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Top Five Necessities Forgotten About when Planning Vacation

Depending on the type of trip you have planned, and whether you will drive your own car, take advantage of car rentals, ride a train, plane, bus, or boat, you could forget any number of useful items.  Consider the following suggestions for must-haves you might have overlooked:

Bring power supplies:

Most of us these days seem to be carrying more electrically powered gadgets than we once did; everything from laptops to hair dryers.  Some need to be charged for several hours.  Hotel and motel rooms, hostels, bed and breakfasts, and certainly camp sites, are usually a bit short on electrical outlets.  A power strip is the solution - all your high-tech can plug in together.  Especially if you pack a personal fan (a really great idea for low-budget lodgings), you will need all the access you can get! Additionally, when you are packing up, they are all consolidated in one spot. 

Be prepared for any activity:

Many hotels and motels have swimming pools, and there are few things more disappointing than gazing at the inviting water and not being able to dive in.  The same is true for taking a vigorous walk - how sad to look out at a gorgeous view and not be equipped to get out into it!  Don't forget specialized clothes and footwear, such as bathing suits and sturdy shoes that will open up opportunities - even for teenagers, who sometimes scorn such details.

Carry your medicine chest:

Health disruptions without your accustomed remedies can be miserable.  Although you will probably remember to pack your prescription medications, many non-prescription items can ease discomfort temporarily.  It is so much more convenient, especially when you are feeling terrible; to have such things in your luggage than to try to find a nearby open store that sells your favorite formulations. 

Exploit your memberships:

Many museums and other institutions offer reciprocal privileges and other benefits when traveling.  For example, many science museums are members of a coalition, and your AAA or AARP affiliation can get you discounts in many settings.  Bring your membership cards! 

Stay in touch:

Even though many of us live and die by the 'contacts' file of our cell phone, compile a list of individuals, services and businesses that you deal with regularly.  So many important people in your life (baby/dog sitter, newspaper delivery boy) may lack a directory listing! Although not a luggage item, as such, money in various forms is another critical item!  You will need to pay for lodging, food, all the entertainment and sight-seeing, and transportation, whether you fly, take a train, go by boat, drive the family beater, or take advantage of the conveniene of car rentals in Augusta, GA, or elsewhere.

Michele Filipkowski is on a team of elite writers who have contributed to numerous blogs and news sites. Follow her @micheleashley89

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