Packing

Pretty much as soon as you start reading or talking about travel, you come upon packing tips.

I’ve read some tips I learned by living and was happy to see are on the web I once also read some that I wish I could tear off of the web as they were clearly written by a non-traveler who clearly just happened to be assigned an article. I’ve found some that although written with a tone of authority, were not my own experience in my 20s and definitely don’t apply to more mature women (or to men).

The posts tagged as “packing” here are either my own personal experience or those of people that I know know how to travel. As with all of my writing, I write only what I know to be true.


Take this towel when you travel long-term or short-term

When you travel, always bring a towel. (But the right towel — and I have one to recommend!)

“You got a towel with you?” were some of the first words said to Arthur Dent as he started his adventures through the universe. And so they went, towel coming in handy. Today, I ask you the same, and offer you the same advice.

Matador’s new Nano Dry Shower Towel ended my search for a great travel towel.

This is the story of finding the right towel and why it’s so good.


Less tech is more travel experience

This blog is called Tales of Travel and Tech, but I’d like to remind everyone that traveling doesn’t mean taking all your tech with you on your vacation.

Want to maximize your travel experience? Then skip the tech!
Most of the time, that is. Not all of the time.
There’s plenty a bit of tech can do to expand your travel, but not if it blocks you from experiences!


Best cable ties for travel and tech

Traveling or not, how do you stash your cords, cables, and wired earpieces? Here’s my favorite solution of all time — the Cord Taco by This Is Ground.

I have four great ones to recommend.
For many cables, Cord Tacos by This is Ground.
For larger cables such as one to plug in your laptop, Gear Ties by NiteIze
For larger items and hanging items, Pixi by Blue Lounge or perhaps Bongo Ties.

Meet the Cord Taco, a durable, remains-beautiful, premium leather cable wrap that keeps your cables untangled better than anything else I have ever tried, and I have tried pretty much all cable organizers. This is on of the original Cord Tacos. I have been using it since January 2014, almost 3.5 years. This size is approximately 3.25 inches in diameter. And meet Gear Ties, a new and very welcome addition to my travels.

Untied and tied cables

Best beach or picnic blanket for travel – Matador Pocket Blanket

As I have said several times, I have happily been using my sarong as a beach blanket, picnic blanket, or as a sheet at times. But recently, I realized that a larger length of ripstop nylon would be handy for the outdoors and not impact me greatly. I planned to get some next time I’m downtown LA. But then I met the Matador folks at the International Travel Goods Show — and they showed me their Pocket Blanket 2.0. I actually had no intention of considering the Pocket Blanket when I came to see Matador for their NanoDry Shower Towel. But then they pulled the corner out and handed it to me. When I first touched this pocket blanket, I just smiled. I couldn’t believe how thin it was. In a life of travel, that’s a major joy. The Matador Pocket Blanket 2.0 is brilliant. It packs tiny and light (98 […]


Going away? A pre-travel security checklist for your home

This is for those of you who do leave your home empty as you travel.

SimpliSafe, a new style, low-cost alarm system and company, created this pre-vacation checklist to give you — or remind you of — ways to protect your home while you’re out traveling. These are very basic but wise. Maybe it will get you started building your own list of ways to take care of and protect your home while you travel.


Mascara & Eyeliner for travel 1

You might laugh at this now but during your travels, you well might curse the size of your gigantic space-wasting mascara and you’ll wish you had that extra space. So you might as well read this and start considering your mascara now. Even if you won’t be traveling for a year.


Hanger tricks for travel

When staying someplace for a few days or more, it can be really nice to get some of your clothes out of your backpack or wheelie bag and let them breathe.

These two tips may help.


Should you refrigerate your eggs?

As I have traveled outside of the USA, I noticed that eggs are not sold in the refrigerator section of any market and that people didn’t tend to put eggs into their fridge when the get them home.

Have you noticed this and wondered why? Or wondered if you have to refrigerate your eggs? Here’s the answer.


Pack Vicks VapoRub or Tiger Balm 1

Either Vicks VapoRub or Tiger Balm should be in your bag as you travel, especially when you travel long-term. Either will likely turn out to be one of the best values for its weight and size.

Both of these similar ointments are helpful for a wide range of medical conditions.

Both are available in my counties.


More packing tips: space-saving travel substitutes 3

It can be difficult to leave luxuries behind. Fortunately, in some cases, you don’t have to. There are often alternates to those nice things.

I’ve already written about how many things a sarong can do.

Here are some more of my substitutes. My goal is to take up very little space and weight.

Don’t worry: I am not going to tell you to cut a neck and arm holes in a plastic garbage bag to make a rain coat.


Redondo Beach get-away packing

I’m back to living in my adopted hometown for a while, so you might not call that traveling. But LA is a major travel destination — and I am traveling within it this weekend! From Friday – Tuesday, I’ll be a guest of a friend in Redondo Beach. I get to show her all the tricks of the iPhone, see friends, and enjoy the beach air and all that Redondo Beach and the Redondo Beach Marina and Pier have to offer.

Wondering how I packed?


Best deodorant for travel – Crystal 1

The Crystal Body Deodorant Stick is the perfect deodorant to take traveling! It is small, pure, long-lasting and doesn’t contain anything that can clog or otherwise damage your body.

Images of my Crystal Body Deodorant Stick over time shows this is a top choice for deodorant for travel.


Giving up heavy shoes

I’ve traveled so many years, for years at a time, that you’d think I knew the best packing. I think I do — but we all make mistakes…

These shoes were not a good travel item.

While a nice sandal, the Columbia gave me no ankle support, so they were not a good choice. They were also very heavy. Heavy in my backpack — and heavy to lift on my foot with every step so walking in them made me tired.