Items to Pack in Your Carry On for Your Next Trip

Photo by  Clarisse Meyer  on  Unsplash

If you plan to travel during the remainder of 2019, hopefully you’ve started thinking about your travel plans. I know I have! After I’ve booked the major aspects of a trip like airfare and lodging, I start thinking about what activities I plan to do and what to pack. Particularly when you travel by air for more than an hour or two, packing a carry on bag that has all of the items you’ll need to access during your flight really helps to feel prepared and in control even when travel snafus happen. Here are the items I tend to pack in my carry-on personal item bag (what I pack in my suitcase varies depending on the season and my destination).


A sturdy but chic backpack can double as your daily bag once you arrive at your destination, so I think it’s an item worth investing in. Brands like Everlane and Cuyana have really stylish ones now that you can also consider using during your work commute. Or if you’re more of a traditional travel accessories person, Tumi has nice travel backpacks as well. I purchased in inexpensive bag off of Amazon because that’s what I could afford at the time, but I’d like to upgrade at some point to a bag that will be long-lasting and durable.

Toiletry Staples

Make sure you have staples like soap, toothpaste, toothbrush and deodorant in your bag. You’ll want those items on your person particularly if you check your suitcase. Do yourself a favor and make sure all of your liquids will all fit in a sandwich bag for air travel. Be sure to include an all purpose moisturizer like Weleda Skinfood, a sheet mask, and a travel sized face spray (like Thayer’s Rose Witch Hazel or Caudalie Beauty Elixir). You may be able to sneak by in some US airports, but other countries may be more strict and it’s so sad to see your previous products thrown out.

Spare Outfit

Planning for the possibility of being separated from your luggage or have some type of snafu where you mess up your clothing (i.e. spilling a drink or food all over yourself). I usually pick an outfit that takes up less space like a jumpsuit or leggings and a long sleeve shirt.

Menstrual Products

Be sure to pack a few pads or tampons on the off-change that you or someone you’re traveling with unexpectedly starts their period. I also like to pack some period underwear from a brand like Sustain or Thinx also. I don’t use a menstrual cup, but if you do, they really seem to be perfect for travel if you are accustomed to them. Travel can be stressful enough so be sure to be prepared for this eventuality.

Kindle + Magazines

Reading material is pretty important to me even on my weekly commute for work, so I definitely like to pack my Kindle and possibly some magazines while traveling. I sometimes pack an actual book or two but Kindles are so convenient in that you can have dozens of books at your disposal. For Netflix watching, scrolling on IG, or catching up on podcasts, my phone works fine.

External charger

It should go without saying in 2019 that you should pack an external charger in your bag for your devices. But a reminder never hurts. Pack too if you are a heavy user of your phone for things like navigation and photo-taking. I have a small charger and I also have the charger that my Away Carry-on suitcase came with.


Quality headphones can really help to tune out sound when needed during travel. For listening to podcasts, music, audio books, watching Netflix, headphones are used so much they are an item worth splurging on in my opinion.


While I love my devices, I recommend jotting down key travel info into a notebook in case all of your devices die or you cant access wifi. You can also use your notebook as a travel journal or scrapbook of your trip that will serve as a nice memento from your travels.

Herbal remedies, vitamins, and medications

Even if you’re not a fan of OTC meds like me, still pack a pain reliever like Advil, anti-nausea meds, and depending on the locale, anti-diarrhea meds. Also consider packing any supplements you normally take and more powder greens and some Echinacea or other preferred herbal remedy to strengthen your immune system.

All Purpose Antibacterial Wipes

No matter your destination, you will inevitably need a wipe at some point. You can wipe down surfaces on your flight or ride or even in your lodging once you arrive at your destination. For this reason, pack tissues as well. There’s nothing worse than not being able to adequately address a runny nose while traveling.

Silk Face Mask

If you are a light sleeper or sensitive to light, you may also want a silk sleep mask to wear during travel to block out lighting and distractions.