Starling Travel

January 24, 2007

Travel Essentials: Ear Plugs & Eye Mask

Filed under: Travel — Laura Moncur @ 4:08 pm

Sweet Dreams Sleep MaskI didn’t used to have ear plugs and an eye mask in my toiletry bag, but over the years they have been bought in desperation on trips and they just stayed with the travel items.

Eye Mask: This is a travel essential if you are traveling with someone else who has a different sleep schedule than you do. Mike doesn’t go to bed until 1 or 2 am, but I’m pretty tired at 9 pm. Rather than let him upset my schedule or have him stumble around in the dark, I use an eye mask. Then he can turn on whatever lights he needs and I can sleep as if I’m in a dark room. This is also helpful if you want to sleep late on your vacation. Light from the window can creep around the curtains and wake you up. Sleeping in is a luxury of our vacations that I don’t want to sacrifice to sunlight. If Al Pacino had packed an eye mask in his toiletry bag, he might have avoided shooting his partner. Hear that? An eye mask could save your life!

Soft Foam Earplugs (10 pair)Ear Plugs: My little box of earplugs was bought in the hotel gift shop at the Nevada Landing Hotel and Casino about seven years ago. We bought them because the people in the room next to us were partying hard and we were trying to get a good night’s sleep before a long day of work at Comdex. We were exhausted and desperate to sleep and the ear plugs helped drown out the noise of the partying folk next door. I have used them many times and in situations where I never expected to need them. They came in handy a couple of years ago when we visited my grandpa. Since our last visit, he had lost hearing, so the television was blasting at all hours of the day and night. Fortunately, the ear plugs allowed us to sleep despite the sound of Matlock solving crimes at all hours.

Ear plugs and an eye mask are items that just can’t be jury-rigged. If you have noisy neighbors or need sleep during a brightly lit time of the day, there is really no way to “hack” something to fix the problem. Ear plugs and an eye mask take hardly any space in your toiletry bag, but they are life-savers when you find yourself in a situation when you need them. That’s why they made my list for travel essentials.

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