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What's In My Carry On? Scotland Edition

March 21, 2017
Travel Tips

I am the worst at packing.

Isn't that hilarious? How did I end up with this gig? I boast about being incredibly organized and driven but can't seem to pack a suitcase or carry on to save my life. My skills (or lack thereof) are being tested as I try to pack my carry on for my upcoming trip to Scotland. Here are some of the items I will be taking along! 

TSA Approved Luggage Lock

Maybe I'm paranoid. I like to think that I'm just well prepared, but maybe I am crazy. I don't like the idea of strangers throwing around all of my stuff. Not that I carry anything of great significance or expensive items in my checked bag, I also don't want people looking at my lady underthings or being perplexed by my Star Trek memorabilia.

I also like to lock my purse/backpack/duffel when I am on a train or in certain public areas. Suck it, pick pockets! 

Collapsible Water Bottle

I feel like I mention this every time people ask what I take on a trip. I really am a huge lover of collapsible water bottles because since you can't have water in them BEFORE the security check point, these are super compact and easy to store. They are also more flexible and easier to store when they are filled with water.

Turkish Towel

Or a shemagh. I love these, if you haven't heard. I use these as scarves, a blanket on chilly flights, a towel, something to go over my sleeping face so no one puts crackers in my open mouth, and even as a makeshift bag. These are larger and wider than normal scarves but are super light weight.

My iPhone & Headphones

Do I really need to explain this? Music, audio books, general entertainment...move along.

Daily Medications & Supplements

If my checked luggage were to get locked, at least I have what I NEED in my carry on! If losing your luggage is your worst nightmare and fills you with anxiety, imagine also losing your anxiety medication. Not fun.

Extra Clothes

Again, if your luggage is lost, you may want to ensure you have an extra shirt or pair of underwear. Don't bring your whole closet, just something you would consider necessary in an emergency. You can buy more clothes when you arrive at your location or pray that your luggage shows up.

Travel Documents

Your passport, obv, but also print out the address of your hotel or accommodations, any reservation confirmation emails, and similar documents. Many hotels around the same area have very similar names. It's best to know the name AND address to give to your taxi driver (or know if you are making your way there yourself!)

Scotland Guide Book

Ok, I'm a nerd, I know. Scotland has always been on my list to go to but I don't know much about it! So I have two guidebooks that focus on the history and area where I will be staying so I can get more out of my trip. I prefer books that are history themed and don't focus just on the tourist attractions.

Valuables and items you just can't bear to lose

I don't think you should travel with valuables or things you can't lose but I break my own rule all the time. I have a bracelet that means a lot to me that I bring along in my carry on so I don't lose it at security. I also stuff my camera equipment in my carry on because lord knows I don't want it to break or get stolen! 


Do not underestimate the importance of this tiny tube. It is the WORST to have chapped lips on a cold flight. I hate chapped lips in general so I always have too many things of chapstick but oh well! 

Kindle or E-Reader

I don't like these very much, I will be honest. I prefer a real book in my hands, pages I can turn, and stories I can get lost in. I don't have the same experience with e-readers. BUT, I also don't want to pack 4 different 500-1000 page novels in my bag just in case I can't decide which to read. There are plenty of options out there.

Also consider: 

-Notebook & Pen (especially me, since I'm a writer nerd!)

-Gum and TSA approved snacks


-Neck pillow (I use my Turkish towel)

-Small travel pillow and blanket

-Face wipes, toothbrush, toothpaste

-Contact solution/glasses

Siggi Einarson

My name is Siggi-dubbed by my American friends because of the Icelandic yogurt-I am a writer, polyglot, and aspiring expat, not a cup of yogurt (unfortunately).

My love for travelling began with a trip to Iceland and Sweden to visit my family when I was just 15 years old. I spent so long dreaming of the possibilities of life abroad but I always figured these dreams were too far reached. Flash forward almost 10 years, here I am again, both cursing and thanking this damn travel bug.

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