Hey you lovely ladies, how many of you keep a pre- travel checklist?
Being a frequent globetrotter, I have a pretty standard pre-travel checklist saved in Evernote. You know, all the mundane part of travel such as checking visa requirement, researching travel warnings, getting vaccination and checking expiry dates of travel documents just to name a few. It’s a long list and if you’re travelling to developing countries this stage of travel planning does take a bit of time and effort.
And unfortunately, for us globetrotting ladies, leaving home for weeks of travel simply means more preparation work and an even bigger pre-travel checklist than our male counterparts. I’m not talking about your travel beauty products or finding your pair of pretty yet practical travel shoes – there’re three other (slightly embarrassing) things to do to go on to each #DameTraveller’s pre-travel checklist that are way more important than those. And for some reasons I managed to have these slipped my mind a couple of times. So here you go ladies, by publicly shaming myself and sharing this list I’m hoping you don’t have to go through the same humiliation as I did. Sorry gents, this is strictly girl’s talk only (feel free to entertain yourself with this travel beauty list for men here in the meanwhile).
1. Wax up a storm!
Okay, hair removal might not be exactly fun, but it can be painfully embarrassing if you don’t have this important task properly done before your trip. I’ll start with my confession: it was a really hectic week and I had a last minute business trip to South Korea. Partly because it was during the winter month and partly because I ran out of time before hopping on the plane the following day, I thought I could get away from not waxing (crazy thought I know). But obviously that wasn’t the case when I got to my hotel room to find that my hotel client has arranged for me a complimentary massage at their day spa. Well, that was really really sweet of them, but honestly, I was due for a round of waxing and the sight wasn’t that pretty! Of course, the following day I dashed into a beauty salon and managed to get myself a full body wax. But no doubt a little bit of pre-travel preparation could have saved some humiliation and travel money! I was sent this Veet EasyWax electric roll-on kit that comes in a self-heating device which is super duper easy to use, leaving my skin so touchably smooth with no fuss at all. The beauty of waxing is that the result could last up to four weeks so it’s perfectly suited for those month-long travel. Having a home waxing kit is simply handy for those days when I can’t fit in a beauty salon visit before I fly off. I guess I have no excuse to not tackle this (hairy) beast before I jet-set again…
“Hairy days, don’t care!” Umm sorry, not me, kitty.
2. Shop your fave tampons
Ladies, don’t take for granted that you’ll be able to buy tampons wherever you are overseas. In some Middle Eastern and Asian cities, you won’t believe that tampon is such a rare commodity! You can score a pack only if you visit a specialised organic beauty stores or high end department store, but they aren’t readily available from the vending machines or convenience stores. Here’s a tiny snapshot of the state of play with the tampon situations around the world thanks to a intelligence report curated by the blogger Carly over at LipglossAndDaBackpack:
Pakistan – tampons are impossible to find even in drugstores.
South Korea – tampons are available but are limited in brands and sizes.
Vietnam – tampons are found in major cities only but not in every urban supermarket.
Cuba – both tampons and pads are rare find and most hotels don’t have extra stock!
Indonesia – the chance of finding tampons in small towns is fairly slim.
Seriously, hunting for a place to buy tampons when emergency hits – ain’t nobody got time for that. And good luck with trying to explain yourself when asking for tampons at the shops while not speaking the local language – umm, #awkward.
I was once stuck in Beijing where I paid an astonishing $12 for a small pack of this precious little thing. The dreaded monthly flow is stressful enough for us ladies, let alone the pain of getting ripped off. So here you go my fellow #DameTravellers, do yourself a favour and always remember to shop a few packs of tampons to bring along on your next trip! The custom officer might secretly judge you seeing how you stuff your bags with tampons, but seriously, who cares?
3. Buy new underwear
Here’s another confession to make. I’ve left my unwashed lingerie and underwear in the wardrobe of my hotel room twice. I’ve had to ring the reception desks when they asked me to describe how the set looked like. I was totally like, “Err, that’s awkward!’. They weren’t the prettiest set of lingerie I have and have survived quite a few washes, but I swear they were my most comfortable set for long haul flights. The hotel ended up wrapping them nicely and mailed them back to me, but I was wondering how many people have seen my embarrassingly old lingerie set before they were posted out. Umm.
Another occasion when I realised I simply need to pack decent underwear whenever I travel was during my onsen trip to Japan. Yep, I’m talking about those hot spring places when you simply need to stripe off in front of your girlfriends. No shame among true BFFs, right? But who knows if that humiliating story of me and my Disney princess underwear would get told at my 40th birthday… (hey you promised you won’t judge!).
So please ladies, go through the piles of underwear you’re planning to pack for your next trip and be ruthless – any piece that’s discoloured or with Pokemon printed on it simply need to go!
So tell me Dear fellow globetrotting ladies, does any of these things to do on my pre-travel checklist bring back some (embarrassingly) awkward moments from your past travel? Is there anything else you wish you’ve done before travelling abroad? Now that I’ve embarrassed myself enough on the internet, it’s your turn so be sure to share your tales with us all in the comments below – DO TELL! 🙂
Until next time. Stay adventurous.
Disclaimer: This post was written in collaboration with Veet while all opinions and travel tales are genuinely my own.