1. Get a carry-on-sized rolling bag that you can attach another bag to.
Instead of a cute weekend bag — which are heavy and impractical. This rolling bag has a strap that you can attach another small tote to.
2. If you need a bag big enough to check, get a lightweight yet sturdy rolling bag.
Most airlines’ heavy baggage fees kick in at 50 pounds, and you don’t want too many of those pounds to be taken up by your suitcase. Try to find a suitcase that weighs around 10 pounds, and remember: Most airlines will refuse altogether to check a bag that is over 70 pounds.
3. Though in general, you should try to not check a bag. But if you have to, make sure to pack some clothes in your carry-on.
I suggest a couple pairs of underwear, a T-shirt, and a pair of socks. Other good items to bring in your carry-on: makeup wipes (I prefer the Neutrogena kind) and/or blotting wipes, dry shampoo, a toothbrush, some basic makeup (lip gloss, concealer, and mascara are my go-tos), and a travel-sized tube of toothpaste.
4. You must be loyal to one airline.
If you travel a lot, you probably don’t need me to tell you that you should try to be loyal to one airline, but it bears repeating because it is JUST SO IMPORTANT. Not just because you are more likely to get upgrades if you get “status” on an airline, but because status often also comes with loads of other perks that make frequent travel slightly more bearable. I can’t tell you which airline to choose but I would advise you to think about 1. where you’ll be flying to and from most often, and which airline flies that route nonstop, and 2. where else that airline flies nonstop from your home airport, because you’ll want to use those frequent flier miles to go somewhere fun at SOME point.
5. Wear a scarf on the plane.
It can double as a wrap/blanket if things get chilly (and they usually do).
6. Remove your rings and bracelets when you get on board.
And most important, take that hair elastic off your wrist! Your fingers will swell thanks to cabin pressure, and you don’t want to be wearing anything constricting.
7. Pack layers and clothes that all coordinate.
That is, don’t pack six completely different outfits. My profession is relatively casual, so I usually pack a couple pairs of skinny jeans (one blue, one black) and maybe one other pair of pants or a skirt, plus a few silk shirts, camisoles, and a cardigan. But I can wear almost any of the shirts with any of the bottoms, etc. If you have to wear suits, just switch up the shirts/accessories.
8. Get a gel manicure before you leave.
That way you don’t have to worry about your nails while you’re away. Gels do kind of ruin your nails, though, so if you travel a ton, switch it up occasionally with nude polish or something light like Essie Ballet Slippers.
9. Bring an eye mask and earplugs.
You never know how loud or how bright the hotel will be, and particularly if you’re changing time zones it’s really important to get a good night’s sleep.
10. Give your house a quick cleanup before you leave.
There’s no better feeling than coming home to a nice clean house after an exhausting, sometimes lonely business trip. It doesn’t have to be a DEEP clean, but: Wash and put away dishes, take out the trash, make your bed, put away laundry, throw out any food that will go bad (or take it with you), and water your plants. For maximum coziness, wash your sheets right before you leave.