Top 10 Packing List for Traveling off the Beaten Path

Posted October 16, 2015 by Christina Bryant

As you know, we spend beaucoup de temps on the road, traveling around the world to source the most beautiful pieces for your home (and ours). Whether we’re heading to Guatemala or Ghana, there’s several things we don’t leave home without. And because you love to travel to our sourcing spots, too, we’re sharing our packing tips for an enjoyable ride on those unpaved roads. Beyond the obvious – i.e. passport (and visas when necessary), our prescription of Cipro just in case, and compression socks for the long flight – we don’t leave home without:

  1. The world’s best world adaptor. Works everywhere, packs small, lasts forever. Nailed it again, Tumi. No matter how far we venture, we’re never truly off the grid. We need to stay plugged in to get work done and to let mom know we’re safe. If we’re stranded on an island, please God let there be an adaptor to charge our tech. And a data plan! Don’t want to get hit with that big bill because we need, need, need, data roaming for 5 seconds to look up one thing (or, let’s be honest, to post a sweet pic geo located in the Serengeti).
  2. A flashlight. Just in case our phone is dead. And, hey, when we need a flashlight, that’s generally because there’s no electricity which means there’s a good chance our phone might also be dead. Maybe we’re walking home at night on an unlit path or maybe we need backup for a power outage – whatever the scenario, this gadget consistently comes in handy. We are always packing a torch. We’re upgrading to this chic, small, bronze number, but an REI headlamp will also do the trick and has gotten us this far just fine (note: on one hand the headlamp option can be nice for the handsfree element if you’re really maneuvering in the dark; on the other hand, it’s not our best look).
  3. Our travel diary. It’s taken a few trips around the world and a few dozen times wondering, “what was that great little restaurant?!” for us to realize that we need to WRITE IT DOWN. We’re making memories! Just need to make sure we actually remember them. Plus, then we can share our fabulous finds and, for once, be helpful when a friend asks for our recommendations. Some of us embrace our inner Bridget Jones, others just make a bullet list of places we went and whether worth revisiting. Either will do the trick.
  4. A pouch to protect against the pirates. We don’t spend much time sweating theft on the high seas. That said, it’s good to know where in the world our valuables are, to keep them near us on the plane, and to lock them (with our passport) in our hotel safe upon arrival. This pretty pocket-sized Stubbs case humors our current skull crush (read: obsession) and it’s fun to pack a little juxtaposition in the mix – Peru by way of Palm Beach.
  5. A bag that ages well. All of our goods need to go somewhere (and preferably pass carryon luggage restrictions). Our investment piece is this classic bag that is beautifully built to hold up with all the handling, plus it will wear well over time. We’re counting on it to go the distance with us and be put through some trials along the way. We need a bag that is up to the challenge and ideally(!) looking good at the finish line. When this Gurkha gets vintage, it’s essentially our silver fox travel companion. Ah, amour! Other travelers must be on our same page because there’s a premium for the older models.
  6. Hand sanitizer that doesn’t make us squirm. Speaking of wear and tear, we’re not afraid to roll up our sleeves and get our manicured hands dirty. But in Mexico or Mali we’re not always nearby a sink to properly wash up. And we’re not wanting to cuddle up to germs on the road (or really anywhere). Getting sick away from home is generally the pits. Most hand sanitizers remind us of the doctor’s office, but this one reminds us of the spa. Obvious preference for the spa.
  7. The hat-of-the-moment. To avoid the doctor, we’re also avoiding the sun. Most of our destinations are close to the equator and that means DANGER ZONE. We’re wearing SPF daily, home or away, but we take it a step further on the road where we tend to spend more time outside. Add a physical block. Sometimes we go for the Panama Hat, other times for the oversized sun hat. Right now, the season is pushing us towards something a little more Indiana Jones-esque. Whatever fashion we pack, we just make sure there’s a brim.
  8. Sporty and sophisticated sunnies. We need one pair that will take us both to a rural site visit, and also to a city meal. As you might have picked up, we’re fans of this San Francisco-based brand. Westward\\Leaning makes sleek shades that have a give-back component, too.  What’s more, this modern wayfarer comes with a tiny travel case that protects the lenses without taking up too much room. Clutch.
  9. The perfect transitional throw. Of course, it’s no newsflash that we love our own products. So, fine, we’re biased and we know it. That doesn’t change the need for an airplane blanket that is actually warm and also for an easy evening wearable layer. We are packing our Baby Alpaca Throw because it’s as soft and cozy as cashmere, rolls up tiny, works to snuggle on the plane, and also doubles as a wrap. Space is precious, so we’re not toting sweaters here, people. This baby is our road warrior MVP.
  10. A sweet soundtrack. Life is just better with a tune to tap our feet. That is never more true than when we’re spending a bit too much time in transport. These Frends are our friends for enjoying a fun and fashionable beat. Gunmetal and rose gold – yes, please. Now, who has the perfect playlist to share for our next adventure?

Wheels up!

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