Thank you to the members who contacted me with their travel tips – I have included your comments in this article!
I read a travel brochure recently that recommended travelling light! The brochure smugly said “The best advice for packing is: “If in doubt, leave it out.” – Ha ha ha! My philosophy for packing is in direct contradiction to this: “If in doubt – better take it!”
When you’re travelling on business you need to be confident that you can dress appropriately for all occasions: meetings, lunches, dinners and even black tie functions!
- Lay out all your clothes before you pack them and check each outfit is complete. I once had to attend a cocktail party in runners!
- Check the climate and pack sensibly. The Internet or your travel agent can give you these details.
- In Asia everything is over air conditioned, so include a jacket for inside.
- The cold in Europe or North America can be a real shock to Aussies. Take a decent overcoat, gloves and scarf.
- Take your favourite clothes – outfits you can put on, even with jet lag, and know they look good!
I always pack too much, but I’m always prepared if the weather isn’t average or I have a disaster. An extra shirt or outfit really doesn’t take up that much extra space for the peace of mind it delivers.
Remember to leave room in your bags – just in case you get time for some shopping!
If you pack your toilet bag in your suitcase, make sure all the lids are firmly fastened. Avoid pump action bottles – they usually manage to do that in your suitcase and foreign customs officials can take some convincing about strange substances!
Buy little plastic jars from the chemist and transfer small quantities of your moisturiser, cosmetics etc into them – it’s so much easier than large bottles. Alternatively, collect sample size containers of your favourite products from your pharmacy or make-up counters in department stores.
Tips for a more comfortable flight
- If you’re flying for more than six hours, it’s likely your feet will swell – that means wearing shoes that will still fit fat feet. Walking around Heathrow Airport in your socks may not be the type of first impression you want to create.
- Tight clothes, particularly jeans or pants, are not recommended for long flights – you’ll regret it after a couple of hours!
- When you get on board, set your watch to the destination time and try to rest at their times – not when the cabin crew want you to! Light sleeping tablets (Normison or Tamarzipan) are great for ensuring a few hours of sleep without the groggy side effects. Talk to your doctor about these.
- Use an airline pillow or rolled up towel in the small of your back to give you extra support. Inflatable neck pillows can save you from the cricked neck syndrome.
- Dehydration from the pressurised cabin air can cause headaches and jet lag. Drink lots of water. Take your own plastic bottle and get the crew to refill it for you. I always carry a small bottle of moisturiser for my face and hands – the cabin air dries them too!
- It’s important to move around regularly – flex your leg muscles, wiggle your toes, go for a walk. Movement is vital for avoiding blood clots and can reduce the amount of swelling.
- Avoid too much alcohol as it accelerates dehydration. Your headache (hangover) feels 10 times worse in an aircraft.
- Don’t eat too much – most people eat because they’re bored. Why not order special light meals like vegetarian or low fat? An added bonus is you get your meal first and they’re individually prepared!