Most of us have experienced some of the frustrations related to travel. I know I have!
Not too long ago, I went to Florida for my grad school graduation and vacation. I miscalculated how long it would take me to get from Daytona Beach back to the airport in Orlando. I drove to the airport at what felt like warp speed, returned my car in record time, and ran through the airport to my gate like a Kenyan marathoner, only to learn that my flight was delayed (and delayed…and delayed). The old “hurry up and wait.” Ugh. Serenity now!
Other travel stressors may include dressing for travel, choosing the right luggage, packing effectively, and getting through the airport security checkpoint quickly and without incident. And the list goes on.
In order to make my future trips (and yours) less stressful, I’ve been researching travel accessories that can help alleviate stress and even improve my travel experiences. I found 5 really awesome ones that I want to share with you.
Now, on to the list….
1. THE SHELFPACK
(by Genius Suitcase)
This unique take on the traditional suitcase started as a crowdfunding project that has surpassed its fundraising goal. If you don’t mind checking your bag (and possibly paying the bag check fee), this bag offers a lot of possibilities. The Shelfpack suitcase is like having your own portable closet or dresser with you when you travel.
- The Shelfpack is just 14″ deep x 18″ wide x 28″ high (including wheels) and expands to 48″ when assembled, providing 6,365 cubic inches of storage space. With all this space, there’s no need to roll your clothes to make them fit.
- It features 4 shelves, 3 front pockets, a retractable handle, and easy-glide ball bearing wheels.
- It’s really easy to assemble.
- You can pack as if you are putting your clothes away in your hotel dresser.
- The $350 price tag is pretty high. Someone who travels a lot for business may find the cost is warranted. However, most avid travelers may prefer to stick to their carry-ons.
- Since it’s not a carry-on, the bag will have to be checked, which may result in a bag check fee for most airlines.
Watch the video to see exactly how it works.
2. COMMAND TSA-FRIENDLY MESSENGER BAG
This cool bag is perfect for travel or commuting, complete with lots of little pockets and compartments for your water bottle, electronics, and especially…your laptop.
- The bag is TSA-friendly. The laptop compartment is located within the front flap of the bag, allowing you to unfold the bag and put it through the security scanner without having to take your laptop out.
- The bag also looks very sturdy, yet has a sophisticated design.
- Its available in a TSA-friendly backpack as well.
- The price tag is a little high: most bags are over $100 (but if it lives up to its claims and allows you to go through airport security faster and simpler, it may be worth the few extra bucks).
Check out the video demonstration to learn about all of the bag’s features.
3. THE BAUBAX TRAVEL JACKET
- With its man pockets and compartments, this jacket performs 15 different travel-related functions…
- Want to lean your head back and relax? No need to pay the flight attendant for a travel pillow. An inflatable neck pillow (that inflates and deflates in just 2 seconds) is built right into the jacket.
- Is your seat mate using the overhead light when you want to take a nap? No problem! The BauBax Travel Jacket features a built-in eye mask.
- Need a place to stow your tablet? No problem! There’s a pocket for that, too.
- And those are just 3 of the 15 cool features this jacket offers!
- The jacket will be available for both men and women in November 2015 (just in time for the holidays!).
- It will come in four different styles: (1) a windbreaker, (2) a bomber jacket, (3) a wrinkle-free blazer (great for business travel), and (4) a sweatshirt. Something for everyone!
Pretty amazing, right?!
Travel Magazine and I aren’t the only ones impressed. As of this writing, the BauBax Kickstarter campaign has raised $4,703,765; well over their crowdfunding goal of just $20,000!
- The jacket costs over $100.
With only 1 con and so many great things going for it, I anticipate seeing many travelers wearing BauBax travel jackets in the very near future! Check out the video to learn more.
4. PICKPOCKET-PROOF CLOTHING
(by Clothing Arts)
I first heard about these clothes and saw a demonstration of them at the DC Travel & Adventure Show. The inventor, an avid traveler, had a run-in with a pickpocket in Xian, China. As a result of this incident, he worked diligently for 2 years to develop functional, practical and fashionable travel wear including pants, shorts, and shirts.
- All of Clothing Arts’ clothing is functional, practical and fashionable.
- Clothing Arts offers Pickpocket-Proof pants, shorts, and shirts.
- All of the clothing is made of durable fabrics that are wrinkle, rain and stain resistant.
- The clothes are a little pricey (the lowest priced item on the website is $84.95). However, if wearing these clothes when you travel helps thwart pickpocket attempts and avoid the stress of lost money, ID and credit cards, they may be worth the price. It’s a personal decision.
5. “MAKE MY DAY” GUIDEBOOKS
(by Lonely Planet)
Tired of traveling the same old way? Me too! That’s why I thought this “Make My Day” guidebook idea was really unique and interesting. Created by Piers Picker, the managing director of publishing for Lonely Planet, the guides are divided into three sections, much like children’s flipbooks. Travelers can flip through the guides to mix and match sights, experiences and activities for each morning, afternoon, and evening of their trip. The concept was to design the guides so travelers with a limited amount of time could make the most of their trip.
- There are more than 2,000 possible full day combinations in each guide, allowing each traveler to create his/her own unique travel experience.
- Phone apps are also available for download on either the iTunes app store or the Google Play store and can be used separately from the guides (but many people often use them in tandem with the books instead.)
- To help make things even easier, each guide includes estimated travel times between destinations as well as food and beverage recommendations near each sight. Other tips are included as well.
- To date, there are 12 titles/cities available: Amsterdam; Berlin; Hong Kong; Rome; Sydney; Washington, DC; London; New York City; Paris; Barcelona; Tokyo; and San Francisco. Prices for the books are very affordable: each guide is currently priced at either $9.99 or $15.99.
- There are a limited number of titles available (right now).
If you either buy or already have any of these travel accessories, please share your feedback with me (and our fellow travelers). Love to hear your thoughts, opinions, and reviews
Get a list of DC's FREE Museums
With more FREE museums than probably any major city in the U.S., Washington, DC, offers locals and visitors alike a budget-friendly way to enjoy art, history, and culture.
Get a list of DC's free museums (complete with their address and links to their websites) so you can plan your 1st - or next - visit to Washington, DC!