BARBARA’S TRAVEL TIPS… Barbara Kingstone September 19, 2016 Health Travel, Travel Tips When traveling on line, there are tips after tips on various aspects. If you followed all of them, you’d never leave you hotel room, or in some cases never leave home. So take these travel suggestions slowly and just digest what is humanly possible for the time being and little by little, it will all get absorbed in the grey cells, cortex, etc. My first step is packing. On the inside door of my medicine cabinet, I have taped a permanent list of the cosmetics, medicines, health necessities, lotions and potions. That’s my starting point and often the most cumbersome since it does take time to funnel many of these into small containers/jars. At this point I have bottles that can take me anywhere for a week and the larger ones for up to two weeks. After the pads, astringents, night and day creams, sun cream, eye cream and wipes, I then put my necessary pills into a small zip lock bag which goes into my carryon hand bag. The second always essential issue are shoes…now I’m talking to the women. I travel in ballerina type shoes. So easy to take off, put back on at the various customs/immigratiion requests. I don’t wear them on the plane. I place them in the front seat pocket of on the floor and take out my fold up soft slipper like ballerinas. Who wants to go to the loo without shoes??? Next, I pack of my most comfortable sneaker and rarely do I take stiletto heels. That’s mainly because, my itineraries don’t have very formal evenings. I usually pack a dressy pair of very low heeled shoes which do for both day meetings and dinners. After that, it seems that packing becomes a breeze. I wear pants and usually travel in a trendy, but age appropriate sweat or soft, stretchy pants, preferable with a crunched cuff so it doesn’t drag on the floor. No jeans on long hauls. they are just aren’t comfortable especially if they are tight fitting. Try bending your legs or even sitting on them for a few minutes. Jeans are your best friend on land but not in the lofty clouds. I dress up my travel outfit with either a jacket, or cardigan and always take a shawl. That’s an essential. Shawls have so many uses. Firstly to keep me warm, if the plane gets cold, then great as a pillow, and once landed it a wonderful wrap for day to night. Note that even though the flight blankets come neatly wrapped and folded into a plastic bag, there is no telling when it was last laundered. Keep those for waist down and use your own near your face. Truth be told, those blankets haven’t seen the inside of a washing machine in many trips. Ah, how to get everything into a small piece of luggage. Naturally, it all depends and where you are going, the weather at your destination, and many other conditions. But I do know that you can’t go wrong with a nice pair of jeans and black pants. I usually roll these starting at the cuff up and if laid out properly before you start, there isn’t a crease when you arrive. I do the same for t-shirt tops and sweaters. However, with blouses, I do fold and pack them in a small zipper travel bag so once I arrive, I just take the handle and place the bag into a drawer. Ditto for under wear. But if you wash your small undies every night, they are usually dry by morning. My system doesn’t include soap suds since I use the hotel shampoo. If it’s good enough for my hair, it perfect for certain items. Some ‘mavens’ say pack the shoes at the bottom. This scribe says leave them until the end and see where the spaces are in your luggage. Also, great for stuffing last minute small items into the toes. And those empty spots in your valise,become a saviour for my note pads, pens and other work needs. BUT not your camera, computer, iPad or Kindle. They are right beside my pill cache. Take them in your carry one. And also, always include a long T shirt, which can double for a daytime top or nightgown if your luggage doesn’t arrive when you do. I also include one day underwear. None takes too much space and then there’s the awesome creams again. At the pharmacy, you’ll find at the cosmetic counter, they have the smallest screw top plastic jars where you have enough to slather your skin for the longest trip, and instead of cleansing cream, I take wipes which I use for my face, hands and the head devices, trays, handles, are rests. which are in a zip top plastic bag..which in time could be used for wet items e.g the undies that didn’t dry, the swimsuit that just doesn’t want to dry. And on arrival, if it’s an exotic country, just call the Embassy or Consulate and let them know you are in their area. Women, wear a wedding band, whether you are or aren’t married, whether you intend to or not…it’s a great safety device that states your status. Wear sun glasses when possible. Don’t make eye contact unless you are interested in adventure. And the best person for advice, is always the concierge. Just a few tips for the time being but look for more in the near future.