There are thousands of travel products out there. Everything from checked luggage to carry-on bags, travel backpacks, neck pillows, toiletry bags, headphones, portable chargers and more. At CNN Underscored, our goal is to help you make easier decisions to help you travel better, smarter and more comfortably.
As the end of the year approaches, we’re looking for must-have travel products for our readers when they travel. If you’re looking to add to your travel wardrobe before heading out for your first vacation in 2023, consider one of these Underscored readers’ favorites.
20 dollars Amazon $10
Our picks for the overall best sleeping masks are also loved by readers — and for good reason. It comes with a nose wire and side flaps to help block out all light so you can get a good night’s sleep on any long flight.
$18 Amazon $13
There’s nothing worse than streaming your favorite TV show or movie from a plane, only to have your hands go numb from holding your phone. Not to mention the sore neck from looking down at your phone! This ingenious phone holder clips onto the small table in the seat in front of you for hands-free viewing.
The July Carry-All Backpack is an eye-catching product. Not only does it have enough room for everything you need to take with you (including room for a 16-inch laptop), it doesn’t compromise on style. Available in four colors, we love this backpack too.
Away Carry-On is popular for good reason. It’s a well-made, durable piece of luggage that we called the best overall hardshell carry-on in our tests. Not only are each style available in a variety of colors, but they are also available at reasonable prices.
Here’s our pick for the best travel pillow overall—in fact, we’ve dubbed it the “Goldilocks of travel pillows.” Readers also love it for its solid support and portability. The memory foam interior folds down in half, making it a great option for easy portability.
$42 Amazon $30
Not only is this travel backpack affordable, but it has all the storage space you need for travel—whether you’re traveling for business or pleasure. It holds everything from a laptop to a tablet and offers compartments for small accessories like passports and charging devices, so you can take it with you on the go.
$84 Cadence $76
We love these modular, magnetic, and leak-proof containers—and so do our readers! TSA-compliant, 100% leak-proof, customizable Cadence capsules are perfect for transporting liquids, gels, creams, and more.
Packing cubes are a traveler’s must-have. Our readers love this set of six bags from Veken. The set is reasonably priced at just over $20 and includes an extra large cube, large cube, medium cube, small cube, laundry bag, and a travel shoe bag to keep your dirty shoes away from your clean clothes.
$35 Amazon $33
This simple accessory is a game changer for travelers. The Bluetooth transmitter plugs into the inflight entertainment system, allowing you to receive sound directly through your wireless headphones. For just $35 — or less, when it’s on sale — this is a must-have when you’re traveling.
$14 Amazon $13
Keep some of your most important travel documents safe while you’re in transit with this dual-purpose passport and vaccine card holder. Not only does it keep your items in one place, but it also protects your personal information with its RFID blocking technology.
$230 Amazon $168
Our pick for the most affordable checked luggage offers plenty of storage in a stylish frame and is available in 15 colours. We love this suitcase for its smooth-rolling wheels, high capacity and light weight when empty, meaning you can pack more without exceeding the airline’s weight limit.
A weekender bag is a must-have in any traveler’s wardrobe. This one from Beis is a favorite because it costs less than $100 and offers tons of storage space, including a zippered bottom compartment for storing shoes and other travel essentials away from clothes.
This bag can hold a lot of carry-on bags. In fact, its 42 liter volume is one of the largest volumes allowed in the cabin. Readers also liked that it has a pop-out battery that keeps your device charged on the go.
Looking for more packing cubes than the standard 6-pack? This pack of eight means you’ll get even more room to store all your travel essentials for each trip. At a price that won’t break the bank, this is a premium set that will boost your organization.
If you’re looking for more room in your carry-on bag, Away The Bigger Carry-On is a great choice. This version has all the best components of the classic Away Carry-On and can hold more items while still fitting in most airline overhead bins.
When traveling, a leak-proof bottle is essential. After all, who wants to arrive at their destination with shampoo and moisturizer all over their clothes? CNN Underscored readers love this four-pack of silicone leak-proof bottles, which are available in fun color combinations to match your luggage.
$26 Amazon $16
Planning a trip abroad? International travel adapters are essential for charging devices while on the go. Our readers love this affordable option, which works in over 150 countries.
Perfect for overnight trips and on the plane, this travel backpack keeps all your essentials within easy reach. We love its simple design and useful features like space for a laptop, water bottle pocket, padded shoulder straps, and more.
$16 Amazon $14
Whether you’re traveling alone or with the family, this beverage can will keep your hands free. It can hold drinks and your phone, along with any other travel essentials, right on the handle of your suitcase.
$16 Amazon $13
Traveling with a digital luggage scale is essential. They’re small and take up little space, but they can save you a lot of money and stress when it comes to avoiding excess baggage fees. Our readers love this option from Freetoo, which is on sale for just $13.
50 U.S. dollars eBags $40
Underlined readers love this set of six packing cubes from eBags. Included, you’ll get one large cube, one medium cube, one small cube, and three slim cubes. Available in three different color options, each cube has a mesh top for easy viewing.
50 U.S. dollars Amazon $42
We love messenger bags for travel. Travel straight from the airport to your new destination with this versatile option from Travelon. It’s packed with organizational features to securely hold all your travel credit cards and other essentials, and it’s also equipped with RFID blocking technology.
Secure your luggage while remaining TSA compliant with these travel luggage locks. Set of four means there’s plenty of room for each of your bags or family members. For less than $20, the peace of mind you’ll get knowing your items are protected with these locks is well worth it.
$27 Amazon $23
This travel duffel doubles as a weekender bag, offering space to store clothes and other essentials for quick trips. At just over $20, it won’t break the bank, and you don’t have to sacrifice style—it’s available in 35 colors and designs.
Trust us: Travel shoe bags are a must. They’re an easy packing tool because they keep dirt and grime from your shoes from getting on your clothes. This 12-piece set is see-through so you can see which pair of shoes is in each bag when you arrive at your destination.
Looking for a travel credit card?Find out which cards CNN Underscored chose as ours best travel credit card Currently available.