Your Flight Survival Kit: 19 Things That Will Change Your Carry On Bag Forever

Your Flight Survival Kit: 19 things that will change your carry on bag forever

If you’re travelling internationally, chances are you’re about to embark on what’s technically referred to as a “long-ass flight.” The 19 life-saving supplies outlined on the list below will help you put together a Flight Survival Kit and protect you from crying babies, shelter you from blasting air conditioning, and make your life a whole lot easier at 35,000 ft.

Flight Survival Kit - 19 Things That Will Change Your Carry On Bag Forever


Your Flight Survival Kit

  1. EYE MASK – If you’re travelling business class, this will be in your goody bag. If you’re travelling steerage (economy) best to bring your own.Black And White GIF - Find & Share on GIPHY
  2. EAR PLUGS – If you have my luck, you’re sitting next to a child who loves to scream, sing, or tap-dance on your tray table. I can’t help you with the kicking, but ear plugs are a saviour. 
  3. SOCKS – If it’s a long flight, taking off your shoes is the best… what’s not the best? The stinky airport socks you’ve been showing off in the airport lounge. Bring a fresh pair o’socks, your seat buddies will thank you for it.
  4. EYE DROPS – My eyes get really dry while flying…I bring drops so I don’t have that whole “Twilight” thing going on…
  5. TISSUES – Dry space, dry nose, you know how to use them. I’ve felt softer sand paper than most airline bathroom tissue papers.
  6. CHAPSTICK – WWBD? (What would Beyonce do?) Queen Bey would never be caught with dry flaky lips looking like she’s been wandering the desert for 40 days… bring chapstick.
  7. TOOTHBRUSH – If you’ve ever slept on a plane, you’ll know that brushing your teeth will make you feel like a new person. Pack a mini toothpaste and make sure it’s in your quartz size clear plastic bag for security – it’s a gel.
  8. SOMETHING TO READ – with pages, on paper – you know, before we had iPhones and computers we had these things called books. Ask your Grandma. If all your technology fails you…it’s nice to have a back up option.
  9. SOMETHING TO WATCH – Download movies ahead of time, don’t rely on any video apps that require WiFi. Airplane WiFi is still in the early 1990’s – it would make Steve Jobs sad.  Most airlines charge you for internet and it’s a streaming nightmare. Don’t risk it.
  10. HEADPHONES – Again, most airlines will try to charge you a small fortune for the saddest little pair of headphones known to man. Bring your own, or listen to that baby next to you sing… you decide!                       
  11. CHARGERS -iPhone, iPod, iWhatever – none of them will do you any good if they’re not charged. Most airlines now offer charging ports in your seat, but if your charger is in your checked bag it won’t do you any good… Bonus points: Bring a portable charger and get drunk on power.
  12. PASSPORT – You won’t get on an international flight without it. Check how many months it’s valid for. Some countries require you to have at least 6 months if you’ve purchased a one way ticket. The last thing they want is for your passport to expire while you’re visiting. Or you could be left living like Tom Hanks in “The Terminal.”                               
  13. BOARDING PASS – I’d recommend checking in online. Most airlines let you check in 24 hours prior to your flight. You might be able to upgrade, choose your seat, or pay for your checked bags. Checking them in at the airport tends to be more expensive – check it! There’s now an e-ticket line for those who have checked in online, so you can skip the longer queue.
  14. WATER – wait till after you’ve gone through security if you plan to buy it, most security screenings around the world will make you drink it or toss it. After the gate, stock up, because you’re about to enter an air-conditioning induced drought zone. Unprepared and you’ll be begging for a sad little plastic cup with a few ounces of water in it every couple of hours. I bring my own refillable option.
  15. ASPIRIN – I’m not a doctor (shocking, I know) so you need to research this on your own… but aspirin is proven to thin your blood. I take it on long flights to avoid blood clots because I’m a hypochondriac.
  16. SLEEPING AIDS: Again, I’m not a doctor (see above!) however, I pack melatonin to help me fall asleep. But – you do you!
  17. SNACK – If you’re a hungry beast like me (wondering when and where your next meal is coming from)… I’d suggest packing a snack. I’ll pack nuts, a banana, or an extra large pepperoni pizza. Again, you do you.                                                           
  18. JACKET – I hate being cold more than anything. Airlines crank their air con up so I always bring something to help me combat the elements.
  19. A BRIBE FOR FLIGHT ATTENDANTS – Joke? You decide. My friend, a former flight attendant, told me to bring a bag of chocolates for the flight attendants to thank them for taking care of us on the long flight ahead… instant upgrade! Guaranteed to give you the best service you’ve ever had.


We’ve reached our cruising altitude…you are now free to move about the cabin.


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Your Flight Survival Kit - 19 Things That Will Change Your Carry On Bag Forever

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If you liked this you may also like Georgia’s tips on Travelling on a Shoestring and Jasmine’s tips on How to Minimise Your Travel Makeup Bag.

Author Profile

Christina is an LA native and former TV Producer on high profile productions such as "Queen Latifah," "Best Time Ever with Neil Patrick Harris," "The Ellen DeGeneres Show," and "Last Call with Carson Daly." Christina is passionate about travel and now lives in Australia. She writes about her adventures, travel tips to make your life easier, the most instagrammable places you need to visit, foodie finds, and what it's like living in Sydney.

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