March 19, 2013

How to pack when traveling

Stephen and I are heading out on our 1 year anniversary trip and I am dreading packing us. I always over pack and get disorganized. I end up bringing more stuff than I need and feel silly lugging 30 extra pounds when I don't need it all.

I decided I would outline everything I need to do and share it with case you're like me and need all the help you can get. 

First, create a packing list
Instead of trying to figure out at one in the morning what you need to pack, create a list of items that needed on a trip. A packing list not only ensures that you won’t forget anything important, it also prevents you from over packing. And bonus! This will help cut down on making your suitcase weighting 50+ pounds and getting charged extra fees.

Check the weather
Some people don’t check what the weather is going to be like where they’re headed and therefore stuff their bag with items they never end up using. Before you pack, check the weather report for a semi-accurate prediction of what Mother Nature has in store for you on your trip. Forecasts these days go hour by hour, so you can see what you’ll need to be comfortable morning, noon, and night. is a great resource.

Packing clothes
Everyone wants to pack as lightly as possible (I know I do) but sometimes when I am  faced with my closet and that empty suitcase I stressed about what to bring. An easy way to pack is simply pack one pair of shorts or jeans for every 2-3 days of your trip, and a shirt and pair of underwear for every single morning.  Add one extra shirt, pair of underwear, and an outfit, in case something happens that will require it. When you’ve packed the basics, think about what additional items you might need. A formal outfit? A bathing suit? Also, don’t forget a pair of pajamas.

Finally, pack an empty garbage bag in your suitcase. That way you can keep your dirty clothes separate from your clean ones while on your trip.

Packing to Avoid Wrinkling
The bane of any traveler’s existence is the wrinkles and creases that end up in your clothes after you pull them out of your suitcase. Try these techniques to keep your clothes neat and crisp while they’re en route to your destination.

Alternate Folding
One way to avoid creases in clothing is by placing one garment between the folds of another garment. By placing another garment between the fold it prevents a crease from forming. I bring lots o f dresses on trips and don't take a hanging bag, so this is a good way to keep those ironed clothes looking perfect.

Add or take away from it depending on the type of trip you’re going on. For example, you ‘re going on a ski trip, remember to pack your ski gear or for us, were going to the beach, so bathing suits are a necessity!

The point of the list is to 1) make sure you remember to bring stuff and 2) make sure you don’t over pack. If it’s not on your list, don’t pack it.
  • Underwear
  • Pajamas
  • Socks
  • T-shirts
  • Dresses
  • Jeans/Khakis
  • Dress shoes (not every pair you own either)
  • Tennis shoes
  • Place the following items in your bathroom bag.
  • Toothbrush and toothpaste/tooth powder
  • Floss
  • Mouthwash
  • Brush
  • Shampoo (or a shampoo bar if you want to avoid the hassle of airport security)
  • Soap
  • Deodorant
  • Feminine stuff (just in case)
  • Makeup (you don't need every lip gloss you own either)
Things you don’t think about, but that you need
  • Plane tickets
  • Driver’s license
  • Passport
  • Camera
  • Sunglasses
  • Prescription medicine
  • MONEY (cash)
I think I am ready. Are you going anywhere soon? How do you pack?
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  1. We are heading to the Blue Ridge Mountains soon. I tend to pack pretty light since I want everything to fit in one small suitcase and one small toiletry bag. Great Tips girl!

    The How to Guru

  2. This is helpful! Your list is the best part - I am ALWAYS forgetting something! And making those runs to the local Target wherever I'm going to get the things I'm missing add up ; )


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