Happy New Year! I hope you all enjoyed the holidays and are now ready for a few whirlwind months of trade shows. Next week is The PPAI Expo in Las Vegas and as I have done in year's past, I am thinking about what to wear and bring. We listed everything you'll need for the actual show in the December issue's Trade Show Preview, so I thought I would focus on what you need while traveling to and from the shows. Dressing and packing for airplanes sounds easy enough, but jeans get scratchy after five hours in one position, sweaters can be too hot and T-shirts can be too light. Other than essentials (tickets, wallet, ID), here are the items that will make your trip easier:
Pants with Stretch: The first part of this is the most important: Wear pants. You may not get kicked off of a plane for wearing shorts, but it is just easier to move around comfortably in cramped areas if you do not have to worry about how much skin you have showing. (Also, nylon stockings or pantyhose are likely to catch fire if you are sliding down the emergency exit, so dresses and stockings are literally dangerous.) As for stretch, you don't need leggings to be comfy. Many jeans and dress pants for men and women include stretch materials to keep you comfortable and professional on long trips.
Book Bag: Book bags have many pockets so you can easily find things when you need to in a car, instead of dumping out your whole purse. They are less likely to bump into bystanders as you navigate your way down tiny aisles on planes and trains. They also are better for your back than putting all the weight of a purse or laptop bag on one side of your body.
Noise-canceling Headphones: You might be able to tune out a crying baby, the booming music of the person sitting next to you or loud conversation behind you, but not everyone has this ability. That is why noise-canceling headphones are worthwhile purchases for those who travel often. They allow users to sleep on red-eye flights (something I have yet to master).
Hand Sanitizer: The shared magazines on airplanes are germ-infested. The armrests, bathroom door handles and person sitting next to you might be too. Err on the safe side to avoid being sick on your trip by using hand sanitizer.
Bonus: All of these items have promotional versions. Search for them on www.promomarketing.com.
See you in Vegas!