Suitcase Savvy

When it comes to packing,  I’ve picked up a few simple tricks that make a big difference.
As many airlines are charging exorbitant fees for checked luggage, you might consider carrying on.  Sure, you may already practice light packing for weekend travel, but with a few new moves you’ll be breezing through a week or longer in a carry-on.
First, refer to a packing list. Create a custom list by taking notes as you dress each day. Or find a packing list online. Either way, this will eliminate the guess work. Review it as you pack, and double check it as you complete the task.
Include essential items, and items of preference.

After you make your selections, try to cut quantities in half. Make outfit choices ahead of time, and think about which items of clothing can serve double duty. You might consider packing in one color scheme or another, which may save you from having to pack too many pairs of shoes or accessories.
Roll items of clothing.
You will be amazed how much space is saved by rolling instead of folding.
Tuck socks and lingerie into shoes and into the crevices created between larger rolled clothing pieces. Rolling clothing and essential items should leave room for items of preference. So don’t deny yourself those little luxuries-it’s vacation, after all!
When making your list, consider your routines( ie. If you sleep on a silk pillow, then make sure to include one) If you have tea every night before bed, or require a first cup of coffee in the morning before breakfast,  pack a few tea bags or instant coffee packs, in case they aren’t available upon arrival.  Don’t depend on hotel amenities for ”must have’s” or something you prefer not to do without.
If you have allergies or sensitivities to detergents, you might want to include your own wash cloth or  or other linens. If you are like me, and can’t stand to walk around a hotel room barefoot, pack a pair of hotel slippers(to toss after use!)
Packing items to toss:
I love, love, love travel treasures! Seeing items in my home that take my senses to those happy places is almost as good as being there again-almost! But if you’re traveling back with a full suitcase, you won’t have room for much. One of my favorite packing strategies is motivated by my desire to shop on vacation!  I do this by packing a few items which I’ll lovingly say are on their last leg.  This works great for a few key bulky items. If you typically replace running shoes on a schedule, think about bringing a pair with about a week of life left-make their last few miles the best:), and then toss them!  This also applies to workout gear. Take a look at your spandex-it only lasts so long. So pack what you’re just about ready to let go anyway.  We all love to start the poolside season with a fresh beach bag.  So pack last year’s bag, and leave it behind. Or, opt to use a beach bag as your personal item, and pack in it. I like to try to estimate my daily quantity of use for toiletry items like shampoo, conditioner, hair oils, sunscreen and lotion, so that I can use those up, and toss them to make room on the way back.
Pack purses, or pouches inside larger bags like totes.  Use tissue sheets to separate items that have a tendency to wrinkle. Use dryer sheets between clothing to eliminate static and keep freshness. Especially when packing for children, use
zip lock bags to separate what is to be worn each day.  Zip locks can be used for dirties (or sea shells!!) on the way home.
So whether your itinerary is set, or you’re dreaming of a future get-away, hopefully you’re feeling inspired to take a few thoughtful steps to make the most of your next travel experience. Bon voyage!
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