No matter where you're headed, a few travel accessories can make your trip a lot more enjoyable. Here are 10 items to take with you on your next adventure:
1) Portable charger
When it's not a huge distraction, technology can enhance your travel experience by providing maps, translations, and other helpful information at your fingertips. But all that gadgetry can quickly eat up your phone's battery life. A portable charger will keep your devices juiced up when there's no outlet in sight. And its compact construction allows you to save more room in your baggage, making it one of the best travel accessories available.
2) Noise-cancelling headphones
Dear Screaming Baby (one seat over), bring it on! Whether you're trying to get some work done on the plane, train, or cruise, or simply want to relax and tune out your surroundings, noise-canceling headphones are a game-changer. They can help you focus and block out unwanted noise, so you can travel in peace.
3) Compression socks
If you're going to be spending a lot of time on your feet, compression socks can help ward off any pesky leg swelling. These snug travel accessories are also great for long plane rides, as they apply pressure to your lower legs and help improve blood circulation. They're safe to use, but you can always check with your doctor if you have any questions or concerns.
Packing a versatile scarf for your getaway is a smart move. Not only can it keep you warm on chilly days, but it can also be used as a shawl or headscarf when needed. Plus, with all the different prints and fabrics available these days, you can easily find one that will complement your travel gear and wardrobe.
5) Sling belt
Also called a "backpack waist belt" or a "sling pack," a sling belt is a great option for carrying your travel essentials without weighing you down. At Gravel, we make one that can be slung across your body or fastened to your waist. Heck, it can even hug the tray table in front of you on the plane. This way, you can easily grab your in-flight essentials without having to bend over or get up from your seat. Our sling belt is also available as a bundle alongside our 42L Carry-On Travel Backpack and 11L Day Pack — a complete travel system all in one place.
6) Stain remover pen
Have you spotted a fresh stain on your shirt? Perhaps a bit of mayo from your sandwich or a dab of red wine from the bar at the airport lounge? Few travel accessories are as handy as a stain remover pen, like Tide to Go. While it's no substitute for dry cleaning, it can help you get rid of some stains quickly and easily. Simply apply the solution to the stained area, rub the tip of the pen across it, and blot it dry with a paper towel or napkin.
7) Travel blanket
Blankets designed for travel are usually lighter and more compact than regular ones, making them great for saving space in your luggage. Our cozy Layover Blanket, for example, features insulation that mimics down feathers (to keep you nice and warm). It also packs down to the size of a grapefruit and doubles as a neck pillow. But if that's not enough, here are 10 more reasons why we love it.
8) Zipper pouch
An afterthought for many, yet a blessing in disguise: a small zippered pouch or coin purse doesn't quite get the credit it deserves as one of the best travel accessories. After all, it's not the most glamorous thing to pack, though it's certainly one of the smallest. If you're traveling to a place where coins are king (hint: euro trip), a zip pouch can help you avoid unnecessary bulk in your pockets. Plus, it's great for storing lip balm, wrapped candy, and other small items.
9) Wrinkle-release spray
If your t-shirts tend to look like unfolded origami after a day of travel, a wrinkle-release spray might just be your new best friend. Of the travel accessories on this list, this one can keep your clothes looking their smoothest, so you don't have to don't show up to the tea house in Kyoto or the trattoria in Rome looking like a rumpled mess. (Unless that's the look you're going for.)
10) Travel utensils set
Last but not least, a travel utensil set is one of the best travel accessories to have on hand, especially if you'll be eating on the go or microwaving at the hotel room. Now, you might be thinking, "TSA won't let me get away with a utensil set!" But don't worry. A few options are TSA-compliant, including a bamboo set that comes with a reusable straw.
Did we miss any travel accessories? Which ones are your favorite? Leave a comment below. And for more travel tips, check out the rest of our blog.