Four Packing Essentials Youll Need if You Get Stranded at an Airport This Summer

Theres just one problem with taking a vacation in the summer: everyone else is on summer vacation! Between national holidays like Independence Day and people looking to spend their summer vacations at far-flung destinations, the airports are always kind of a nightmare during the warmer months of the year. If youre facing layovers, delays and cancellations this summer, youll be glad you packed these beat the heat essentials in your carry-on.

1. A neck pillow and blanket

You should always be prepared to sleep comfortably in an airport. Its not a fun prospect, but if you bring a pillow and blanket in your carry-on, youll be ready the next time a volcano blows or a war breaks out, and you get stranded in an airport for days. If you can squeeze it in, a folded-up air mattress is also a good idea. Nothing ruins a summer vacation like a bad night of sleep!

2. PowerBar

No, not the energy bar (though thats not a bad idea), but the portable charger. If you get stranded in an airport this summer, keeping your phone, laptop, tablet, or iPod charged may be the only thing between you and the loony bin. A device like a PowerBar can give you nearly a full charge, which means you can entertain yourself (or a pile of unruly kids) with ease.

3. A first-aid kit

A fully stocked first-aid kit can really make the difference when your summer travel plans hit a snag. Band-aids and anti-bacterial creams are obvious choices, but painkillers, face masks, and antiseptic wipes also make travel more pleasant. Toss in a small sewing kit to repair damaged clothes on the go and some anti-diarrheal pills in the event of food poisoning, and youll be all set.

4. A game

You probably have games on your phone or tablet, but when your battery dies, how are you gonna play em? Bring a travel-friendly card game or board game with you (something without many moving pieces), and you can engage your fellow travelers or traveling companions.