As I was just in Europe for 2 1/2 months, there were a few items that were just what I needed to help make my time the most excellent.
This is crucial when you don’t know where you’re going to sleep. I was often with friends that had a bed for me. But when certain friends didn’t or when I stayed in a hostel, it was just easier to have the bag. Having one gives you the freedom of crashing with people regardless of whether they have a bed or a couch, as you can post right up on the floor with no problem. That’s one of the reasons I paid to have an excellent bag. I use a MontBell bag because I like the fit of it, but there are comparable bags from Western Mountaineering that are American-made. Those two brands are, in my opinion, the best in the business. And probably Feathered Friends is up there, too.
I’ve spoken about this before, but this is wonderful to have to add a couple degrees to your sleeping bag, to use instead of your sleeping bag on hot nights (like every night during the summer in London without air conditioning or air flow). Also, they’re great for long travel days, on planes, trains, and busses. When it gets a bit too cold, just pull out the liner and slip it over your legs. Works like a charm every time.
I love these little things. They're not the climbing-grade carabiners that lock to ensure your life is safe, but the tiny travel biners that ensure your gear is safer. I grab a couple and put them on every externally-facing zipper I have on my bags. They look like a little complex carabiner to the casual eye, but they also lock. So, if somebody tries to make sly and go for the bag, they can’t unzip it at all without the right type of particular pressure.
Nalgene bottles and similar have been my go-to for carrying soap, shampoo, conditioner, and mouthwash. They are simple to carry, make it so you don’t waste by buying new bottles in every location, and they’re usually clear so you know exactly what’s in them.
Whether RFIDs are a real threat or not is up for debate. What isn’t, however, is that I feel more comfortable having my passport (in a passport wallet) and identity cards (in a trifold wallet) behind RFID blocking material. Maybe it’s unnecessary, but at least I don’t have to worry about the technology, even if it does exist.