I travel to New York City every week for work and have to carry everything that I need for the day in a backpack. It’s a lot of things to carry and it does get quite heavy, so I’ve narrowed it down to just the essentials. I’m an assistant buyer for a Northeastern department store here in the United States. The company operated 49 stores and with my buyer, I am responsible for assisting in buying, stocking and managing the young men’s and boys’ 4-7 clothing departments.
Mostly every Wednesday we take a bus to the city. It’s about a 2-hour drive from where I live. We get in around 7:30 am and we arrive in the city around 9:30-10 am depending on traffic. What we do here all day is visit clothing vendor and they show us what products we should sell in our stores each season. Currently, we have over 75 vendors that we carry their clothing and accessories in our stores. We usually see about 5-6 vendors a day for an hour or two at a time.
During the day I need a variety of different things from notebooks and pens to headphones and snacks. Here’s everything that I bring with me in my backpack to New York City each week:
I am on the bus for 4-5 hours during these trips so I need things to keep me comfortable and occupied. In the mornings I eat my breakfast which is usually yogurt and granola bar. I then go through all my emails on my phone and review our companies sales from the previous day. For the remainder of the bus trip, I am usually playing games on my iPad or watching Netflix shows that I have downloaded the night before.
Other things that I bring on the bus with me are comfy shoes, a blanket, headphones, and sunglasses. Our company usually rents out the bus so it’s safe for me to leave items on the bus all day.
We are going to see 4-5 vendors each day so I need to have all the notes and selling for each of those vendors. I need to be knowledgeable about what products we have previously bought from them, how well each item is selling, and what are our plans for our buy next season. I have a folder for each vendor and they can get pretty bulky and heavy. I also have a notebook to take notes during each appointment so that I don’t forget anything. I could bring my laptop to take notes but honestly, that would just add weight to my backpack.
I never know what kind of weather to expect when traveling to the city so I like to be prepared for everything. I always carry my umbrella in my backpack, just in case of a surprise rainstorm. Other items I like to have on me are chapstick, lotion, hand sanitizer, deodorant, band-aids and a stain remover pen. Since I’m walking all day long, many things can happen from blisters on my feet, sweating, frizzy hair, or food stains so I like to be prepared.
New York days are always 12-13 hour days from the time I leave my house in the morning to when I walk back through the door at night. I need a lot of snacks to get me through the long day. I always pack my self breakfast in the morning to eat on the bus ride into the city. It has to be an easy food to eat too because it’s very difficult to eat cereal or eggs on a moving bus. I usually pack a granola bare and a bagel with cream cheese already on it or a muffin and yogurt.
Lunch is always provided for us by the vendors free of charge so that is a nice perk because the meals are always really delicious. For dinner, our work orders us dinner from a small restaurant but the food is not the greatest so I either pack my dinner (a pb&j sandwich usually) or buy food from the Whole Foods that is across from our bus stop in the city. On the way home I like to have some candy or chocolate to perk me up from the long day.