16 holiday travel essentials for the absolute worst time to fly
These are not going to make sure that any of your flights are on time — they will, however, make getting to and from wherever you're going much, much better.
No need to stress more than usual. We mean, delays and cancelations are sort of part of the experience now.
Nau Journeyman - $115
You're traveling, not lounging around you house: while society may no longer expect us to wear shirt and tie, don't be the one wearing the stinky undershirt from college 'cause it's "comfortable." The soft cotton will be as comfortable if not more. And the heavy utility construction will take whatever major airlines decides to throw at it.
Bluesmiths The Kula - $225
It gets chilly in the air, and even on the ground — in both the terminal and the cabin as your taxiing for umpteen hours. It's intended for post-surf bodies: this thing is super warm, extra comfy, all the while not smothering you and making you sweat.
Mountain Khakis Flannel-Linned Mountain Pant - $94.95
Business on the outside, slumber party on the inside. As with your buttondown, they're also tough and rugged and able to respond to travel tribulations blow-by-blow. And the liners will transport you home to under your sheets like you never got out of bed.
Flint and Tinder Heritage Boxer - $24.95
Most times you talk about "base layers" you're talking wool or some high-tech fabric that works miracles on the conditions during extreme circumstances but aren't necessarily the most comfortable for a long haul. PIMA cotton is soft, balls-in-Gold Bond soft.
Farm to Feet Englewood - $23
100% American means 100% bullshit-free. You've got your sock basics in wool, nylon, and spandex. Honestly, that's all you need, but the wool being merino makes your stress sweats from standby a little less annoying.
Teva Chair 5 - $170
Unless you're flying to Hawai'i, Southern California, Florida, or otherwise out-of-the-country, there's always a chance you're going to come across some good ol' American slush. These packable — yes, packable boots not only fold up into lightweight inserts, but the liner is basically a removable slipper-sock that is perfect for kicking back in whatever room you have in aisle 15, seat B.
Aion A Hand Made Beanie - $24
Like with the base layers and socks, when it comes to coverage up top, there's a lot of discussion about functionality, meaning acryllic when it comes to knit caps. But when you're flying cross-country, functionality takes a back seat to pure comfort, and we're quite comfortable declaring 100% lambs wool as comfort-ready.
Penfield Chinook - $180
Part of the Packables collection, these puffy down jackets stow away in small drawstring bags for easy storage, but balloon back out into warm and durable (ripstop shell) coats that are perfect for freezing terminals and frigid outdoor pick-ups when you're flagging down your ride.
Smith Optics Lowdown - $209
Whether you're traveling hungover or simply traveling, a pair of shades will block not only the sun but your own empty gaze. And there's some crazy ChromaPop technology that, similar to polarization, decreases color "confusion": the lenses filter light at two specific points, making for greater definition and more vivid color. And lastly, there's a nifty bridge and temple stays to make sure sweat, rain, or snow, these are keeping put.
Boreas Bootlegger - $199.99
Employing what they call "Super-Tramp" technology, these modular packs will break down or build up into the one you need, responding to conditions outside and what you're putting inside, so that if you're taking side trips from wherever you land, you're not lugging around a trunk of air.
Askov Finlayson x BAD Bags #3 Duffel - $100
Checking luggage is a crap shoot as it is. Checking luggage in November/December? Asking for a migraine. This thing is not only carry on-friendly, but made of 1,000-denier CORDURA — so while it looks like brushed cotton, it is coated with urethane and DWR, making it wear-and-tear-and-water-resistant.
Or even distracted. Physically, you have to be at the airport. Mentally? Take yourself miles and miles away.
Tivoli Audio Radio Silenz - $159.99
These are the first active noise canceling headphones to employ real wood housings instead of plastic. What's that mean? "Attention passengers on Flight 490, your flight has been dela... shhhhhhhhhhhh."
TripAdvisor GateGuru - Free (iPhone, Android, Windows)
This is your personal assistant: it offers real-time updates to your itinerary such as security wait times, flight delays, gate changes or layover time adjustments. It also provides amenity information, maps, weather forecasts, and airport tips. Basically it takes the I'm-three-and-lost-in-the-grocery-store out of it.
PhoneSuit Flex Pocket Charger - $69.95
While your own personal power grid would be ideal, these quick fixes are ideal for when you're in a jam, and there's a game of King of the Hill happening for the six available outlets near your gate. Plug this in and it'll give you a power-up, 1.5 times over. [More... ]
Karma - $99 (1GB), $149 (7GB), $279 (20)
Pay-as-you-go wifi that's largely tied to juju: allow others to join your 4G network and you get 100 free gigabytes, and they get access to your network for a short period of time. You'll be everyone's best friend in no time — and that means free beer.
Dublin Dog Nomad Pad - $69.95
Wolfie isn't really house-trained enough to stay home alone, and the kennel is, well, a kennel — so he's obviously coming with! While he may be (unfortunately) with the luggage during the actual flight, don't be the guest who leaves paw prints on car seats/area rugs. Give him a durable, soft sitting/sleeping area, one that also packs rather easily rolling up into a manageable log.