I’ve been traveling more lately, and thought it’d be handy to show my favorite setup for attending work conferences or business trips. As I sat down to record this video I was literally preparing to go to a conference on the other side of the country and thought, what the hey, I’ll take you through my thought process about what fountain pens, paper, and ink I take and why.

Things that are important to me when I travel:

  • Portability
  • Ability to carry-on (when flying)
  • Durability
  • Function and reliability

Keeping these core tenants in mind for me when I travel, here are my product preferences:

Pens:

Pilot Metropolitan F

  • reliable writer
  • lots of color options
  • inexpensive enough to lose and not worry about it
  • very fine nib works great on cheap paper
  • snap cap is very convenient
  • takes cartridges or converter



Lamy 2000 EF

  • great writer
  • piston fill, nice ink capacity
  • snap cap is convenient
  • ink window is nice
  • understated, design is impressive without being flashy
Discussing the Lamy 2000: Quality Control



TWSBI Vac-700R EF

  • high ink capacity
  • ink chamber locks for flying
  • visible ink level
  • “cool” factor
A spring greeting with flowers drawn with a TWSBI VAC700R fountain pen and Graf Von Faber Castell Electric Pink ink
  • extremely convenient “click” mechanism
  • EF nib is very fine, great for cheap paper
  • Great writer
  • Takes cartridges or converter

 

Lamy Rollerball
Update 3/25/20 We no longer stock this rollerball

  • fallback plan, great for a backup pen
  • works well on terrible paper
  • a few color options for you
  • snap cap
  • won’t dry out like a fountain pen if left uncapped
  • most reliable on other peoples’ business cards
  • easy for other people to use (maybe that’s not good!)

Notebooks:

Filofax Notebook, A5 size

Update 3/25/20 We do no longer stock this particular brand

  • dividers and removable pages are great for attending different seminars
  • jot notes down quickly, organize later
  • color options will stand out from other notebooks

 

Leuchtturm1917 A5

  • color options let it stand out
  • page numbers and table of contents are great
  • dot grid is great for all different kinds of writing

 

 

Traveler’s Notebook, Passport size

  • small, rugged
  • notebooks are swappable
  • very portable, great for quick meet ups

Ink:

Overfilled samples

  • 7ml, plenty of ink!
  • Can reuse vials from samples or buy them in 10-packs
  • Small enough to carry on

Diamine 30ml

  • plastic bottles, 1oz in size so okay to carry on
  • fit nicely in a ziplock snack bag
  • lots of popular colors available

Cartridges

  • a necessary evil sometimes
  • some standard international pens can fit a spare cartridge in the pen which is very convenient

My ink colors of choice:

Noodler’s Heart of Darkness

  • Solid performing, deep black ink
  • Great black for cheap paper
  • 4.5oz bottle



Diamine Red Dragon

  • nice red, vibrant but not too vibrant
  • stands out from the black ink on handouts
  • great for writing down ideas for emphasis
  • 30ml bottle



Diamine Majestic Blue

  • deep blue, just a personal favorite
  • stands out against black, but very subtly
  • for 30ml bottle

Accessories:

  • Aston Case-10– plenty of room for all your pens, plus ink samples and even syringes if you want
  • Aston Slip– protects individual pens
  • Ziploc bag– always handy to stop leaks from ruining your clothes

I should mention that I have a video in my Fountain Pen 101 series called Flying with Fountain Pens that goes into detail about this specific way of traveling with pens. That said, if you can keep your pens oriented so that the nibs are pointed up when you takeoff, you’ll pretty much never have an issue.

These are the things I have enjoyed taking with me to my work conferences, how about you? Let me know in the comments below.

 

Write On,
Brian Goulet