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Top 5 Recycled Travel Tools and Toys

Posted by on December 20, 2011

We like to be frugal and re-use things when possible. Here a few ideas of things to assist in your travels. We’ve found them useful and hope you do too!

1. Plastic shopping bags

It is so useful to have a stash of these in your backpack. I love to use them to collect trash as I go. I put the bag in the seat pocket and fold it down around the magazines and front of the pocket to make a trash can. This doesn’t work in all seat pockets…the 737 seat pockets are larger…but it’s perfect for some planes. Otherwise you can just stow it at your feet for easy access.

2. Bubble Wrap

Found this cute critter on Teen Scene @ Fredricksen Library

A flight attendant friend of mine says she always packs fruit in bubble wrap and it remains bruise free. Apples, bananas, and peaches are all fruits she has successfully transported. I have yet to try it but will on my next flight.

3. Restaurant Crayons

One of our helpful readers said he always saves the crayons they get at restaurants to keep permanently in his travel bag. If you run out of things to color on, just color on the air sickness bag and make a hand puppet!

4. Play-Doh (it’s not free, but you probably have some in the house)

 Another reader favorite, Play-Doh is great for entertaining when traveling. You can bring a few small cookie cutters. We like to use Littlest Pet Shop Animals to make footprints. A few things to remember: Play Doh is considered “liquid or gel” by the TSA and can only be brought on in containers sized 3 ounces or less. You need to pack these in your quart-sized bag along with your other liquids to declare at the checkpoints. One last thing, be responsible and don’t let the Play-Doh get smashed into the seats and carpet. This is where that plastic bag comes in handy. As pieces fall and get dirty, just pick them up and toss them in the trash bag.

I have been lucky on occasion and found small Play-Doh Kits such as this one. With a play mat and fun tools it’s a great travel item. Found this one at Amazon.

5. Kleenex

Directions for this and many other great preschool crafts at

This ghost craft is just one of the many things you can do with a Kleenex. What else can you and your child think of? It doesn’t have to be a permanent creation. Your hands can be puppets with the Kleenex on top for hair; you can twist it into a bow/mustache for a silly game of Villian (mustache), Hero (bow tie), Heroine (hair bow)…Use your imagination and you can have lots of fun! Remember to keep and “indoor voice” while locked in a tube with 180 others. 🙂