13 must-haves that the TPG team can’t travel without

When it comes to a long flight or airport delay, having your favorite travel items on hand is key.

The perfect sleep mask, comfortable clothing, or noise-cancelling headphones can go a long way when it comes to getting a good night’s sleep during jet lag or feeling comfortable on a long flight.

Whether you are traveling alone, with co-workers, family or friends, there are a number of products that can enhance your travel experience from start to finish.

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Each year, TPG team members travel thousands of miles to destinations around the world. These are some of the best elements that make travel easier, more relaxing and enjoyable.

BYLT Low Cut T-Shirt

BYLT Basics / Facebook

$28.99 to exchange

The Points Guy himself, Brian Kelly, is all about comfort when he travels. From his Nike kicks to his stretchy travel pants, staying cool and comfortable on a long ride makes all the difference.

His favorite T-shirts are BYLT Drop-Cut Signature Tees, thanks to the brand’s moisture-wicking fabric, which has a luxuriously soft feel and a loose-fitting drape. The shirts come in different colors and sizes too.

For all the women who want comfortable travel clothing and other clothing, BYLT also makes women’s clothing.

Bose QC45 Wireless Noise Canceling Headphones

Amazon

$329 on Amazon

Sleep like a baby on a plane (or drown out a crying baby) with this TPG favorite, the Bose QC45.

Ben Smithson, senior writer at TPG, swears by these headphones, explaining that they are the best headphones he’s ever owned and he wouldn’t dream of traveling without them.

“The battery is long lasting and easy to plug in with great sound quality,” he said. “The best part is that you can turn on the noise canceling feature to get rid of any noises going on around you.”

The plush ear cushions and padded headband are comfortable on long trips. Advanced audio technology, including adjustable EQ, allows you to adjust the sound according to your preference.

You can also toggle these headphones between silent mode and aware mode, depending on your setup and needs.

Paravel foldable bag

Paravel / Facebook

$70 at Amazon

Having the right bag that fits all your important travel items can make or break a trip. Sustainable travelers will love the Paravel foldable bag, which is made from 22 recycled plastic water bottles. Melanie Lieberman, TPG’s Managing Editor of Global Features, loves the bag to be compact, versatile, and eco-friendly.

It also has a number of handy features, such as a trolley sleeve that fits over luggage handles and an interior zip pocket – and you can also add a monogram.

However, the coolest feature of the bag is that it folds into a small e-book-sized bag.

iPhone 14 Pro

An apple

$1,099 at Best Buy

Featuring iOS 16 and all-new colors, the iPhone 14 Pro is a favorite of TPG reporter Zach Greve, who can’t get enough of the 48MP camera. The 14 Pro phone uses the A16 Bionic chip that enhances energy efficiency.

This model has a ceramic shield designed for durability, a low-display backlit always-viewable lock screen, 2X brighter screen in the sun and longer battery life. It’s perfect for long trips, adventure trips or busy tourism days.

Snoozeshade for Play Pack

snow

$89 at Amazon

You’ll never have to watch Netflix or sip a glass of wine while hiding in your hotel room bathroom again, thanks to Snoozeshade’s Travel Bed Cover, which safely blocks 94% of the light in your hotel room.

Whenever I travel with my baby boy (now a small one), I always stuff him in my luggage and put him on top of cribs in hotel rooms and rental houses. This means I can keep the lights on while my baby sleeps peacefully in the dark at the same time.

It is a lifesaver for families traveling. The shade is air permeable, washable and usable from the newborn stage as long as your baby sleeps in a crib.

Bestselling Supergoop SPF Starter Kit

Image courtesy of SUPERGOOP

$25 at Supergoop

The three packs come with Unseen Sunscreen – Invisible & Lightweight SPF 40 – Play Everyday Lotion made with whole sunflower extract with SPF 50 and Glowscreen SPF 40, which can be used as a dewy, bright and standalone sunscreen. Or a makeup primer.

TPG’s Senior Vice President of Content, Jamie Page, always has this sunscreen/skin care in her bag, precisely because “all products are reef safe and provide powerful sun protection.”

The set is ideal for travel as each item meets 100ml or less of portable fluid requirements. Not sold on these particular products? The brand offers a wide range of travel-sized products — eye cream, lip glosses, different types of sunscreens and more.

percussion capsule

Rhythm

$14 per beat

Becca Mannheimer, TPG’s director of marketing and communications, is tired of buying travel-size items. She wanted to take smaller portions of her regular produce in a sustainable way when traveling.

I discovered the rhythm: refillable capsule containers made from recycled plastic. Each capsule is magnetic and customizable, allowing you to select the appropriate color and size, and even customize the label with icons or text to indicate your product.

Shoppers can build their own system of capsules that hold magnetically for easy access to a travel bag or toiletry bag.

ProMaster All-in-One Worldwide AC Adapter

Promaster

$19.95 at Amazon

Keeping your tech items charged while traveling doesn’t have to be complicated. Just choose the Promaster travel adapter, which can be used in more than 150 countries.

Ryan Smith, TPG credit card writer, considers this the best travel adapter I’ve ever used. You can plug in two different US plugs and then flip the correct prongs to plug them into an outlet in whatever country you are in.

slip pillow cover

sliding / facebook

$89 at Slip

Sometimes traveling can be stressful—especially on the skin. Rachel Malone Olson, vice president of marketing for TPG, found that airplane air, bed linen, utilities, and towels can be drying and you won’t travel without a sliding pillow case.

“It’s my last defense in maintaining some semblance of moisture and hydration,” she said.

Dermatologist-recommended pillowcases aim to increase skin hydration and radiance, helping to maintain fine lines, dryness and wrinkles. It’s available in basic white, or consider a bolder shade of a rainbow of available colors.

Modern eye mask Belle de Nuit

TRENDY BELLE DE NUIT

$46 at Amazon

Sleeping on planes is often out of reach, but TPG UK’s director of social media, Maren Gimenes, can sleep on any flight as long as she has an eye mask on her Branch.

The mask’s renewable silk protects the delicate eye area while completely blocking out light so you can sleep anywhere while traveling. Hypoallergenic silk also helps rejuvenate the skin around the eyes to prevent wrinkles and under-eye circles.

Cotopaxi Alba travel package

COTOPAXI / Facebook

$200+ at Cotopaxi

Comfortable and durable backpack is key for travelers. Bill Fink, senior writer at TPG, is a fan of Cotopaxi’s travel packages for his off-road trips. He found that the different compartments made it easy to find things quickly. He also loves that the packs feature a sturdy, padded laptop sleeve.

These colorful packs are a fun alternative to typical black luggage and bags. The mesh interior compartments look like a backpack as well as the all-in-one packing cubes. Plus, the four reinforced grab handles make it easy to carry in different ways if you don’t want to put it on your back.

Instant phone lens and case and case mount

Moment / Facebook

Lens, $99, Case, $39.99 + and Mount, $4.99 at Moment

We’ve already discussed how the new iPhone 14 Pro camera has really stepped things up. If you want to take things into the world of photography while traveling, consider iPhone photography accessories from Moment.

White Smith, senior photo editor at TPG, swears by Moment’s Phone Lens, as it allows him to have more variety within his photos. While you may have to upgrade the case and mount as you change phones, the lens should last forever, providing more sharpness, clarity, and range for your travel shots.

Addalock mobile door lock

ADDALOCK / AMAZON

$17.95 at Amazon

Safety is very important, especially for anyone traveling alone. TPG Content Operations Editor Madison Blancaflor is always traveling with this portable door lock.

“It provides an extra layer of protection and peace of mind at night, especially when I’m staying at an Airbnb where I have no idea who all have the keys to accessing the rental,” she said.

This safety gadget is easy to slip into your travel bag and simple to clip to the door, whether you’re staying in a luxury hotel, budget rental accommodation, or anywhere in between.

Feature by Bill Harkins/The Points Guy

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