Written by: Maralee Striker, Owner and Principal Travel Consultant Magic Mouse/Off to Anyland Travel
No matter your destination, all travel adventures have one thing in common: packing.
We at Magic Mouse/Off to Anyland Travel have our favorite travel items… things we NEVER leave home without… things you may not even know you need!
1. The perfect bag for your trip
We all have our favorites, but there are options that can provide style, as well as functionality. Consider your must-have-with-you-all-the-time items and choose wisely. Be mindful of your destination. Are we sending you on a girls' getaway to the beach? Then consider the small, cute and functional crossbody made by Coach. Or, are you headed on a family vacation to a theme park, beach or the mountains? Baggallini makes smaller crossovers, medium messenger bags or large-ish backpacks. Whether I’m headed to a theme park or on a hike in the mountains, I usually carry their messenger bag. It is durable, dries quickly as it is water resistant, and has great compartments. I can fit a can of Clorox wipes, my kiddo’s meds, a bottle of water and sunscreen – along with my sunglasses and personal items. For backpack lovers - Eddie Bauer has some Sling Packs, Daypacks and Backpacks (a lot more pleasing to the eye than the kiddo’s last year’s school backpack) with the right space to store everything you need for your adventure. These are also gender neutral, so both parents can take turns carrying.
2. Let’s talk hair
Some destinations have awesome products provided for you in the bathroom to help control your locks… and, some don’t. Bring a small amount of your favorite shampoo and/or/ESPECIALLY conditioner. Another thing to consider, there are places we may send you that have higher humidity than here in Kansas City. Yes, that’s right, worse than today. This can wreak havoc on even the cutest pixie cut. Take something to get your hair out of your face and control it as it inevitably flies and frizzes in different directions. Bring your ponytail holders. Our favorite Disney accessory: headband ears. Yes, the ear hats are cute. Trust us, the time you or your kid actually wears them is completely short-lived. They are hot.
3. Your feet
Whether we send you to pound the pavement checking out DC, to explore the theme parks in Orlando/California or to climb the trails in the Rockies – a good pair of shoes makes all the difference. You may laugh, but sistas – blistas, are no laughing matter and can put a real damper on your trip. Brutal honesty – nothing ruins a vacation like sore feet. How much and where will you be walking? Are your feet likely to get wet? The Magic Mouse/Off to Anyland Team definitely has preferences. Keens are our absolute favorites. Keens take water well, have great arch support, are well-ventilated and come in all sorts of colors and designs. Sometimes, athletic shoes are the best option. The team loves Asics!!! Lots of designs, colors and extreme comfort while being lightweight for long periods of being on your feet or walking. The socks are just as important as the shoes. Our favorite, trendy socks are Thorlo Running Socks, Experia. They are AWESOME!!!
4. Electronics – don’t leave home without them
This is simple…
· Remember a phone, completely downloaded with all of your important apps for whatever travel adventure we may send you on (apps for the airline, theme park, resort, etc.) Also, remember the charger to the phone. AND, a travel accessory tip: bring a portable phone charger. We think it is so important, Magic Mouse/Off to Anyland agents often supply our clients a portable phone charger at the pre-travel meeting. No more fighting for the plug in the airport!
· Before leaving home, download books or movies to your phone or tablet. Inevitably, there will be time when you need something to do. Bring your entertainment on a device you are already taking.
· A REAL camera. For a few years after the advent of the camera phone, I was convinced this was the absolute best.thing.ever. And it is for social media, etc. Anyway, I came home from a recent vacation and tried to make books and prints. The pictures are just not the same as those taken with my nice, handheld, traditional Canon. Take a real camera to capture those special, candid, once-in-a-lifetime moments. Turn the camera around and get the shot of the moment when your daughter comes around the corner at Magic Kingdom and sees the castle for the first time or your little adventurer sees Buzz Lightyear or a pirate ship! Capture that moment when bravery overcomes fear and your family goes zipping through the rainforest in Costa Rica. Or, get that shot of your kids surrounded by fish in the brilliant, blue ocean. I love my Olympus underwater camera! Good for the rain forest or the middle of the ocean!
5. After much debate, the top two miscellaneous items you may not think about packing…
Pump Soap. Sooooo, let’s get real – resort bar soap is gross. Jimmy Fallon saying “ewww” gross. It is an institution, but is it gross. After one use, it is yucky - sitting in extra water from the person who picked it up and sat it down. Go get a cheap bottle of pump soap and throw it in your checked bag (in a sealed bag in case it has issues with pressure, don’t want liquid soap all over your suitcase). If you buy right and don’t want to take it home, just leave it in the room. It likely costs less than $2.00.
Ziploc Space Bag Suitcase Travel Bags. These useful bags come in various sizes. They are the perfect suitcase organizers. You can have a PJ's bag, a swimsuit bag, a bag for each kid, a bra & undies bag (so the TSA person poking through your bag isn’t touching your personal items with the same gloves he went through the last guy’s suitcase – back to Jimmy Fallon “Ew”). Organized packing is happy packing. It will make the mornings and nights in the resort room so much easier!
Book a trip from now through September by either initiating contact through the form here or emailing us at firstname.lastname@example.org and mentioning sheKC. Your name will go into a drawing to win a Baggallini Travel Sling filled with some of our favorite travel items: A Minnie Ear Headband, Thorlo Socks, a Portable Phone Charger, Suitcase Organizing Bags and More!
Where do you want to go? We will make amazing!
PS – We did not receive compensation to endorse any of these items. These are simply products the Magic Mouse/Off to Anyland Team loves that make travel easier for those we send on wonderful adventures.