Joanne Shurvell, travel writer and contributor to Forbes Lifestyle does her fair share of globe-trotting and we were delighted to see her Five Favourite Travel Products
Frequent travellers are always on the lookout for ways to simplify their journeys and make travel hassle free and more comfortable. Here are my five favourite items that have enhanced my travel experience, from a carry-on suitcase with a lifetime guarantee to a super soft travel pillow that is so comfortable that I also use it in my hotel room and at home.
1. Carry-on suitcase
I try to travel with carry-on luggage to avoid the hassle of checking my bag and waiting at the other end. I recently discovered Away, a brilliant new luggage brand founded in 2016 by two friends, Jen Rubio and Steph Korey. The first product from this new company was a carry on bag, funded by a kickstarter campaign. Just two years later, the company has a lovely range of luggage, including a hard shell carryon, available in nine gorgeous colours including blush pink and sky blue. I’m in love with my chic sky blue case which moves like a dream on its four 360° spinner wheels and features an ejectable battery that can charge your phone up to 5 times.
2. Packing Cubes
To ensure I can travel with carry-on luggage, I use ultra light nylon cubes that compress my clothes and take up far less space in my suitcase than clothes packed in a traditional manner. I like Eagle Creek Pack-it Specter cubes which have two sets of zippers, the outer of which compacts the contents within the pouch. And, in addition to taking up very little space, my clothes stay relatively wrinkle free in the compressed packages.
3. Travel Pillow
I tend to avoid the blankets and pillows that are provided on planes because it’s a well known fact that even those sealed in plastic probably haven’t been cleaned after the last use. But a decent pillow is essential and can make a cramped plane seat so much more comfortable. I’ve been searching for a comfortable travel pillow for years and have tried every type on the market from the geeky round-the-neck type, to a ball to be cradled between shoulder and chin to a plastic brace with a velcro scarf. None have worked for me and it wasn’t until this year that I found the ideal pillow from Tielle Love Luxury. Smaller than a regular pillow at 40 x 50 cm and easy to fold and squash into a carry on or a handbag, Tielle's travel pillow is far superior to the standard round the neck variety. The down-filled pillow has a super soft silky pillow case and is so comfortable that I've been using it on my bed at home as well as for travel. When I used the Tielle pillow on a recent long-haul flight from London to Tokyo, I think I actually managed to sleep for the first time on a plane. My search for the perfect travel pillow has finally ended.
I find in-ear headphones very uncomfortable and always prefer the on-ear type that offer noise cancellation. My new favourite pair is from the Danish Hi Fi brand Bang & Olufsen. The B&O H8i model offer style, comfort, superb sound and super soft padded leather ear pads that make them possible to sleep in on long-haul flights. They're wireless and also come with a cable to plug into airplane sound systems.
5. Travel Adapter
As I travel to countries with lots of different power outlets, I don’t want to have to remember to carry different adapters so I was thrilled to find a very compact one that can be used everywhere. Passport from Zendure (who also produce brilliant power banks) is a simple white cube that includes built-in power adapters for nearly every region of the world (more than 150 countries). It's also the world's first global travel adapter with an auto-resetting fuse which allows the device to recover from overloads.The clever design features easy to press and slide buttons and has four USB ports.