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  • Writer's pictureMaria

25 In-Flight Must Haves for Women Traveling Overseas

Updated: 4 days ago

Recently I wrote a post about what to pack for your toddler on an airplane, but it is important to also look out for numero uno when you are packing for your overseas trip. Below you'll find a list of the in-flight must have's if you are a woman traveling overseas. Keep it corralled in one small bag, or even a bag within your underseat bag. Keep these things within reach the whole flight!

Note: Always Pack Tissues represents many tried and tested travel sites as what is called an 'affiliate' partner. That means if you click on my ads I may get a commission from a resulting sale.


  • Deodorant - for the next morning when you land, you want to feel fresh!

  • Eye drops - for the next morning!

  • Hand lotion - for the next morning and throughout the night. Airplanes really dry you out!

  • Hand sanitizer - for after every meal or bathroom visit

  • Tissues - for equalizing your ears upon landing and ascent

  • Face masks - the disposable blue ones are the best I think for traveling. They are the most breathable, most comfortable for sleeping in, and cheapest for disposing of when you land at your destination. Bring a few just in case some break.

Note: if your flight originates in the US you will not be required to wear a mask. If your flight originates somewhere where masks are still required on airplanes, you must comply. If you are unsure, listen for announcements at your gate or ask a gate agent.

  • Eye mask (I used to use a basic furry lined one, but lately I LOVE these self-warming eye masks. They get warm as soon as they come out of the package, and stay warm about an hour. It's nice on a chilly airplane to put you to sleep. Bonus is that they are comfortable, disposable, and individually packaged.

  • Mini toothbrush picks. These are amazing. You can buy in little mini packs or mega packs, but basically this little brush has a blue center that releases a fresh peppermint tooth gel once you start brushing it around your mouth. It's very subtle and you can kind of brush around while you are landing, and no one really knows what you are doing. The bristles work to scrape away the overnight ick, the gel provides a minty fresh mouth, and the pick is for any extra duty. Toss in the trash when you are done! No rinse and spit and no sink required!

Get them here: or by clicking on the photo below.

  • Neck pillow - this one is new for me since I've had neck problems sleeping. I used to use an inflatable one, but it's the worst. I looked around and found one for 4 euros at the Carrefour in Spain, but these average like $12 in stores.

  • Medications - a trick I use with these is to take them at the time you should be taking them at home for the flight. Once you arrive, jump on the new time zone schedule. Just make sure that is safe for whatever meds you are on, of course.

  • Chapstick

  • Passport

  • IDs

  • Pen and paper - you never know when you need them.

Entertainment Needs:

  • Magazines (I bring a few and never read them until the return leg home, when it's all daylight hours). Wasted weight, so it's worth considering leaving this one out.

  • Book - keep it small and light

  • Noise Cancelling Headphones, again these never come out of my bag until the return leg.

Pro tip for your US-Europe flight !!!: You may be tempted to stay up and watch movies on the way to Europe, but don't. Go to sleep the second you get on the airplane, as everyone is still boarding. Pop on that eye mask and do your best to get some sleep. The in-flight meal is never worth it (but the beer and wine is!) so you choose if you want to rest an hour or two and then wake up for the eats. They typically serve about 1-1.5 hours in to the flight, meaning you've got about 40 minutes of boarding time snoozing and a good hour after that before smells of food wake you up. I usually get the meal for the ice cream or dessert and pocket the crackers and cheese slices for snacking later. To each his own! They will wake you again about an hour from the ground for breakfast and coffee, so plan on deducting that hour from your snooze time. That is an ok time to drone your sleepless sorrows out with your headphones for an episode or two of Resident Alien.

  • Extra batteries, if needed

  • Phone charger - there aren't always chargers on board, but just in case keep it handy.

  • Foreign adapters (you'll need this pretty soon after you've landed)

  • Snacks for you (I usually pack Oreos or a favorite candy to have with my free red wine after the in-flight meal, and then some kind of breakfast granola bar for the morning in case the morning meal option isn't super. Bonus if you can bring an orange for the morning. There is nothing better than the smell of orange after 10 hours. So juicy and delicious!

What to Wear:

  • Wear socks - these are your slippers for walking to the bathroom mid flight! Just pee careful what you step on...

  • Easy on shoes - for the afore mentioned warning!

  • Long leggings or a long cotton dress- no buttons or zippers - Dress for the country and weather you are going to. These options cover my legs from the cool air (don't forget you will also have a blanket on the long hauls), they are comfy enough to sleep in, and aren't too constricting for sitting down a long time.

  • Sweater - no buttons or zippers - something cozy, but not sloppy. You don't want to look like a college kid rolling out of her dorm room. I usually bring an oversized cardigan, or if I am going to cold weather I will just wear a sweater that doubles as a top.

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