Traveling with Kids (with Dylan Thuras)

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Dylan Thuras, co-founder of the travel company Atlas Obscura, has been to 30 countries. But even more impressive: he’s traveled internationally with his kids, and lived to tell the tale. Between SuChin’s family trip to South Korea and Kulap’s first plane ride with Eme, the Aunties are ready to soak up the wisdom – or at least, go into the dark together. They swap travel tips and carts, from the perfect kid-friendly headphones to a magical place where you can actually buy people’s unclaimed baggage.

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Kulap Vilaysack, Dylan Thuras, SuChin Pak

Kulap Vilaysack  00:10

Carter’s welcome back to Add To Cart. This is a show about the things we buy the things we buy into what it says about who we are, I’m your auntie Kulap Vilaysack.


SuChin Pak  00:19

Hi, I’m your other auntie SuChin Pak who you know, we love to talk about traveling on this show.


Kulap Vilaysack  00:24

We do we do.


SuChin Pak  00:25

We’d like to actually even talk less about the destination. But really how we get there. We all have our different ways. You know, I am chaos on a tripod missing a wheel. That’s how I roll.


Kulap Vilaysack  00:39

Yeah, you’re you are I would describe you as soup.


SuChin Pak  00:44

A soup?


Kulap Vilaysack  00:45

Yes, right. You’re packing cell is soup.


SuChin Pak  00:48

Sloshing around.


Kulap Vilaysack  00:50

That’s right SuChin, you got it.


SuChin Pak  00:52

By the way. Also a little bit of danger involved. You know, I like.


Kulap Vilaysack  00:56

Scolding. Yeah, this isn’t a spa show.


SuChin Pak  00:59

One false move. It’s er time I love to live on that edge. Now imagine when the kids are involved and all of Mike’s Insta pots and deep freezers. You know, just just go ahead and sit with that for a moment. But our guest today is an expert on traveling. I’m so excited to learn about how he navigates trips. I’m sure he’s, he’s more sane than me. But who knows he’s been all over the world with kids. I’ll be taking a lot of notes and perhaps I will be imparting some of my own soup wisdom.


Kulap Vilaysack  01:34

Oh, boy, well Su, let’s give the listeners some stats. Our guest today has been to about 30 countries. He travels to places near and far from Niagara Falls to Minneapolis to Scotland to South Korea. This guy will go anywhere. He’s the co founder of Atlas Obscura, a magazine and travel company whose tagline is the definitive guide to the world’s hidden wonders. He’s also the host of the Atlas Obscura podcast and especially relevant for our conversation today. He is the data of two young kids please add to cart, Dylan Thuras.


Dylan Thuras  02:14

This is this is the most hype intro I’ve ever gotten. This is like you got to do it right. Hi, it’s good to be here.


SuChin Pak  02:21



Kulap Vilaysack  02:22

You deserve this intro sir.


Dylan Thuras  02:23

Thank you.


Kulap Vilaysack  02:26

You should be heralded every time you you deplane, sir, that is what you deserve.


Dylan Thuras  02:36

[…] SuChin, I think you’re going to be disappointed by the level of expertise around traveling with children that I bring to this it is. Soup is the correct metaphor for this.


Kulap Vilaysack  02:49

Oh, no for me.


SuChin Pak  02:53

Dylan, I didn’t want to blow up your spot. But I did see a little soup twinkle in your eye and I said, I’m crossing my fingers. I have one of my people on the line live.


Dylan Thuras  03:03

Controlled chaos like and controlled. Just loose chaos actually take control out of that sentence. Not once, but twice. I have found myself either on an airplane or running through an airport. Holding a cup in my hands. Someone else’s vomit luckily is one of my children’s not as strangers but children’s vomit as I find someplace to trashcan. A bathroom to get to. This has happened more than once, you know? Which, pretending everything’s fine. Excuse me, could you open that airplane bathroom door for me? Why thank you. And then they’re still you know, 12 hours left on the flight. Has this ever happened to you? Have you ever I mean, it’s a disgusting question. But have you ever had to catch children’s, you know.


Kulap Vilaysack  03:48

Vomit that happened last night. Last night, a one and a half year old. She’s having a coughing fit. And yep, it happened and it was projectile and we it was me and my husband was all over, it was all over. Like the exorcist, it was all over.


Dylan Thuras  04:10

What’s crazy is just like how quickly you just learned to take that and you’re just like, all right, like that’s just this is next thing all good, you know?


SuChin Pak  04:20

No, because if you panic then you have screaming vomit child and you just have to be chill. I remember one time we were on a trip somewhere and we were at like one of these like festivals you know outdoor festivals, food and ride it kind of the Carnival but more of a food festival. And my son was probably two on my husband’s shoulder, vomited from his head all the way down to the back of my husband’s shirt just soaked. My son when he was younger, just like a really expert vomit are still expert vomiter by the way and very quietly just puked. You know? And at that point what do you have to clean up in a porta Potti c’est la vie.


Dylan Thuras  05:04

C’est la vie, this is of a parent trying to do stuff with their kids. This is the cost of business.


Kulap Vilaysack  05:10

I mean, I’m getting my mind, right, because what I thought this was going to be was that I was going to be asking Dylan, the expert, I pictured you the renaissance man. And you may still be but now I’m getting my mind, right, that we’re all going to be feeling in the dark together. And I’m okay with that. It’s just different than what I thought this was going to be.


Dylan Thuras  05:32

I wish I could show up here and be like, aunties, I’ve got it figured out. I know the moves. You do this, you do that. But like, I’m pulling from the same loose bag of snacks and books, and pens, and garbage you are and I’m getting the same results on the other side, like, yeah, we’ll feel out together, who knows? Maybe we have little tips and tricks to trade, like little insider trading that we can do on how to travel with the kids.


Kulap Vilaysack  06:01

Okay, okay, well, first off, in general, what would you say your sort of shopping style is.


Dylan Thuras  06:06

This may help frame why I don’t necessarily have all the tips and tricks, but I am like, I am fully up like a panic shopper, I sort of will put off important purchases until it is really late in the game. There was one time I had to give a presentation I needed all my clothes. I didn’t have anything kind of right fancy to do this. So I had to like run to a store just see what they had that might fit try it on. But this kind of like weird, slightly ill fitting linen suit. I just tried to make it work. And the problem is when I do have lots of time to think about it and buy something I like descend into research until I have so much information that I’m wildly overwhelmed. And I’m on like weird fringe blogs talking about like the plastics used in some interior part of something that like, certainly doesn’t matter. But I’m just like, fall in so far. So yeah, those are the two modes overthinking or buying under duress. Are either of these familiar to you? You guys do no shopping?


SuChin Pak  07:11

I mean, I should just excuse myself from the room because Dylan you got me covered?


Dylan Thuras  07:16



Kulap Vilaysack  07:17

You guys are twins?


SuChin Pak  07:19

I’m gonna go and you know, do something else. Because I know that feeling well.


Dylan Thuras  07:26

I’m glad to meet a fellow traveler. You know, like, I’m glad to meet a fellow, a fellow spirit.


SuChin Pak  07:31

Now Dylan, are you opposed to getting to a country and then being like, oh, shoot, I forgot to pack something. Let me you know, dip into the local pharmacy or the local Target or whatever it is?


Dylan Thuras  07:48

No, no, not at all. Not at all. In fact, I kind of even I kind of even like it sometimes because like an excuse to go and do some weird, you know, you’re like, oh, we’re buying swim trunks in. You know, Vienna like, alright, well, that’s weird. I don’t I don’t mind a little bit of that.


Kulap Vilaysack  08:07

Um, so if you’re on Dylan, I’m sorry to interrupt. Because I didn’t know again, I am shocked that we find ourselves in the opposite of an episode we did a couple of weeks ago called Zook’s Cubes. We’re in our friend Jason Mantzoukas he lives a life of packing cubes. He’s all about efficiency. And now we find ourselves in the real world.


Dylan Thuras  08:28

The chaos.


Kulap Vilaysack  08:29

The other place. Oh, okay. So we have different takes we have different yeah, so it’s instead of Zook’s cubes. We have Dylan and Su soup. And, again, I’m happy to be here. I just didn’t get it. I’m slowly I’m letting it marinate, I’m seeing.


SuChin Pak  08:46

You’re warming up in the soup. Yeah, the temperature. It gets a gradual, you know, piping hot baby. Don’t worry, by the time we’re done here, you won’t even know you’re in the soup.


Dylan Thuras  08:57

It’s so welcoming here. You know, you can’t find anything but it’s really friendly. It’s a friendly space.


Kulap Vilaysack  09:05

Okay, wow. Yeah, okay, so we should go around the horn and say how old our kids are, what our experiences are in terms of travel. And I’ll start and say that my daughter Emerald is a year and a half. We’ve only done sort of road trips like two hours max in California. But now the summer we will be doing her first plane rides. The first will be to go home to where I’m from in Minnesota. That’s a four hour plane ride. And then we are we’re gonna go to Hawaii in September and that’s a five hour plane ride. And I am I am nervous. I purchased some things that we’ll get into, but I really am hoping since you know you guys have done this before that I can get some tips of the trade.


Dylan Thuras  09:56



SuChin Pak  09:57

it is very interesting and I can’t wait to hear your story, Dylan because Emmy’s one and a half and you really haven’t been on a plane yet to me, in my world that’s ahead of the curve. But I know a lot of people travel very differently with within that age range of like zero to two years old like either they’re down for it’s like swaddled to my boobies getting on a plane and just showing up, you know, arms wide open, or like me Ku, like I did it once. And then there was a travel ban on our family until probably they were seven years old. There were seven years where like nobody got on a plane. So it’s really interesting that you’re approaching it with like, logic, reason, and trepidation. Because it’s gonna be a nightmare.


Dylan Thuras  10:49

Yeah, it’s, I hate.


Kulap Vilaysack  10:51

Go ahead take it away. Take it away.


Dylan Thuras  10:56

Oh, how old are your kids six years or older now, right there.


SuChin Pak  10:59

So mine are 10. And let’s say 12. He’ll be 12, and in a few weeks, so 10 and 12.


Dylan Thuras  11:05

Got it. I’m just a little behind you. I have a nine year old son and my daughter turned seven Yesterday. So and the thing I have to say Ku, is, well, no, it’s totally fine. The big the issue is that particular age, the first plane ride we took with our son, he was like, you know, a few months old. And actually, when they’re really little, it’s easy. You just like strap them on, and you’re just there to the air. And it’s totally fine. And we took him to this big party in Chicago when he was six months old. And it was great and cool. And like everyone was all impressed. But then you hit this period. And it’s about one and a half. So like called […] Yes, we’re plane rides get particularly challenging, because the kids just really are uninterested in being in their seat. They’re so interested in exploring every single thing around which is cute, and people are pretty chill about it. Actually, I we’ve had very few experience bad experiences with people being mean, on planes about the kids, you know, like, and we try and make sure they’re, you know, it’s all right, but like, you’re just gonna need to be ready to like, walk the aisles a little bit. There’s some aisle walking that I think will be a part of that experience.


SuChin Pak  12:18

Okay, and are you opposed to screens, because.


Dylan Thuras  12:21

That’s a great question.


SuChin Pak  12:22

That is a different way of traveling.


Kulap Vilaysack  12:24

I’m not I honestly, I’m not opposed to screens. And I mean, a lot of people are not going to feel great about this. I’ve been sort of conditioning her. We are at three quarters of a Disney film right now.


SuChin Pak  12:35

To me, it that’s when you bust out a screen. You bust out a screen. When you’re traveling, period. There’s no politics involved. I don’t care how many neuroscientists are in the plane, you’re putting on a screen?


Dylan Thuras  12:50

Yeah, we it’s interesting. We don’t do screens in the car on road trips. Because like, I think our children think it’s not possible. Because we’re moving we’re like, obviously, you can’t can’t watch something.


SuChin Pak  13:06

Advantage of their stupidity. You only get a few years of that.


Dylan Thuras  13:11

They don’t totally get like what technology can work in what space so we’re just sort of living in the world where there aren’t screens in the car, however, on a plane, like we rip it, it’s like, well, you can watch basically, whatever movie you want, like.


Kulap Vilaysack  13:27

That’s right.


Dylan Thuras  13:28

You can it’s can be something we would just any other time we’d be like, Oh my God, no, we’re not watching this, that we’re watching it. Like, it’s a plane, everything goes so. So in that case, yeah, I think movies on planes are like, that’s the whole thing.


SuChin Pak  13:42

And we’re just one more tip, at least and tell me Dylan if you experienced this. So when you’re traveling with the chat, to me, it’s like how I strategize was I broke everything into blocks of time, right. So I knew in my bag for 35 minutes or 45 minutes, I had the sticker activity, and then I knew we were going to and that was gonna take a half hour and so try really hard to stick like don’t end sticker activity time and 15 minutes shinned you’re just gonna have 30 minutes of soup. You want to try to like plan that trip and stick to your blocks of time like because the worst thing is having an hour and a half and you’re like they can’t sit in front of a screen anymore. They just won’t do it. It’s too much or you know, because every kid at certain ages at some point the screen just doesn’t work.


Dylan Thuras  14:32

The bag of tricks is where it’s at. Like, you know where it’s just you got like another little magical item comes out of the bag of tricks and.


SuChin Pak  14:40

Wrap it, wrap it wrap it in so much wrapping paper of a trip, the opening. Wrap it, wrap it, it takes more time to unwrap everything and everything is a present. So just think of it like Christmas for five to […] Yeah, that’s to me was how I just went in there was such a like, you know, military precision strategy of like how I was going to occupy this child’s time. So I was never in soup. It was always like I knew exactly where I was going.


Dylan Thuras  15:18

I also think that any like a plane trip that is five hours and under, it’s like manageable. That’s like a two movie or even if it’s a one movie, but then you’ve got other you can kind of like get through that in pieces. Once you get over that mark. You’re like entering a kind of a totally different.


SuChin Pak  15:37

You’re the only person on this call that is has has left that mark. Ah, so yeah, wait to hear. Because I’m about to enter that in a few weeks. Dylan and I, South Korea. I have been panic buying since probably January. And I just don’t know, I won’t know if any of this stuff will work. So okay, because I have not exceeded that mark.


Kulap Vilaysack  16:15

Let’s get into Dylan’s cart, because I think this is going to be eye opening for both of us. Let’s talk about the headphones that connect together.


SuChin Pak  16:23

Thank you. Oh my god headphones are this is critical. This is make or break. But the right headphones and the right adapters. I’m so excited to hear about this because I’m going to be adding to cart immediately.


Dylan Thuras  16:39

It’s such a simple little thing. And there they were these the ones we got are like really cheap. There’s a bunch of different varieties of them. They’re not super high end. So in a lot of flights now there’s no seatback entertainment anymore, right the like, the screens are gone. And so you bring your own phone and we bring a computer that’s preloaded with a bunch of movies, we’ve downloaded a hat, there’s like the kids know what they are. It’s like 12 movies to choose from. They’ve seen them all a bunch, but they like um, and so. And then we’ve got headphones that plug into each other, so they kind of like daisy chained together. It’s very cute, and that way the kids can both watch the same computer, listen to the same movie, and just be zoned in for that trip because the little headphones they give you or you buy on the flight like don’t work for kids. They like fall out of their ears and they keep it on work. But well and and obviously you can’t plug them both in. So these little daisy chain headphones were like a real game changer for the kids. And they only come out on a trip. They never see them any other time. So they’re kind of.


SuChin Pak  17:40

Technology doesn’t work.


Dylan Thuras  17:41

Yeah, so unfortunately, they cease to function. That’s correct, that’s right. Yeah. SuChin it sounds like you’re also bringing your own headphones for kids on.


SuChin Pak  17:52

Well, yeah, I know. I’m glad to hear about this. My nightmare is the headphones breaking. Like not working? Because we’ve had that so like, what I start to get an I just have to let go is like, do I pack an extra? Right? One more splitter, just one set of headphones, because because I’m not going to pack extra everything but the headphones are so mission critical. And this this myth of your back of the seat entertainment, working? Like that’s a fool’s game. I just went on a very short trip. But the back of the scene entertainment wouldn’t the English subtitle whatever version wouldn’t work? You know, so even though it’s there, it’s out. So you gotta you got to preload.


Kulap Vilaysack  18:46

Oh, I was gonna say if you guys scroll down to my cart. I have purchased headphones that they’re here. I haven’t tried them yet. I’m going to they’re the band do 2.0 Kids headphones. They’re like a headband. I got to I got Kiki the Koala and Mittens the cat.


SuChin Pak  19:07

Do you have them?


Kulap Vilaysack  19:08

I have them.


SuChin Pak  19:09

Okay, so a new technology. I don’t know, if you agree with me must be tested. You have to test it before. And in my cart. I have some new things. Guess what? We’re gonna test them. I’m going to test them in the car. Like the car is in a perfect, you know, replica of an airplane seat. But you know, I can get just sort of like, how’s it gonna fit, but you have to test it. Because you don’t want to get on the plane. And this koala headband is she just won’t wear in. It’s too tight or she doesn’t like the feeling of it so. But I think in theory, this is a great idea for that age.


Dylan Thuras  19:49

I agree. I’ve never seen that before. Like a soft little headband with headphones built in. That’s clever. That’s very good.


Kulap Vilaysack  19:57

Okay, okay, this feels good. So good. This feels good, okay, all right.


Dylan Thuras  20:04

Reload test the headphones, yeah.


SuChin Pak  20:07

Okay, so you’re going to give us those specific headphones and splitters or you don’t it doesn’t matter for you. It’s like whatever is works, or do you have ones that you were like, because I just have one of these households wear headphones. My kids headphones are always on the fritz, they’re expensive. I I just I can’t seem to find one that is reliable.


Dylan Thuras  20:27

Little gadgets is the name of the company and we I had the same problem. SuChin, we bought headphones for the kids and they broke immediately. And so we found these and they were well reviewed little gadgets you know, connectable, chainable headphones ones and blue ones in green. They have like a soft little bag, they come in, and they’ve so far so far, they’re folding up, they fold up, they go in their little bag, they’re like, they’re pretty good. We we’ve been we’re into them. Okay, I kind of want some for like, my wife and I it feels fun to watch something together on a plane. I don’t know that. Maybe that’s weird.


SuChin Pak  21:09

I will check in with her. Anyone like me? That’s a violent, violent.


Dylan Thuras  21:18

That’s violation, yeah.


SuChin Pak  21:21

I would say yeah. So but it is cute when they are I love forcing siblings.


Dylan Thuras  21:29

Me too, yeah.


SuChin Pak  21:30

Together to do. Just I don’t care. I don’t care what it is like forcing them to do things together is it’s like my secret. You know, torture pleasure.


Kulap Vilaysack  21:45

Dylan, SuChin, I have a question I have added to cart. What I would call It’s a car seat. But it’s a travel car seat and that it’s lighter than the the big new one that we have in my car. And also a backpack, car seat travel bag. That in my mind, it was something that I could do backpack. And then I could gate check it. But then I’m finding and all this is here and I’m looking at it. And I’m like, that’s a lot on my old back. I’m an old mom, my husband’s even older. My question to you is, do I keep it? Or do I return it? Because now I’m finding when I go to Minnesota hurts, I can rent a seat. And then also when we go to Aulani the Disney Resort in a Wahoo the shuttle has a seat as well. So is it what do you guys think about that? Obviously, it’s probably not going to be as clean as the one I bring, but is it worth it? To not carry it on my back?


Dylan Thuras  22:49

It’ll be cleaner. It’ll definitely be cleaner than the one I bought.


SuChin Pak  22:53

I’m gonna give my opinion first and then Dylan, you give your opinion. I don’t think you should buy this thing. I think she returned it, it’s too big. This is too cumbersome. They’re everywhere you go now there’s gonna be a way for you to get a car seat. Is it going to be perfect? Is it gonna be clean? Is it going to be blah, blah, blah. Now she’s one and a half so yeah, I think she’s old enough. Like if she was a baby and she you know she was sleeping in the thing a lot, you know that maybe would change my mind a bit. Now what are you going to do for her in the plane seat? Like just have her with a lap belt?


Kulap Vilaysack  23:30

Yeah, she’s a tall, sturdy.


SuChin Pak  23:33

So that’s fine.


Kulap Vilaysack  23:34

So I’m not even messing, she’s got her own seat. Even though it would be free before she’s too, she’s just that’s not who she is. Like we barely baby. We didn’t do a lot of baby wearing we both got too hot. Yeah, so



Yeah, so as long as that is comfortable for her to me, like traveling with a car seat just sucks. It’s so hard.


Kulap Vilaysack  23:59

I can’t tell you how good this is for me.


Dylan Thuras  24:03

I have to say what convinced me to your point SuChin is in the product page. Like three or four photos down they have a like scale photo of the mom carrying the size of a small piano it’s so unbelievably big and I’m just picturing you carrying this well carrying your bags if you can rent a car seat somewhere like rent the rent the car seat it’s such an annoying thing to travel with. It’s so bulky, can always come in like comes out a different part of the baggage sometimes because it ends up with like the weird baggage and you gotta go find it. It’s like wrapped in plastic.


Kulap Vilaysack  24:38

Okay, all right. I’m looking at it right now. It’s it’s inside this huge box. Because my husband it’s gonna be on my back. Scott’s not putting this on his back. It’s on my back. I’m are beasts of burden on our family. And it’s like, I don’t want it. I don’t want it. This is so helpful. I really really appreciate it.


Dylan Thuras  24:56

Are you traveling with like a pack and play or you bring needing a little bed? Or what are you doing about that? That’s the other giant object that I remember when the kids were little just being like, oh my god, like, we have to bring our own bed.


Kulap Vilaysack  25:08

I have one. It’s maybe a little bit bigger than like a backpack, like a regular backpack. It’s pretty good. Guys, I want to tell you that the technology has improved since you guys have little ones.


Dylan Thuras  25:18

I’m glad to hear that because the technology was bad.


Kulap Vilaysack  25:22

It was yeah, this was like the guava Lotus Travel Crib. It’s pretty good. It’s pretty good. That’s what we’ve been taking. For our road trips. There’s a tent basically sleep pod that goes over that. So then it’s completely blackout for her. And if we’re sharing the same room with a sound machine, it’s like we have two separate rooms.


Dylan Thuras  25:41

Yeah, for sure. The blackout the blackout like room is a great when we sleep in hotel rooms. We still just go to bed at like eight o’clock. Stinks, or like, oh, okay, I guess it’s time for bed. Whispering under the covers holding our phones under their like.


SuChin Pak  25:59

I have so many pictures of me and my husband. Like dying with laughter But trying not to make any sound in a bathroom eating room service.


Dylan Thuras  26:08



SuChin Pak  26:09

Just like in the mirror pictures of us like eating club sandwiches like crying laughing because we just cannot believe that this small human has dictated such measures in our lives that this is where we are, but yeah.


Kulap Vilaysack  26:24

Sometimes though, after being with the kiddos so early, it’s nice to just like, electively decide to not speak to one another and be on our phones.


Dylan Thuras  26:33

That’s true. I’m over here trying to like plug our headphones into the bathroom, you idiot.


SuChin Pak  26:45

You get it, Dylan? You get it.


Kulap Vilaysack  27:00

Talk to us about the unclaimed baggage center.


Dylan Thuras  27:03

Oh, yeah, so this is almost like it’s like a weird, meta recommendation. It’s actually a recommendation for a place to shop for things when you’re traveling. But it is also all stuff that comes from other travelers. So when you lose something on a plane, you know, a computer or a Kindle or whatever, your bag gets lost, and they can never figure out how to get it back to you. All of that stuff that never makes it back to the traveler ends up at this place in Alabama called the unclaimed baggage center. And it’s funny because it’s not everything. It is a lot of stuff, but it’s everything that anyone would ever take on a trip with them. So there’s a lot of fancy clothes actually, like people are leaving behind their $800 Gucci sweater actually, it costs $800 on unclaimed baggage, I’m sure it’s like a $3,000 Gucci sweater, and it all ends up in this place. And you can go on there and browse around and buy stuff from there.


Kulap Vilaysack  28:06

Oh boy, oh boy, I’m getting itchy.


Dylan Thuras  28:13

This is this is this is not good for you. It’s triggering.


Kulap Vilaysack  28:19

Dylan, thank you so much.


Dylan Thuras  28:21

I’ve never bought any clothing from there. So I can’t speak to that. But I did. I lost my Kindle on a plane. And it felt natural to go and buy someone else’s Kindle that they had lost on a plane. I don’t know why that made sense to me. But I was just like, ah, the cycle of life. You know, like, I shall reclaim your Kindle from the weird Netherlands of plane zone. And so I got a Kindle. I got like a few you know, older Kindle. It’s like $30 is great deal works perfectly. I did not realize when I bought it though. There’s these models of Kindles that are a little cheaper, but they have ads on the stressed screen, and it’s kind of like it’s like a moderate annoyance. Like, I got it, and I saw that and I was like, ah, whatever. And mostly, you know, at first it was just it was advertising like books and mostly books have the kind of stuff I like to read like it will you know, I read a lot of like genre sci fi fantasy, some mystery and so it was like advertising those kinds of books maybe a little annoying, but not a big deal. But in the last six months, it has started only advertising these weird AI generated books that say like a time story for kids and adults and they all have the same weird like AI animate art on them and it’s they’re all like a little they just feel weird. And now when I like bring my Kindle on trips, which I love I love taking the Kindle with me I love having whatever book I want like I you know in the moment, but I have to hide I like hide the covers grain because it’s like the mother and her dragon and it’s like a weird animated drawing of like a lady riding a dragon. I’m like, Listen, I’m not, this isn’t the book I’m reading.


SuChin Pak  30:10

That’s right.


Dylan Thuras  30:11

Yeah, basically, did they be there? Yes, they’re all pervy in that weird like aI animate art way like they don’t even have to have anything actually obscene on them. They’re just like, like that’s looks like you’re that’s a little pervy, whatever it is you’re reading over there.


SuChin Pak  30:25

He left it on the plane on purpose. He was done. He was done hiding his Kindle and now picked it up. And this is a trade off for unclaimed baggage center. And guess what? A fine trade off you made 30 bucks.


Kulap Vilaysack  30:40

I’m not turned off at all.


SuChin Pak  30:43

Whatever, you have to hide your books, you know, you gotta lie a little it’s a good deal.


Dylan Thuras  30:49

Let’s see what they got all kinds of crazy. You ever looked at this place?


SuChin Pak  30:52

I know. I was looking at that. Yes, they I just want I’ve never been here but like, they have like $4,000 cameras for you know, so for $2,000 but I’m saying like, it sort of makes me mad that someone wasn’t able to do we weren’t able to get this camera back to the person but they have a I mean when I tell you they have a lot of iPads and switch gaming systems. Both things that I don’t have but could be great for a 13 hour flight to Korea. I don’t know guys.


Dylan Thuras  31:24

So in the weird and wonderful finds section they have like these glass fruits that you could buy you have like colonial heads of like colonial soldiers that are also planters. They’ve got a lot going over there.


SuChin Pak  31:42

This is humanity here on unclaimed baggage. This is really fun to sort of see what’s here but I think that’s a great tip especially if you’ve got kids and you know tech stuff you can go crazy with it but it you know keep it simple when you’re traveling you know you don’t need much to keep them entertained.


Dylan Thuras  32:04



Kulap Vilaysack  32:05

I’m really really interested in your remove from cart Dylan and please sir, launch into this launch into this hot stance this hot take.


Dylan Thuras  32:18

Is a very hot take the.


SuChin Pak  32:21

Sound effect here.


Dylan Thuras  32:25

I know this is gonna get me in in trouble. I think we’re gonna have a heated debate about this. But my removed from cart is an entire category of very popular style of baggage called roller bags. And I currently I do travel with a giant roller bag, we have one enormous roller bag, and we pack it for all of my wife stuff is in there. And then our kids stuff goes in there too. And it’s like it’s packed to the brim. It always weighs exactly, well, it usually weighs 52 pounds and we like get there and we’re like okay, like we know we’re ready, we’re like take out the one thing and put it in the other thing. And so it’s always like exactly at the weight limit. And when the kids were little God we would we would pile the roller bag with the pack and play the car seat. They’re not carrying their backpacks when they’re that little so they’re brothers and it was just like this towering now I’m the beast of burden in our family. So I’m just like pushing all this stuff. Meanwhile, all everything I bring on every trip fits in one backpack that fits either under the seat goes under the seat it goes up into like a little space overhead. The thing about roller bags I understand they are very convenient but like they always like aren’t fitting right you know everyone’s bumping in with them and then when you get to your place like what did you you’ve just packed a backpack inside of your roller bag that then you’re like taking your stuff out and putting it in so I am just maybe I’m like hanging on to some last youth I like can’t let it go I can’t I’m like I’m like the backpack traveler for but I this is me this is maybe this is my my failure to let go but man roller bags. I can’t do them. I can only I’m a backpack traveler forever, I think.


Kulap Vilaysack  34:14

Shook that all of your items are in a backpack because I don’t understand. What about your 10 step skincare Dylan I don’t get it.


Dylan Thuras  34:26

Yeah, the water at the hotel is already there. And they have those little soaps you unwrap like that’s at least that’s two steps and I […] listen, I’m a minimalist. I am a minimalist on packing. I roll all the clothes I get them in there tight sometimes I’ve got a second pair of shoes like tied to the bottom. Like I mean this meanwhile, my wife is like, what like, come on. She’s like the giant roller bag is filled with every other single thing we need, you know, it’s got like, weird swimmies for the kids because we’re going somewhere and they need a little floaties. So I’m probably just being a fool, but I can’t I just like traveling with a backpack. You get to your destination. You pull it out from under your seat. You throw it on your fantasy, you stride on, plane out, you jump in a cab, you don’t even need to go to the hotel first. You’re just in your backpack, you go to the thing.


SuChin Pak  35:29

Your backpack days are in the rearview mirror for a minute.


Kulap Vilaysack  35:34

Oh, wow. You’re throwing a bucket of ice water. And I’m dealing right now.


SuChin Pak  35:41

I mean, your kids are older so it’s not far before you you can put on a […] but.


Dylan Thuras  35:48

I’ve got a different what if the, what if everyone else’s backpack days are just coming right up? What if we’re entering backpack family travel for backpacks? For people? Yeah, everything is a carry on the match to match the simplicity.


SuChin Pak  36:07

That postcard wow, fantasy. Yeah, I don’t know. I mean, I would love that. I’m just, I’m not raising kids like that. And it’s my fault. I’m not saying I want them to be this way. But like, that world is so far away from me, but I like to dream. I like to dream.


Dylan Thuras  36:27

Well, my wife should come in here and be like we 100% entirely depend on that giant roller.


SuChin Pak  36:33

Yes, of course. That’s very clear. Yeah, plug your headphone out of mind and grab the corner of the suitcase.


Dylan Thuras  36:41

Yeah, start pushing the bag.


Kulap Vilaysack  36:43

Yeah, start pushing the bag. No, I mean, Michelle is not on mic, but her presence is felt.


Dylan Thuras  36:48



Kulap Vilaysack  36:49

Between your words.


SuChin Pak  36:51

Always, she’s here.


Dylan Thuras  36:52

Oh, it’s truly, yeah.


Kulap Vilaysack  36:54

Well, Su, you’re you are kind of wrestling with buying roller bags for your […] What’s going on?


SuChin Pak  37:04

Yeah, okay, so I was so interesting to hear your take. I am all for the fantasy. Now. I just recently traveled solo with my 10 year old daughter. And it was her first time being in charge of her own roller suitcase. Like, just carry on. It was a very short flight. And I said you are old enough now to do it. She was so excited. She packed her suitcase. I packed mine. We had two little wheelies. And we were just business women going on a conference, you know. And the third time that she lost her suitcase. I was like 10 is too young in my family. 10 is too young for someone to be in charge of this suitcase all the time. Like that concept all the time in the bathroom. At customs, yeah, I get you know, we get through customs. We do this I’m rushing. And we made it and it was pretty easy going. And I you know, get the ticket for the cab. I stand on line. I don’t speak the language. The guy comes up and I go to throw my suitcase and I go to throw her suit her suit her. Where are they? Where’s your suitcase? Ah, so we have to backtrack through international airport.


Kulap Vilaysack  38:26

No, you didn’t tell me this.


Dylan Thuras  38:29

That’s brutal.


SuChin Pak  38:31

I had to talk my way into customs. Back to the bathroom. Back to the play she had to […] and find the suitcase. So I was like number one. She’s not ready for a suitcase. So that’s fine. That’s not on her, that’s on me. Number two. Not only is she not ready for a suitcase, she’s not ready for for spinner wheels. Like that is too big. She can maybe drag something behind her that’s not too heavy. And so I have to buy her a suitcase. That’s an upright two wheel carry on suitcase. So that makes sense. Not a spinner. And that’s where that’s that’s the luggage I’m at.


Dylan Thuras  39:09

I would love to invite you into backpack world over. There’s this amazing technology. It’s very hard to lose it just attached to your body. You know, surprise.


SuChin Pak  39:21

Three backpacks, that’s I’m already dragging two suitcases at least those have wheels and I can you know, manage it. But you can’t at some point. I think my son now is 12. And he is this year I think going to be able to handle it all on his own. I don’t think I want to be carrying three backpacks.


Dylan Thuras  39:44

Instead, you’ll be rolling to roller.


SuChin Pak  39:47

That’s what I did.


Dylan Thuras  39:48

Ku, what about you if you’ve got this little trike in here?


Kulap Vilaysack  39:51

Yeah, so the leaky trike. Our daily use since she was a baby is this Noona Stroller which is it takes up in our SUV, three quarters of the trunk, it’s so heavy. That’s not coming to the airport. When then I was looking at all these travel strollers, I just don’t want to put the money down for something either flimsy or so expensive that it didn’t think it made sense. So then I saw this Duna liki trike, which we’ve been using for a month now. So could you read what the description.


SuChin Pak  40:29

Oh my god, this is a mate, you guys. First of all, I’m going to redo it. But the picture of the guy, it’s a small backpack. Again, the fantasy lives on. But when it’s folded up, you could hold it in one hand, it’s almost like it’s, it almost looks like the size of like a small speaker or something like that. So get ready to roll with Liki, the world’s most compact folding trike. So this sleek urban design allows the trike to be safe and fun. It comes with a patented small fold. It folds and clicks with a button.


Kulap Vilaysack  41:04

You can put in the overhead.


SuChin Pak  41:06

You can put it in the overhead. I mean, this is this is smart. I don’t know Dylan, what do you this to me. Makes sense.


Dylan Thuras  41:12

It’s so cute. It’s like it has a little push thing. So you can put her on I put put her on it and push her through the airport. But all that stuff comes off. So we can also just be like, a little almost like a balance push pedal like, you know this. This you kind of found like a toy for the trip was a way to get through the airport. Plus it packs down really small. That looks nice.


SuChin Pak  41:35

Yeah, they didn’t have this. They didn’t have this tech.


Dylan Thuras  41:39

No, they didn’t.


SuChin Pak  41:40

I only had that plastic plastic giraffe that she that my children were balancing on. This is definitely an add to cart.


Kulap Vilaysack  41:48

Su, do you want to go you have a lot of links that you want to talk about?


SuChin Pak  41:51

I put in basically everything I bought recently. And so I’m just gonna go through just the things that have really worked that I know. Have you tried, and either one of you tried one of these foot rests? The on a plane.


Kulap Vilaysack  42:04

I have it.


SuChin Pak  42:05

So there, it’s so good. So if you’re sitting, okay, let me tell you. So if you’re sitting in economy, why do you laugh? Tell me what I look at this, and I think.


Dylan Thuras  42:21

This looks awesome. It’s just not something I would have ever. Like, I feel like you are live you both are living in a slightly different world than like, I think you have access to a whole set of products that I am unaware exist in any fashion.


SuChin Pak  42:35

Because you and all your you’re in this other world of weird AI possible. Like you gotta get on a different algorithm, or you got some other person’s algorithm at unclaimed baggage.


Dylan Thuras  42:51

Like you’re living in the world of like, tiny individual foot.


SuChin Pak  42:56

Yes, tiny, they’re tiny, individual foot hammocks to relieve your lower back and leg soreness for a long trip. So if you’re sitting in economy, and you know, you want to sleep for me, it’s like, I want to try to get as close to a reclined position as you’re going to get you’re never gonna do that. This sort of helps. So you hang it on the back of your table rest or your table, right? And you can put your feet in it and it sort of hangs and supports you. And so it alleviates your lower back. And this thing totally works. Dylan, I’m preparing for a flight that has never been attempted before with my kids. So I’m freaking out.


Dylan Thuras  43:45

You’re going from California to South Korea, right?


SuChin Pak  43:47

Yes. Yes.


Dylan Thuras  43:49

What is that like a 14 hour flight?


SuChin Pak  43:51

Yeah, 13 to 14 hour flight.


Dylan Thuras  43:52

That’s so long. That’s so long.


SuChin Pak  43:54

But I have used this thing. And my brother uses it. And so I can vouch for it, it doesn’t work.


Dylan Thuras  44:01

From the list of stuff because you have you have these little foot hammocks. You’ve got like some next level neck pillow. And you’ve got like, a super advanced eyemask you’re one of these people who I see on planes, who like I’m always impressed but you’re like, ah, you’re like a flight cyborg. Like you get onto the plane. And suddenly all these like weird extra parts come out. You have these like robotic things. And you’re like, you transform this tiny space into like, somehow like a modest apartment with some plants and shit. I’m gonna look what the fuck like this is my backpack problem. I’m like, I don’t I don’t care. I don’t have any of this stuff.


SuChin Pak  44:40

Click on the link that says trying out. Now, I have not taken this on the plane but I have tried it out in the back of a car because that’s where I do all my trying out. Okay, the problem with sleeping on a plane and sleeping with a travel pillow. There is no travel pillow. I do not care what it says I don’t don’t care if NASA says it, it does not exist where travel pillow is comfortable and will keep your head upright. I don’t care I’ve tried all of them the turtle the this that it does not work, your head is too heavy for any travel pillow. So what inevitably happens is you do the front nod side nod the king. So then I started getting into this world and I’ve got two different versions of these. And it’s strapped. It’s an eye pillow that straps into the headrest. So it holds your head up. While blocking out light. I have two different ones I have this one. And I have one that’s got like a sheepskin on the inside that I have to admit it’s a little warm. So I’m going to be using this one and this one I’m going to be giving to my son so that I don’t see his head […] What? Look at it tells me the science doesn’t work. Go ahead. I want you guys to really look at this and go ahead tell me what what’s wrong with us.


Dylan Thuras  46:06

If there is ever an emergency, you are not leaving your seat, your feet and are both attached. You are bound to vary. I hope you’re on the window seat because no one’s getting past you either. You are both fully asleep and like bound in like man true is sleep cyborg game here. I like it, I like this, this is crazy.


SuChin Pak  46:28

Dylan, let me tell you this. I don’t fuck around when it comes to. I can see do not mess with me. I will I will wrestle you down in the mud for you at all come for me in my sleep. So this is all the things that I am buying. To make sure that that happens.


Kulap Vilaysack  46:46

I have never seen I’m so sorry. I have the listening. You’re ahead is strapped to the back of the seat. Like I’ve never seen this […]


SuChin Pak  46:55

It’s true, and your eyes are covered. So it’s pitch dark. You’ve got your foot in a sling. Okay, then then I other thing I added to cart, Dylan. You guys, you guys laugh, first of all, I know you’re laughing. And it looks funny but I know deep inside, it’s peeking your interest.


Dylan Thuras  47:18

I just looked it up, you are allowed to bring a small house plant or potted plant onto a plane, if you might need to get it approved. But I’m just saying if you want to keep going. I mean, you know this is I get for to be fair, that flight I did to South Korea with my daughter was not yet to and we were flying in part because she got a free ticket, right? So she was like, one in eight months. And my son was four. And I was dying for sleep. I could not sleep everyone was trying to sleep in the same three seats, four people three seats. So I wedged myself at the bottom, like this space where your feet go, like my wife lay down and the kids kind of lay on her and on the floor and I kind of covered myself in a blanket so they wouldn’t find me because they did eventually find me and we’re like yeah, you.


SuChin Pak  48:13

I was like no, they would definitely.


Dylan Thuras  48:15

Against the rules. But so that’s the alternative so I mix. This is not this is probably better than that. That I like I’m making fun, honestly […] Pretty good.


SuChin Pak  48:28

Go ahead Ku.


Kulap Vilaysack  48:29

She he what he is not gonna do it. He’s not gonna do it though.


Dylan Thuras  48:33



Kulap Vilaysack  48:33

Not adding to cart any of this thing could also throw this in. I’m gonna throw this in. I get why it works for you. It’s so doesn’t look cool. And that I I’ve never I’ve been always honest about how shallow I am. I’ve always been about how like that just a simply does not look cool. And I can’t get past that SuChin.


SuChin Pak  48:55

Oh, yeah, yeah, no, no.


Kulap Vilaysack  48:56

I don’t saying it’s right. I’m not saying.


SuChin Pak  49:00

Oh, God, no, again, it just sleep is for me. It’s like on a on a you know, 10 hour plus flight. It’s all about how do I usher in, you know, ssleep? Like what can I do to make this work? So those are my my hacks and and listen, it’s not for everyone. But I really appreciate that you guys listened with an open heart and an open mind.


Dylan Thuras  49:25

I feel like it would be a fun competition to see who it’s all got to be cared if it didn’t carry on baggage.


SuChin Pak  49:31

That’s right.


Dylan Thuras  49:31

See who could transform their single seat area into the most like lux, relaxing homey environment like […]


SuChin Pak  49:40

We know the answer to that. I think that context.


Dylan Thuras  49:47

Won, yeah. All right.


Kulap Vilaysack  49:49

You already won.


Dylan Thuras  49:51

These are good choices. It’s so fun. It’s really fun to talk to other parents about the trials and tribulations of traveling with the kids because it’s like, there’s so much good in it. There’s so much you that is like valuable for you and them in it. It’s also so unbelievably hard sometimes and so it’s just like it’s fun to chat about.


Kulap Vilaysack  50:12

I am really nervous and but I’m also like, I just want to, I want to be able to go places with her. I like being a mother has been so reparative for me, but also it’s just it’s so energizing and to see the world in her eyes. makes me appreciate it more. And I’m so much more present as difficult as I know it’s going to be and I really do hear you guys and I’m preparing as much as I can. I’m like, I just believe that like the good is good outweigh.


SuChin Pak  50:42

Always puke? Always, that’s the thing traveling with kids the good always outweighs the puke a 100%


Dylan Thuras  50:52

Well, we really shouldn’t get shirts that say that. That’s really good. It’s true, it’s so true.


SuChin Pak  50:56

Well that’s it for today’s episode here at Add to Cart Dylan, thank you so much for coming on. Love, love that I found a super you know, I’m really psyched. You can find Dylan on Instagram @DylanThuras you can find all of his cart items on our Instagram at Add to Cart pod. Go subscribe to the Atlas Obscura podcast. It is so fun, we love it, check it out. So happy to have you here. Thank you so much.


Dylan Thuras  51:28

Thank you guys this has been […]


CREDITS  51:36

There’s more Add To Cart with Lemonada Premium subscribers get exclusive access to bonus content like where we tell you about the last item we bought or returned and why subscribe now in Apple podcasts. Add To Cart is a production of Lemonada Media. Our producers are Kegan Zema and Tiffany Bouy. Brian Castillo is our engineer. Theme music is by Wasahhbii and produced by La Made It and Oh So Familiar with additional music by APM music. Executive producers or Kulap Vilaysack, SuChin Pak, Jessica Cordova Kramer, and Stephanie Wittels Wachs. Be sure to check out all the items we mentioned today on our Instagram at @AddToCartPod. Follow Add to Cart wherever you get your podcasts or listen at free on Amazon music with your Prime membership.

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