Don’t Fail to Prepare: Part II

Tomorrow, I will start my trip! First stop will be in L.A. to visit my dear friend Malcolm for a few days before he drops me off at the airport to head to Narita Airport in Tokyo. I’ve been running around today to take care of some of the last minute details. So here’s the skinny on what you should be taking care the last few days before your trip.

Call your bank. I have three bank accounts, and one credit card. What do they all have in common? They need to know you are going out of the country. Make sure you have your itinerary all set, as some banks or credit card companies want to know exact dates. For some of the countries I’m going to (Vietnam and India in particular), it took over two weeks to get the holds released on more than one of my accounts, so make sure you plan in advance for certain countries. You don’t want to be stuck without any way to pay for your delicious Pho in Hanoi, or fabulous salwar kameez in Delhi.
Pack pack pack. I thought packing for three months would be difficult. I was wrong. Picking out outfits for 90 days was the easy part. The tough part was fitting it into one piece of checked luggage, one carry and a personal item (aka, the biggest bag I could imagine would fit underneath the seat in front of me). I had to do a lot of editing. Apparently, four pairs of heels was a little too much. While some people can live off of 20 articles of clothing for 3 months, I choose not to, and I have no problem paying for a checked bag for a little more comfort. One of the big problems I faced was packing for multiple climates. Within the same three months I will be facing 40 degree weather at night in Beijing and 90 degree heat in Phuket. Layers were definitely the key! While I don’t want to get into the specifics of my checked luggage, I will touch on the important stuff that should be going with you to your seat on the flight.
All of my electronics I’m bringing with me. I’m packing my MacBook Air, Kindle, Canon DSLR camera, iPhone 4S, iTouch, Nokia dummy phone, electric toothbrush (not pictured), and all of the chargers to go along with it.
My carry-on bag holds all of my essentials to make me comfortable god forbid my luggage gets lost. This includes: all of my medications needed for the trip (which has everything you might need just in case), a small bag of my liquid toiletries, shampoo, conditioner, toothpaste, hairspray, body wash, lotion, face wash, shaving cream, and sunscreen. Tampons, which are hard to find in some countries in Asia. Peptobismol and Immodium (definitely needed for India!), protein bars for travel snacks, neutrogena face wipes, a baseball cap, Kate Spade sunglasses, my favorite 3.1 Philip Lim crossbody bag (in it’s dust cover), a pair of blue jeans, shorts (not pictured), and a couple tank tops (not pictured), a bathing suit, bra, sports bra, couple pairs of underwear, sandals, and flats.
The all important personal item! This Lulelemon bag is great for all of your essentials that you don’t feel comfortable putting in the overhead compartment. It is filled with all of my electronics, a couple extra protein bars, my passport (with visas), my wallet, my Chanel sungalsses, kleenex, hand wipes, face wipes, a pen (to fill out forms on the plane), a scarf, Nyquil (to help me sleep on the plane). I’m wearing my Jimmy Choo sneakers on the plane with a sweater, pair of jean shorts, and a jacket in case I get cold. Also packed in here are the few pieces of jewlery I won’t already be wearing.
Double check! Go through your packing list. Make sure you have everything you need. Worse comes to worse, you can pick it up in another country, but some things you just can’t get anywhere else. Medications, passport, and visas are all a giant pain in the butt to get elsewhere. Make copies of your prescriptions, passport photo page and all of your visas just in case.
Say thank you. If you’re like me, there are a lot of people who helped you get ready for this trip. Show them your appreciation with a fun card! I still love getting snail mail, and I know my friends and family will be grateful for my effort. As Oscar Wilde says, “The smallest act of kindness is worth more than the grandest intention.”

 Until next time! xoxo

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