Travelling abroad: Preparing for the unexpected

Wish you were here...

Wish you were here...

Scott and I are both planners, but sometimes we overlook packing some of the smallest, yet vital necessities.

In Italy the mosquitoes turned Scott's legs into Swiss cheese, the insect repellent we borrowed on the eleventh hour was in reality hours too late. One visit to a hospital and several vials of blood drawn determined poor Scott had an infection from all the bites. If only we had packed a bottle of bug spray – did I mention we didn't have screens on the windows (minor detail)?

Before leaving for Singapore I remembered to pack my razor and never thought to grab my shaving cream. Ten Singaporean dollars later I was good to go, but the expensive, albeit unnecessary, purchase still stings.

Sun blisters, you can get those (I did). Unfortunately, I applied my sunscreen with a light hand on our first day in Kauai – my pasty winter skin was well and truly shocked and went into overdrive. A bottle of aloe from the Hyatt's sundry shop, a tube of hydrocortisone cream and a day spent indoors helped calm things down.

So, where am I going with this? You can't plan for the unexpected, especially when new surroundings can sometimes be unkind to us and even put a damper on our adventures. For these "oh, crap I forgot the thing-a-ma-bob" moments or times when you don't feel like packing your whole entire bathroom, pick up travel size toiletries – perhaps, even, purchase a couple of products that’ll push you out of your comfort zone.

Here are the places I hit up to get most of my travel essentials:

  • Sephora – I always buy brands I’ve never tried before
  • Priceline in Australia or Target in the US – for the basics (shampoo, lotion, wipes, etc.)
  • MiniBarCo – It’s the sort of site you’ll hit back up for seconds and thirds and they’re currently having a month-long sale. Simply enter EOFY14 when you’re ready to checkout!

Bonus: leftover products often make their way into my gym bag, which oftentimes bring back memories from the amazing places I’ve visited.

Good things really do come in small packages and TSA will never be compelled to snatch them away from you!

Where do you go for your must-have travel essentials?

Got any travel oh nos?