We’ve all got our “must-haves” for air travel. Here, Guest writer CJ Garrett outlines 5 essentials for frequent flyers. In the comments, let us know if you agree and what your mandatory bring alongs are.

It’s an unfortunate fact of life that taking a long flight can be very stressful. Thankfully, many people don’t need to fly all that often, but in the world of business, frequent flying is an accepted financial and mental cost. Having a few essential items around to offset the negative effects can do wonders to keep a traveler happy and sane.

1: An E-Reader

A Nook, a Kindle, a Sony Reader – the technology of ebooks in the modern world is varied and very portable. With e-ink displays, a good e-reader usually has enough juice to last even the longest flights. The inside of a plane may not be the best environment for reading, but the distraction of a few good novels can make the time pass rather more pleasantly. As many e-readers have wireless functionality, however, it’s likely they cannot be used during take off and landing.

Modhop’s Favorite? Any tablet without a glare.

2: A Spare Battery

Business people frequently need their laptops and other electronic devices around at all times, even while they’re thirty thousand feet up in the air. Unfortunately, the battery life of a laptop just isn’t enough on long haul flights. The solution? Carry a spare, and swap them as needed to keep working, or look for laptops and smartphones that specifically tout a long battery life.

Modhop’s Favorite? We like the looks of this Samsung charger.

3: Earplugs

There’s nothing worse than having to go from the airport to a business meeting with little or no sleep. Crying children are the least of a frequent flyer’s problems – what about talkative neighbors, and noisy engines? Light sleepers can’t expect to get any rest unless they take a few precautions, and earplugs should be top of the list in case the airline doesn’t provide them on the flight itself.

Modhop’s Favorite? We’ve tested and like plugs from Mack’s, HearO’s and generally like the 3M ones found in many amenity kits. Here’s one of the nicer kits I’ve reviewed that contains 3M earplugs..

JAL First Class Amenity Kit.

4: Sensible Shoes

You may be expected to dress professionally, but there’s nothing worse for a long trip than high heels, whether walking the distance to the gate or standing around in line while waiting to board. The best thing to do is carry a pair of light slippers or socks for the plane journey, and stash the heels with the carry-on luggage.

Modhop’s Favorite? I’m a fan of having an extra cozy pair of socks or slippers for the ride. While I don’t typically go this far on my own, I’ll wear PJ’s on the plane if the airline provides them.

Look out Penney’s Catalog nerd dad section. Jake Redman in Delta One Pajamas offered on longer international flights.

5: A Shaving Kit

Having a five o’ clock shadow can be a big mistake no matter what time zone you’re in. Portable shaving kits can be as simple as a small electric razor, or include everything from shaving foam to aftershave, but they’re a necessity for a frequent flyer who cares about looking the part when he lands.

Modhop’s Favorite? I use a fairly portable Remington trimmer to keep my shadow from getting past 4 o’clock.

6: A Checklist of References

There’s nothing more irritating than going through airport security and finding that something in your luggage isn’t allowed. This can hold up a traveler for hours as the security personnel open their bags and find the offending item. When time is money, this can seriously interfere with anyone’s business plans. Frequent flyers should always keep a reference of what items are allowed and what are banned, and refer to it any time they have to pack for a trip.

Modhop’s Favorite? I like checklists of all kind. I use a free app called Wunderlist to make simple checklists for things to bring with and pre-trip tasks.

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