As the travel industry begins to open back up for business, wanderlusters across the globe are itching to get themselves on the road, in the sky, and on the seas. As the last of the hot summer months ebb away and the temperatures start to fall, and perfect autumn getaways and winter holidays are just on the horizon, it’s a great time to book that trip.
But what’s the best way to make sure your most valuable and beautiful assets survive the voyage and return home safely to their little porcelain beds and velvet nests?
Protect your jewelry when you travel so you can be stunning wherever you go.
Learning how to pack jewelry doesn’t have to be difficult.
First, determine what kind of jewelry you will be bringing based on what kind of trip you are taking and where. Do your research on crime rates in the area you will be staying in, paying particular attention to theft.
Unless your itinerary involves a formal occasion such as a wedding or gala, consider leaving the more expensive jewelry at home. Some women even travel with fake engagement rings, replicas made of cubic zirconia, just in case of loss on vacation.
For someone who is very used to wearing one, a naked ring finger just feels "off" somehow. You can purchase these replicas for as little as $20, and they are surprisingly authentic-looking. Better, certainly, to lose one of these faux baubles at the beach than to have your most prized and sentimental possession swallowed up forever by ocean and sand.
If you do decide to bring the goods, make a list, and photograph each individual piece so you have a visual representation of your inventory. That way, if you lose your jewelry, you can provide the photos to the hotel or airline staff for reference. Or, if you suspect it stolen and need to file a police report, you can provide proof of ownership.
You can also provide these photos to your insurance company along with your expected dates of travel. This is a good idea to do anyway if you own expensive pieces, just for safety's sake.
The good news is that TSA does not require you to remove your jewelry during the security screening process, so you can just wear it through the gate. You can also request that you and your valuables are screened privately.
Keep in mind, you may be asked to take off larger pieces like statement necklaces, big cuffs, and bulky rings.
Also, the TSA recommends putting bulky jewelry or jewelry with a lot of metal into your carry-on bag. This is an extra security measure so you won’t forget to grab your jewelry out of the bin or risk it falling out during a security scan.
You can wear rings, necklaces, or wristwatches as long as they’re not oversized.
Always as a TSA officer if you aren’t sure of what to remove.
Got it? Great! Now we're ready to pack.
Keep it Together
When you travel with jewelry, there are many different ways to keep it safe and secure.
- Pack jewelry in a way that it doesn't attract unwanted attention. You probably have all the things you need for DIY jewelry packing lying around your house.
- A weekly pillbox is an excellent travel organizer and will give you seven slots for your rings and earrings. If you don't have one of these, an old Altoids tin will do in a pinch. Toss in a couple of cotton balls to keep jewelry separate and add another layer of protection.
- Poke earrings through a paper or styrofoam plate and secure with earring backs. Leave enough room between each pair, and be sure to wrap the plate in doubled-up plastic wrap to avoid any scratches or fabric snags en route. In a pinch, buttons will do the trick for keeping pairs of earrings together. Rubber erasers are also good for housing earring posts in transit - just don't lose those backs!
- Thread chain necklaces through a straw and clasp the ends, and it will stay intact and tangle-free. You can secure multiple straws with a twist tie or zip tie if needed. No straws handy? Lie necklaces flat and straight on plastic wrap and press to seal.
- Loop and fasten bracelets around a rolled-up hand towel. An empty toilet paper or paper towel roll will also work for this, but be sure to place it in a Ziploc bag in case the bracelets slip off in transit.
- Remember Kaboodles? You can get the same organization and space from a plastic fishing tackle box. Dozens of different-sized, sometimes removable compartments in a protective box. Ideal for travel.
If your jewelry does still happen to get tangled despite your best efforts, use a straight pin on the center of the knot to gently pull it apart as you work your way outwards. Go slowly, don’t rush, and never pull.
Draping the chain over a doorknob can help safely give you the leverage needed to hold it just taut enough, and a sprinkling of baby powder or baby oil can also help lubricate the really tricky tangles.
Roll small knots between your fingers to help loosen them up. Pack an eyeglasses cleaning kit with a cloth and solution for a quick polish and shine.
Keep It Close
Always keep your jewelry in your carry-on bag with you, preferably zipped up in an inside pocket. NEVER pack jewelry in with your luggage; as luggage can easily get lost. Do not leave your bag unattended in a car or in your suitcase, and don't hand it off to airline or hotel staff when checking bags.
Once you've touched down and checked into your hotel, you can request a personal safe from the front desk. Be sure to store jewelry in the safe whenever you are not wearing it.
Be advised that hotel safes are not 100 percent secure, as they can be taken from the room if not bolted to the floor, and hotel staff generally has access to it, but it is a better option than leaving them in your suitcase or out in the open.
You don’t have to worry about the jewelry you brought from home, but if you are traveling abroad, you may be asked to declare your purchases in customs on your returning flight or risk incurring fines or even detainment.
If you are a jewelry aficionado, you probably snagged some good deals on gorgeous pieces as a souvenir of your trip. If they are particularly expensive items, you definitely want to declare them.
As a general rule in Europe, for example, you can usually bring up to $800 worth of merchandise in your luggage without having to pay duty, though this amount is subject to vary depending on the country from which you are returning. The next $1,000 is taxed at 3 percent.
Pack Jewelry Safely When You Travel!
Your jewelry is unique and versatile. It’s how you accessorize, emphasize, and express your individuality.
It’s the personal signature you put on your outfit and overall look, making it ideal for vacation fashion. But while it certainly takes up less space than your clothes, it’s precious, often irreplaceable cargo and must be treated as such.
At Rellery, we realize that the most memorable moments are your own. That’s why we have tons of customizable jewelry options that are high-quality at a fair price. We can do this because we cut out the middleman so there aren’t ever any crazy markups!
Travel in style year-round. You deserve it.