to the Canadian Consulate, from there, schedule a meeting to meet with someone, leave the consulate to go to a photographer for a new passport photo, head back to the Canadian Consulate to get a temporary passport with that new passport photo, high tail it back to the airport so I can finally check into my flight, of which, I was the now the last one checking in with only minutes to spare before the window closed.

    Then, when we landed in the US, I got sent to secondary in immigration, because they wouldn't recognize my temporary passport as a valid passport, and wanted to deport me back to Spain! It took a lot of begging and pleading to let them let me continue on to Detroit, of which I was the last one to board, because of my hold up in immigration.

    Then, to top it all off when I went to get an official passport replacement in Canada, I was told that I was only ever allowed to have this happen once. If anything ever happens to one of my passports in the future before they expire, they won't replace it.

    So yeah, I'd say your passport is even MORE important than most other things. Credit/Debit cards are definitely a high second, right behind the passport, but the passports take precedence in my book based on my past experiences.

  11. #41
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kaadk View Post
    Actually, I do have a horror story about that.

    Many, many years ago, at my previous employer, I used to travel to Europe occasionally. With all of this travel, my passport was starting to get a little worse for wear. I was at the airport in Madrid, checking in for a flight to the US, that had a layover, before catching another flight to Detroit, where I would then have to catch a ride across the border back to Canada. Not a problem, I did this kind of trip all the time. Except, that there was a problem. It seems the airport staff wouldn't accept my passport. One of the pages was frayed. This is now within 3 hours of departure. I had to leave the airport, catch a taxi to the Canadian Consulate, from there, schedule a meeting to meet with someone, leave the consulate to go to a photographer for a new passport photo, head back to the Canadian Consulate to get a temporary passport with that new passport photo, high tail it back to the airport so I can finally check into my flight, of which, I was the now the last one checking in with only minutes to spare before the window closed.

    Then, when we landed in the US, I got sent to secondary in immigration, because they wouldn't recognize my temporary passport as a valid passport, and wanted to deport me back to Spain! It took a lot of begging and pleading to let them let me continue on to Detroit, of which I was the last one to board, because of my hold up in immigration.

    Then, to top it all off when I went to get an official passport replacement in Canada, I was told that I was only ever allowed to have this happen once. If anything ever happens to one of my passports in the future before they expire, they won't replace it.

    So yeah, I'd say your passport is even MORE important than most other things. Credit/Debit cards are definitely a high second, right behind the passport, but the passports take precedence in my book based on my past experiences.
    This summer I overheard someone in an American consulate being told that since this was the second time they'd lost their passport, they would only be issued one year passports for the foreseeable future. This is of course 10 times more expensive than the normal 10 year passport.

    Let us also mention that one should never put a passport in a back pants/jeans pocket, even if you're at home. They really take a dim view of wear and tear like bends and creases.

  12. #42
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    Re passports: sometime in the later 2000s I was flying back from Europe. I boarded the plane, put my passport in the pocket of my big puffy coat (I had been someplace cold), and put said coat in the overhead bin. The flight passed uneventfully. When we landed at JFK I went to get my puffy coat out of the overhead bin and... no coat. Someone else's coat was in the bin (short, black, but very much not similar to mine). I found the flight attendants and mentioned that my coat was gone, which didn't concern them ("it happens") until I mentioned that my passport (and wallet!) was in my coat pocket. That got their attention.

    They sent me through US immigration (I am a US citizen: it's not like I could be sent back to the EU!), the officer sent me over to another desk, and someone tapped a bit on a computer. Tapped some more. Asked me some questions. And that was that. Off I went. In other words, they know who is coming on the plane. Still, it probably was helpful that I was a youngish, conventionally attractive-ish, white woman with a standard midwestern accent.

    So, yes, take care of, and keep track of, your passport, at least until you're on a plane headed back to your country of citizenship.

  13. #43
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    Buying clothes in Europe is only easy if you are not plus size.

    Buying shoes is easier, especially nice ones. European sizes are different.

    If you plan to go to a nice restaurant, bring one nice pair of pants or one nice skirt in a dark neutral color: black, navy, burgundy, dark grey (essentially the color of the Pop Tote).
    Nice walking shoes in a neutral color will be fine with a nice pair of pants but bring or plan to buy a nice pair of flats with the skirt.

    The pair of nice walking shoes will be ok for all circumstances, when paired with pants.

    In winter, in Europe, it rains a lot, always have a waterproof outer layer and a warm layer because it also snows. If your trip is in late winter/early spring (March), you might also have not so chilly sunny days.

    This is why layering is very important!


    One of the nicest item to buy in Europe is a scarf or any traditional textile items. If you buy heavy items, in most of the touristic areas, they can ship it for you.

    Are you staying in international chains hotels or local hotels?
    In Europe it makes a load of difference, small hotels usually only have stairs.

    Check your airline for the size and, if it is a European carrier, weight of your bags.


    Make a copy of your prescription(s) and bring the original prescription (the piece of paper from the pharmacy, that comes with all the prescriptions medications), keep those prescription medications in their original bottle(s).

    Bring medications, even over the counter ones, in their original packages/boxes. Some pharmacy, in the U.S have little lipstick like tubes for over the counter medications buy them and keep them in your A45 top pocket.

    Make sure that everything that is liquid or gel is placed in your 3-1-1, items need to be less than 3oz placed in one quart plastic ziplock for each person.

    TB makes the 3D Clear Organizer Cube, just for that purpose. https://www.tombihn.com/products/3d-...nt=16399453639

    To organize your clothes use Packing Cubes. One for tops, one for bottoms, one for foundation garments, one for night clothes.
    Or one for each type of outfits. They are lifesavers.
    https://www.tombihn.com/collections/...=6900188119103

    Years ago, I bought TB Packing Cubes Backpacks, they still look new.

    As far as knitting is concerned, check the TSA website and as others said the TB subforum on Ravelry.

    Passport: the only place to keep a passport is the Passport Pouch. It keeps the passport looking like new, it is very easy to open so easy to slip it back in after all inspection(s). The opening is very secure, it is roomy enough for a couple of passport and/or the travel paperwork.

    https://www.tombihn.com/collections/...nt=38408323975


    I sure sound like a TB items saleswoman but, those items have really been lifesavers on all my travel. For me, there is travel before and travel after discovering Tom Bihn Inc.
    Last edited by backpack; 01-17-2019 at 06:30 PM.

  14. #44
    Forum Member TRD's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cristina View Post
    This summer I overheard someone in an American consulate being told that since this was the second time they'd lost their passport, they would only be issued one year passports for the foreseeable future. This is of course 10 times more expensive than the normal 10 year passport.
    I have never heard of such a thing, crazy!
    I’ve never lost one and would be heartbroken to lose what few stamps American passports get nowadays but yikes that’s pricey. And honestly I’m not even sure how that works since most countries require 3 months of validity left on your passport when you visit and timing renewals can be tricky.

  15. #45
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cristina View Post
    This summer I overheard someone in an American consulate being told that since this was the second time they'd lost their passport, they would only be issued one year passports for the foreseeable future. This is of course 10 times more expensive than the normal 10 year passport.
    I have never heard this and I did have to report a passport lost around my 18th birthday because we weren't sure if it was expired or not (actually my parent stole it but the rep we spoke to said it was easier to report it 'lost'). So this makes me *SUPER* nervous! I'm really careful with my passport (yay for anxiety!) but, you know, some times things just happen. I know people who have had house fires, someone who had their bag stolen at the airport before they departed for home, I had my house broken into TWICE in 7 days, etc..... I usually travel internationally once or twice a year so having to renew one EVERY year would be an insane hassle....

    I hope there was some kind of 'mitigating factor' for that guy which caused this to happen, like he'd been careless or lost it twice in a very short amount of time?
    Synapse 25, Aeronaut 30
    "I may not be an explorer, or an adventurer, or a treasure-seaker, or a gunfighter but I am proud of what I am... I am a Librarian!"
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