Check out these tips for stress-free holiday traveling…
Are you going over the hills and through the woods to grandmother’s house for the holidays? Well, you might as well stay a few days! But like many of us, you may love to go – but just hate packing. So here’s a few suitcase organizing instructions and packing tips to make getting ready to go a breeze.
- Distribute weight intelligently – Put heavier items on the bottom of your suitcase. This includes shoes (in shoe bags), rolled jeans, and blazers (folded into drycleaner bags). Lighter pieces go at the top.
- Use bags to organize – Ziplocs are great for small accessories and toiletries. If you’re not checking, make sure cosmetics are on the top of your backed suitcase, for easy access as you go through security. To protect undergarments from damage (and pruing TSA agents), place them in a lingerie bag.
- Roll your casual clothes – This approach minimizes creasing and maximizes space. It’s best for lighter-weight pieces – cotton shirts, khakis, jeans – not bulkier items like sweaters. Put compactly rolled pieces in organization cubes to create extra room. Roll smaller items (yoga pants, socks) and use them to fill in spaces.
- Fold sweaters and delicate items – Bulky articles should be folded and placed in compression sacks, like the Spacepak Bags from Flight 001. Delicate pieces can be protected from wrinkles by using tissue paper and dry-cleaner bags. Dress shirts and skirts should be folded and separated by tissue paper.
- Don’t forget the laundry – Bring a laundry sack (or extra-large Siploc) and stuff it with a few dryer sheets to keep everything smelling fresh. Put it at the back of the suitcase, so that clean clothes are easily accessible during the trip.
These tips work well whether you are flying or driving. It’s always nice to look your best no matter where you are going. Have a great trip!
Are you going on vacation soon or just visiting relatives? Packing can be easier than you think.
Packing for your trip needn’t be the time-consuming, dreaded activity, we’ve all come to hate. We can make it much more pleasant simply by doing a little planning, and not putting it all off until an hour before departure. You can even make a game of it – see who can be most organized and ready first.
About two weeks before your trip find out what the weather will be like at your destination. If your destination is tropical you will obviously need warm weather attire, but if you’re going to New York in January, well, you get the picture. It will also help you to know if you need any kind of formal wear, sportcoat, or dress. Check these kinds of items now to make sure they are clean and in good repair. If not, take them to your local dry cleaner to be ready in time for your trip.
Two weeks ahead is also a good time to check your luggage – is it in good repair and will it hold enough clothing for your length of stay? If you travel a lot, like we do, you may just need to replace your old worn luggage every-so-often, but for the once-a-year traveler you might try borrowing a piece or two from friends. Just make sure to return it in good condition. Also, make sure each piece has an ID tag with your name and address.
As far as how much to pack, that’s kind of a personal preference. Some people can get along on a lot less clothing than others. I believe in packing just what I will need with maybe an extra shirt and socks for emergencies. I have also packed with the intent of purchasing an extra item or two at my destination. This usually works well for those of us who like to have T-shirts, etc. from our trips.
If you are thinking of going to Europe or other destination out of the country, you may want to leave most of your toiletries at home as these items can leak and are not “airport friendly.” Most airports and hotels now sell almost any toiletry item you can think of in their shops. They come in small sizes – just enough for a few days to a week.
If you are flying to your destination you will need to have some kind of carry-on. Be kind to yourself and others and don’t choose a piece of luggage that is obviously too large for carry-on. I like to carry-on as little as possible to leave myself unencumbered for walking through the airport, embarking and disembarking the plane. The things that should be carried-on are: laptops, cameras, medications, passports, money, credit cards, jewelry, and possibly a change of clothes (if you’re afraid your luggage might get lost or delayed). Other than that, why waste your energy lugging more stuff through the check-points than you have to?
Several days before your scheduled departure, get your luggage out, leave it open, and start packing. To keep hanging clothes from wrinkling, put every-other hung item in a plastic dry-cleaners bag – this way the clothes slide against the slippery plastic instead of each other for less wrinkles. In your regular suitcase you can wrap shirts or other clothing items in tissue paper to keep from wrinkling.
If you’ve followed these few easy tips, the morning or evening of your departure you can simply add your last minute items, close your luggage, and take off. No hassle, no worry of forgotten items, no rushing around at the last minute. And, by the way, don’t forget to have a wonderful time!