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Kathy Hilton Loves Airplane Food

Welcome to Refinery29’s Travel Diaries, a place where we find out the how, the why, and the where people are exploring now that the world is opening up again. In their answers to 29 questions, diarists will reveal their unique — and often a little offbeat — travel habits, stories, and hacks, from their bucket list destinations to their must-have road trip munchies to the wildest thing that ever happened to them while on a vacation. Buckle up, because we're inviting you along for the ride.
Today, Real Housewife Kathy Hilton tells us about her love of the eggs she can only get on airplanes, must-have skincare products for flights, and where to eat the best meal in Rome.
Name: Kathy Hilton
Age: 62
Occupation: Television personality and philanthropist
Home: Beverly Hills, California
Handle: @kathyhilton
Plane, train, or automobile? I prefer to ride on a plane. I love the hum of the plane, I feel unreachable, and — funny enough — I love airplane food. (Breakfast eggs on a flight are better than any restaurant eggs I have had.)
Beach or mountains? Beach. I am a Pisces; nothing makes me happier than being on water.
What's your biggest vacation splurge? If it is an option, my favorite splurge is a day out on a boat.
What’s your minibar weakness? Peanut M&Ms and a Coca-Cola.
What is the first big trip you ever took? Europe! Our first stop was London.
Tell us about your best travel experience. Spending Christmas in Maui at the Four Seasons Hotel is my favorite vacation experience. Since the children were little, we would go during the Christmas holiday. I love the smell of the Christmas tree there! We would put little Christmas trees in the rooms for the children and make stockings to give them at the restaurant, Spago, on the first night. The children loved going to the water slides at the Grand Wailea. I can’t wait to continue the tradition with my grandkids.
Tell us about your worst travel experience. Recently, on my way back to L.A. after a trip to Europe, we found out at the airport that a COVID test was required in order to get on the flight to the U.S., and it could not be a quick rapid test. We had been told that our vaccination cards would be enough! There were around 50 people in the same boat as us, all surprised that the COVID test was required. It was a nightmare being at the airport for six hours, but the silver lining was that we had one more magical night in Paris!
What is your favorite place to visit? London. I love it there! The people are so friendly, they have the nicest taxi drivers in the world. The shopping in London is fabulous, and my all-time favorite hotel, Claridges Hotel, is also there. One of my favorite restaurants to visit when I'm in London is Harry’s Bar.
What is your go-to traveling outfit? Juicy sweats, a T-shirt, and All-Bird sneakers. They’re comfy and good for the environment! I also take my Max Mara teddy coat, which doubles as my blanket.
Do you arrive at the airport three hours early? Or 30 minutes before boarding? If it were up to me, I would be there 5 minutes before, but my husband is a stickler, and he would get there 3.5 hours before.
What are your favorite traveling snacks? Potato chips, pretzels, and an airport hotdog.
What's your favorite part about staying in a hotel? The comfy beds, robes, and hotel slippers.
Where do you want to go next? Back to London.
Where would you travel if it were the end of the world? I would go to New York to see my grandchildren, daughter, and son-in-law. Also, I’m a born-and-raised New Yorker, and I think it’s the most magical city in America.
What’s your most frequent trip? San Francisco! Some of my best friends live there, and we love to visit the Opera and the ballet. There is an annual San Francisco Antique Show that I really enjoy as well! Whenever I am in San Francisco, I never miss going to the Fisherman’s Wharf.
What’s your packing style? Definitely over-packing. I usually start packing three or four days before leaving for a trip, and I make sure I have shoes for each outfit, enough comfy things, and that my valuables are packed in my carry-on. Any designer purses, shoes, or bags that I absolutely love and feel are irreplaceable are on the plane with me.
What was your last trip? Europe. We went to Italy, the South of France, and Paris.
What's your next trip? London, as soon as it is open and we are able to travel safely.
What’s your best travel hack? I bring my pillows and eye mask on the plane with me. I use my Barbara Sturm face cream on the plane, take vitamin C, and hydrate with my favorite moisturizer, Super by U Beauty. I like to have my La Mer spray mist as well if I am feeling dry.
What’s better: solo trips or traveling in groups? We just did a big trip with friends, and it was so much fun, but I do love to be on trips with just my husband and family, too.
What’s a touristy spot that’s actually worth it? Las Vegas has the best restaurants, spas, shows, and shopping. It’s like a playground for adults! I love a Wheel of Fortune slot machine — my daughter Nicky introduced me.
Window, middle, or aisle? Window seat. I like to be tucked in on a flight.
Hotels: splurge or save? Splurge — I like to stay in a nice hotel.
What’s your go-to airplane drink? I make sure to drink as much water as I can.
Domestic or international travel? International travel. Walking into the international terminal with all the duty-free shops is exciting. I personally think long distance flights allow you to catch up on sleep and get work done. I set up an office on those flights!
What’s the best meal you’ve ever eaten while traveling? Lumen Garden in Rome at the St. Regis! The atmosphere is amazing, and you are right in the middle of Italy, eating the best cheeses and wine.
Podcast, audiobook, or playlist? I don’t even know what any of those are… I have heard of them, but wouldn’t know how to do it.
What’s your favorite airplane movie? I am not big on movies, but I usually will watch old Disney children classics like Cinderella.
What’s at the top of your bucket list? Going to a European Christmas market because I collect ornaments and Christmas is my favorite. I am obsessed with Christmas, it is the most fun time of year. I have heard the markets in Germany are amazing!

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