CRACKING THE CARRY-ON CODE
Ever packed boiled eggs into your carry-on luggage? This curious purchase before a long flight is one of the many intriguing habits recently shared with me by a very frequent traveller. The man, who gets on hundreds of planes all around the world each year, has a finely tuned set of rituals and, in this case, instead of picking from the airline menu, he favours a simple, protein-rich snack.
Other seasoned flyers I’ve quizzed have more predictable inclusions. At the top of every list are a water bottle and noise-cancelling headphones with a jack adaptor for compatibility with the plane’s audio system.
Next up are loose-fitting pants with a drawstring or elasticised waist, an eye-mask, and a pen for filling out customs and immigration forms.
Also important are shoes that easily slip on and off. Going to the bathroom in bare feet or socks is a travelling travesty. You’d not wander into the public loos at the local Westfield without shoes, so why start here? And if you do it, the flight attendants will not look at you with respect for the rest of the trip.
My carry-on includes all of the above plus the following: Fess Frequent Flyer nasal spray to help counteract low humidity; Amolin Baby Cream, a calamine, almond oil and zinc oxide mix which has been my go-to product for dry lips for the past 35 years; dark chocolate and almonds for snacking; and a book with short, digestible chapters or sections (recent favourites have been Tina Brown’s The Vanity Fair Diaries, Tribe of Mentors by Timothy Ferriss, and Rules for Modern Life by Sir David Tang).
And you? I’d love to know what’s in your luggage.
JANA FRAWLEY, NATIONAL TRAVEL EDITOR