Packing – the most exciting part of travelling … NOT
Travellers dread packing. Some leave it till the last minute, while others get it done weeks in advance just to not think about it again. Either way, packing is an essential part of travel and not that bad when you break it down to a science.
Just like any other science, there is a list of things that need to be in place to make sure that the process goes as seamlessly as possible.
What you’ll need
Packing lists are like recipes: without them, things can get a bit messy and don’t always turn out as expected. They are a great way of getting everything mentally organized for your specific destination so that when you go to pack, it’s just “command and conquer”. In our blog we have printable packing lists available for Alaska, Sun Destinations, and Europe.
Not just any old suitcase, but a lightweight case with interior pockets and straps for organization. If you need some help choosing a suitcase, check out our luggage review here.
Ziplock bags are a great way to keep things safe and organized. Before starting to pack make sure you have a few on hand for electronics, cables, liquids, and shoes.
Coloured packing cubes have become a favourite travel companion for many avid travellers, simply because they make things easy. They are fairly inexpensive, and you can find them at many big box stores and specialty travel shops.
How you’ll pack
The number one best tip is to roll, not stuff or fold. Rolling saves space and keeps your clothing from wrinkling, saving you precious time at your destination.
If you have articles of clothing that are likely to wrinkle, roll them with a sheet of tissue paper. This is great for a first-time pack, but if you are needing to pack up continually, we would suggest a suit bag.
Filling the gaps
After you have rolled all big items, you will have some gaps in the corners of the suitcase. These gaps are the perfect place to store soft, smaller items like socks, scarfs and small tops. These spaces can also accommodate accessories such as chargers and toiletries (packed in the ziplock bags mentioned above)
Pack the cubes
As we talked about before, packing cubes are a great way to keep your suitcase organized. Roll items into the packing cubes in categories, such as the green cube for tops and blue for bottoms. That way when you are looking for something specific, you just have to pull out the cube opposed to everything in your bag.
Why you’ll feel stress-free
When you break packing down to a science, you go through the process in a very methodical way, ultimately saving huge amounts of time and stress.
Before you head out the door to the airport, there are a few last “icing on the cake” techniques to ensure a stress-free check-in.
- On the day of departure, have a post-it note prepared with a list of last minute items that you want to add to your bag (toothbrush, contact case/solution, etc.)
- Weigh your luggage ahead of time, allowing plenty of extra weight for souvenirs and shopping at your destination.
- Lock your suitcase. We suggest a TSA approved lock, which will provide peace of mind for you and compliance with TSA screening.
- Place a unique ribbon or luggage tag on your bag to help it stand out from all of the other “black” suitcases on the baggage carousel.
- Ensure that your carry-on bag is ready to be screened, and that all restricted items and liquids are in a ziplock bag.
- Most of all … relax. If you have forgotten something, it is very likely that you will be able to pick it up at your destination…or maybe you are better off without it!