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In-Flight | What to Pack?

In-Flight | What to Pack?

Welcome to #TravelTuesday Remix! In anticipation of the holiday travel season, The Trend Tribe wants to remind our friends what to pack in your carry-on bag to keep you company in-flight this Christmas season!

Wishing our fellow travelers a very happy and safe journey,

– Katy

When you think about packing for a trip isn’t it always the clothing, accessories, cosmetics and shoes you think of first? Clearly these are the vital things, particularly for us women. However I’ve found it is equally as important to make sure you have your carry-on equipped with necessities for the duration of the flight whether it is four, eight, ten or twenty plus hours. There is nothing worse than being uncomfortable and bored to tears on a flight with ten hours to go. I’ve been there, done that and have vowed not to experience it again. When you are accustomed to double-digit flying times you start to figure out what those must-haves are for you. Here’s a peek at mine.

What to Pack?

My top 10 essentials for a long flight:

  • Gossip magazines. Gasp, shock, horror! Yes I’m guilty of purchasing US Weekly, OK, In Touch, People or anything similar as I’m dashing through the airport. These are perfect for mindless entertainment reading about the latest happenings in the celebrity world. Go ahead and judge me, it won’t stop me! A few of these juicy reads add up to at least an hour of passing time on the flight.

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  • Mindfood magazine. This is my absolute favorite. I discovered it while living in Sydney. It’s the perfect combination of stimulating content covering things like environment, culture, food, women’s topics, travel, health, beauty and more. I like the variety. Most importantly, reading Mindfood after my gossip magazines reminds me I actually do have a brain.
  • Good book. Whatever I’m reading at the time comes along with me or I choose from one of the many I’ve downloaded on my iPad. Sometimes it’s a mind-stimulating read and other times it’s just a good story to lose myself in. Mood dictates all.
  • Entertaining flicks. Some airlines will have a good selection of movies, TV shows and documentaries but it doesn’t hurt to download some of your own just in case. This can be an ideal time to enjoy that movie or show nobody else in your house wants to watch with you. On my last couple of flights to the US I watched Jane Eyre, A Christmas Story, caught up on “The Good Wife” episodes and watched the first season of “The Big C” all on my iPad.
  • Grooving tunes. I think we can all agree it’s much better to listen to your music than the person snoring to your right or the adorable but screaming baby two seats forward. Good headphones are a must also. Noise cancelling is a preferred choice.
  • viewerCosmetic bag. Mine is packed to the brim with moisturizing lotions and potions, face wash, toothbrush, toothpaste, make-up remover and more. Some of my favorites: Vitamin C face spray from The Body Shop, L’Occitane hand lotion and ASAP eye cream. I’ve been known to slap on a collagen face mask at the end of the flight to feel refreshed. Yes, this hot look may attract some stares but trust me it’s worth it.
  • Vitamins and pills. All legal of course! Anyone who knows me knows I am a big vitamin and supplement gal. They travel with me wherever I go along with painkillers and something to help me sleep if needed. Sometimes I’m surprised I haven’t been stopped through security for the big bag of vitamins stuffed in my handbag.
  • Cozy socks. Most international airlines provide you with socks or slippers these days but I like to double up with my own cozy socks and their slippers over them. I don’t know about anyone else but my feetsies are always freezing on long flights. This also keeps your own socks clean while you are doing your stretches around the cabin or running to the ladies room to apply your moisturizer.
  • Earplugs. These are probably the most important things for me to bring on any flight when I need to sleep. Of all the things stuffed in my hand luggage it would be most disastrous if I forgot my awesome earplugs. I recommend Mack’s earplugs. They are by far the best and much better than the ones they give you on the plane. Good earplugs paired with an eye mask means optimal sleep.
  • My iPad. I don’t leave home without it! It is so much more convenient than lugging out your laptop on the plane. You can do so much on these great gadgets. Read, write, watch movies, listen to music, play games, the list goes on.

What are your top 10 flight essentials? What are your absolute favorites you can’t board the flight without? I’d love to hear them!

Bon Voyage!

– Katy

Director of Luxury Travel, Katy Paterson, is living an ex-pat life in Singapore by way of Sydney. Spending the rest of 2012 globetrotting, Katy will be checking-in from her favorite spots in San Francisco, Boston, NYC, LA, Dubai and Abu Dhabi. Twitter: @Chamorro_Chica

 Disclosure: On occasion, contributors of The Trend Tribe receive products and services gratis or at discounted rates. This practice does not influence the contributor’s point of view or the outcome of the review. All descriptions are factual and accurately reflect the reviewers experience. The opinions are their own. Photo credits: Katy Paterson
Katy (19 Posts)

Katy is our Director of Luxury Travel and resident ex-patriot living abroad in Singapore. Having just walked down the aisle in Bali, and back from her honeymoon in the Maldives, she documents her super cool world travels and personal journeys at Chamorro Chica. @Chamorro_Chica


  1. I really need to get my hands on this MINDFOOD! It looks awesome.

    • Yes you should try! I love it! I still have it sent to me in Singapore and it’s worth the extra money to me. I was just reading it on the flight here actually.

  2. Love this! That mag looks great. What about snacks and drinks? And, quick question on your cosmetic bag…do you buy specific oz sizes for regulations or do you put them into special containers? I’m such a plane virgin these days with the kids we usually drive, so am clueless when it comes to flying anymore. 🙂

    • Thanks! Snacks and drinks would definitely be something to add and also one of those neck pillow things. I forced myself to keep it to 10. 🙂 For the cosmetics/lotions, I do both. If I can find the same product 100ml or smaller I grab those. If not then I put it in special containers. I have even used little plastic snack bags to put a little bit of my clear gel face mask in so I can apply during the flight.

  3. Great advice! I’m definitely going to grab myself a copy of mindfood! Hadn’t heard of it. Thanks for the tips 🙂

  4. My number one essential is a large pashmina – I use the nasty airline blanket to cover my lower body only, then wear the nice clean smelling pashmina around my neck and face.

    • A large pashmina is a great idea! Thanks! Cozy and smells good, much better than an airline blanket for sure!

  5. My current list, from the last time I flew (it was like an hour an a half)
    – iPad
    – Earphones (I just use buds)
    – hand sanitizer
    – lip balm
    – scarf that can be used a wrap
    sunglasses so I can wear them on a plane and avoid eye contact with the weirdo across the aisle… also, to feel like a celebrity
    -clean underwear (just in case)
    -change of shirt (just in case)
    diaper (because I forgot to take it out of the bag)

    • Love your list Megan! I think my favorite is the clean underwear – brilliant! You never know, right? 🙂 I burst out laughing at your sunglasses comment too! So true! Hand sanitizer and lip balm are always in my cosmetic bag also.

  6. Your list is missing my number one: Xanax!

    Great list though – I’m dying to check out MindFood. Is it a foreign magazine? Can it be found in the U.S.?

    I bought my husband a pair of Bose noise canceling headphone for his business travels and he swears by them.

    Two more of my essentials: disinfecting wipes to wipe down the arms in the plane seat and Airborne. I always come home sick after flying!

    • Love the Xanax addition and good call on the disinfecting wipes!

      As of now I believe Mindfood is just in AU/NZ. I’m actually checking with them though to see if it’s circulating outside that region at all as I’m curious myself. Stay tuned…

    • Hi Wendy! Mindfood confirmed they are only in AU and NZ for now. I guess their website would be the next best thing to the actual magazine.

  7. Perfect List. one stop shop article for a long haul preparation.

    Thank you.