BY JAMIE LOBER
In planning a summer getaway, whether for rest and relaxation at a beach or the action and hustle of a big city, being prepared is the key to success. The last thing you want to do is be away from home and realize that you forgot something important. Make a list about two weeks in advance and check it twice. This will alleviate stress and let you focus on the exciting aspects of travel as your vacation approaches.
A day at the mall may be the first thing that comes to mind, as everyone wants to be fashion-forward. Bright colors are sure to make a statement, complete with possibly having a fresh new swimsuit. Do not forget to pamper your feet with new flip-flops or gym shoes, as comfort is essential when traveling. Be sure to check the weather forecast, so you know what to expect at your destination. Remember that it may be cooler in the evenings. Layering is smart, as even air conditioning can get chilly.
First things first; have lots of identification and your bags tagged. This will make things easier. Some personal items you want to be sure to include:
- Your driver’s license;
- Your passport;
- A credit card;
- Your AAA membership card;
- Important phone numbers and emergency contacts;
- Prescription medications.
An extra precaution is to put a lock on your luggage. You can fill a tote bag with some cash, nonperishable food items, lip balm, comfy socks and technology like your phone charger or iPad.
Preparation is especially important, because you may not be able to find a store open at midnight when you need one. Safety should never be overlooked. A basic travel first aid kit should include:
- Band-Aids and gauze;
- Medications for head, stomach and fever control;
- A thermometer;
- First-aid ointment;
- An icepack;
- An Epi-pen for any unexpected allergic reactions.
The skin is the largest organ in the body and you want to protect it. Several accessories that promote healthy skin include:
- A hat;
- Sunscreen that’s broad-spectrum, water-resistant and has a sun protection factor of 30 or higher.
For air travel, keep weight and size restrictions in mind. Sometimes personal hygiene items like toothpaste, toothbrush, and deodorant can be overlooked. Take a close look at your bathroom counter, so you do not leave anything behind. Since travel is all about making unforgettable memories, you may want to consider bringing along a scrapbook, journal or photo album so you can document the good times as you go along. Do not forget to leave some space, so you have room for souvenirs. If you are traveling by car, a blanket and pillow, as well as a trendy umbrella, can make all the difference. You can stop in the Dollar Store to pick up some fun supplies for an activity bag for the kids. The trip always goes smoother when the little ones are not asking if you are there yet. AAA can be a great resource if you need tour books or printed roadmaps. Have a flashlight, jumper cables, and spare tire in your trunk, available for an emergency situation. Last but not least, grab the book you have been waiting to have time to read or a favorite magazine, so you can stay busy and get the show on the road.