Tips for Traveling With Style

travel tips

Spring Break and Easter Vacation are fast approaching around here! If you’re like us, you’ve got plans to go somewhere warm for a little while, or just plans to travel “over the river and through the woods” to Granny’s house for the holiday.

Either way, you’re going to need to transport your “stuff” and thanks to these new totes and cases by Martha Stewart Home Office with Avery (available exclusively at Staples)….you have some great new options.

Here is a peek at some of the items you can choose from and a collection of traveling tips for saving your sanity!


travel totes


Of course this nice, BIG tote has proved priceless with the amount of traveling I’ve been doing lately. It worked perfectly for my recent trip to Austin and SXSW. I was able to fit everything I needed in it for the trip, including my laptop, so I only had to deal with one bag on the plane. I love the colors too. The gray is stylish but doesn’t show every scuff or bit of dirt it comes in contact with.


travel totes


If you are traveling with little ones (bless your heart!) you might appreciate the “hands-free” option that the laptop bag gives you. Just loop that strap across your body and you still have both hands free to corral kids! :-) It is also nice and roomy so you could easily fit your laptop, an ipad, books, magazines, snacks, etc.


travel totes


As weird as it sounds, I think I got the most practical use out of this little wristlet case! It’s the perfect size to hold the key items you need when going through the airport without having to rummage through your whole bag to try and find them! I hate that!

I put my phone, my credit card, my identification and some cash for tipping, etc. and I sailed through the airport just as easily as could be. I bet it would be great at an amusement park or some other vacation destination when you just need the basics with you. I really wish I’d thought of something like this a long time ago!


martha stewart tote


For entertainment on the plane, there’s nothing better than an iPad in my opinion. Laptops work, but even small ones take up the entire tray table! This convertible case tilts the screen at the perfect movie-watching angle and leaves room for snacks! Once again, I love the color. I’m really loving mint green lately. :-) I like to use plane time to catch up on shows I love but can never seem to find the time to watch! Like Downton Abbey. :-) And with small children, it’s an absolute life-saver. Even if you don’t let your kids watch much television at home, now is the time to break those rules. It’s all about distraction on long, boring plane rides! Even for adults! :-)


travel totes


Finally, I think I was most taken with these handy accessory pouches. I bet collectively we can think of dozens of ways these would come in handy while traveling! Especially with little ones!


Here are a few:

Baby wipes. Even if all your children are long out of diapers, don’t forget the baby wipes. They’re useful for washing hands, cleaning toilet seats, wiping down restaurant tables, you name it!

NEW toys and books. Something that they have never seen before will hold the attention far more than something that has been played with dozens of times already. The key to this, is to not bring them out to soon. Wait until the meltdown begins and then bring out the big guns.

Snacks. Meals on flights and airport food aren’t usually kid-friendly (or adult-friendly for that matter!), and nothing makes kids grumpy faster than being hungry and having nothing to eat. Bring snacks they are familiar with and don’t need refrigerating. Lollipops during take off and landing help avoid ear pressure and should keep kids quiet for at least 15 minute blocks at the beginning and end of the flight.

Art Supplies. Coloring books and crayons; a travel-size Etch-A-Sketch or magnetic sketcher; notebooks and stickers…..all encourage quiet, creative time.

Small Ziploc bags containing various “activity sets“:  two little pots of Play-Doh and two shape cutters; inexpensive action or animal figures; Post-it notes; paper and a paper punch; triple-wrapped presents or snacks (the unwrapping is the fun part!); a metal tray with magnets, card games, magnetic checkers game, etc.


For even MORE great ideas for keeping your sanity when traveling with kids…CLICK HERE to check out these great tips from my friend, and seasoned Mom traveler, Reagan.


martha stewart tote


The lucky winner is………

Screen Shot 2013-03-18 at 4.56.12 PM

And to win a tote and a set of accessory bags to take on your next trip…..leave a comment below adding your favorite travel tip!  (With kids or without!)

If you would like an extra entry into the contest….head on over to Instagram and follow me there @JillsGoodThings. Leave a comment on my Martha Stewart Tote Instagram photo. If you tag a friend in the comment you get another entry!  :-)

The winner will be announced on Monday, March 18, 2013.

Good luck!  And happy travels!


Share on Facebook10Tweet about this on Twitter5Pin on Pinterest295Google+0

Enjoy This Post? Never Miss Another!

Subscribe to Jillee's FREE email newsletter and receive more great tips and ideas!



  1. margaret says

    my trip advice—and i travel so much it isn’t funny—i almost forgot where i did live there for a while—-LOL—I have no children to travel with—just me—with all my pains from my body yelling at me to go back home—but anyways—my trip advice is to never be in a hurry—-get going way before the time you should be there—-take the time getting back and forth from the place of the trip—as if was a trip in itself–get it?
    sooooo the bags are packed —every thing is in order, right– transpertation is already –there to pick you up to get to the port—well–make sure you set the time for an hour before you thought you needed to leave—take your time–as if you never saw the way to the port before–RELAX,,,CHILL—–read a book–or watch a movie on a gaget–people watch[now this could be fun at times] and just plain smile and enjoy the trip—take your own food you enjoy eating–so you will not need to stop to fight the crowds—walk through the airport as if you had all the time in the world—for you will have[ cause you left way before the time lotted to get to the seat of the plane!!! right?—
    and by all means—GET A CASE THAT HAS WHEELES ON IT SO YOU CAN PULL IT—-one that thas to carry a case—will get sore ,tired, upset—and start the trip off in the wrong mood—
    just my 2cents is all—
    take it for what you wish—-for i have been there –done that—ad now when i do travel–it is so much nicer for me—-

    • LOUANNE says

      As an elder who moves slowly and shares your comment re: many aches and pains, I agree re: most important things being WHEELS. HAVING “WIGGLE” TIME, ETC. really works for me. Although my “young-uns” look at me like I am really strange when I choose to leave for the airport so far ahead of time. Another thing is GETTING BOARDING PASS ON-LINE PRIOR TO FLIGHT. Saves so much standing in line and is appreciated by airlines.

  2. Abby K. says

    My favorite travel tip is the one our pediatrician gave me when I had my first child. You mentioned using lollipops to avoid ear pressure. I used the milk bottle and now, sippy cups with straws, at take off and landings to help ease the pressure. Never had any problems or a complaint yet. :)

  3. M M says

    Most suitcases have a small outside pouch. Keep a strip of address labels in the pouch for easy identification, in case your luggage decides to take a separate vacation. Hopefully, temporarily. ID tags on the outside of luggage sometimes break off in handling.

  4. tillie says

    My favorite tip is an empty water bottle that can be filled after the security check. It is also a life saver when you have to stay buckeled in until they can come around and give you that little tiny cup of water

  5. Linda Navejar says

    Pack all your items together… shirt/pants/undies/jewlery in baggie. Then it is just a grab and go into the shower. If you do this for the whole family it is far less work… I also like to put all my items into a see thru bag from the dollar store. Once my clothing is dirty I return it to the bag, zip and place at the bottom.

  6. sewsurprising says

    I dont travel with children, but my travel tip is always photocopy passports and travel documents with accommodation details etc and leave with a family member. Also keep business cards on you, travel and holidaying is a perfect time to do some relaxed networking ;)

  7. kimS says

    Carefully determine how much clothing you need, then put some back in your closet! You can really make do with so much less. Handy wipes (cuz I hate airplanes and how dirty they are) are a fav. Gum for my ears. And ipod or some sort with a movie for those flights without (many are now) and headphones. Lots more, but not enough time as it’s midnight!!

  8. Kelly says

    Be sure you have any prescriptions , contact lens case and glasses with you in your carry-on. You really don’t want to be without any of those if your checked bag gets delayed or lost.

  9. says

    Love these but unfortunately we don’t have a Staples near us for me to check them out but I could probably get one online if I don’t win one here….Loving the pink one.

    My travel tip is for traveling International. Always take a photo of your passport and put in your luggage and not with you on the plane as well as any other important documents that you will be carrying with you like prescriptions.

  10. Michelle Bartlett says

    I love the Martha Stewart Totes and tried to purchase one last week. The were sold out. They are large enough and stylish enough to always look great and always be prepared for anything!

  11. Rosemary S. says

    Hi. I would love to win a tote…they look great.

    My favorite tip is this. You know those free shower caps that you get in hotels? Well, at the airport security line, you have to take off your shoes. I take off my shoes and put a shower cap on each foot…those floors are FILTHY! I protect my feet and my shoes are in their security bins. I then get through security, get my shoes back on and throw the shower caps away.

    All are happy. (hey, it works!)

  12. flerbiejean says

    While I don’t do a whole lot of airplane travel, I do a lot of hotel stays (business-related trips). Two things have been my life-saver!

    One, I always have a toiletries bag packet with smaller versions (if possible) of all my favored toiletries from home, including a hairbrush, toothbrush, and toothpaste. (Before a trip, I will check the levels of items to see if I need more, but everything is already packed in the toiletries bag, so I don’t need to worry about forgetting contact lens solution, band aids, ibuprofen or not having needle and thread.)

    The second thing is a “trip list” I keep on my computer (now my iPad!) to remind me to take a triple outlet extender, a charging cord for my iPad/iphone, small plug-in air freshener/febreeze, and my “travel” office that has pens, mechanical pencil, sharpie pen, pop-up tape, small scissors, etc.

    I may not use everything I pack, but if I travel with office colleagues, they know who has the extra charging cord, needle/thread, and a few dollars in quarters!

  13. NaDell says

    When we drove 2,500 miles with our four kids in the car (in four days with two days between each driving day visiting family), I changed the idea I saw on Pinterest of clothespinning dollar bills to the window visor and taking one away when the kids are bad into a more positive behavior reward. Since our kids at that time were ages 9, 7, 4, and 1 1/2, I decided that they could each earn a quarter for every 15 minutes they were good that we were travelling (not at rest stops or restaurants, just driving.) Now, this could have been $10 a day per kid, but it wasn’t (thankfully!) We had a pile of quarters from a jar at home and added them to little makeup bags when they earned them (on the :00, :15, :30, and :45). When we stopped for gas they could pick something to snack on (even though I did bring snacks in the car) or save it for souvenirs later. I’d count up how much money each kid had to spend and my husband used his debit card to pay and then those quarters spent went back into the giveaway pile. The kids enjoyed it, looked for the time to be that time, and time flew right on by-other than our baby yelling way too much! =)

  14. Jen says

    The best tip that I can think of for travelling would be to make a list of everything that you need to pack , about a week before you even start packing. That way you have time to add or cross off things that you may need, or decide that you don’t need! then, when you are packing you can cross off what you have put into your bag. A perfect tool for not forgetting ANYTHING!!

  15. Lesley Symons says

    My favourite travel tip; homeopathic remedies. If you tend to suffer from swollen ankles after a long flight, Nat Mur will prevent this. If you suffer with painful ears, you need Kali Mur. Absolutely brilliant!

    Also I keep a little “sleep kit” in my carry-on bag, this includes earplugs, sleep mask, an mp3 player with soothing music to get me into sleep mode.

    And of course my Ipad and Kindle for entertainment!

  16. Carol says

    Leave the kids at home! As a 20 year airline employee, I couldn’t even begin to count how many times bags are lost (yes, even the flight crew’s bags) always pack something /anything to change into at your destination, in your carry-on bag….whether it be a swimsuit and flip flops or PJs.

  17. Karen P says

    Wear slip on shoes when going through security. Pack gum, pills, ipad, iphone (turn off for take off and landing) in your small carry on to have handy. I like the idea of baby wipes so you can freshen up on the plane. I put any liquids in your suitcase. I pack all my charging cords in one of the front pockets of my checked in suitcase because you can be sure they are going to want to have a closer look at those. LOL I pack any breakable in the middle of my suitcase surrounded by clothing. I can picture my suitcase being thrown around so I pack accordingly. Thank you for the opportunity to win this lovely bag. I love bags, I probally have too many but you can never have enought right?
    cheers! Love you blog, great tips.

  18. Bon says

    When my boys were younger they each took a backpack filled with several toys they picked out. I would purchase a few new ones & sneak them in as a surprise in addition to travel size games we played together. Those Martha Stewart accessory pouches would be awesome for holding crayons just for the trip as well!

  19. says

    My best tip is to not take your regular purse/handbag that is full of “stuff”. Downsize the contents, removing the unnecessary items- so you the bag is lighter in weight…and you have room for a few additions during your travel. Things I almost always inherit when traveling is carrying my husband’s wallet, cell phone, or his keys in my purse and a smaller purse will not allow for all of it especially if I have my coupon caddy, notepads, extra tissues etc taking up space.

  20. Angela E. Sledge says

    I always pack a dryer sheet in with my clothes. That way they smell clean and fresh. I put the dryer sheet on the vent in my hotel room to make it smell clean and fresh too.

  21. Theresa says

    I pack a small purse in my luggage, then just keep my wallet and phone in the front pocket of my carry on bag. It gives me one less thing to carry, and an extra hand to wrangle kiddos.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *