Travel must-haves

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After traveling for years, I already have my staple travel gear. I’ve blogged them numerous times before, but here’s a short list of the basics for first time travelers.

Good, sturdy luggage
Not all travelers are backpackers, and though I travel mainly with a backpack, there are times when I have to bring out the big bags.

Muji Hard Carry Case Luggage – Made of durable and lightweight polycarbonate, this travel case provides supreme comfort with its 360-degree turning wheels and an adjustable carry bag to fit any height.


What you see here are the three common sizes of luggage. The smallest one can carry up to 10kg, but of course, if you abuse it, can go up to 15kg or more. These are cabin trolley bags, which you can hand-carry on the plane and can fit in the overhead storage bin of most airplanes.  The one in the middle is the 20kg, which is a good size if you’re traveling with airlines that give you a 20kg baggage allowance. If you’re moving away permanently, the 30kg is ideal, as it can obviously fit more.

If you’re checking in your luggage, bear in mind that it will be subjected to very rough handling. That’s why it’s important that they can withstand being tossed around.

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Bag locks
The protection this offer goes two ways: it prevents people from opening your bag and taking something, and it also prevents them from putting something in. Watch enough episodes of Lock Up Abroad, and you’ll get what I mean.

Muji TSA Locks – The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) of the United States set the global standards to ensure safe travels and luggage requirements. These locks have passed TSA tests and criteria to protect and secure your check-in luggage.

If you are traveling to the United States, it’s important that you get a TSA-approved lock. Luggage passing through airport security are subject to random inspections. If your lock isn’t TSA-approved, they will cut it, since they won’t be able to open the lock with the TSA master key.

Toiletry kit
If you’ve been to Baguio, you’ll notice that all the bag of chips are puffed up because of the pressure due to the altitude. Imagine the pressure at 30,000 feet.  In more than a couple of occasions, I’ve had tubes squirting gels, pastes, and liquids in my kit. It’s a good thing I keep all my toiletries together, because it would have been a gooey mess.

Muji EVA Pouch – Made of strong and sturdy plastic material, this pouch can give extra protection to small, delicate belongings such as accessories and cosmetics.

Keep your toiletries in a sturdy plastic to prevent it from soiling your clothes (or that cool souvenir you picked up along the way). If you’re hand-carrying your toiletries, make sure that you follow the 3-1-1 rule.

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Reusable eco bags
We’ve lived through more than enough floods in the Philippines to realize that most of the rubbish that cause them are plastic bags. While cities and municipalities around Metro Manila are slowly banning the use of plastic bags, in other countries, you are asked to pay for each plastic bag that you use. That means if you don’t have your own bag, you either carry your purchases or pay extra for a bag.

Muji Nylon Shopping Bag – Travel with care for the environment. Avoid bringing or asking for plastic and paper bags. Reuse this washable nylon bag and fold it away when not in use. 

That’s why reusable bags are a great alternative: they last longer, and they’re compact enough that you can keep a couple in your bag. If they get dirty, just wash them and they’re ready to be used again.

Travel Pillow
Yes, I am such a pansy. I became the person I used to scoff at: the tourist who wanders around toting this bulky neck pillow.

Muji Well-Fitting Beaded Neck Cushion – Known as Muji to Go’s Best Selling item, this travel pillow provides support to your neck and back when going on long flights or road trips.

Traveling in itself takes you out of your comfort zone. While others thrive in that, there are some of us who doesn’t mind having a little reminder of home. Or at the very least, something to make sleeping at the airport a little more comfortable.

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While I am paid to write this piece, only the photos and captions are from Muji. These are my personal opinions. Muji has branches at Bonifacio High Street, Power Plant Mall at Rockwell Center, Greenbelt 3 and SM Mall of Asia. 

Article by Nina Fuentes

Nina doesn't aim to travel to every country in the world -- she just wants to travel to the places that means the most to her. She started traveling in 2006, and hopes to travel for as long as she can. Her travel blog, Just Wandering won the Best Travel Blog in the 2010 Philippine Blog Awards and in the 2011 Nuffnang Asia Pacific Blog Awards.

This Article Has 3 Comments
  1. AJ says:

    FTW ang neck pillow! You only realize its importance when you’re trying to get some of those elusive 40 winks at an airport terminal and ending up with a massive stiff neck a la Gloria Arroyo.

  2. ching says:

    how i wish the write-ups also include the price of the item.

  3. myschkinr says:

    im so glad ive stumbled upon this post it makes me more excited to travel more… im a newbie backpacker and i aim to travel at least one country a year and its my second year this year and this time ive encourage a new set of backpacking friends to go along with me!

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