6 Buys for $100 or Less That Make Travel Better

You want to make the most of your precious vacation time. You also want to make sure the time you spend getting to and from your destination is as stress-free and comfortable as possible. The good news is that you don't need to pay first-class ticket prices in order to achieve that level of comfort. Here are six buys that will make travel much smoother that won't cost you more than $100. (See also: 15 Affordable Gifts for Travel Lovers)

1. Global Entry and TSA Pre✓

If you're flying anywhere in 2018, you really should get Global Entry. For $100, you skip the long line at U.S. customs and it comes with TSA Pre✓, the federal government program that lets you skip the long security line at the airport. What's more, Pre✓ members don't need to remove shoes, laptops, liquids, belts, and light jackets. Global Entry does require you to fill out an online application and have an in-person appointment at a local Global Entry Enrollment Center. Global Entry is valid for five years. (See also: Credit Cards That Offer Free TSA Pre-Check and Global Entry)

2. An HD tablet

The newest HD Fire Tablet from Amazon gives you access to books, movies, music, email, social media, a camera, and anything and everything you need online via Wi-Fi while you travel. You can also download music, movies, and books before you get on the plane, and remain endlessly entertained while your tablet is on airplane mode. Currently, it's priced at $79.99 for 16 GB.

3. Comfortable pants

Is there anything better when you're traveling than a stretchy, relaxed fit pair of yoga pants or sweats? Even better, get a pair of convertible pants that you can easily zip off into shorts when the plane gets stuffy or the weather at your destination gets hot. A quality pair of yoga pants, sweatpants, or convertible pants are well under $100, and you can probably get a couple pairs.

4. A quality backpack

Rather than dealing with rolling luggage and heavy single-shoulder weekend bags, I prefer a high-quality backpack that also doubles as a daypack. I'm traveling to Ireland in 2018, and I'm in the market for a new travel backpack. It's best to look for a backpack that's easy to pack, and keep electronics organized. (See also: The 5 Best Backpacks)

5. Your airplane DIY comfort kit

If you're taking a redeye or even just a long flight, you need what I call a DIY comfort kit. A set including compression socks, an eye mask, ear plugs, a neck pillow, and a lightweight travel blanket will help you rest and combat any jet lag and help you hit the ground running once you arrive at your destination. I don't take any long flights without this set of items. A quick spin through Amazon, and you can build this comfort pack yourself for less than $100. (See also: 9 Things You Should Always Carry on an Economy Flight)

6. Travel insurance

Do you really need this? Yes. Yes, you do. You've worked hard to save to go on vacation and enjoy yourself. It's an investment, and like any good investment, you want to protect it. Think about everything that could come up while traveling, given the state of the world and the travel industry — trip cancellation, trip interruption, medical needs, and baggage loss or damage.

Travel insurance depends upon the total cost and length of your trip. For example, I recently priced a policy for my trip to Ireland. I'm planning to travel for 10 days and the cost of my trip will be about $2,000. Policies came in around the $100 mark for that kind of trip. You want to make sure to read the fine print of any insurance policy so you know what's covered and under what circumstances. You also want to check with your credit card companies and your own health and property insurance policies as they may have travel clauses that cover you. (See also: 6 Types of Travel Insurance Credit Cards Include That You Didn't Know About)

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