Travler Spotlight: Katy Zimorino / “12 Travel Safety Essentials from Dr. Diva aka Katy Z”


I went to high school with Katy in Phoenix, Arizona and we are lifelong close friends. She has a passion for altruism and has spent time living in remote Tanzania to spread medical knowledge.



Here’s the top 12 essential items that every adventure-seeker should carry with them at all times for their wanderlust companions.

As much as I would like to say I’m a trained professional, I am far from your Bear Grylls survival expert.  Honestly, I am just an adrenaline junkie with some accident-prone friends, so I’ve listed below some of the items I recommend for a First Aid Kit.

Let’s be honest. I’m no Bear Grylls. This is the closest I’m ever getting to a wild crocodile.

1.     Compression Dressings: What does jungle trekking in Indonesia, hiking in the Outback, and exploring ancient Buddhist temples in Burma all have in common?  The potential for a bloody mess, given the group of flat-footed hooligans I travel with! Compression dressing is critical for any major blood loss trauma, cleaning sensitive lenses, passing love notes on an airplane and creating a MacGyver-rigged tampon in extreme cases. Literally, compression dressings could be used in a million different ways- each one as important as the next.

2.     Sunscreen: A sunburn is a sure fire way to ruin your delightful beach nap after a hard day of drinking bottomless Mai Tai’s on a secluded beach in Thailand.  Plus, sunscreen insures keeping that fresh face fit for a television show 😉

Sunscreen was a must at the Marina Bay Sands infinity pool in Singapore.

3.     Water purifying tablets and water flavoring packets with sugar:  I know this sounds extreme to carry around water purifying tablets but water is the key to survival.  The tablets take up very little space, are easy to find, and reasonably cheap.  The water flavoring packets are a refreshing way to change it up from the bland water taste.  Carrying flavoring packets that contain sugar are for ‘just in case’ moments where someone you are traveling with needs a sugar lift.  ‘Hangry’ is a real thing.

When you are so hungry that your lack of food causes you to become angry, frustrated or both.
– Urbandictionary

4.     Motion sickness tablets: All amazing travel destinations are pretty much guaranteed to have some sort of unsightly mode of public transportation.  In our first episode of Chasing the World the cast and I spend two and half hours in the back of an “open air off road vehicle” … an old pick-up truck equipped with a metal cage mostly there to transport animals (I’m assuming)… however, in our case budget-friendly travelers. The only thing worse than being motion sick is being stuck in a vehicle with someone who has just projectile vomited over you because they were motion sick.  #gross #holdthevomit

I secretly wanted to blow it up and walk.

5.     Hydrocortisone cream: There are a million different bug repellents sprays, home remedies, and what-nots to try and prevent bug bites, but at the end of the day (unless you are willing to travel completely wrapped in saran wrap from head to toe) carry copious amounts of extra-strength itch cream.  This is not an item I go generic on either… it’s well worth the extra couple of bucks to get the name brand.

Itch free is the way to be!

6.     Band-Aids and moleskin: Honestly, I only use Band-Aids on my feet to help against blisters. I’m a firm believer in the “let it breath” method of cuts and scrapes as long as they have been properly cleaned out.  Moleskin is also an amazing way to help heal and prevent blisters and tends to hold better than Band-Aids.

7.     Chapstick: I would take a broken arm over having chapped lips while traveling.  I HATE chapped lips.

This is what happens to The Diva when she has chapped lips. Does that look like a happy face to you?

8.     Scissors:  Standard First Aid Kit and basic travel necessity.  I will probably write my next blog post on twenty different ways a scissor will save your travel trip, scissors are that important! Just don’t accidentally bring them on a plane.

9.     Zip-Ties: Odd for this to be in a First Aid Kit, but it’s guaranteed that this will be the number one most used item in your First Aid Kit.  Zip-Ties can be used for almost everything, from locking the zippers shut on your bag to protect from thieves, or even having to use it as a tourniquet in the case of major blood loss.

10.    Aspirin: Again standard First Aid Kit item, I get the extra-strength ones with caffeine mostly because when I’m hungover, it gives me that extra boost to continue on with the ridiculous travel itinerary Danny, Arielle and the crew have set out for the day.

11.    Anti-bacterial wipes, sprays, and pills: Germ-free is the way to be.  I am such a huge fan of any sort anti-bacterial no matter if it comes in liquid or pill form.  Always use antibiotic hand wash before and after each meal and antibiotic spray to coat a hostel room.  In extreme cases, I use an everyday body mist spray to de-germ myself.  As a precautionary before each travel adventure, I visit my family practitioner and get a prescription for a wide spectrum antibiotics in case of emergencies. It could be days before you are able to receive proper medical attention and this precautionary insures a bit of comfort and will potentially save your life.

12.    Latex Glove for the Love Finger (Condoms):  Traveling the world finds you in the most romantic spots around the globe, so don’t miss out on an opportunity to get bit by the love bug! Best to be safe and prepared…cue sexy mood music: bow chicka wow wow!


Check out the link below to the page for the American Red Cross First Aid Kit suggestions:


Dr. Diva aka Katy Z