The Minimalist Travel Carry-On Essentials

Ever feel like you are over-packed yet underprepared? #minimalism #travel

Have you ever waited for quite a while to make a big purchase, telling yourself you’d wait it out and if you realllllly want it, you’ll buy it, only to lose it within two weeks? If that sentence was shorter, it could be the title of the story of my life. Traveling so happens to magnify my lack of organization and after years of tearfully calling hostels to “please just check one more time sniffle” for something I shouldn’t even packed anyways, Ive gotten my shit together. Tons of people understandably dread flying. But, just like everything in life, there is a trick. I’ve been a little smitten with attempting to turn into a minimalist, especially travel. Preparation is the difference between a great trip and a shittay trip and when it comes to a carry-on, minimalism is key.


Should be enough said, but I’ll say it again bring ya damn headphones! Introverts will delight in the realization that putting them on, whether you are jamming out or not, will usually prevent strangers from chatting with you. Do yourself a favor and actually download music- you won’t be able to stream music even if you purchase inflight wi-fi!

Baby Wipes

Not for what you’re thinking 😉. After a few hours of flying, locking yourself in the bathroom and cleansing your face (and body) feels like a gift from the heavens. It’s tempting to purchase a pack of scented facial wipes, but trust me, don’t do it! I’ve fallen into the facial wipes trap before. After 12+ hours traveling, your face reacts unkindly to the extras in facial wipes, making your skin either sticky or Stick with the classic for a refreshing mini-cleaning.

A Small Notebook

write down your passport number, any confirmation numbers, and your flight number. It wouldn’t hurt to secretly enter your credit card info as well, by secretly, I mean do not put the sequence on the same page. This has saved my arse a hundred times while nursing a dead phone.

Pack of tissues

OYE. This is my life advice to girls- always keep tissues on you, especially when traveling or at a festival. Plenty of places do not provide toilet paper in public restrooms (if there are public restrooms) and Porta Potties are quite unreliable- especially at festivals!

Soft Shawl

The perfect pillow, blanket, and jacket combo. Sticking with a neutral tone, such as a grey or a brown will allow for versatility. I prefer thick cotton or wool blends to make for a perfectly plush pillow. Take some time and invest in one you find comfy, you two will become great friends.

Charger + Adapter

Especially if you happen to be the type of person that wings the important tasks like finding accommodation. Hell is arriving in a city, with a dead phone, and no place to go. Don’t let it happen to you.

A Med Pouch

If you haven’t gotten sick on a plane yet, I pray you avoid it at all costs. Feeling ill with no chance of relief is hell on earth. In my med pack, I generally keep Emergen-C, Advil (caffeine) and Melatonin. And most importantly… hand sanitizer! Especially if you just rolled your eyes. Trust me, I’m all for the “building of immune systems” with letting germs germ around. Flying is another animal. Ebola. SARS. Plenty of other shit I’m sure. If that doesn’t bother you, please think of errybody else. Don’t be so… Shellfish 🦀


Ideally, every traveler would have an iPad that holds all their favorite books, songs, and movies. However, if you haven’t jumped on the Apple train yet, no fear! Simply grab two novellas (they will fit easier and you have a variety) or one novel and one magazine. Gabriel Garcia Marquez is a master of the novella- “Of Love and Other Demons” is one of my favorite books!

  • I did quite well the last time I went on a trip 🙂 My friends actually laughed at me that I was going to Thailand with just one small suitcase (considering the fact that Thailand is very very cheap), but at least I restrained myself from spending money :)))

    BTW: do you remember me Lauren??? I’m Patty from Travelekspert 🙂 I was absent since October, but fortunately I am back :)))

    • Lauren @

      YES! I was wondering where you went! So glad you are back in action <3 love your blog hehe.

      Thailand is great for that because you can always buy cheap clothes when you arrive 🙂

      • Thanks Lauren!!! I was working like crazy so I could go visit Thailand :))) But now I am back again with new stories, and won’t disappear again hihih!

  • Great post! That’s pretty much all I have in my carry-on bag, plus some water and snacks!

    • Lauren @

      Always snacks! Can’t help myself, always have to grab one salty thing and one chocolate thing. I should throw that in there… Thanks 🙂