5 Must-Have Carry-On Items For Your Next Flight

Vacations are a blast, but sometimes getting to your destination can be a little on the stressful side. Taking a 15-hour overseas flight in a cramped coach seat can put a damper on your getaway before it really even gets started. Here are a few things you can throw in your carry-on bag to make the journey just a bit more tolerable.

Travel Pillow

Travel Pillows are nothing new, but we suggest picking up one that’s more at home in a hiker’s backpack. We’re talking about an inflatable pillow (as opposed to one of those foam-bead-stuffed neck donuts). An inflatable pillow will allow you to adjust the “firmness” to whatever works for you, and when deflated they weigh next to nothing and take up very little room in your bag.

Eye Mask

If you find yourself catching multiple connecting flights and crossing multiple time-zones, you may not feel like adhering to whatever sleep schedule the flight crew deems appropriate. A good eye mask will allow you catch some Zzzzs in the pitch black whenever you want. You’ll especially appreciate having one when your seatmate decides to get in some reading at 2 AM.

Noise Cancelling Headphones

Planes are full of crying children, loud talkers, and even louder engines. A pair of noise-canceling headphones can make all of that go away. There are tons of brands on the market, and they vary greatly in price. Do some research and determine the features and budget that works for you.


It’s no secret that airplanes are self-contained germ factories. The last thing you want to happen is to have picked up a nasty bug on the journey to your vacation destination, resulting in your being laid up in the hotel room for most of your trip. Improve your odds of a healthy trip by throwing some sanitary wipes in your carry-on bag before you leave. Then use them. Seriously–wipe down EVERYTHING.

Old Fashioned, Actual, Yes-You’ll-Need-A-Bookmark, Books

An e-reading device is definitely a modern convenience, and by all means, throw the newest Kindle in your bag. But you should also throw an old-fashioned paperback or magazine in, too. You won’t have to worry about those pesky, “electronics are not allowed” take-offs and landings, and you never have to worry about your paperback running low on batteries.