Saturday, June 30, 2018

Packing Light With Carry-On Luggage Only

Flying is a hassle as it is without having to deal with lost, damaged or stolen luggage. That's why I only travel with a carry-on. Even when I'm on an almost two-month trip, I have no need for a voluminous piece of luggage. How do I manage this?

1- I choose clothing that in neutral or earth tones, often black, tan or grey -- so there's a lot of mix and matching -- with tees, tanks and a scarf providing bright accent colors. I'm particularly fond of Ex Offcio clothing.

2- Almost all the clothes I pack do not wrinkle and are made of wickable fabrics, which means they don't absorb moisture easily so you stay dry as you race about town, but they also dry relatively quickly when you wash them. (I hand wash my underwear, pants, shorts, dresses and shirts and they dry in no time.)

3- I wear my bulkiest, heaviest clothing on the plane, including a Merino wool sweater, insulated vest -- it doubles as a pillow or lumbar support, long-sleeve shirt, a jacket (if it's necessary at my destination) and leggings. (I never ever travel with jeans. They're heavy, bulky and when wet, take forever to dry.)

4- No matter how many weeks I'm traveling, I never pack more than a total of three dresses, one or two skirts, one pair of leggings, one pair of pants that convert to shorts, two tee shirts, two long sleeve shirts, one rain jacket, a hoody, three pairs of Merino wool socks, and three pairs of Merino wool underwear. (I love the clothing items Smartwool sells.) I choose items that are made of thin fabrics (such as Merino wool) and roll small.

5- I pack a sarong that serves multi functions, as a beach blanket, cover-up, or shawl when I need to visit a church or other religious sight.

6- I only travel with two pairs of shoes: I wear the heaviest on the plane and then I pack a pair of Mary Janes, such as these by Astral Designs.

7- Instead of a typical hat or cap, I pack a multi-purpose buff, such as those made by Buff USA. Again, it's all about multi-purpose uses. A buff can be used as a bandana, hat, balaclava, neck gator, headband, or hair band.

8- All my toiletries are travel-size, and that includes shampoo, conditioner, deodorant, and toothpaste.

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Sunday, June 24, 2018

Necessities on the Plane

I recently traveled on a 15+ hour flight and was surprised with the number of passengers who were quite uncomfortable because they neglected to pack an array of items. This is my list of in-flight necessities for health and comfort:

1. Large pashmina that functions as a blanket and, when rolled up, as a lumbar support

2. Lightweight merino wool buff that also serves several functions: eye mask, neck warmer, cap.

3. Altoids - peppermint

4. Lightweight cotton tote -- I use it as a pillow case, stuffing my down vest or jacket, or my merino wool sweater into it

5. Antacid - chewable tablets like Rolaids or Tums

6. Aleve

7. Chewable Bonine - meclizine hydrochloride - for motion sickness

8. Limoncello lip butter

9. Charmin flushable wipes

10. Ricola natural herb throat lozenges

11. Eye mask

12. Ear Peace - ear plugs -

13. Hand sanitizer

14. travel-size toothpaste, toothbrush, dental floss, Stim-U Dents

15. Dark chocolate

16. Unsalted shelled pistachios

17. Low-fat string cheese

18. Whole wheat crackers

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Sunday, June 10, 2018

Sneak Peek: My New Line of Handbags

This is a sneak peak of my new handbag line. Not only will they be sold at a lower price point compared with my first micro travel bag, but they will be manufactured in a soft canvas fabric that initially will come in two different colors/patterns: camo pattern and solid burgundy. (Other colors/patterns will follow, down the line.) The bag, of course, will have multiple zippered pockets -- none visible to the casual observe -- and will have a minimalist look. Unlike my first bag, each pocket will accommodate an array of large-sized items, including sunglasses, large iPhones or Androids,  even small tubes of sunscreen. The atta-BAG label (below) will appear on the front of each bag. I expect these bags to be on the market by early Fall.

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Saturday, June 9, 2018

Luxe Sri Lankan Hotels That Are Socially Responsible

Staying at the innovative Wild Coast Tented Lodge property in Sri Lanka, you have the opportunity to be enwrapped with nature -- it's adjacent to Yala National Park -- while also indulging in ultra contemporary architecture and design. These two organic, bamboo-clad structures house the restaurant, bar and den. This is one of three Sri Lanka-based properties owned by Resplendent Ceylon, a company that revolves around doing the right thing, whether it's protecting the environment or giving back to the local community. (The other two properties are Ceylon Tea Trails and Cape Weligama. Check out my recent article for Forbes where I interviewed the Managing Director Resplendent Ceylon.

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