October 2014 my mom and I embarked on our first European adventure together! We decided to visit four countries: England, Italy, France, and Switzerland over the course of three weeks. I planned and planned, made lists twice over and still felt like it could’ve used some tweaking once I was actually on my trip.
What I did
1. I bought two external phone chargers – one from Target before I left, and a longer lasting one for the same price ($20) from an airport. Handy as it was I definitely didn’t need two of them, and it was annoying to keep track of recharging so many separate things (iphone, iphone chargers (x2), camera battery).
2. I purchased a dual socket adapter with all the international plug-in attachments… However, the design was ill conceived and would only allow one regular sized plug to be charged at a time. VERYYYYYYY inconvenient (see above) which was also purchased from Target (thankfully was able to return once I got back to the States).
3. I packed a pair of slippers (just in case I wanted them for the hotel showers… yeah), a pair of gladiator sandals (cute but hardly worn as it was full fledged fall in October), and a pair of brand new (not broken in one step) Keds for everyday walking. The first two were unused, the latter not actually very comfortable. Big no-no.
4. When in Rome… actually just Italy in general. I decided to enjoy a full diet of gelato on the daily, ignoring the very real fact that I am allergic to dairy and ended up getting sick: for about 10 days. Not my brightest moment.
5. Miiiiiiiiiiiiiight’ve needed a selfie stick. Would’ve gotten more pictures with my mom if we had longer arms 🙂
What I did RIGHT
1. Used a pair of fleece lined leggings as a layering piece when it was cold outside, as well as for pajama bottoms, keeping me warm and packed light!
2. Filled my carry on with clothes that not only mixed and matched with everything else, but that I could throw out after 2-3 wears, thus lightening my load as I traveled and making room for all the things I wanted to bring back.
3. Had all tickets printed in advance, organized in a little notebook with all the information for our flights and hotels which was easy to find at a quick glance–
4. Packed everything in a standard size structured duffle bag with wheels and a pull out handle. I could use the long strap around my shoulder, or roll it along like I did 99% of the time! Made life so much easier going through airports and such! This thing has been everywhere with me and I can’t imagine using anything else.