Travel Tips

Jet-setting soon? Use these stylist’s packing tips

Written for MyCentralJersey.com on 5/23/17

Summer is almost here, which means the much-coveted time for beach getaways, family vacations and exotic retreats has arrived. However, before you hop on that plane, you need to fly over one final roadblock — packing.

For those of us with a penchant for overpacking, overplanning and overshopping, packing can be a real pain — especially with airline luggage fees continuing to skyrocket. Nevertheless, with some thoughtful preparation, you can open your suitcase upon arrival and actually be happy with what you’ve packed.

Tiffany Pinero, fashion and brand stylist based in Scotch Plains, is known throughout the tristate area for her personal wardrobe styling, personal shopping and ability to help those getting ready to embark on a trip pack their bags with her Pack Light Pack Right service, which stemmed from her own experience as an overpacker.

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Don’t Forget Me!

So now that, even though I hate to admit it, I’m pretty settled back home in New Jersey, I guess I should start blogging about something other than how much I wish I was in Italy…

I’ve seen a lot of pretty extensive packing lists that are supposed to “help” us on our journeys across the pond, but in reality, I’m not going to forget to bring socks and who’s who to tell me how many pairs of underwear I need to bring?! Which is why I am putting together this short packing list that will hopefully help you out no matter who you are or where you’re going. DON’T FORGET THESE THINGS!

1. Guidebook and map. Can you buy a guidebook and a map in basically any place that you are going? Yes, yes you can. Will it be a quality guidebook? Yes, it probably will. Will it be cheap? No, no it will not. Which is why I’m telling you now that you should probably order your guidebook online (I like Amazon.com) because you’ll get it for like five bucks versus like twenty and you’ll get your pick of the litter. You can read some reviews, sample the pages, the works. Personally, Frommer’s are usually a solid pick. Also, if 2013 is $20 cheapest and 2012 is $5, just friggin get 2012. How much do you really think Florence-or anywhere else-has really changed in the past year.

2. Ear plugs and eye mask. When traveling, sometimes you don’t know where you’ll be staying, what it will be like, (or who you will be sleeping with). It’s always wise to pack an eye mask for those window-facing beds and ear plugs for those baby-ridden planes. And you also never know who of your supposed “best friends” snores. Seriously you’ll be glad you did.

3. Travel pillow. And I don’t mean one of those stupid neck pillows- what if you have an extra seat and you wanna lay on your side? What if you’re in a hostel and the bed feels like your best friend’s futon? Save yourself (another) $20 and steal the surprisingly soft plane pillow.

4. Refillable water bottle. I absolutely LOVE my Water Bobble, a plastic water bottle with a built-in filter you change every two months (the 34.5 ounce is a good choice). These bottles will save you money and possibly your life on one of the many unbearably hot summer travel days. With these, you can fill up your water from any sink and feel safe knowing you’re not going to contract some rare disease. You can get these from any department store really and they go for like $20 but are worth it. I know Brita makes them too but they kind of have a weird taste to them.

5. Flip flops. Your shoes break. The shower is nasty. Somebody finds a pool with an unlocked gate. The possibilities are endless for why you need a grimy pair of flip flops.

6. Hand sanitizer, lotion, and a chapstick. These are all tiny things that fit into your purse but come in handy when you get sunburned unexpectedly (whoops fell asleep on the beach again) or the airport is making you feel especially nasty.

7. A book. Even though I hate buying books (because I know I’m only going to read them once and that’s what the library is for) having them while traveling tight is not a bad idea because you never know how long it’s gonna take to stand in that line or how boring the tour is gonna be. It’s always kinda nice to leave your book behind for the next curious traveler that comes your way. Plus this way, you have less stuff coming home than you did leaving! Now how cool is that!

8. EXTRA Converter/ Charger. No, NOT one. Seriously just don’t. Especially when abroad, these babies burn out like it’s nobody’s business and then you are up the creek without a paddle. Just bring an extra they go for like $5 on eBay! SERIOUSLY HOW CHEAP ARE YOU 

I wanted to get to ten but this is all I got for now. CIAO!