The holidays have become synonymous with travel, which tends to be the most dreaded part of the holiday season. According to AAA, last year over 98.6 million Americans journeyed more than 50 miles or more during the end-of-the-year holiday season. This means traffic, long lines, stress, lack of sleep, delayed flights… the list goes on and on. So this year, instead of facing all of these problems alone, take a look at some of these helpful travel necessities that can make your holiday pilgrimage a little bit easier for you and your family.
TomBinh’s Aeronaut 45
Starting at $295, the Aeronaut 45 is the perfect duffel/backpack/shoulderbag for any on-the-go traveler. Designed for weeklong or longer trips (perfect for the holidays) it is the maximum carry-on size. It has a very spacious main compartment with mesh stowaways, with end pockets that can fit up to size 12 shoes.
The bag itself is waterproof and is built with reinforced ripstop fabric. You could throw this thing around carelessly for years and it would be just fine. However, if something does go wrong it has a lifetime guarantee and the company will repair any damages for free.
Travelrest Travel Blanket
When the Snuggie first came out, people laughed and made fun of it. Then, somehow, two months later almost everyone had one. Why? Because it was cheap and practical. Now, for $30, Travlrest is offering their travel blanket which has an opening at the head, acting as an oversized, comfortable poncho. Although a tad bit dorky, style isn’t anyone’s top priority when traveling.
This blanket is perfect for plane rides, sleeping in the car, or anytime you’re cold really. On top of its supreme comfort and reasonable price, it also includes a carrying bag which easily fits the blanket and can be stored in a suitcase, carry-on, backpack, or held if needed. No more cheap plane blankets anymore, yay!
Balanzza Mini USB Luggage Scale
We’ve all been at the airport and assumed that our luggage was under the required weight, only to discover that it is not. Next thing you know, you’re on your hands and knees in the middle of the line, transferring items from one suitcase to another with all of your stuff out for the world to see just in order to avoid the fee. So embarrassing. Skip all that stress and trouble with the Balanzza Mini Luggage Scale.
It’s simple, easy to use, shows both pounds and kilograms, and charges with a mini USB. With a bright and readable screen, you’ll know exactly how much your luggage weighs at all times. This travel must-have is only $35.
Calamari 3-in-1 Cable
For only $15, this cable allows you to charge up to three different devices at once. No more fighting over the charger with your friends and family because now there are enough to go around. You can choose from a variety of voltages depending on the various devices you are trying to charge, and the connectors cover essentially all smartphones and tablets.
This is a smart, cheap, and easy way to keep everyone’s devices charged up for the journey ahead. You might even want to buy two if you have a lot of devices to keep refreshed and ready to use.
With this carry-on luggage, you’ll be the most technologically savvy traveler wherever you are. This carry-on has wheels that go in any direction you are headed in, as well as the world’s first 3G-and GPS-connected bag. The bag can be locked, unlocked, has a built-in scale, and can travel all over the world with you. It also has a built-in battery that you can plug a USB charger into that can charge any of your devices over and over again.
All in all, you can put over 34 liters of folded clothing inside, and it only weighs 3.8 kg, even with its polycarbonate and aluminum frame. All of this for $225.
Virgin Mobile Pre-Paid Hotspot
Today, having wireless access is something that we take for granted until we no longer have it. You never know when you might need a connection — you could end up in a hotel that doesn’t have wireless internet, driving in a car, stuck at a bus stop, or waiting in a coffee shop. With one of these devices, you don’t need a contract and you only pay for what you need when you need it.
Don’t ever stress about having wireless internet again as long as you have one of these on you. For $80 you can save yourself a lot of trouble and even help out people around you.
Patagonia Black Hole
In case you can’t tell by the name, this duffel bag is designed to amaze you at how much you can fit inside of it, without having clothes bulging out the seams. At 120 liters, it is made from burly denier polyester which is made to hold up to three peoples’ clothes for a whole week.
It is also equipped with zippered mesh interior pockets and long exterior pockets for easy access or bigger side items. It is low-cost at $159, weather resistant, and is perfect for either visiting your family and friends over the holidays or heading out camping instead.
Chums Latitude Accessory Case
The latitude Accessory Case is a mini organizer made from ballistic nylon with waterproof YKK zippers and even includes a see-through rear pocket so you can check to make sure you have everything you need. These cases are best used for small electronics and their accessories, first-aid kits, and toiletries, but the options are endless.
Inside the case, there are interior pockets for all of your little trinkets and necessities that could get lost otherwise, They are available in three sizes, of which the largest is nine inches long. Keep your smaller items organized from now on.
Anker Premium Extended Battery Case
With cell phones becoming one of the essential tools for travel, this product is genius. It can be used to pull up your boarding pass, call an Uber, look up directions, find entertainment… the uses are endless. However, a phone is only useful if it has battery life. Well, stress no more. Anker has released the Premium Extended battery case for only $50.
All you have to do is charge the case separately from your phone and it provides you with over 130% longer battery life. Now you don’t have to constantly be worried about your battery percentage, or where you’re going to be able to charge up next.
Bluetooth Tiles are the ultimate way to find lost items. The tiles can be hidden in your bag, passport case, hung on your keys, or even your wallet. They connect to your smartphone so you know where all of your items are with the use of GPS technology. You can track where your items are if they are lost, stolen, or if you just want to keep an eye on them while you go to the bathroom or step away for a moment.
They can be used to deter thieves, and can even be customized to fit your style or your travel bag. This is a must-have for people that repeat offenders of misplacing items. Prices vary, but start around $20.
Audio Technica ATH-ANC23
These are Audio Technica’s noise-canceling earbuds. Although most noise-canceling headphones can be in the upwards range of hundreds of dollars, these earbuds are an effective and cheap substitute at just $45 on Amazon. They are comfortable so they can be worn for hours at a time without pain, and cancel up to 90% of background noise.
So even if you’re not listening to music, you can block out any noises around you. They run on a single AAA battery which can last up to 60 hours. This is one of the best noise-canceling options on the market right now.
An unavoidable part of travel is downtime, so a lot of people choose to read. But sometimes books can weigh too much and take up too much space, especially if you have multiple books. For $119, you can switch to a Kindle Paperwhite which has a screen of 300 pixels per inch, the highest resolution that Amazon offers.
If you only read for a half an hour a day, one charge can the battery can last up to six weeks, proving its dependable battery life. The size also makes it perfect for travel and can store up to hundreds of books at a time. You basically have your entire library at your fingertips.
Ultimate Memory Foam Neck Pillow
Sleeping on long flights or drives can seem like an impossible mission to accomplish. It can be frustrating trying to get comfortable, and half the time when you wake up you’re so sore that you wish you hadn’t slept in the first place. Now, with the Travelrest memory foam pillow, you can sleep comfortably and soundly in almost any situation.
It provides great neck support, has ultra-soft material, and a grippy back that clings to the seat back and prevents it from slipping. It even has a contoured bottom edge so it can rest comfortably on the user’s shoulders. Around $30 on Amazon.
Vumos Leak-Proof Travel Bottles
Available in an array of colors, the Vumos leak-proof squeezable silicone bottles are perfect for all of your favorite shampoos, conditioners, creams, or whatever you need to bring on your travels. They come with labels so you’ll never get mixed up on which bottle contains what.
In addition, the Vumos bottles come with their own travel bag and are TSA approved so you can conveniently take them in a carry-on bag. These bottles will help you feel comfortable and at home wherever your travels take you. They can be found on Amazon for $35.
Eagle Creek Packing Cubes
When traveling, having enough space is key. Even if you have large luggage, sometimes you can find yourself laying on top of your suitcase trying to zip it up. Now, Eagle Creek offers waterproof packing cubes which are individual zip-up cubes that you fill up and then put in your suitcase.
This greatly helps to maximize space as well as keep you more organized. The packing cubes help to keep your items separated, helps prevent wrinkling, and are perfect for any vacation no matter how short or long. For $23 on the Eagle Creek online store, you won’t have to rummage through your suitcase anymore.
Outdoor Research Ultralight Compression Sack
The Outdoor Research Compression Sack is perfect for all of your clothes, underwear, towels, etc. that take up unnecessary room in your luggage. It’s easy to pack and unpack with the fabric flap that holds the fasteners in place, and two of the four compression straps are Fastex buckles, so you can just undo them in order to decompress the entire sack.
The sack itself can be comfortably carried in one hand, or even be put inside of a suitcase or backpack. Now, you can fit the whole family’s socks, underwear, or other items in one sack to avoid losing items or wasting much-needed space.
Eagle Creek Pack-It Specter Wallaby Toiletry Organizer
When you’re traveling, having all of your toiletries handy is a necessity. Thankfully, Eagle Creek has their Pack-It toiletry organizer for all of your hygiene needs. With a hook located on the back, you can hang it wherever you need and let it unfold for easy access to any of your items.
It’s lightweight, water-resistant, and easy to clean in case you spill any toothpaste or deodorant while using it. You can carry it by itself or store it inside of one of your bags. No more buying all new toiletries whenever you travel. Pricing varies depending on size.
Packtowl Personal Towel
The Packtowl Personal Towel is a must-have both for traveling, and once you’ve reached your destination. It is a soft, lightweight towel that can be used in almost any situation. With sizes ranging from face towels to full-blown beach towels (and corresponding prices), there’s a Packtowl for any occasion.
All towels come with a mesh carrying bag so you can fasten it to any backpack or bag while you’re on the go. The Packtowl has been proven to be more absorbent, and odor-resistant that its competitors so you won’t have to lug around a damp and moldy towel during your travels.
Mack’s Ultra Soft Foam Ear Plugs
Traveling can be noisy and exhausting. Sometimes you just need to tune the world out whether it’s to take a nap, read a book, or just have a few moments of silence. Luckily, with Mack’s Ultra Soft Foam earplugs you can. According to Cooper safety, Mack earbuds can reduce the volume of a gas lawnmower down to that of a normal conversation.
So most noises in airports, bus stops, or on the street will be essentially canceled out. Each pair costs around 16 cents and you can buy them in a pack of 50.
Nidra Deep Rest
Nidra Deep Rest is a sleep mask that makes it possible to sleep in even some of the brightest and most chaotic situations while traveling. The mask is contoured to rest on the user’s face like a pair of goggles, with the lenses sitting around your eyes instead of directly on top of them.
This particular design provides space for eye-fluttering during REM sleep so you can actually sleep rather than just closing your eyes. The contoured design is also appreciated by cosmetics wearers who claim that the sleep mask has little to no effect on their eye makeup.