Packing can be a pain for even experienced travelers.
You may be looking forward to your vacation, but packing isn’t quite as relaxing. If you don’t know where to start, you’re not alone. The hardest part about packing is getting started.
Clothes piled on your bed, toiletries scattered everywhere, and forget about all that extra stuff you can’t find a place for. You need some tips on how to pack like a pro.
To take some of that stress away here are some helpful tips to get the most out of your travel gear and relax like a pro.
Weigh your Suitcase
If you struggle with overpacking, the scale at the airport could be your biggest enemy. Make sure you weigh your suitcase before your trip to make sure you don’t exceed the weight limitations.
Luggage scales are inexpensive and give you the peace of mind to put your luggage on the airport scale without any drama. Bringing them with you on your trip can also make sure you don’t exceed the weight limitations on your flight back. Souveniers can be heavy!
If you don’t have a special luggage scale like these, weigh yourself holding the bag on your regular bathroom scale. Then, subtract your original weight from the weight of you holding your bag and you should have an approximate weight.
Also, make sure to check specific weight limit restrictions for your airline, they can sometimes differ and may even weigh your carry on.
Make Your Luggage Stand Out
The baggage claim at the airport can be chaotic. Whether you’re feeling the jet lag or exhausted from a long-haul flight, you don’t want to miss your bag.
Make your bag stand out on the luggage carousel by choosing a unique luggage tag. Or, you could simply tie a brightly colored ribbon to your suitcase handle. This can go a long way when looking for your black suitcase in a sea of… more black suitcases.
Better yet, skip this step altogether and choose a brightly colored or unique looking suitcase. Not only is it your style, but you’ll never miss it when it comes around.
Roll Your Clothes
This tip is on every travel blog, and for good reason. Your clothes may get a tad wrinkly, but you save tons of space.
Clothing items like jeans and t-shirts don’t have to take up as much room as you think. Rolling is a foolproof way to maximize your space and still see everything you packed!
To combat wrinkles you can make your DIY wrinkle release spray to pack with you, just make sure it follows TSA’s liquids rule!
Traveling With a Pet?
Not all hotels or rentals are pet friendly, and this is especially true for larger breeds. Make sure you check the rules of wherever you’re staying ahead of time. The last thing you need is you and your pet left without accommodations when you arrive at your destination.
Keep vet information, shot records, certifications, and any necessary documentation handy as well.
Also, keep essential pet gear easy to reach. You’ll never know when you’ll have to pull out a treat or a poop baggie. Give your pet their own little bag so you can find anything they might need quickly or in case of an emergency.
Baby on Board?
If you’re traveling with a baby chances are you already know it’s going to be hard. There’s no denying that. But make traveling easier on yourself by staying organized.
You can’t be too prepared in this area either. Keep your diaper bag versatile and everything you may need within arms reach.
Stacking your diaper bag or carry on on top of your luggage makes it easier to carry when rolling a stroller or holding a fussy baby. Special baby travel gear like pop-up cribs, compact strollers, and slings can come in handy when you want to feel extraprepared.
Use Packing Cubes
Once thought to be a gimmick of the travel industry, packing cubes are now becoming just as popular as suitcases themselves! Use the rolling technique to fit your clothes neatly, and organize them by category.
Keeping your bottoms separated from your underwear and shirts will make it that much easier to find what you’re looking for. Nobody wants to be digging through a suitcase when travel adventures await!
This super handy packable travel gear will make your packing experience so simple you’ll have no problem pulling anything out of your suitcase on a whim.
Depending on where you’re going, you may need some extra travel gear. Whether this is safety gear, camping equipment, or children’s necessities, you want to make sure it’s easy to transport and TSA friendly.
If you’re flying, be extra cautious about what you can and cannot bring with you. You don’t want to be stuck at airport security because your gear isn’t allowed on the plane.
Keep Bulky Items Outside Your Bag
Winter coats and travel pillows can take up most of your space when you pack them inside a suitcase. Opt instead for sliding your travel pillow over the luggage handle and wearing your coat onto the plane with you. Even if you get warm you can use it for a pillow or blanket to get comfy!
If you’re looking for a lightweight but super comfortable travel pillow to keep you company on your adventure, this one from Everlasting Comfort feels like luxury. Even on economy flights or long road trips, you’ll fall asleep with ease. It even has a nifty drawstring so you can toss it on top of your luggage and roll out.
Chances are you know you don’t need all 12 of those sweaters for a 10-day trip, but what if? We’ve all been there. Way overpacked and struggling to drag our luggage through the airport.
Pare down to only the essentials. Before your trip, find out if where you’re staying has a washing machine. If so, all the more reason to pack less. If not, go for layering pieces that you can mix and match throughout your trip.
Mixing pieces keeps your outfits stylish, but clean. Don’t be afraid to wear an item like jeans or a sweater again. That is if they’re still in good shape!
Carry Laundry and Shoe Bags
You’ll probably want to pack a second pair of shoes, whether they’re hiking boots or cute sandals. Keep these away from your clean clothes by packing them in a separate shoe bag. This will keep your luggage from smelling like the bottom of your shoe.
Another pro tip, toss in shoe odor eliminators into your shoe bag to keep them smelling fresh every time you pull them out.
Laundry bags are also a great way to separate your clothes. Once you don’t plan on wearing it again, pack it in a dirty laundry bag to keep it separate from your clean clothes. Suitcases with dividers are also a good way to keep things organized in there.
Pack a Portable Charger
Some airlines have in-flight charging outlets and most airports have outlets at the terminal, but do you want to chance it? This is one of those things you can’t be too overly prepared for.
We rely on our phones for almost everything nowadays, sometimes including our boarding passes. Don’t risk your phone dying unexpectedly or not having enough battery to last you through a delay. Be prepared and come with your own portable charging pack.
This one from Anker is small enough to fit in a side pocket in your carry on and can charge your phone back to its full battery life.
Road Trip Tips
Road trips come with their own set of problems. The upside is that they can be less expensive, more spontaneous, and provide just as much fun! Thankfully, you can maximize your space and travel with ease by doing these small things.
Kids in the backseat? Keep them occupied by providing lap trays to play on. Also, anything magnetic is great to occupy them with because there’s less of a chance it falls off their lap!
Those seat-back pouches can also come in handy for hiding snacks, wipes, and games.
Use all your space! Don’t forget to pack items you won’t need during the drive under your seats or on a luggage rack to maximize space.
Rundown with your family or travel-mates where everything is located in case you’re not in a position to fish it out from the backseat.
With these 12 helpful tips, you’ll soon be on your way to arriving at your destination organized and stress-free.
Your travel gear should feel like an extension of you. Keep track of what and where you pack everything to be ready for anything.
Traveling isn’t always predictable or easy, but you can make it easier on yourself through proper packing and preparation.