Remember that teleconference training in a few weeks? Your boss just informed you that it’s been moved up to next week, and it’s in Dallas. However unlikely this scenario seems, these inconveniently timed trips do pop up occasionally, and it’s good to be prepared with a “go bag” when they do. So, go ahead and recline your seat and flag down a flight attendant for another mojito; we’ve got this.
Your boss probably isn’t going to give you extra cash to check your bag, so you’ll want to find a suitcase that is carry-on-friendly. We recommend going with a bag that measures 22x13x9 inches. If you’re chronically late to the gate — a la the Home Alone McCallister family sprinting through O’Hare at Christmastime — consider The Race Case ($449) from Suit Supply at The Bellevue Collection. This elegant lightweight leather bag has a hidden surprise: It unfolds to become a smooth-rolling scooter.
Don’t forget: You’re not packing for a family vacation; this is all about business. Packing light is the name of the game. Pack a few versatile pieces that you can mix and match. A good rule of thumb is one pair of underwear, socks, shirt, and tie for each day you’ll be gone, and a pair of pants (or skirt) and jacket (or sweater) for every two days. And don’t forget a durable and water-resistant toiletry case for your sundries. We like CALPAK’s Hardshell Cosmetics Case in Milk Marble ($75) from Nordstrom. Only bottles 3.4 ounces or smaller are allowed in carry-on bags per TSA.
You never know what kind of delays or cancellations you are going to encounter on your journey. For this reason, your comfiest sweats and your circa 2003 Ugg boots probably aren’t going to cut it, lest your plane arrives late, forcing you to head to your first meeting before freshening up. Guys, this might look like dark jeans, a button-down shirt sans tie, and a nice suit jacket. Ladies, try dark jeans with a nice blouse, blazer, or stylish jacket, and sensible flats. To cut down on further baggage, ditch the purse and opt for Stashbandz ($23) instead. These Spandex bands can be worn over or under clothing, with secret compartments to keep your phone, keys, and credit cards safe while you navigate busy airports.