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What’s in Your Bag? Hilton hospitality pros share essential packing tips

What’s in Your Bag? Hilton hospitality pros share essential packing tips

With this summer expected to be a record-breaking travel season, people are not only dusting off their suitcases, they are also scrambling to remember how to assemble the right packing essentials.

We talked to 13 Hilton hospitality professionals on the best way to pack, so that you can hit the ground running with your next vacation. Whether you’re packing for business, leisure or ‘bleisure’ (the blending of business and leisure travel), consider the following helpful tips and advice from Hilton executives and property team members:

Sofia Drosos, General manager, Hilton Garden Inn Lima Miraflores
“No matter where I am going or what type of trip I am embarking on, I always pack a comfortable pair of walking shoes to ensure my feet are ready to get through a day of exploring. I look at every trip as an opportunity to learn and enjoy new places, such as Miraflores, which offers everything from great shopping, spectacular oceanic views and seaside dining to street art murals, parks and archaeological sites.”

Jimmy Sarfraz, general manager, Signia by Hilton San Jose
“When I travel, I always take my noise cancelling headphones and my paper tablet. This way, I can enjoy great music as well as take notes of whatever inspirational thoughts I have during my trip.”

Mario Thompson, commercial director, Hilton San Diego Bayfront
“Single-use travel toiletries are bulky and a hassle to restock before and after each trip. I prefer to use reusable and refillable toiletry containers that are easily packed and limit the amount of unnecessary waste. Taking a lead from Hilton San Diego Bayfront, I’ve also cut out all single-use plastic beverages from my travel routine. Instead of relying on an airport café for a pre-flight water, I bring along a reusable metal bottle that can filled up at a water station.”


Cedric Nubul, general manager, Hilton Singapore Orchard
“The most important item that I pack is a family picture to be placed in the hotel room that will remind me of home.”

Clavel Jacques-Louis, General manager, Embassy Suites by Hilton Miami International Airport
“My must-haves items when I travel include outlet adapters that can accommodate the chargers for my cell phone, watch, laptop and professional camera in any country I visit.”

Glenda MacLean, general manager, Hilton Saint John
“I always bring my ‘Pack It and Forget It’ carry-on. While grounded, I always have a carry-on ready and packed with travel-sized toiletries, sanitizer, wipes, granola bars, travel binoculars as well as a charger and backup battery for my phone. P.S. Travel binoculars are highly recommended when staying somewhere like Hilton Saint John. With so many rooms featuring panoramic harbor views, you are sure to be treated to a show by the sea dogs or the many sea birds in the area.”

Cindy Racco, general manager, Waldorf Astoria Park City
“I bring along my favorite hair and skincare products. My go-tos are a Dyson Supersonic hair dryer, Oribe hair products, Dr. Barbara Sturm Deep Facial Moisturizer and Nivea Lip Balm.”

Ben Ly, General manager, Zachari Dunes on Mandalay Beach, Curio Collection by Hilton
“When thinking about the essential need-to-pack items when traveling for leisure to Mandalay Beach, three things immediately come to mind: A day-pack to ensure I have all the gear I need to explore the nearby Channel Islands National Park, a tripod and a phone/camera to capture the countless ‘Instagrammable’ spots and sunsets and several bathing suits to enjoy the resort’s reimagined pool area or the sugary sands of Mandalay Beach.”

Felix Schlokat, manager, Hilton Tulum Riviera Maya All-Inclusive Resort
“My biodegradable sunscreen is a must. I want to make sure I am respectful to the environment and local fauna while not returning as a human lobster.”

More than two years into the pandemic, Americans are beginning to realize the negative effects of being grounded. In fact, a recent Hilton survey* revealed that 76% of U.S. travelers experience negative feelings when they go too long without a vacation, with burnout (41%) and boredom (36%) being among the top emotions.

No matter where travel takes people this summer, the most important thing to bring along is an open mind. “Going on vacation to get away from the stressful day-to-day routine and spending some quality time with my loved ones is top priority,” Schlokat says. To that end, 39% percent of Americans surveyed feel mentally refreshed when reconnecting with their partner during vacation. “Don’t forget to bring the positive energy, positive vibes and lots of love!”