A lot of people idealize the jetsetter gal’s life. She always looks fabulous on the gram, she’s got a bazillion followers, and I swear you’re never sure exactly what continent she’s on. But as with all things, the grass is always greener. Jetsetting is a lot of work, and that girl who looks like she’s on perpetual vacation is actually perpetually on a plane. I’m partial to it, obviously, but I also know that it takes a lot to make it work. You have to know exactly what you need, and pack accordingly. Here’s a list of travel essentials for the jetsetter gal in all of us.
A Parisian Backpack
Let it be known that jetsetters are not tourists. They never were, and they never will be. That’s the whole point of traveling, isn’t it? To go unnoticed and experience the place for what it really is, like a local. Even in the world’s most exclusive locations, no one should ever be able to tell you’re not from there. One thing does give it away. The bag says it all. But rest assured, I got you. With a mini backpack you can fold up and slip into your pocket, you’ll fit right in—and be speaking the language before you know it!
A Fanny Pack
If you’re fashion-forward, you may want to upgrade your look with a fanny pack. More conservatively known as “belt bags,” fanny packs have been making the rounds at Fashion Week. If you can get with the trend, they are hands-down the most practical purses around. Always accessible to you, and never to pickpockets, fanny packs are the new go-to for fashionistas on the move.
Leading the charge with impressive designs and price tags, fancy brands like Balenciaga and Gucci have hopped on the fanny pack bandwagon. Sporty or posh, you may need to take a quiz online to determine which Spice Girl you’d be before you buy one.
A Collapsible Water Bottle
Anyone who flies a lot—you know who you are, you jetsetter you—knows how important it is to stay hydrated while traveling. But I’m the first person to write off reusable water bottles. They always explode in my bag. Or I’ll lose the cap and be stuck with an open container on a turbulent flight. Of course, plastic water bottles aren’t an option either, since they are singlehandedly destroying the oceans.
Are we stuck with the clunky, drippy metallic bottles that soak everything to the bone? Not anymore! With collapsible water bottles, you no longer have to live in fear of a wet passport. Made with silicon, they’re super lightweight and easy to stash in your tiny, trendy backpack.
Another challenge is finding shoes that are comfortable, not too heavy, and easy to wash. To be honest, I didn’t even know machine washable shoes were a thing. But they are. And I love them. They’ve changed my life. No more stinky feet or dirt on my shoes. With a wide selection of styles and colors, Rothy’s shoes are the best for travel I’ve found yet. They’re actually made from recycled plastic bottles, the very same I was lamenting earlier in this post. Wearing them makes me feel a little better about the world.
Layers are the name of the jetsetter game. Clunky items that only serve one purpose take up too much space. However, if it’s malleable or foldable, it’s probably on our list. Leggings are one of those perfect traveling items that deserves a spot on this list.
Whether you’re sneaking them on under a skirt for warmth, snuggling up in them on the plane, or wearing them to bed because your hotel room is frigid, you always and will always need great leggings. Look for a pair with pockets and a comfortable elastic band—too loose and they’ll fall right off, but too tight and you’ll never get comfortable.
In some countries (can you guess where?), I’ve seen people milling around in the evening in sunglasses. They are statement pieces, and you could risk looking virtually naked if you leave yours at home come dinnertime. Thick-rimmed or tortoise shell, cat-eye or heart-shaped, you’ll want to give the shades a think before purchasing. But don’t think too hard, as they’ll often get lost or broken on your travels.
I suggest buying a cheaper pair that you won’t miss too much if something unfortunate were to happen to them. Whatever you decide, don’t forget to pack a handy-dandy glasses repair kit with adorably mini screws.
As you know, traveling is an adventure full of the unexpected. Ideally, you come back with stories of a lifetime, even if it means letting go of some gorgeous shades on the way!