Whether we’re planning a whirlwind weekend away, or a full tour with several destinations, we take packing very seriously. With countless adventures under our belt, we’ve found that less is more, because having extra space always beats having extra stuff. With that said, there’s a short list of must-have items that we always pack – no matter where we’re headed. The items on our list take up very little space, but each one makes a big impact on our travel routine.
But First, Coffee
We would be kidding ourselves if we didn’t admit how important coffee is to our travel morale. For that reason, 3 of our must-haves (arguably the most important ones) are coffee-related. We love strong, rich coffee, so we rely on Boyd’s Good Morning ground coffee to perk us up. To brew it, we boil water and enlist the help of our simple ceramic Hario pourover, which works just as well on our mugs as it does on our Stanley vacuum bottle. Once brewed, the insulating walls of this light weight stainless steel bottle keep our coffee hot for hours – or until it’s gone. The combination of these 3 items starts our days off right, and gives us the energy for whatever adventures the day brings.
We’re both hardcore, non-stop snackers, and we’ve learned the hard way that we can’t rely on truck stops and gas stations to satiate our cravings when we’re on the road. We’re vegan, and the last thing we want to do is read labels at 4am, so we pack plenty of our tried and true favorites, allowing us to make fewer unnecessary stops between meals! Win-win!
Spearmint Leaves candy –The texture of a gum drop, the flavor of natural spearmint, and a cute leaf shape. Also, these are pretty big so you don’t have to eat a handful to beat a sweet tooth. We still end up eating a handful.
Cape Cod Salt & Pepper Kettle Chips- Classic potato chips with zingy salt and pepper seasoning. Nothing more, nothing less. Lot’s of crunch.
Cedar’s Hummus (any flavor)- If they sold this stuff in buckets, we would buy two. We go through it so fast, and it works just as well as a sandwich spread as it does to dip our chips in. Yummus.
Justin’s Peanut Butter + Local Jam- We can’t sample the regional cuisine of every place we pass through, but we make our PB&J’s with a our favorite peanut butter and whatever locally-made vegan jam we can find. Once we’ve run out of one jar, we’re in a new place and ready to find another at the local farmer’s market.
When we’re not eating one of these handheld foods, we eat our meals with our handy and cute sporks made by Swedish brand Light my Fire. These are light, easy to wash, and save us the hassle of carrying metal utensils or adding to the world’s plastic waste with “disposable” silverware. Washing our hands on the road isn’t always an option, so we use our Honest Company hand sanitizer before we eat.
Photography plays a huge role in our travel blogging lifestyle, and since we like to capture every moment without setting a timer, we always have our CamKIX photo trigger. It uses Bluetooth to shoot beautiful photos of us, and it has a great range, so we don’t have to stay close to our tripod. Most importantly, none of our photos have the dreaded “selfie stick arm”
In our toiletry bags, we each have our own favorite cruelty-free and vegan self care products, but we have one favorite in common; Tom’s of Maine toothpaste. Founded in our home state, Tom’s makes natural, simple, and effective toothpaste. Our favorite is the fluoride-free whitening spearmint. We still have coffee breath all day, every day, but it keeps our teeth nice and clean.
Turn the Page
With Google and GPS in our pockets, you’d think we wouldn’t cart books around with us everywhere, but we’re a little old fashioned. Our Rand McNally road atlas helps us plan our route and navigate without relying on a cell signal or internet connection. Navigation by map is a good skill to have; it gives us a bigger picture and a sense of our topographical surroundings too. and we feel a lot safer when we’ve got our trusty atlas with us. For bed time stories in our tent, and quirky insight into the places we’re visiting, we bring our hardcover copy of Atlas Obscura. If you’ve never heard of this awesome book, it sheds a unique light on some of the lesser known corners of the world, and obscure travel destinations. We love that kind of thing, so it helps keeps our adventures exciting.
Rest and Recap
To write our own stories, we pack our notebooks, which allow us to take notes at the end of each adventure-packed day, so we can write our blogs later.
To set the mood of creativity and reflection, we light our favorite incense, which is especially fitting for our upcoming trip. It’s made with pinon wood, which gives the smoke a light campfire scent that makes our clothes and bedding smell good, even if we’ve spent the day hiking, touring breweries, or wandering around the desert.
Packed and Ready
Nothing beats the satisfaction and excitement of being fully packed and ready to hit the road. Once we’ve loaded up the car with all of our gear and the must-haves above, we’re prepared for just about any adventure. Speaking of adventures, we have a BIG one coming up, and we’re excited to share the details soon! Who knows, maybe we’re headed in your direction! In the meantime, follow us on Instagram and comment with your best guesses about where we’re going.