What Is the Best Kit for Domestic Travel?

You don’t have to cross an ocean for travel to become a major hassle. Like an overseas journey, flying domestic is easier if you have the right stuff.

Jun 3, 2015
Outside Magazine
What Is the Best Kit for Domestic Travel?

Whether traveling first class or on a budget, you’ll want to have these things with you.    Photo: Kristian Karlsson


This month, I’ve either worked or played in eight different cities and three different times zones. That adds up to a lot of travel. Which is why I’ve carefully curated a personal travel kit that includes the perfect pieces for an on-the-go lifestyle. In addition to these eight items, my biggest piece of advice is to pack everything in a single bag. Whether you’re flying first class or using Craigslist rideshares to get across the country, having a single bag makes you way more versatile.

Topo Designs Mountain Pack  

  Photo: Topo Designs

Yes, $189 seems like a hefty price tag for a daypack, but the Mountain Pack’s 500-denier exterior, waterproof zippers, and heavy-duty strap loops give this 21.5-liter bag the durability to last decades of travel. The down-the-front zippers kept all my gear easily accessible even with the top cinched down, but I most appreciated how the lid can expand to create a few more liters of storage when I return home with more goods than I left with.

Super.Natural Men’s Base Boxer 175

  Photo: Super.Natural

These boxers ($40) are made from a stretchy blend of merino wool, polyester, and elastane, meaning they’re extra comfortable for all-day sitting if your domestic travel looks more like work and less like adventure. Even though they’re only 48 percent odor-fighting merino, I have worn them for a full week on a single wash—an essential component to keep in mind when you have limited space and have to limit how much underwear you pack.  

Kitsbow Power Wool Base Layer 

  Photo: Kitsbow

I’ve tested a variety of Polartec’s Power Wool—a bicomponent wool and synthetic blend—and give the material high marks in moisture wicking as well as supple next-to-skin feel. The athletic fit of this base layer ($115) works well under a ski jacket during a morning skin, and the Henley collar gives it just enough style to wear to dinner.

Arc’Teryx Index Dopp Kit

  Photo: Arc’Teryx

My Index Dopp Kit ($29) has remained locked and loaded with all of my toiletries for more than a year now, and I think it may be my favorite piece of travel gear. Here’s why: It’s the perfect size to fit everything from a razor to a stick of deodorant, there’s a mesh compartment for my toothbrush so nothing else gets covered in toothpaste residue, and it has a clear plastic front so I don’t have to take liquids out while passing through airport security. I treat it like a first-aid kit and replenish it after each adventure. Knowing I can grab it on a moment’s notice seriously cuts back on travel-prep stress. 

Lululemon ABC Pant 

  Photo: Lululemon

It’s simple: The four-way stretch on these pants ($128) makes them plenty comfortable for summit bids and airplane seats, but their slim fit and muted tones make them a respectable work pant as well. 

Salewa Mountain Trainer L Shoes 

  Photo: Salewa

The Mountain Trainer L ($199) has become my go-to walking shoe. I have yet to get a blister while wearing them, and the predominantly leather and muted black rubber upper make them look relatively dressy under slacks. Plus, the super-grippy Vibram soles saved my ass while scrambling on snowy granite when a storm chased me out of the Sierra a few weeks ago.

Ursa Major Essential Face Wipes

  Photo: Ursa Major

I take pride in how well I can clean up in a rest-stop bathroom. I’ve gone for weeks without a proper shower and still maintained a pretty high level of personal hygiene. While hand soap, deodorant, and a toothbrush can do wonders for stink mitigation, I never feel fully clean unless my face is. Ursa Major’s Essential Face Wipes (20-pack for $24) are compact, and the natural ingredients make my face feel refreshed and totally clean in a single use. 

Yurbuds Inspire 400

  Photo: Yurbuds

While I prefer cordless Bluetooth earphones when exercising at home, I tend to forget to charge them on the road, which just means one more thing to worry about. While the Inspire 400 ($50) may not be cordless, the silicon buds did sit snugly in my ears while running and never felt uncomfortable, even when I wore them for an entire ten-hour road trip when my stereo system bugged out.

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