I’m just back from traveling over the weekend. I flew to Atlanta on Thursday to drive with my mother to Kentucky on Friday for a memorial service on Saturday. We drove back to Atlanta on Sunday and I flew back to DFW yesterday. Phew.
I’ve thought over the years of frequent & not so frequent travel, that I’d keep a running list of things not to forget when I travel. I don’t really do that, but I should. I have such a list in my head, but sometimes forget things, and often decide I can do without something or another and usually regret it later.
- A scarf or large scarf/blanket for the plane. This trip, I didn’t bring a scarf with me, and I regretted it on the plane last night. I was wearing a t-shirt with my Zady linen sweater on top, and my neck/shoulders were FREEZING. I really wished I’d had my scarf. In cool weather, I usually bring my wool cloud scarf by Scarf Shop and in warmer weather I try to remember to bring a very lightweight Everlane scarf I’ve had forever, but obviously forget sometimes….
- Headphones and podcasts – I’ve found that I like to listen to music/podcasts on the plane lately to try and drown out some noise, rather than read the entire time. I have large noise cancelling headphones, but those are too big to travel with, so I just use the ones that come with my phone and load it up with podcasts like Invisibilia, TED Radio hour, Sam Harris, This American Life, American Fashion Podcast….
- Nail care kit & cuticle oil
- Sneakers – I’ve traveled in sandals before, and changed into thick socks on the plane, but now, I’d rather just wear comfortable sneakers for travel days, whether or not I ever wear them again during my trip (I don’t like to wear/bring anything I don’t wear often). But often, sneakers do come in handy, even in summer when I’d rather wear sandals. So, I always wear my Vince sneakers on travel days, and maybe once or twice on the trip.
- Travel bag with a zipper closure – this is a new must-have. Most of my totes do NOT have any closure at the top, and I’ve not had a problem using them for travel before (Everlane petra tote, Admonish tote), but this time, since I’m in the TSA pre-check, and I don’t have to put my bag in a bin anymore, I was nervous that everything would fall out on the belt. So I tried to fold the tops under, and just waited with bated breath at the end to make sure I still had all my stuff! It worked out, but I’d rather not do that again.
A couple of extras I just thought of, that aren’t necessary, but I will probably start traveling with: silk/satin pillowcase, and a small travel foam roller. If I’m staying at a hotel, I always bring a small bottle of Dr. Bronner’s soap to use as hand soap and body wash because I HATE the little soaps hotels provide. I also always bring my JP raglan sleeve dress to wear around the house, or at the hotel, that’s also appropriate for hanging out in the lounge or for breakfast in the mornings.
More on bags…
As I may have mentioned before, I’m a bit picky when it comes to bags. And I like to carry one bag for everything. Especially for travel, I like to use whatever bag/purse I’m going to use at my destination as my “carry on” (separate from my roller bag), so I always use a larger bag that can fit my laptop if I need it to, as well as a large scarf, kindle, etc., etc.
I’ve experimented with also packing a smaller bag to use at my destination so I don’t lug around a large tote all the time, but that doesn’t work well for me, because I don’t do well carrying smaller bags. Ever.
I’m still searching for a go everywhere, do everything bag, have forever, bag, but it’s harder than it seems. Especially for me.
So, what are five (or more) things you don’t travel without??
1. Well-loaded Kindle (though I’ve been known to download new books from the wilds of Tanzania, I’d prefer not to – I don’t always know what my connectivity will be on work trips). I want a lot of options – who knows what I’ll be in the mood to read? I have a waterproof bag I can read my kindle through too! Got it for a sailing trip a couple years ago and use it in situations near water – pool beach – rare for me, but since I have it….. I always bring a magazine too, and plan to leave it behind/with someone during the travels. That started back when airlines wouldn’t let you read your electronic devices during take-off/landing. I’m bereft without something to read!
2. Wipes. I have wipes for EVERYTHING. I like to travel carry-on when possible. Wipes come in super handy when traveling in developing countries.
3. Clothing varies by type of trip but I always carefully (obsessively!) plan out a wardrobe of comfortable (hopefully flattering) layers in just a couple of colors where most things match with others. Including at least one cardigan and scarf (of appropriate weights). Nothing that hasn’t been worn before – I do NOT like testing new clothing on a trip. (I might fudge this a little if I’m traveling someplace I can easily get a replacement) I’m also not as minimalist as I could be or as others are. I broke a bra strap the first day I put it on for a work conference last month. Fortunately I had one other bra with me – but it was nude and my 3 work-day outfits were all black.
I don’t travel that often, but the last time I flew, my throat and skin got so dry on the plane. So, I’d say a big bottle of water, hand lotion, lip balm, and cough drops are definitely on my list of necessities. And I always buy a magazine at the airport to read on the plane, and then I’m usually too much of a nervous flyer to actually read it. 😛
I have the Travel Case set from Cuyana and the smaller bag is perfect for carrying in your tote. I actually keep it in my bag all the time and it’s filled with things like granola bars, band-aids, and hand sanitizer for my kids.
Hi, Grechen, I am interested in how to choose a size if I want to order JP Raglan Dolman dress. According to their chart, I’d be a size 4 (esp based on hip size). I am 5’7″ and 160. Do you think that is the size I should order?
Grechen Reiter says
Hi Lydia – i am 5’3″ and about 145 pounds, with wide(r) hips and I took a size 1. it does tend to stick a little at my hips, but not enough to bother me. if you have a more straight body type, i’d recommend a size 2 or 3 – it’s meant to be a little oversized and loose.
I also travel via train and car as well as plane.
The train and car are a bit easier because there aren’t as many restrictions. Must haves are something to drink, snacks, and something to read. If I’m really travelling light I just download stuff to my phone (iPhone 6) and read it on that (I know not everyone likes the small screen but I don’t mind). I also have an iPad mini but find I don’t use it that much, but I might bring that too. Sometimes I buy magazines or a paper but mostly I read onscreen. I usually have a backpack and a rolling case. I stuff my purse into the backpack.
For the plane I have disinfectant wipes for swabbing the plastic bits all around my seat, plus some kind of moisturizer (I usually just bring a sample of something, but my favorite is the travel size of Weleda skinfood–love the smell). Everything else–like lip balm, lozenges and eye drops–I already have in my bag. Depending on where I’m going I bring a scarf etc. If I am going on a long flight (like to Europe) I often bring a hoody and a big scarf. I always wear socks and shoes of some kind. My big thing about being on a plane is that I want to look presentable but feel cozy and comfortable. I try to wear natural fibers because I once read a terrifying account of how melting polyester sticks to your skin, but it’s really hard to find clothing with no elastic or metal or plastic hardware, so that’s not all that logical, lol.
I don’t do anything special for my domestic flights (the longest I can take is only 1hr45min) but for longhaul where I’m flying 12+hrs ? I’ve got to have a Kindle, some music + noise-cancelling headphones, saline nose spray (my sinuses dry up something crazy) and comfortable (preferably slip-on) shoes.
My black merino Wild South dress comes with me whereever I go, no matter the climate. It’s so easy to dress up or down and I’ve been quite comfortable wearing it in Dubai at 40 odd degrees!
This is very timely as I am leaving on Saturday for two weeks in France! Thanks for your thoughts on the bag. I’ve been debating between my Moop carrier bag which has more organization and a crossbody strap but no zipper or my La Pillage bag which has a zipper but only shoulder straps and no organization. Still not decided….
1. Kindle – I download books from the library.
2. iPhone/headphones – music & podcasts.
3. Scarf – for all the reasons you said! Can also double as a pillow.
4. Empty water bottle to fill once I get past security. I’m not a fan of bottled water.
5. Lotion for my dry, dry hands and cuticles!
(the link to your Zady linen sweater isn’t working)
Very helpful to read your list and the comments! I fly all the time between islands in Hawaii but do have two longer to mainland trips coming up so I need reminders 😉
(1) Swell bottle – I fill it up in the airport lounge so I don’t get dehydrated before the beverage cart comes around & I also use it when shopping/sightseeing on my trip. The small 9 oz is light and fits into smaller purses.
(2) Scarf – my neck gets cold easily and I use it to cover my nose/mouth if someone is sniffling next to me. I usually have either a pullover a sweater or my wool overcoat but I’ll still feel cold without a scarf around my neck.
(3) Kindle Paperwhite – avid reader.. Sometimes I bring my iPad mini too for magazines on the Texture app but not always. The Kindle comes with me 100%. Also is handy when sharing a room with others as it has its own backlight.
(4) Vitamin E stick for dry lips (dry anything actually).
(5) Something soft and warm for my feet. Either thick socks or a sock slipper thing. I don’t feel comfortable on a long flight keeping any kind of shoe on the entire time, even a sneaker (minimum from Hawaii to CA is 6 hrs, used to fly to Japan & then HK 8 + 6). On my 1st trip to Asia I noticed all the Japanese passengers on JAL took off their nice dress shoes and put on house slippers or thick socks. I’ve adopted that practice ever since. I do put my shoes back to get up for the restroom etc and I always sit on the aisle so it’s not so bad for me to be taking shoes off and on periodically.
I like to listen to podcasts too especially when I’m not in the mood to chat with strangers. If I take a non zip bag I merely pouch everything in the bag but I agree a zippered bag is so much easier, especially at TSA (Longchamp works well, one with the shorter handle as those don’t move around as much when hung on my rolling suitcase, also can be cleaned up as bags tend to get scuffed up on the xray machine belt).
I travel twice internationally per year with only carry-ons. My boyfriend and I traveled in Croatia and Sweden on 10 kg each! I have a See by Chloe Nellie bag that I absolutely love for travel. It has big pockets on the front of it that handily fit a passport, iPhone, etc. It’s made in China and doesn’t have a top zip (two negatives), but the leather is pretty good quality, and it does have a snap on the top. Fits my enormous Nalgene, iPad, and a of couple books in the interior. I also always travel with a big but lightweight cashmere scarf and wrap sweater. The wrap sweater is great for the plane and days where I need a chic layer. The scarf is perfect for everything from a wrap over a cocktail dress, head scarf in a mosque or conservative church, or a pillow on the road. I also bring several pairs of lightweight smartwool socks; they don’t smell bad after a couple of wears, and they help to prevent blisters by wicking moisture. I also wear pointy-toed ankle boots that translate well from day to night.
1. Turbie Twist for my hair. I know this may seem like an odd item to bring, but I have loads of curly hair that gets frizzy when I use a traditional bath towel on it. One Turbie Twist thrown in my bag or suitcase doesn’t take up much space and is a convenient way to gently dry my hair and keep it out of my face while I get the rest of myself ready. The microfiber also dries super quickly, so no risk of mildew smells when you throw it back in your bag.
2. Very moisturizing and emollient lip balm. Doesn’t matter where I’m going or what the weather is like – as soon as I step on a plane my lips gets so dry and flaky.
3. Some sort of antacid. The stress of traveling and the cabin air pressure give me the worst heartburn and bloating feeling. Plus, I like to eat a lot when I go on vacation or am at a new place and rich, fatty, and new-to-you foods can take a toll, and the antacids help so much!
4. Scarf – for all the same reasons as everyone else!
5. Comfy slip on sneakers – easy to wear/take off during security, I’m usually wearing thin socks with them so my feet are warm enough during the flight, and they’re versatile enough to wear with my planned outfits and comfortable enough to wear during long walking days once I’m at my destination.
Do try Cuyana leather zipper tote, not the pebbled leather one, but smooth leather. I was looking for a tote for a while myself, and ordered it in black pebbled leather. It did not work for me – felt stiff, heavy, and too boxy. I decided to try their smooth leather one (made in Italy), and what a difference! It is made of a very soft leather, somewhat slouchy, exceptional quality and fits my laptop and more. I highly recommend. I bought the grey one and now I am on the waitlist to get the black.
Grechen Reiter says
so funny – i was just over there looking at the cuyana tote. i like it very much (it’s similar to my everlane tote) but i DO NOT like the narrow handles and shoulder strap…i could switch out the longer shoulder strap with a wider one easily, so it’s still an option. but i’d love more internal organization
oh, you are talking about their oversized carryall tote. Mine is a “classic” zipper tote. I would have the same issue with the carryall, longer strap is too thin…
Grechen Reiter says
not odd at all to bring your own towel (if i can bring my own pillowcase LOL)
Grechen Reiter says
oh, love smartwool socks!! i just wear the footie style (that just barely cover your toes) because i hate socks, but they are wonderful, so much better than other socks. and i had to wear them multiple times this last weekend because i forgot socks for my exercise shoes, and no smell 😉
Grechen Reiter says
i have everything in pouches in my bag also, but still..made me nervous this time.
i brought my swell bottle with me this time, and i always use it at my destination, but when i filled it at the airport yesterday the water tasted funny. so much that i couldn’t drink it, so i had to get water on the plane 🙁
how do you clean yours? that’s the frustrating thing about swell bottles, that i can’t just put it in the dishwasher…
i always have my kindle paperwhite with me also, but since i don’t listen to podcasts at home, i like to take airplane time for listening to them. and like you said, it has an added bonus of sending the message that i don’t want to talk …which comes in REALLY handy most of the time!!
Grechen Reiter says
i really want more internal organization, zippered sections, so i’d lean towards the moop bag. and i always wanted one of those !! (do you have the market bag?)
something weird i’ve been thinking about since my experience with my “open” bag this time – i’d love a large piece of canvas i could put inside my bag that would stay open usually, but when i want to close it up, i just cinch it closed on the top and everything is locked in. i’ve seen very sturdy/boxy totes that have a similar closure, i wonder if my friend could make me one for my admonish tote?? then, it would be perfect 🙂 and obviously that would work for any open tote, it just wouldn’t provide any additional internal organization though.
Grechen Reiter says
yes, me too (want to be cozy and look presentable) – i try to accomplish both, but some people traveling by plane lately seem to choose only the “cozy” option LOL
that would be a good PSA against wearing workout leggings on the plane….sort of…!
Grechen Reiter says
ha! i used to buy magazines for the plane too when they’d make you turn off your kindle on take-off – of course i also remember a time BEFORE kindles (gasp) and always brought magazines/books to read anyway 🙂 but now, i don’t ever buy magazines anymore, which i sort of miss, but not really. i’d rather read what i have on my kindle or phone nowadays. i wonder if the airport booksellers have noticed a decrease in sales lately..hmm…
i need a waterproof bag for my kindle!!! i take it to the pool sometimes, but have to be VERY VERY careful not to get water on it. and sometimes i like to read in the bathtub.
I think your list pretty well matches mine, except I would switch out the turbi twist for a real towel lol! Fyi, to anyone who forgets overthecounter meds (forget prescription meds at your peril!) attendants do have supplies of gravol, antacids, pain meds, etc. for emergencies. Just don’t ask during meal or drink service….they will forget.
I think I will now be packing my hair towel for an upcoming Vegas girls weekend LOL. I already leave one at my BFs apartment (long distance relationship). I haven’t blow dried my hair in 6 years so that’s a brilliant idea.
I just fill my Swell with hot soapy water and let it sit open overnight. In the morning, I’ll close it & shake it up a little and wash around the mouthpiece/outside and then rinse/air dry. But I don’t put anything in mine except plain water. For coffee or flavored drinks, I’ll use another container that’s easier to wash. On their website, they said you can also use vinegar with the soapy water but I haven’t felt the need to do that yet.
I have the carrier bag. There is a buckle closure but not a zip. I’m leaning toward this one because I think ultimately I’ll be grateful for the cross body option and the pockets for my water bottle and phone or sunglasses. And yes, pouches for everything else!
I also have the envelope clutch and the tiny clutch phone case.
I think what you’re describing is the swoop bag for your tote! (Swoop bag is a big, round, fabric circle with a drawstring for kids to play on with small toys – legos – and when they’re finished you can “swoop” it all up)
Definitely bring it Tania! It sort of changed the game for me once I started bringing my own hair towel while traveling! It’s also just so much easier to get ready when you don’t have a huge wet towel flopping around your head. Also, I rarely blow dry/straighten my hair when traveling since I don’t want to waste precious packing space by bringing my own blow dryer and flat iron since the hotel provided dryers are so dinky and never work for my hair type (it’s high maintenance lol) and having my nice micro fiber hair towel helps my curly thick hair dry so much more nicely and with much less frizz.
Ah, the one time I’m grateful for my no-so-thick, curly hair! No need to blow dry and products just make it look worse.
Do you have any suggestions for PJs or Lounge Wear?
I’m kind of old school and don’t have a kindle. I once took a stack of hardcover books from the public library all the way to Cape Town. I just bought an Osprey travel backpack and I’m very excited to use it on my next trip.
My five essentials are:
1. Books – at least two
2. Comfortable shoes. I usually wear Dansko clogs as they are easy to slip off in security and also keep my feet up out of puddles in airport bathrooms and other nasty things.
3. Layers to wear on the plane.
4. Ibuprofen – never travel without it!
5. Band aids
I travel as often as possible. I only bring a lightweight rolling bag and a second bag that acts as a purse/ carrying around bag. The rolling bag is the osprey ozone from rei. It’s like a Mary Poppins bag– it looks small but it fits a ton. And since the bag only weighs 4.5 pounds, I can actually lift it into an overhead bin fully packed without doing the half- hearted attempt while hoping for a taller ( I’m only 5 ft) stronger person to help hoist. Here are my essentials:
1. Scarf. Sometimes more than one. They not only change up outfits, they are essential on cold planes.
2. iPhone 6 Plus and soft earbuds. Large enough to be a mini iPad mini. Can read on my kindle app which means I don’t always need my kindle. Contains my boarding passes as well.
3. Secure cross body bag. My favorite is a canvas/ leather man’s laptop bag from Bosca that I got on super sale. It is much lighter than a leather bag, withstands all sorts of weather, and can fit everything I might want handy on a plane or while touring around.
4. A lightweight foldable raincoat or rain vest. I prefer this to an umbrella. Not only is it lighter ( sensing a theme?) but it is more versatile than an umbrella. I got a great one from Cole Haan at loehmann’s way back when ( miss you loehmann’s !) but an interesting vest style from Banana Republic a couple of years ago that, at first, confused me until I realized that it was a great solution to throw over my clothes in a warm climate and which rolls up tight.
5. A modestly sized hanging toiletry bag. I try to rely on samples and small sizes of everything and then fit it in a small light hanging waterproof bag with a couple of compartments. Not only does it protect against leaks, but it is great to have in any bathroom because while there is often limited counter space, there is always a spot to hang a small bag.
To answer another question posed in the comments– my favorite travel pjs are a pair of all cotton long plaid lounging shirts from uniqlo that have washed to incredible softness, and which are long enough to go down to just below my knees. And they are baggy. And an oversized all cotton men’s tee.
As you can probably tell, I am not into a lot of feminine frills when I travel ??
I subscribe to a lot of magazines. I like the paper (and I have an old school e-ink Kindle so it’s not good for digital magazines anyway. I have a tablet too but never use it. I just like paper….)
I admit I use the kindle in my bubble baths without the waterproof bag 😉
While we’re on the topic of zippered totes, I thought I’d share this small brand that I stumbled upon while browsing at the Brooklyn Flea: Rowdy Bags (http://bit.ly/2939T9A). I bought the Llanca Tote, which I found to be great looking and good quality, especially for the reasonable price. It’s only got one pocket inside and is unlined, but this hasn’t been annoying for me. I’ve owned it now for a couple of months, and it’s replaced my previous purse along with a small fabric tote I also carried every day to work (for gym clothes, books, what have you). My only complaint is that where the leather’s gotten wet from my water bottle and rubbed against my clothing, it’s stained—but that’s on the side that I hold against me, I assume from rubbing against my clothing. The side that faces out to the world has worn nicely.
For NY locals, they also had some small cross-body bags that aren’t available on their website (kicking myself for not also getting one of those). Oh, and I’m in no way affiliated with them—just happy to pass along the tip, given the pocket-friendly price point *and* the company’s philosophy!
I just got back from a trip to Scotland, and I really need to do a postmortem of my packing. Part of the problem with this trip was I really didn’t know what to expect. I took way too many beauty products (I have a hard time limiting skincare). That said, things that proved themselves:
1. SLIPPERS. To wear on the plane, in the hotel, while lounging. I would never go barefoot or just in socks on a plane, and slippers make things perfect.
2. Emerson Fry caftans. I changed into the Star Caftan (the gray and black one) while traveling back on the plane, and it was perfect. I have the blue indigo one as well, and I wore that to breakfast and around when lounging. They’re great.
3. Noise-cancelling headphones. The over ear ones are big and bulky, but they are worth it. My ears don’t hurt and I’m just less tired when I use them on a plane. Even when the airline supplies them, I take my own. AA, for example, collects them about an hour before landing, taking away precious sleep time on a short flight.
4. Extra underwear, because I generally don’t want to deal with handwashing on the road and stuff happens. (A shower flooded the bathroom floor on this trip and some clothes got drenched. I was glad to have extra clean undies to wear.) Those gauze-y On Gossamer ones pack down to nothing, and if I do have to wash in the sink, they dry quickly.
I find a long stretchy skirt with the leggings underneath can work!
This is tough because it’s seasonal for me. I’m always traveling to the Midwest, which is freezing in the winter and scorching ly hot and humid in the summer!
1) My individual BAGGU bags and pouches so I can easily find shoes, makeup, toiletries, etc.
2) well-planned, impactful jewelry pieces that go with everything.
3) a scarf…either lightweight linen/cotton or cashmere, depending on season. (“Hell” vs. ” ice age”) 😉
4)Jeans. Usually that means my best pair, probably black so I can dress them up.
5) A large leather tote. Can’t live without my J Crew leather tote for travel.
Jillian, I live in my Splendid thermal cotton wide leg lounge pants when I’m at my destination! Love them!
Hi! I wear casual loungewear instead of sleepwear always (hotel, at home, at BFs). I like the idea that I can throw on a T or sweater to go outside to grab a coffee in the morning without changing. I like jersey pants (super soft with a slight flare at the bottom) or maxi dresses from Michael Lauren. I also have trapeze slip dresses from Free People with a soft pullover bra underneath for warm weather that also make a cute swimsuit coverup (but I’m only 5’1″, those can be quite short on anyone taller). Whatever brand works for you, I’d say loungewear rules, especially when traveling, over sleepwear from the lingerie dept as can be multipurpose and have a more flattering fit.
I cannot travel without a photo of each of my grown children. I know. It’s weird. But when I’m overseas I like to have them close by.
I also need my journals and pens so that I can keep notes for my blog : https://atypical60.com/
Last of all, I need, while en route, really pretty matching bra and panties. Just in case something happens, the rescue workers can match the top with the bottom. True this. I’ve traveled like this for years–and I just returned from my annual trip to France!
Water…ALWAYS! And I feel like flying gives me the perfect excuse to buy mags that I usually wouldn’t.
OMG! I brought along a photo of my youngest daughter(17) when we went on our cruise last fall. I must’ve thought we were going to die or something. (She was perfectly ok while we were gone, btw.) 😉
Curious to know the brand of waterproof bag?
I love this post! One of my favorite topics. I just came back from almost 3 weeks in Europe, cris-crossing cities that had hard rain, humidity, blazing sun… There were a LOT of learnings, including:
– bring half your face care essentials
– should have brought my hanging toiletry bag by bagallini (see through pockets and rolls into itself
– pack your bag and take 5 more things out
– try and stick with the 3 shoes rule: shoes on you to the airport, plus 2 more in your suitcase
– if you’re a shopper, pack so that you can make room for purchases
– pack a travel umbrella
– I didn’t need a wool cocoon coat, my tuxedo blazer, my LBD or sparky evening shoes
– never ever bringing more than 2 pairs of sunglasses
– bringing a little bottle of delicate laundry detergent for handwashing
– a Ziploc of Epsom salts to soak my feet after all the miles logged
– a foldable, camping-style bowl so I can soak said feet
– this is so obvious, but SANDALS or FLIP FLOPS! For whatever reason during packing I just said F it, and didn’t pack them. BIG mistake
The Traveling All-Stars (I ditto much of what everyone has already said: packable rain coat, earbuds, scarf, meds… I would add your jewelry just be in your carry-on at all times):
1. Tiek flats that pack in a pouch and come with a bigger bag so you can stash the current pair you’re wearing. Doubled as house slippers (expensive, but worth it)
2. It’s a toss-up: my Vans Hi-Tops or Teva “Foxy” ankle boots (make sure to bring all your arch and heel supports–your feet take a BEATING)
3. My Rebecca Minkoff backpack–wish it wasn’t sueded but it did the trick for all the daytime sightseeing and storing of stuff in the bag: stomach aids, sunglasses, wallet. http://www.rebeccaminkoff.com/medium-julian-backpack-black?mkwid=s&pcrid=48905742352&pmt=&pkw=&pdv=c&gclid=COir05bn5M0CFRSUfgoddjwKzQ
4. Cuyana travel wallet (LOVED this!)
5. Eye mask and ear plug set! (Used it on the plane and for all the street noise outside of our airbnbs)
BONUS: My 16-year-old zipped Longchamp to act as my carry-on for my checked carry-on. PLUS: Uniqlo AIR-ism undies (quick to dry for when we did laundry) and their 3-pack of ankle socks in a quick dry material and a coin purse for all those heavy Euro coins!
Bon Voyage everyone!