Posts Tagged ‘packing tips’

Electronic gadgets – To pack or not to pack?

Posted in Electronics, Travel on April 20th, 2021 by – 17 Comments

While electronic gadgets were created for convenience and entertainment, sometimes they can be frustrating at places like airport security checkpoints. This is an alert for our tech junkies with gadgets like laptops, laptop accessories, MP3 players, iPod, pager, cell phone, Kindle, video game consoles, video cameras, DVD players and much, much more.

I can completely understand the fun in listening to your favorite music, watching a movie filled with humor, or playing a thrilling game that makes time fly while on a plane. However, the TSA says Pay now, Play later. If we follow the TSA rules, we can have a fun enjoyable flight. All we need to do as travelers is pay attention to their rules especially for the electronic gadgets and it will make our security process smooth and neat.

Few quick gadget security tips:
Simplify…have only the electronic gadgets, which are crucial on your journey. This can quickly add up though between your laptop, phone, iPod, GPS and Kindle.  Besides the laptop and dvd player, many of your electronics can stay stored in your carry-on while passing through security – even your Kindle!  TSA prefers that you put most of your electronics in your carry-on as it makes it easier to screen the devices.  I once was pulled aside in security for an iPod docking station (last minute purchase).  I didn’t even think it was something that would be a concern…but it was!

Most corporate travelers have their laptops in their carry-on luggage. The best thing to do is to have laptops in checkpoint friendly bags. For more information on the styles, visit http://tinyurl.com/358hojk .  The seasoned business traveler has this process down to a science.  It really is important though for the average traveler to keep all the electronics organized.  Mini, convenient packing cubes are perfect for packing cords and small electronics.

Don’t be surprised if you are requested to switch off all your battery-powered devices. While packing your carry-ons, make sure the electronic gadgets are organized to make the screening process easier. If not, your bags have to undergo additional screening process, which would be more time consuming.

Every airport within U.S and international airports have similar regulations for electronic gadgets. If you are planning for a domestic or international travel, it is highly recommended to check the electronic regulations for the country.  You wouldn’t want your favorite gadget to end up in the hands of TSA in another country…never to be seen again!

What is the ONE gadget you can’t stand to travel without?  Have you ever had electronics confiscated?  Please share your gadget drama.

BottleWise is committed to manufacturing high-quality bags that make life easier for the discriminating culinary traveler and is founded by Amy Dias (adias@bottlewise.com).

Tips for winter air travel

Posted in Travel, Travel Tips, Uncategorized on April 19th, 2021 by – Be the first to comment

Here are some helpful tips to consider when traveling when a storm is brewing.

Consider re-booking. The airlines generally allow passengers to change tickets free of charge when a major storm threatens travel. You might be able to connect through another city unaffected by the weather system.

Sign up for airline alerts and check your flights frequently online before you head to the airport. A flight’s status often changes by the minute as the airline works to line up slots and crews and keep planes and runways clear of ice and snow during winter travel disruptions.

Make sure you have a cell phone and your charger in case you need to rebook a canceled flight. Get in line for assistance and try your airline by phone at the same time if you’re among hundreds of passengers jockeying for seats. If you can get online, try that, too.

Pack essentials in your carry-on. If you’re hoping to make your original flight, be sure to pack essentials such as prescriptions, glasses or contacts and other necessary toiletries or clothes in your carry-on. You and your checked luggage are likely to get separated if you end up stranded overnight.

Dress comfortably. With sleeping in an airport terminal in mind, pack and dress for warmth and comfort. Foam earplugs can be a saving grace.

Pack snacks. Airport entertainment and snacks can get expensive, and they’re harder to come by in the wee hours. Stow away an emergency book or magazine and some sustenance to keep you going.

Inquire at the gate about food vouchers and sleeping areas. While airlines aren’t required to provide accommodations for travel interrupted by severe weather, many airports have provided food and cots to travelers stranded in this season’s string of whopper storms.

Data found on CNN.

What Is Your Best Holiday Travel Tip?

Posted in Family Travel, Packing Tips, Travel, Travel Tips on April 18th, 2021 by – Be the first to comment

How do you manage all the details throughout the holiday and travel?  Share your best ideas.  Here are some helpful tips to get you through this busy month.

Managing the Gifts

Because you cannot bring wrapped presents on a plane (and they’d get wrinkled or torn anyway), I pack cloth bags to put gifts in, such as velvet bags from fabric stores or a fun purse I may find on sale. It’s easy to “wrap” the presents once I arrive, and the bag is a bonus gift. It also helps the environment a little by eliminating discarded wrapping paper.

Carrie Cihasky
St. Francis, Wisconsin

To travel light and save money when visiting my family in Germany for the holidays, I purchase gifts through the German branch of Amazon.com and have them sent to the home where we celebrate, thus saving international shipping charges.

Katharina Wilkins
Weston, Massachusetts

Traveling With Children

A few tips for traveling with young children on a long flight: (1) Check in early and request front-row seats. You’ll be less frazzled because Junior isn’t kicking the seat in front of him for 10 hours, and the nearby crew seat is needed only for takeoff and landing, so you can get some extra space. (2) Bring along little gifts: mini coloring books and crayons, to make your kids happy and relieve boredom; chewable candies to prevent earache and tears on landing; and a spare set of clothes for each child, plus a fresh T-shirt for yourself. (3) If you have a baby or a toddler, take your umbrella stroller with you on the plane. The crew will store it during the flight, and customs and luggage checks are much less stressful when your hands are free.

Emma Fashokun
Houston, Texas

When I traveled overseas with my 16-month-old daughter, I was inundated with equipment (car seat, stroller, diaper bag). To thank fellow travelers who helped me through the customs and immigration lines, I gave them gourmet chocolate bars―a great way to see smiles on your travels rather than scowls.
Holly Driggers
Austin, Texas

My husband and I make his-and-hers travel CDs with copies of our favorite holiday tunes. As we take turns playing them throughout the long road trip, it’s fun to see which songs the other has come up with.

Deanna Holt
Springfield, Illinois

For long drives, I bring holiday and thank-you cards, stamps, and my address book. During the drive, I write cards for those I am on my way to see. On the way home, I write thank-yous for gifts, dinners, or parties for the people we just left. That way, no one is forgotten and the details are fresh in my mind. Finally I stamp them, and they are in the car, ready to be taken to the post office.

Annesia Bixler
Dayton, Ohio

Getting Organized

Always take notes when making travel plans over the telephone: whom you spoke with, what was said (promises, rates, etc.). Should something go wrong, you will have the details in writing.

Lori Frank
Bethlehem, New Hampshire

I order fresh flowers or fruit to be delivered to the home I’m visiting on the day I arrive. It’s always a welcome hostess gift, and I don’t have to carry it.
Deb Fecher
Acton, Massachusetts

Packing Strategies

Pack your bags for your trip and then carry them around the block. It will inspire you to rethink what you packed and simplify.
Tracy Gillin
The Woodlands, Texas

When I travel, I keep my jewelry in a small fly-fishing box (with storage compartments) in my makeup bag. This keeps necklaces and earrings from getting tangled.
Shery Rogers
Grenada, Mississippi

I store a cosmetics bag with travel-size versions of everything I use every day in my suitcase. When I take a trip, I never have to worry about leaving the essentials behind.
Sandra Boemler
Atlanta, Georgia

When packing for a trip where I’ll be on the go a lot, I put together as many outfits as I need (including underwear and socks). I then place each outfit in a plastic grocery bag and put it in my suitcase. While on holiday, I take out a bag each morning and my outfit is ready to go―no fussing about what to wear or digging to the bottom of the bag to find something. At the end of the day, I turn the bag inside out and put the worn clothes in so I know which outfits are dirty.
Jessica Baldasaro
Stratford, Ontario

More Good Ideas

Be sure to get plenty of sleep during the holidays, especially in the days prior to traveling. It’s stressful packing up the family, battling the parking at the airport, and dealing with other travelers, and sleep is one way to keep your immune system healthy so you can thoroughly enjoy the holidays.
Heidi Heikkala
Everett, Washington

Traveling with toddlers is easier if you don’t have to rely on restaurants for three meals a day. When possible, book a room with a fridge, a microwave, and a coffeemaker, then stock the fridge with breakfast and lunch basics.
Jennifer Meacher
Almonte, Ontario

During hectic holiday travel, I make it a point to smile at my fellow travelers and help them with luggage and doors or dropped items. I also thank and extend a sincere “Happy Holidays” to the service workers who are away from their families and festivities while they help me get to where I want to be.
Susan van Allen
Orono, Maine

RealSimple readers share favorite tricks and strategies to make traveling easier.

Article by RealSimple

Should I Check My Bags or Ship Them?

Posted in Packing Tips, Travel, Travel Tips on April 17th, 2021 by – Be the first to comment

You probably assume that checking your luggage is the cheaper option, even though you’re stuck paying the airline about $25 for the first bag (each way) and $35 for the second, not to mention additional fees for heavy or large items. And sometimes it is. But not always, says Susan Foster, author of Smart Packing for Today’s Traveler (Smart Travel Press, $20, amazon.com). So before you jet off, it’s worth doing the math. If your baggage is unusually heavy or bulky, shipping may be a better deal—provided that you don’t send your Samsonite overnight or by two-day mail, says Jami Counter, a senior director of Seatguru.com, a travel-resource site. Case in point: UPS can ship a 75-pound box from New York City to Orlando, Florida, for $57. Checking an item that heavy would probably cost between $100 and $175—one way. Get quotes from the two options that you have for shipping: a standard delivery or courier service, such as FedEx or DHL, or a specialty luggage handler—particularly useful for bulky items, like skis—such as Sports Express (sportsexpress.com).

You should also consider shipping your baggage if you want to hit the ground running at your destination (which means skipping the luggage carousel), or if you want to be assured that those bags will be waiting for you when you arrive, says Peter Greenberg, a travel editor for CBS News. “Shipping is an especially good idea if you have a connecting flight, which increases the risk that your bags will be misplaced,” says Greenberg. And delivery services offer far more bells and whistles than air carriers, says Counter, such as superior insurance, better tracking, and, best of all, picking up your luggage at your home. No schlepping!

Article by Vera Gibbons, Real Simple

How to Pack Anything

Posted in Packing Liquids, Packing Tips, Travel, Travel Tips, Uncategorized on June 25th, 2012 by – Be the first to comment

Smart strategies for stowing your belongings, from accessories to sleepwear.

Accessories (Earrings, Necklaces, Scarves)

  • Keep necklaces protected and kink-free “by threading them through drinking straws, then putting the filled straws in toothbrush holders,” says Anne McAlpin, author of Pack It Up.
  • Store earrings in a day-of-the-week pill container, or cut out a small cardboard square and punch them through.
  • Put all the jewelry you intend to wear with a certain outfit in a sandwich bag and pin it to one of the clothing items.
  • Toss silk scarves near the top of your bag to prevent them from getting crushed.

Belts

  • For narrow belts: Wind them into coils and place each one in a zipper-sealed bag. Put every bag in a shoe.
  • For larger versions: Fit them around the edges of your bag. Their size and width make them less likely to snake about.

Blouses, Shirts, Tees

  • Layer tissue paper or plastic dry-cleaning bags between garments to keep them smooth. (Clothes wrinkle when they rub against one another.)
  • Put nice items on top to keep weight off them.
  • Shirts and blouses will lose their shape if they’re rolled up, but rolling works well for T-shirts, which should go near the bottom of the bag.

Books

  • Because of their weight, books tend to shift to the bottom of a suitcase, near the wheels. To prevent them from dragging other items down, start by placing them there.

Bras

  • To help preserve their shape, stuff rolled underwear and socks in the cups and seal in a plastic bag. Tuck into the corners of the suitcase.

Dresses

  • If a dress is long enough, you can place it directly on top of your pants and “interfold” it (see Pants). Otherwise, keep it near the top―above heavier shirts and sweaters―and fold it as few times as possible.
  • Either way, slip it into a dry-cleaning or garment bag to prevent it from wrinkling.

Jeans

  • Because these are heavy, position them near the wheels, well below any delicate clothing.
  • Fold them at the waist, then in half, lengthwise. Or roll them, folding at the waist, then rolling upward from the bottom, stopping just below the belt line (because of the zipper and the pockets at the top, rolling jeans all the way adds unnecessary volume).

Medicines

  • Put all daily medications, as well as things like contact lenses and glasses, in your hand luggage. Keep prescription drugs in the original containers; the Transportation Security Administration requires you to have proof that they’re yours.

Liquids

  • Traveling with your favorite bottle of vino.  Pack safely with the BottleWise Rollup.  Its compact and take up little space in your luggage.  Best of all it protects from breaking or leaking.
  • You never leave home without your favorite lotion or makeup.  Be sure to protect your liquids with a Pitotube cosmetic case.

Pants

  • Pack at the very bottom of the suitcase, just above the layer that fills the three indentations made by the suitcase pulley (that layer can consist of underwear, workout clothes, and pajamas).
  • For the first pair, place the waistband against a narrow end of the suitcase and drape the legs over the opposite edge. Position the next pair’s waistband so that it touches the opposite short end of the suitcase. Continue alternating with all the pants, then put all the other items on top. Fold the pant legs over the pile of clothing. This “interfolding,” as packing experts call it, helps prevent trouser creases.

Outerwear

  • In the winter, carry on an oversize jacket or parka and bulk up with long-sleeved T-shirts, sweaters, and scarves. Packing a light jacket and several layers is more space-efficient than packing a heavy coat.
  • Place your jacket toward the bottom of the bag. Store gloves in your coat pockets.

Sleepwear

  • Chances are your pajamas are among the things you’ll need first, so put a set in the top layer.
  • Keep the rest at the bottom, filling in the indentations caused by the suitcase handle.

Article by Sara Reistad-Long, Real Simple

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Traveling with KIDS?

Posted in 3-1-1 Liquids Bans, Family Travel, Packing Liquids, Travel on March 15th, 2012 by – 12 Comments

With spring break upon us and summer vacations quickly approaching, parents are typically more nervous than excited as they prepare for a vacation with their lively kids in tow. As many know, traveling with kids can be stressful. Fear not, we have a few tips to easily prepare parents to think ahead and get organized for their vacation.  This will transform your vacation with kids into an “expedition of amusement” rather than a bitter experience.

Here are a few things to have prepared when traveling with kids:

1) A detailed agenda and tour plan of the places you are planning to visit.
2) Copies of all schedules and time lines to various places to cover.
3) Kids should be actively involved in certain activities such as:

  • Putting together your trip ideas
  • Planning out activities to do on vacation
  • Making family rules during vacation
  • Having a small rewards and penalties if the rule was broken
  • Assigning roles based on age group such as food carrier, water carrier, photographer, etc.
  • Collecting memorable items like tickets, brochures, pictures, etc.

4) Family games, cards, checkers,art supplies.  Many games come in travel form which are perfect for planes, trains and cars.

5) Electronic devices for kids(big and small) like cameras, laptops, DVD players, hand held games.  Don’t forget extra batteries and chargers.  Taking a GPS along is perfect for exploring your new destination and finding points of interests.

6)  Have a supply of healthy snacks on hand.  Don’t count of the airlines for much more than a drink and a bag of pretzels.
7) Packing your baggage:

  • Limit check in luggage. Try to have carry on luggage and have backpacks for each kid and allow them to carry their own stuff. This will save you money and time.
  • Pack light clothes, sweaters, jackets, beach wears, shoes.  The more items each individual can wear, the easier it is to pack and keep items to a minimum.  Ideally your destination has laundry facilities to do a quick load if necessary.
  • Follow TSA’s 311 rules when are packing the liquids, gels, toothpaste, shampoo and other stuff for your kids. These are all important for your kids, but at the same time are restricted to carry on the planes in great volumes.

Packing the family’s items can sometimes be quite a challenge, one parent commented, “Nowadays opening my baggage after a trip can be full of surprises. I only wish that I don’t end up having a toothpaste stained shirt and shampoo covered pants.” A few great products that will come in handy when packing toiletries are Pitotubes and GoToobs. Often packing many of our daily necessities slips our mind and it is often a pain to carry full size products, make sure you have the TravelRite travel kit, which will make your life so much simpler. All of these items meet TSA 3-1-1 regulations so you can use them in your carry-on luggage.  Shop www.BottleWise.com.

Pitotubes Quart Size

Family vacations can be fun, enjoyable, memorable, cherishing and adventurous. Don’t let the detail of packing and planning ruin a family memory.  It  pays to plan ahead.  Have some planning trips that have worked for you and your family in the past, we would love to hear them!

BottleWise is committed to manufacturing high-quality bags that make life easier for the discriminating culinary traveler and is founded by Amy Dias (adias@bottlewise.com)

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Carry-Ons: Right vs. Wrong

Posted in 3-1-1 Liquids Bans, Packing Liquids, Travel, TSA Regulations on February 7th, 2012 by – Be the first to comment

Sue Ellen: average height, slender build, simply dressed, frazzled mind, and bloodshot eyes. She’s a smart woman, but let’s face it, she’s been working hard. It’s 11:30 PM and Sue Ellen has yet to pack for her trip to New York City tomorrow at 5:00 AM.

So what results? Sue Ellen grabs an energy shot and begins a whirl of activity. She dumps in three pairs of slacks, a skirt, four blouses, a scarf, three blazers, a jewelry box and her mismatched, dirtied, TSA approved zip-lock bag into an over sized duffel bag. On top of that she throws in her two pairs of bulky high-heeled shoes. Of course, her laptop fits in there….somewhere. Finally the miscellaneous items: a snack bar, her iPod, headphones, portfolios and a few pens. All in all, her bag is a dump yard.

Alright, so we already have a bad feeling about this scenario. Let’s fast-forward and see how it pans out. A tired, sleepy Sue Ellen arrives at the airport and hurries through check-in. She lugs her duffel bag through security but is stopped. Her bag has to go through another security check. The attendant dumps out all her bag’s contents. The zip-lock bag has opened and ruined her good slacks and shoes. Her nice blouses are wrinkled. The security attendant discards her zip-lock and allows her to proceed. Not only do the few minutes cause Sue Ellen to miss her flight, but she has no toiletries and soiled clothing. What a great start to her business trip!

Now if we back track, we can see that the crucial point was Sue Ellen’s hurried packing job. Could she have done things differently? Yes, perhaps she could have. Here are few tips that may have helped her out to pack her carry-on bag:

  • Pack in layers and be organized. Rolling clothing helps reduce wrinkles and saves space.
  • Don’t over-pack clothes and shoes.  Many outfits can be mixed and matched over a few days.
  • Invest in one piece of carry on luggage that is easy to pack and fits nicely in the crowded overhead bins.
  • Pack a second carry-on (backpack, handbag or computer case) with your laptop or electronics you need access to easily on your flight.
  • Pack items that need to be removed in security (toiletries, computer, etc) in one carry-on. This avoid having to rustle through both of your approved carry-on pieces.
  • Use travel-size bottles for cream and liquids that aren’t bigger than 3 oz.
  • All liquids should fit into a quart sized, transparent plastic bag
  • Declare or discard any liquids that you have (baby formula, juice, medications, bottled water, etc.)before getting into line.  You are not only going to delay yourself, but others behind you.

Most of the above is pretty simple. The only challenge is getting those liquids under control. Who wants to be running around the last minute, tearing the house apart for small containers to put shampoo in? After all that hard work, you won’t even be sure that those liquids won’t leak! As cabin pressure changes, often liquids are caused to leak out of containers. Who wants to deal with that?

This is why BottleWise offers travelers  few alternatives to help make packing your toiletries at various price points. TravelRite Kit comes with TSA approved bottles with tops and a see-through plastic bag. If you’re more of the simple type or just new a few leakproof bottles, Go Toobs are for you. If the cabin pressure has been messing with your plastic bottles, then a great thing to do is check out Pitotubes; they don’t let those liquids leak!

Be sure to check out our great savings on all of our toiletry items to make your next trip mess free!  Safe Travels.

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Security Checkpoint – A Pit Stop in your journey

Posted in 3-1-1 Liquids Bans, Packing Liquids, Travel, TSA Regulations, TSA Restricted Items on January 30th, 2012 by – 1 Comment

Imagine this…you’re planning a trip from your home in the city of Chicago to Washington DC, which would be roughly a two hour journey by flight. But, you’ve got to keep in mind that the security checks prior to the journey will waste two whole hours of your valuable time. No matter frequent of a traveler, there’s no way around the TSA (Transportation Security Administration) rules. You still have to stand in long lines and disrobe yourself multiple times. Doesn’t that become a pain? Of course, but proper planning always helps. Especially in travel nowadays, it really makes much more sense to plan with the increasing rules from the TSA. Let’s see what the travelers have on their mind about the security check…

Can I carry my favorite shampoo and toothpaste?
You can carry limited amounts (3 oz. gel or liquid) in your carry-on. Good news! There are several great products on the market that make packing your favorite shampoos, creams and makeup a breeze.  GoToobs are a compact, reusable and inexpensive solution.

I need my prescription medication and how about food for my baby?
Thank goodness, they are exempt from the rules. However to expedite the process place these items in their original labeled containers.

I’m a photographer, is it safe to have my film rolls in carry-on?
X-Ray machines for carry-on are considered safe. It would be better to carry the rolls in clear plastic bag. Depending on the number of security check points during your travel and minimal exposure is better.

What can I expect in passenger screening?
Unlike your baggage, which undergoes X-Ray exposure, you, as a passenger, don’t have to do the same thing. However, it is mandatory to remove your shoes, place your cell phone and any other metal items like keys along to be screened as well.

I am going on a wine tour in the Fall, how can I bring home a few bottles of wine? Unfortunately, with the new TSA regulations, you must pack any liquids over 3 oz in your checked baggage.    There are a few products on the market that make packing large, fragile bottles of liquid a breeze!  The BottleWise Duo easily packs two bottles of wine or spirits in your luggage.  This bag is reusable and lightweight!

Last but not least, it is always better not to argue with the TSA authorities if they confiscate something from you. Argument never makes the situation better, especially with the security authorities. If they feel that your nail clippers might be a potential danger, just say, “So be it!” and pass the security check. You don’t want to miss your flight with such expensive tickets for something that is worth less than a dollar.

What have you had confiscated by TSA in your journeys recently?

BottleWise is committed to manufacturing high-quality bags that make life easier for the discriminating culinary traveler and is founded by Amy Dias (adias@bottlewise.com)

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