12 Essentials You Should Have in Your City Bag

There is nothing quite like the feeling of being less than ten minutes out the door and realizing you forgot an essential, something you really need but don’t have time to go back for. Taking the time to pack a backpack, tote, or handbag with a few essential items for a trip to the city could spare you that very feeling. It’s always better to be over-prepared than to find yourself in a pinch, spending additional money or time on a quick fix. Here is a list of 12 essential items to pack in your bag for your next trip into the city!

  1. 1. Portable Charger

    If you’re heading into the city, a charged phone is a necessity for directions, pictures, rides, emergencies, and more. Everyone can relate to the unfortunate realization of waking up to a phone that didn’t charge overnight. Carrying a portable charger can save you from any potential fiasco!

  2. 2. Back-Up Metro Card

    If you live in the city, you’ve surely experienced missing the subway by a few mere seconds and being stuck waiting an additional ten or more minutes. Carrying a back-up metro card with a one-way fare will save you from those times you forget to refill your card ahead of time. Check out some other helpful subway tips here!

  3. 3. Blister Relief Bandages

    As I’m sure many of you know, the experience of walking multiple miles in those oh-so-cute new shoes which gave you a blister, is a highly unpleasant one. You’ll never regret packing a couple extra blister relief bandages!

  4. 4. Headphones

    Sometimes the commute to and from the city can be slow or noisy, and after a long day, all you need is a pick-me-up song or podcast. For these occasions, I always recommend placing a pair of airpods or headphones in your city bag. 

  5. 5. Stain Erase Marker

    A large majority of my trips into the city include getting food, which inadvertently involves some kind of spill. For this reason, I recommend carrying a stain erase marker to save your clothes before you can throw them in the wash!

  6. 6. Mini Umbrella

    There’s nothing worse than running late and finding yourself without your mini/foldable umbrella during a rainstorm. Although they can be clunky when carrying smaller bags, I’ve learned it’s always best to be over-prepared!

  7. 7. Hand Sanitizer

    Carrying a miniature-size bottle of hand sanitizer is a must, especially if you plan on taking the subway. 

  8. 8. Healthy Snack

    Food tends to be super overpriced in the city, so it’s always a good idea to carry an on-the-go healthy snack, like a piece of fruit or trail mix. You don't want to be stuck buying an overpriced and unhealthy alternative!

  9. 9. Extra Cash

    It’s always a good idea to carry a little extra or emergency cash wherever you go, you never know when you’ll need it!

  10. 10. Sunglasses

    The sun’s glare, especially off city buildings, is at times unbearable. It doesn’t hurt to throw an extra pair of cute sunglasses in your bag just in case!

  11. 11. Safety Pins

    Unfortunately, there is no way to avoid a wardrobe malfunction, and they always seem to come at the worst times. I always like to carry a couple of safety pins in my bag for myself and my friends in case of a fashion emergency!

  12. 12. Travel-Size Deoderant

    I often find myself working up a sweat while in the city, especially when spontaneous adventures call for a little more walking than expected. If you have room, I highly recommend bringing along a travel size deodorant to combat the sweat.