Going away on holiday is an exciting time, but there’s no denying that one of the most stressful pre-travel activities is packing a suitcase.
The risk of forgetting something or the possibility of mega fees for going over your luggage weight – there is no getting away from the fact that packing a suitcase is one of the least enjoyable tasksl.
To lessen those stress levels and set you in the right direction towards a fun and stress-free holiday, here are a few top tips for packing a suitcase.
With your attention turned to packing your suitcase, we recommend that you get your favourite tunes a pumpin’, your body a rockin’ and your clothes a rollin’. Folding clothes in your suitcase is very 1990’s. The modern day jetsetter knows that rolling clothes is the way of the future. The benefits are three-fold; they are going to be less creased when you get to your destination, stay more firmly in place in your suitcase and also help you to fit more in. What’s not to love about a triple-win packing technique?!
You may dismiss vacuum packs aka. space bags, as something you would only ever need for storing bulky ski gear which gets a look in once a year. Alas, there is another great use for these air-tight oversized sandwich bags. They are a godsend for packing a suitcase where space is at a premium. They are especially great if you need to pack some of the bulkier items such as coats and woolly jumpers because you are travelling to multiple destinations with varying climates. Or you are coming to Melbourne which is renowned for having four seasons in one day!
Only a relatively new addition to the suitcase packing scene is the packing cube. These squarelicious storage solutions are super helpful for those instances where you want quick and easy access to your ‘stuff’ when you arrive at your destination. You know as well as we do that it is inevitable that the one item you are looking for in a hurry is right at the bottom of the suitcase. As you dig deeper into your case you start to get the panics, thinking that perhaps you left that essential item behind when you were too distracted by rocking and rolling or vacuuming oversized sandwich bags. Don’t panic people, get your cube on so that you can better separate items into their own little sections e.g. accessories, t-shirts, trousers and socks; and make sure you can access those all important travel goods on the go much quicker.
At some time in your travelling career you will have no doubt had your shampoo leak all over your favourite clothes that you spent long and hard planning and actually packing into your suitcase. We refuse to see you a victim of liquid leak again. Prevent the spillage by using a sheet of cling film between the top of the bottle and the lid. Once set in place, you then pop the lid back on and some cling film over the exterior of the bottle top. With this old faithful technique, you will dramatically reduce your chance of victimisation to the traveller’s nemesis. Alternatively, you can wrap items that have leakage potential such as shampoos and roll on deodorant in a plastic bag to separate it from those items you’d prefer to save for dry cleaning!
Eyeshadow palettes and pressed powder look great on faces but not so great on the inside of your suitcase. Without putting in place some precautionary measures, there is every chance that you could be left with a cracked and messy palette as you set off on your adventure. You can avoid this by putting a flat cotton wool pad in-between the powder and the lid, to give it a little extra padding. No one is going to judge you for using a little bit of padding to improve your appearance!
Whether you are travelling for a short amount of time, or you’re setting off on the big trip of a lifetime, towards the end of your travels it’s likely that your clothes will smell a little bit on the pungent side. A little traveller’s secret is to pop a fabric conditioner sheet/dryer sheet over the top of your clothing and in-between the layers to keep everything fresh and fragrant.
Fight the urge to pack everything you own. Be ruthless. Our best advice is to make a list of all of the essential items and review it before you pack. It can help to actually lay out all of your gear and put items into piles. Don’t pack too many ‘going out’ outfits as inevitably they do not get the use you think. Consider footwear for difference purposes but be ruthless at the same time. Packing running shoes solely for holiday exercise may not work in your weight limit favour, so consider leaving the street shoes behind and wearing versatile sports shoes during the day. Make sure you know what your luggage allowance is – not just for the way over but more importantly for the way home. You are going to want to buy something when you are away despite your best intentions not to. Excess luggage charges aren’t pleasant, and neither is that awkward moment when you have to review your suitcase at the check-in desk and remove an item or ten while the queue backs up behind you.
And finally, while not technically a ‘packing tip’, we want to share our last suitcase related piece of advice…
If you’ve travelled before you’ll know all too well that feeling of waiting, waiting and more waiting for your suitcase to arrive at carousel A. This is the most enjoyable time for suitcases as they cruise the carousel like they are on an amusement park ride, but it is not the most enjoyable time for you. You hope that your suitcase will stand apart from the rest and will scream “I’m yours” when it makes the big plunge onto the carousel. But rather you see a million similar looking black, grey and navy cases straight out of a Samsonite catalogue. As time passes and your fellow passengers disappear, your anxiety levels rise thinking that either some crim’ on your flight has legged it with your case or your airline has lost it. You just knew that would happen to you! The best way to avoid this situation all together and get your holiday off to a flying start is to make sure your case stands out from the crowd. Purchase a case in a bright or unusual colour which is sure to stand out and/or tie it with a colourful ribbon or luggage belt. Be loud and proud, and add a bit of ‘X Factor’ to your suitcase.
So for what they are worth, these are our top tips for packing a suitcase.
Happy travels you smart traveller, you.