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    "These Were A Lifesaver": 30 Things That’ll Smooth Over Travel Annoyances So You Can Just Make Memories

    A compact bag *with wheels* that fits under plane seats, reusable TSA-friendly toiletry containers, Pedialyte packets, and other things you'll never travel without again.

    1. A portable safe ideal for the beach or when you're staying at a hotel or Airbnb that doesn't have a working safe in your room. Use the handy cable to secure it to a beach chair or other fixed object so you can worry less about someone walking off with your passport and other valuables while you concentrate on having a great time!

    pink masterlock personal safe with belongings inside of it
    reviewer's pink personal safe that's attached to a beach chair at the beach

    It's the perfect size to hold phones or wallets, and easily carry in your beach or tote bag. 

    Promising review: "This safe has become a MUST-HAVE on all our vacations. We no longer travel without it. We put two iPhones, cash, and car keys in this little safe, locked it to a beach cabana, threw a towel over it and took off for a hour of snorkeling. Never once worried about our belongings. We now use several of these as room safes AND as 'hide a key' lockboxes outside our vacation condo for teens who come and go throughout the day. They are invaluable!" —KeepIT Reel

    Get it from Amazon for $23.98+ (available in two colors).

    2. A small wheeled carry-on bag that qualifies as a personal item even on the strictest and budget-friendly airlines. Now you can stop trying to squeeze everything into a backpack and hobbling under its weight through the entire airport just to avoid having to check your bag (and wonder if it'll *actually* make it to your final destination or not). With this, you can glide through the terminal with ease, and it'll even fit right underneath your seat so you can skip the stress of wondering if there'll be any overhead compartment space by the time you board.

    It'll also make getting off the plan faster since you won't even have to pull your suitcase out of the overhead when you land!

    Promising review: "This works out so well for me. I’m a flight attendant, and I’ve had an infinite amount of day trips over the summer. I got tired of carrying around my regular TravelPro spinner, so I finally ordered this. SOOOOO MUCH BETTER FOR ME. It’s light, has enough pockets, and can easily fit under a seat if needed.

    The ONLY picky thing I can think of is how loud it sounds going across rough concrete. The wheels aren’t as silent as others, but that won’t stop me from buying another." —Kayla T

    Get it from Amazon for $57.08+ (available in three colors).

    3. A mini lightweight flat iron — it'll barely take up any space in your toiletries bag and will actually do an impressive job so you can keep up your hair routine while globetrotting!

    reviewer showing their naturally curly hair and then pin straight hair achieved using the straightener
    reviewer hand holding straightener

    It also comes with a heat-resistant pouch for easy carrying!

    Promising review: "This fits perfectly in my toiletries travel bag that I take with me as a flight attendant. Anything that comes in a small size and still works well is perfect for me." —Kathy S

    Get it from Amazon for $14.97.

    4. A set of packing cubes that'll help you fit a LOT more stuff in your suitcase than you thought was possible.

    The packing cubes in a suitcase
    shirts inside a packing cube
    Rachel Dunkel / Via BuzzFeed,

    The set comes with four packing cubes of various size, as well as a laundry bag.

    Promising review: "I was skeptical about packing cubes, but finally decided to give them a try and I won't travel without them now! It helps with organizing and to prevent wrinkles. Especially helpful when I’m going to multiple destinations so I don’t have to completely unpack or dig through my suitcase at each stop. My son has used them when packing a duffle bag, and I can’t imagine using a duffle bag without them. The quality of the brand is very good, and I love that each cube has their own handles. I ended up buying a second set since one wasn’t quite enough for extended travel." —April

    Get a set of five from Amazon for $21.99+ (available in seven colors).

    5. Or a set of compression packing cubes — these work similarly to a vacuum sealer to save you a *shocking* amount of space... even if you always pack more clothes than you actually end up wearing. They come in different sizes ideal for everything from jackets and sweaters to socks and underwear, and there's even a spot to put a little card on the front so you can label what's in what!

    stack of thick sweaters and then it in the compression cube
    the full cube and then showing it zipped and compact

    Just be sure to look up any weight restrictions on carry-on luggage!

    Promising reviews: "I'm a flight attendant. Great for my four to five days trips when I need to pack extra!" —Amazon Customer

    "These bags are amazing! Everything fits, and the compression keeps everything in order and leaves space for last minute additions. No more emptying the suitcase looking for an item. So easy and organized. My travel life just became 100% easier! Highly recommend them." —LYNN vT

    Get a pack of six from Amazon for $39.99 (available in a variety of colors and as a pack of two or four).

    6. A tube of anti-friction foot balm here to keep your feet happy on those vacations where you put in more steps per day than you usually average in a week. 

    A model applies the BodyGlide Foot Anti Blister Balm to the back of their ankle

    Check it out in action on TikTok here!

    Promising review: "The best! I used this every morning and each night on an 11-day Disney vacation. No blisters! So thankful for this product! There's no awful scent, it's easy to glide on, and it's well worth the money!" —JaeMamaJams

    Get it from Amazon for $8.99.

    7. An AirFly Pro wireless transmitter that plugs into the headphone jack on the in-flight TV screen so you can use your wireless headphones instead of having to pay for those crummy wired headphones they sell on the plane. You can also use it to send audio from one device to two separate sets of headphones, so you and your friend can listen to the same music or watch the same movie!

    the transmitter plugged into an airplane seat TV
    child models watching something together on one tablet with the AirFly plugged in so they can both hear through their headphones

    Promising reviews: "Ever since I purchased my wireless Bose earbuds, I always hated having to use another set when I was on an airplane with the seat-back entertainment system. I tried many different models to connect the system to my Bluetooth headsets until I came across this one, and it is amazing! It seamlessly connects to my headset, very clear and reliable audio, and it takes the stress away from having to carry multiple headsets! Thank you!!!" —Ryan Malloy

    "I fly a lot, and bought this due to disliking corded headphones, as either the cable line breaks during flight, and/or gets tangled up. I just recently flew four times last week and used them for the in-flight entertainment, and did not have one issue. I also use these in the gym while connected to my iPhone for music. And I plan to use them on my PC at work for meetings." —Marky

    Get it from Amazon for $54.99 (available in three styles).

    8. A portable door lock you can easily attach to pretty much any regular door in *seconds* without needing any tools or causing any damage to the door. It'll help you feel safer when traveling alone or staying in any hotel rooms, Airbnbs, or guest houses that feel like they could use an extra layer of security. Then when it's time to depart, it's super easy to remove and small enough to travel with! 

    lock on door
    how to guide for door lock

    Promising review: "I’m a flight attendant and swear I live in hotel rooms and needed extra security, and these seem to be the talk in the airline world so I order myself two. It took me a YouTube video to figure out how to install them and yes very easy and very secure. Safe sleeping is important and I’m glad I have these." —Elizabeth C. Breton

    Get it from Amazon for $14.99 (also available in multipacks).

    9. And a tiny, portable doorstop with a built-in security alarm designed to 1) emit a loud, high-pitched sound when door pressure is applied and 2) prevent the door from opening or being pushed in. The alarm is loud enough to wake you and possibly even neighbors so you can feel extra secure while staying in an unfamiliar place.

    The doorstop under a closed door
    Model putting the doorstop into a bag

    Promising review: "This small, but very capable product out preformed itself on our recent vacation with our grandkids. While his mother and sister slept, our 3-year-old grandson tried to sneak out of their motel room. Fortunately, we had given our daughter one of these alarms. He only managed to pull on the door and the very loud alarm sent him running back to bed. He never tried to get out again. Would highly recommend this product." —evie

    Get it from Amazon for $13.25.

    10. bendy travel pillow to help make long hours of sitting upright on a bus, plane, train, boat, or car ride a *whole* lot more comfortable. It's super adjustable, making it easy to customize for the support you need whether it's your back or your neck that tends to suffer on long trips. Some reviewers even love using it in bed or to help prevent back pain while driving!

    model sleeping against car door thanks to bending travel pillow

    Promising review: "I’m a flight attendant and I travel with this pillow all the time! In hotel rooms I use it to support my neck, on the plane I use it to support my lumbar area. When I drive it helps my lower back. I love that it has a liner that can be removed to wash. I bought my boyfriend one too and it goes everywhere we do!" —Debbie

    Get it from Amazon for $24.99 (available in two sizes and seven colors).

    11. Or a super soft, adjustable Trtl neck pillow designed to hold your head in a comfortable position when sleeping upright so you can stop waking up every time your head starts to nod on long trips.

    model wearing a gray trtl pillow while sleeping on a plane

    Promising review: "As a flight attendant for a major airline I have heard from passengers how much they like this pillow. So I ordered it...I LOVE IT. I lost my U-shaped memory foam pillow recently so I thought I would give this a try. It's smaller than a U-shape pillow and easy to pack up. Lots of fun colors to match your outfits. But most of all it works. It's cheap enough to give it a just do it." —Franny

    Ciera Velarde, an editor here at BuzzFeed, also loves this! She says: "I've used this for the past few years and swear by it! Before this, I always found traditional neck pillows uncomfortable and would end up ditching them halfway through the flight and getting frustrated. The Trtl pillow is adjustable — you wrap the pillow around your neck and secure it with Velcro, and if you find it's too loose, just make it a bit tighter! I've truly never slept better on a plane than with this pillow.

    Get it from Amazon for $59.99 (available in four colors).

    12. A pocket-sized, refillable travel perfume atomizer you simply press against the nozzle of your favorite perfume to pump it full of a travel-size portion of your signature scent! Now you won't have to find space to pack your larger perfume bottle and worry about it leaking the entire time.

    atomizer pumping on a perfume bottle
    Elizabeth Lilly / BuzzFeed

    Here's why BuzzFeed shopping editor Elizabeth Lilly loves this:

    "^ That's me pumping my signature perfume into one of these travel atomizers I've been using for about a year. As the reviewer down below mentions, it's great to just throw in your purse on the reg for a fragrance re-up throughout the day. As you can see, it's about the size of my thumb and therefore takes up very little room. Plus! It's smaller than most rollerball travel fragrances you can pick up. This first one is working so well, that I just have the other three in storage. But if this one bites the dust this summer during travels, I'll be OK about digging into my stores to use one of the remaining three...especially at this price point."

    Promising review: "I bought these due to traveling a lot for work and needing to cut down on the size of things in my carry-on bag for flying. I can bring four different perfumes now instead of one big one. They’re super easy to fill, haven’t leaked so far but I keep them in a sandwich baggie while traveling just in case. I would 100% buy them again." —Emily

    Get a four-pack from Amazon for $8.99.

    13. And a reusable TSA-friendly toiletries set so you can easily travel with your everyday products! They're easy to fill and clean, *and* the bag is super sturdy so you can rest assured that nothing's going to escape and turn your entire carry on into a gross soup of skin cream, body wash, and other sticky liquids. 

    the set with bag and labels
    Reviewer holding the smaller containers in their hand to show size

    Check out what BuzzFeed shopping editor Elizabeth Lilly has to say about this:

    "I own and love this set! It includes the zippered bag, four soft silicone bottles with leakproof caps, three compact jars, an two toothbrush caps. I've used this set on more than five trips and and for trips when I don't require body wash or shampoo (like to visit my parents) I use the extra room in the bag to shove in all my beauty products and daily contacts. Plus! It comes with labels that stay on the containers really well despite my thoroughly washing these containers between trips. I bought this set in spring 2019 and have, admittedly, lost a container or two. But the ones that I've held onto over dozens of trips have all held up well!"

    Promising review: "This set is perfect for traveling. Was looking for a set to use for work (flight attendant). I use the bottles for lotion, body wash, hair oil, and shampoo. None of them have leaked yet and I love that it comes with a bag just in case. The only negative is that sometimes you need to unscrew the cap to puff the bottles back out after you squeeze them, but doesn’t really bother me. It’s a quick fix. Easy to fill/refill." —Kandice222 

    Get it from Amazon for $14.79+ (available in a variety of colors and multipacks).

    14. Or if you already have some travel-size containers without a bag, a clear TSA-approved toiletry bag is a worthy investment to place one more barrier between your liquid goods and everything else you stuffed into your personal bag. 

    clear bag with toiletries inside

    Promising review: "This is a game changer. I work in consulting and travel 50–75% of the time for my job. I've burned through many a quart baggie over the last few years and dozens of flights. It's nearly impossible to use the full volume of a quart baggie without breaking the zipper, and this toiletry bag allows me to bring about 150% of what I was able to fit in my crappy press-and-seal bags. I do not regret this purchase one bit, and have already recommended it to several friends and family members." —Ainsley H.

    Get it from Amazon for $13.99 (available in 11 colors).