There's certain necessities in life: food, water, your phone, clothes and fuzzy socks. Okay, so maybe not all of those are necessities, but there are things that make life easier- and the same could be said for travel. Whether you're trying to save money or have plenty to spare, here are some must-haves for your next trip.
1. Small Backpack/Tote
No matter if you're traveling by plane, car or boat, having something small to carry your things in is a given. A large purse or backpack can be a hassle in small spaces and can be heavy, but a small bag allows you to have everything you need in a more manageable package. Luckily, tiny bags are totally in right now so it's easy to find something that's your style and in your price range. Here are two of my picks:
Budget Friendly: Forever 21 Faux Leather Bag
This bag is cute enough to not be an eye-sore in pictures or mess up a great outfit, but is practical enough to easily fit the essentials and its chic style could easily transition from airport to night on the town. You can buy it now for a sale price of $16.03.
Looking for a Splurge: Nova Backpack by Herschel Supply Co.
At $49.99, this small backpack may take a large part of your paycheck, but it's a great investment. Coming in nineteen different colors/patterns, this bag can definitely be matched to your own style. The bag features a front zipper compartment that's perfect for your phone and an internal pocket that is a good place to store other valuables. Like their full sized bags, this Herschel model has the traditional label and slender straps that make it comfortable, stylish, and lightweight. You can choose your pattern and buy it here.
2. Luggage Tag
Even if you aren't traveling by air, luggage tags can save you the headache of losing your belongings and add a layer of customization to your travel look. A luggage tag gives you the peace of mind knowing that your bag can be located and returned to you if lost.
Budget Friendly: Ribbon
It may seem weird, but I've personally used a ribbon on my bag on multiple vacations. It's cheap, cute and you can choose from an array of designs. You can easily purchase ribbon for under $5 if you don't any lying around here. Don't forget to take a Sharpie and write your name/number on the back before securing it to your bag!
Looking for a Splurge: Anthropologie Travel Set
Anthropologie has a way of always being #LifeGoals and this adorable matching set is no exception. Not only does it stand out, but it is a great investment if you're looking for a luggage tag as well as a passport case. Bonus? It's on sale!
Although most phones take good quality pictures, using your phone for every picture can allow you to get distracted. One minute you're taking a beautiful shot and the next minute, you've been scrolling on Instagram for half an hour. Save your memories while not sacrificing the moment with the purchase of a camera.
Budget Friendly: Fujifilm Instax Mini
Kick it old-school with this Fujifilm camera. It comes in multiple colors and with an array of accessories to help you fit your vibe and possibly create a vision board or photo album that you can look at for years to come. Plus, the pictures print instantly which means you can immediately use them or give them to your travel gang.
Looking for a Splurge: Sony Alpha a5100
If you're someone who is super into selfies or vlogging, this camera is a great choice. Not only is it compact (perfect for fitting in your new mini-backpack) but it's wireless, too. This means that you can send your pictures/videos instantly to your camera or laptop, making sharing your pictures easy and effortless. Check out the video quality here and buy it for $499.99 here.
4. Travel Yoga Mat
Traveling can be stressful and hard on your feet! Keep your zen from start to finish by packing a foldable yoga mat that you can use for a full on practice or light meditation.
Budget Friendly: Gaiam Yoga Mat
With a 4-star rating and a couple hundred reviews, the Gaiam foldable mat comes in strong at just $24.91. It still has the grip of a normal yoga mat and can fit the bottom of your suitcase or your carry-on bag. Buy it here.
Looking for a Splurge: Jade Travel Yoga Mat
For seasoned yogis, seeing a Jade mat is no surprise. These mats have a great reputation and are made from renewable resources with no PVC. The natural rubber helps keep you from slipping while practicing and it's fairly lightweight at only .125 inches thick. Buy it for $64.95 here.
5. Water Bottle
Bringing your own water bottle can save time while keeping it green. Fill up at fountains or restaurants and stay hydrated.
Budget Friendly: CamelBak Eddy
Camelbak bottles are a common choice among travelers and hikers for good reason. They're BPA free, come in multiple sizes/colors, are easy to clean, and have a hook for easy transportation. Buy one for $14.79 here.
Looking for a Splurge: Hydro Flask
Another trendy choice is a Hydro Flash bottle. They're BPA free, insulated for hot or cold, and are stainless steel, meaning they're tough and can withstand your adventures. Pick one up for $29.95 here with your choice of over ten colors.
6: Light Jacket
You never know when the plane will be the same temperature as Antarctica, the forecast will change to rain all day or when a spontaneous hike will get chilly. It's never a bad idea to have a light and fashionable jacket and can save you the hassle of trying to find one when you're supposed to be enjoying yourself.
Budget Friendly: Tilly's Full Tilt Windbreaker
At only $21.99, this jacket is stylish and budget friendly. The color block pattern comes in two possible combos (yellow or pink bottom) and adds an eye-catching sporty vibe to any outfit. It also has a hood (unlike some other cheaper windbreakers) and can be bought here.
Looking for a Splurge: Patagonia Windbreaker
Patagonia is definitely not a cheap brand and this jacket keeps with that trend, coming in at $99. However, the multiple color options and hood make this both a fashionable and practical choice. The jacket is also very lightweight and can easily be worn with layers and is available in both the men's and women's department. You can buy it here.
Being prepared for your vacation allows you to stay more present and have more time for what actually matters: the experience! These travel must-haves at every budget prove that traveling doesn't have to break the bank and can still be done right. So go ahead and buy that ticket, too.