17 Packing Tips and Suggestions
Those of us that love to travel, but don't do it extremely often, are often puzzled or frustrated when it comes to packing and cramming everything in that suitcase. Let's save ourselves from all the unnecessary stress and listen to the advice of somebody that travels a lot. Any and all types of personalities will find something useful here:
1. When taking carry-on only, wear heavy things
This might be obvious after you have travelled a few times – if you don't check in your luggage, make sure you wear your sneakers or heavy boots during the flight. Take your jacket and wear your sweater, airports and planes are usually cold anyway. This way your carry-on will be lighter and will fit more.
You can call it whatever you want to call it, but take your sarong, Turkish towel, lungi on your trip because it might just be the most versatile item. It won't take much space and you will be able to use it as a cover on the flight, cover your shoulders and hair in the religious places, and use it at the pool or beach.
3. Don't bring hair tools
You are not at home or at work, so let your hair take a break from all the curlers and straighteners. Natural hair are beautiful, but if you want to spruce your hair up a bit, use some surf spray. Try Bumble& Bumble travel size. Spray, put your hair in a bun, sleep like that, get up, shake, and go.
4. Packing cubes
These little dividers are totally awesome for packing. Try ebags packing cubes and you won't know how you did all your packing without them.
5. Don't roll or fold
If you are not using packing cubes, you might be rolling or folding your clothes. Try to lay everything flat in a large rolling suitcase. Fill the corners first and then fill up the middle. Do it clockwise and you will be surprised how much space this type of packing will save you. Put bigger pieces on top to hold everything in. For carry-on packing fold bigger pieces once and don't fold small tank tops.
6. Put your shoes in the bags
There is nothing worse than dirty shoes mixed up with clothes in the luggage. You can use plastic grocery bags or old cotton bags from purses to store your shoes separately. Dirty laundry should also go into separate bags, which can be washed at home.
7. Plan your outfits
Yes, this might be easier said than done, but it makes a huge difference. We all tend to pack our favorite tops, best jeans, dresses, but some things that go together might be forgotten and then you have just a partial outfit that you can't use. If you go for less than 10 days, create an outfit for each day. If you go for longer, still have outfits for 10 days and then mix and match. Make sure you coordinate the colors and don't take something that you might want to wear, but never did so before. Read also When and What to Wear in Connecticut.
8. Beauty travel necessities
Don't overburden yourself with countless make up supplies. Take only things that you can't live without, like mascara, powder, bronzer, eye liner, brow kit, and lipstick. OK, maybe eye shadows too. Keep it simple and don't spend too much time every morning on that.
Purses are heavy, so try to take only one. Sometimes you might need to have one more, just for matching colors. Soft leather bags can be flattened; structured ones should be filled with things and left in the luggage. You can store your extra toiletries and sunglasses in that extra purse.
10. Don't take soap
People are often attached to their favorite shower gels or soaps. Try to be smart and survive without it while you're traveling. Every hotel has soaps and shower gels, so save yourself some trouble and spillage. The only time you might need soap is if you are in a remote location in India or camping. All other times let it go.
Treat them with respect and don't just throw them in. Mac cords are known to break at the seams and become useless. Wrap them gently and store them in the pocket. It makes good sense to keep all your tech stuff in one place or bag, so that you don't have to go crazy when you get to where you're going and want to charge your phone ASAP. You should keep some rubber self-setting goo with you because it works miracles on the cords that are starting to break.
12. Lightweight luggage
Having a good quality lightweight luggage can save you some serious money at the check-in counter. IT luggage is one of the lightest luggage out there and of superior quality. You might consider just getting rid of the luggage you bought 10 years ago, it is too heavy! Another good brand is Delsey. When buying lightweight luggage, make sure it is expandable, has four wheel spinners, has some compartments, and fits your style. Read also How to Save for Travel When You Shop at Target.
You should always keep your liquids together. Put your lotion, mini contact lens liquid, and everything else in a clear bag, so that you could take it out at the security easily instead of searching through all your bags.
Laptops are sometimes thrown on top of the overhead bins and forgotten for the rest of the trip, but try not to do that. Your neighbor might be not careful and leave a leaky water bottle right next to your computer. Things might shift during the flight and something heavy might crush it. Keep it under your feet or get a hard shell carry-on that has a special compartment for a laptop and can protect it. Check out Delsey 19-inch carry-on.
15. Heavy things
You should always put heavy things close to the wheels. When you pack, visualize what will happen to the bag when it stands up and pack accordingly. Try to angle things to stand upright when the bag will be rolling.
16. Buy a luggage scale
This is definitely a necessity. It is much easier to use than the stand-on scale and will be of great help when you will want to determine the exact weight. If you will be climbing onto the scale with the luggage in your hand, then subtracting your weight from the total, you might be a few pounds off, let alone all the trouble. Luggage scale will always be precise.
17. Keep necklaces untangled
This last trick is marvelous – put your necklace through a straw and it won't get tangled up. Don't take more than one or two of them anyway, and keep them in the straws.