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Get ready for takeoff! Flight attendants share their go-to travel products

Get ready for takeoff! Flight attendants share their go-to travel products

With spring in full swing and summer just around the corner, we're all eager to switch on our "Out Of Office" messages and go into vacation mode. If you are one of the lucky ones who has a trip planned and booked, your mind has probably turned to a packing list as long as a CVS receipt. We talked to the people who have literally made flying their job — flight attendants — to get their expert recommendations on travel products.

Cindy Kowalewski, a private flight attendant with 10 years of experience, has traveled to 100 countries including Seychelles, Myanmar, Maldives, Slovenia and many more. Valerie Fraser is an in-flight crew member, photographer and foodie who catalogs the best dishes for every layover and leisure trip on her secondary Instagram account, @flightattendantfoodie.

Now let's get ready for takeoff with their tried-and-true must-haves.

Having an inflatable travel pillow not only ensures your neck stays nice and comfy en route, it also saves space in your luggage! This one comes with a handy carrying pouch and easily inflates with just three breaths.
$15 at Amazon
These comfy earplugs are designed to actually stay in your ears so they can block out noise on airplanes and in hotel rooms. Plus, wearing earplugs can help prevent painful popping during flights!
$7 at Amazon
Planes can be really cold, and sometimes those flimsy blankets they hand out just don't cut it. This pretty scarf doubles as a soft blanket so you'll stay nice and toasty in the air while looking effortlessly stylish.
$12 at Amazon
These polyester and foam sleep masks are lightweight, comfortable and washable. The contoured design gives your eyes some breathing room, and they come in 17 colors, from a shiny magenta to the pretty purple shown here.
$11 at Amazon

"My must-pack items are an inflatable neck pillow, Mack’s Dreamgirl earplugs, a big warm scarf that can double up as a blanket and a sleeping mask. I love Bucky 40 Blinks Eye Masks, because they have molded cups, cute colors and patterns, and are so comfortable," says Kowalewski.

Formulated with hydrating ingredients like ceramides and niacinamide, this lightweight, oil-free moisturizer works for normal, dry and sensitive skin. Plus, it's free of parabens, allergens and fragrances.
$18 at Amazon

"Flying can dehydrate your skin like no other, so I have to have a good lotion on hand," says Fraser. "One of my favorites is from La Roche Posay."

This mask contains the ultra-hydrating ingredients of coconut oil, shea butter and muramura seed butter to help your kips feel smooth and flake-free by the time you reach your destination.
$24 at Amazon

"I always bring a hydrating lip balm when I fly. A flight attendant friend just gifted me the Laneige Lip Sleeping Mask, and I really like it," Kowalewski says.

There's a reason Hoka sneakers have become a favorite of people who are always on the go — they are incredibly supportive and comfortable. The popular Mach 5 model comes in nine fun colors, like the yellow pair shown here.
$140 at Zappos

"I always pack extra underwear in case of delays, a swimsuit for sunny destinations and a pair of leggings, so I can run downstairs at a hotel without putting on a full outfit. I also make sure to pack a comfortable pair of sneakers for walking," says Fraser.

Weighing in at just one pound, this steamer is made for taking with you — it even comes with a travel bag. It heats up in less than a minute so you can give yourself a quick once-over before you arrive at your destination.
$44 at Amazon

"I keep a mini steamer in my bag when I travel because hotel irons aren’t the best," Kowalewski says.

A wide-brimmed Panama hat is the perfect travel accessory. Not only will it hide unkempt vacation hair, it'll also shade your face on sunny days — and it's super cute, too!
$230 at Amazon
This Nordstrom hat is another fantastic option, and under $50! It comes in four neutrals, from ivory to white to the tan shade pictured here.
$39 at Nordstrom

"When you’re really on the go, Panama-style hats can hide a lot of things — especially that unwashed, messy hair — and will still make your outfit look fab! Rag & Bone has an exceptional one," says Kowalewski. For a more affordable option, try Nordstrom's $39 version. (It comes in four colors, too).

This set of packing cubes is perfect for storing and separating clothing in your suitcase (think shirts from socks or clean from dirty). Each set has one small, one medium and one large zippered pouch, along with a dry bag.
$40 at Nordstrom

"I really love my Herschel packing cubes. The set I have comes with a wet bag too, which is perfect for when I have a bathing suit that didn’t dry completely," Fraser says.

Longchamp's water-resistant nylon and leather tote cleverly folds small for easy packing, then unsnaps once you need it. Its roomy size and classic good looks have turned it into a cult favorite among frequent travelers.
$155 at Nordstrom

"For an everyday travel bag, I cannot live without my Longchamp. It’s waterproof — and with travel something always explodes in my purse — so it’s easy to clean up," Kowalewski says. "Be sure to pack your carry-on with possible delays or detours in mind. Bring a snack, refillable water bottle, change of clothes and a great book." Kowalewski isn't the only one who loves this tote — it happens to be a favorite of Kate Middleton, who's been a fan of the bag since her college days and has been spotted carrying it throughout airports. Talk about traveling like a royal!

This cute carry-on is most famous for its handy TSA-approved USB phone charger. It's small enough to fit into the overhead bins of most major airlines, but can hold plenty of clothes, thanks to its interior compression system.
$295 at Away
As a more affordable alternative, this Traveler's Choice carry-on also has a built-in USB port and comes in four colors, including a light pink and this lovely blue!
$88 at Amazon

"I love all the colors of Away luggage," says Kowalewski. "I have pink and it's easy to spot when it comes through the baggage carousel because it's unique. The lie-flat design and two compartments easily separate my clothes to stay organized." Trying to save some souvenir money? This Traveler's Choice carry-on is a great affordable option.

The reviews quoted above reflect the most recent versions at the time of publication.