Must Have Travel Essentials

Must Have Travel Essentials

The road is calling, and I must go… If you had asked me a few years back if I liked to travel, I would have said no way. But something happened to me last year. I visited my daughter in California ( a part of the country I had never been to before), and now I yearn to travel – to see new places, meet new people, experience new things, eat new food, and just live my life to the fullest. This year 2023, is the year of adventure for me. In fact, that is my word for the year. Can you believe I have had this blog, Adventures of Frugal Mom, for over ten years, and this is the first time I was led to choose adventure as my word? It is funny how it just never felt right until now. So with adventure being my word, I thought I should gear up for all the adventures ahead with some travel essentials. ( Don’t worry I promise my word of the year post will be coming soon. )

First Aid Kit

There are so many things that include in what I call my first aid kit. First, before I even pack, I evaluate whether I am driving or flying because if I am driving, then this girl has to have her young living stress away roll on to keep me calm and my crazy under-wrapped in heavy traffic. I also pack peppermint oil because it is very helpful for migraines.

Along with the essentials, I have my trusty meds for migraines as well as my all-natural pain relief cream, my Walton Wood Farm Bunny Fluff Hand Rescue, some hand sanitizer as well as a pack of baby wipes, and of course, some disposable masks. One can never be too careful when one suffers from chronic bronchitis.

I also try some bandaids and some Neosporin on hand, just in case.

Mercadito Moncara

My Bags from Mercadito Moncara

There is a cute little shop, Mercadito Moncara, that I found in Pasadena that is family-run, and they import handmade items from Mexico. Anyone that knows me knows Mexico is very close to my heart. I actually found this shop by accident on my trip to California last year. I was searching to find handmade woven bags from Mexico to see if I could find some that were cheaper than the almost $200 that a boutique here in North Carolina was selling, and I ran across the store. Maddie had never heard of them, so we discovered the store together.

I will have to say that their customer service is the best. I got the smaller of the two bags on my trip, and when I found that they were getting bigger bags, I messaged them and asked them if they would hold one for me so Maddie could pick it up, and guess what they did. Maddie bought it to me when she came to visit at Christmas. I can’t wait to go back and visit this cute little shop. So regardless of what trip I go on, one of these bags is going with me. They are definitely a must have travel essential.

Packing Cubes

Y’all, I have been sleeping on these. After my trip to California last year, I thought to myself that there has to be a better way to pack. And there are packing cubes.

My Save the Girls Bag

I love this bag from Save the Girls the moment I received it. Not only does it contain RIFD blocking, but it has enough pockets for just the essentials. I also love that I can fit my cell phone and my keys and not feel overloaded. I just wish I had this bag before I went to California last year because the bag I had just wasn’t working.

handbag holder

And with that comes my Ivy Alexander handbag holder. I love that it comes with a cute little bag so that it doesn’t get lost in any purse I carry and that I can use it whenever we stop to eat.

Manta Sleep Mask Travel Essential

My Manta Sleep Mask

The Manta Sleep Mask is a must-have, especially if I am traveling by plane. I wish I had taken it on my red-eye flight back from California last summer because it so would have helped with my migraine. I also heard that it is a must have travel essential for those who have long eyelashes.

Kayleigh May

Hair Accessories

I always try to travel with several different kinds of hair bows/ hair ties. I have scrunchies from Kayleigh May that I use when I go to see at night to keep my curls at bay. I love how they are made from silk, so these curls don’t get tangled and gnarled.

hair bow

And then there are a few more, like these hair ties from Maya J. Jewelry. I love that they can be a bracelet or hair ties. So I am never without.

comfortable shoes

Comfortable Shoes

One of the must have travel essentials is comfortable shoes. I always pack a pair of flats and, of course, my handy dandy Nikes if I am doing a lot of walking because the dogs will be barking if I don’t. ( I also throw in a pair or two of thick ankle socks to help maximize the for my feet.


I always pack a few interchangeable outfits and at least one dress and a least one jacket. Because you never know where your adventures might lead you, and the weather can change on a dime. Basically, it is my favorite pair of jeans or two, a few tops, undies, a sweater, some shorts depending on the time of year, a dress, and the jacket is all you need.

Pro tip: always pack one change of clothes in a carry-on if traveling by plane

Also, I need to include in this suitcase items my personal items like deodorant, hair products, razors…..


This is a must-have for me because I found if I go a long period of time without eating some protein, I get a major headache. Plus, you might not be able to find someplace open to grab some food. Ya girl found this out the hard way on a road trip with hubby.

So now I always pack a variety of snacks, some water, a few caffeinated drinks, and some liquid IV. And, of course, a girl has to have some chocolate, so some Chocolate Covered Jujubes get thrown in there as well.

Office on the Go

Blogging Items

Of course, I never travel without the items I need to cover trips. I always try to carry an extra charge for my phone (portable and wall charger), my DSLR camera, and my laptop, and I make sure I also have a tote bag that I use just for blogging so I can put all the information from the places I visit in one place. Add in a pen and paper, and I have an office on the go.

So these are just some of my must have travel essentials. They may vary depending on the time of year, the length of the trip, and the mode of transportation, but I will guarantee at least half of these items travel with me every time I take an adventure.

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