What to Pack in the Perfect Carry-On

by  Anne Roderique-Jones | Mar 21, 2013
Packing / humonia/iStock

I admit that I'm pretty particular when it comes to packing for a trip. I have my trusty roller bag that's perfectly packed with my trip essentials. (I never check luggage – even for month-long trips.) And, I have my carry-on. This is where I keep the necessities for the most comfortable flight possible. Here's what goes under my seat:

Reading material
I bring print magazines and books on the flight. Sure, they're bulky, but I hate being the sucker staring off into space when we're asked to turn off all electronics. I like to pay it forward and leave old reading material for the next passenger.

My laptop should serve as a means for work, though sadly it's mostly used to catch up on past episodes of Breaking Bad. Not only does it help pass the time on long flights, but on a recent 11-hour trip from Honolulu to New York, my noise-canceling headphones plus DVD combo cancelled out the crying baby behind me. Hooray for technology.

Foldable down throw
I have the body temperature of a reptile, so I'm always freezing on an airplane. A pashmina won't cut it, so I carry a down throw. This may sounds like a space-waster, but these puffy covers roll into a tiny ball. Bonus: They're ultra-warm and double as a pillow in a pinch.

Packing my own snacks helps to fight the bloat (and hunger) that often occurs while traveling. My favorites are a combo of fiber, fruit, and fat (and nothing that needs refrigeration). I love LUNA Fiber bars, along with raw almonds and a banana.

Blow-up head pillow and eye mask
There are plenty of head pillows available, but I prefer the blow-up variety for space-saving and comfort reasons. You can blow in as much (or as little) air as you neck prefers and it's easy to store away in your carry-on after use. A silk eye mask is a luxe addition that's the perfect mix of comfort and diva.

Travel-sized face products
Flying takes a toll on my skin and I try to tackle the dryness with products specifically designed to combat the effects of altitude. The Air Repair Kit has five products that'll keep your skin looking great from takeoff to landing. I'm also a fan of bringing my travel-sized toothbrush and paste for an in-flight brushing.

What do you bring in your carry-on?

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