Ten Simple Packing Tips Every Traveler Should Know

It's summer time and you know what that means: it's time for traveling! Having a rather adventurous nature, I have always loved to travel. Whether by plane, train, or automobile, the anticipation of visiting new places, tasting new cuisine, and experiencing new areas and different cultures is so exciting. However, I have to admit, I have not always been the most economical thrifty packer. They say there are two types of packers: those who pack lightly and those who wished they had. I definitely fell into the latter category. After far too many times lugging way too many suitcases through airport terminals and hotel lobbies, I revised my packing process.

Packing efficiently not only makes for lighter travel, less laundry, but also allows me to leave more space for any special souvenirs I pick up along the way!

Read below to learn a few tips I found work well and help me stay organized.

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1. Make a list

 Take the time to write a list, it is worth the effort and the best way to ensure you do not leave important items or paperwork behind. If you start packing a week or days ahead of time, check off the items you as you place them in the suitcase.

2. Plan Your Wardrobe

Take the time to coordinate outfits prior to your trip. Choose pieces that can do double duty. Take two or three tops for a pair of pants. Neutral and classic pieces like a white blouse, jeans, a chambray top, and a black dress are all multi-purpose. Pops of color can be added with sweaters, scarves, and tops. 

3. Layer

Pack clothes for your trip that can be layered and on travel day, your outfit should include layers that can take you through varying temperature changes inside and outside. 

4. Limit Footwear and Jewelry

Footwear should be limited to a pair of dress heels, casual shoes, and an athletic pair.  The bulkiest of these should be worn on the plane. Limit jewelry to a few light simple pieces especially if you need to go through security at an airport. Having to remove pieces is awkward and will delay your security check.  

5. Roll Clothes

This is not only the most efficient method but, helps reduce creases and wrinkles in clothing. You can even take it a step further and use vacuum compression bags and packing cubes to keep everything organized and in its place.

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6. Buy Travel Size Toiletries

Instead of taking your large size products, buy travel size or purchase small plastic bottles and put your own products in those. Always check on the Transportation Security Administration website for the current liquids rule. Currently, you are allowed to bring a quart-sized bag of liquids, aerosols, gels, creams and pastes in your carry-on bag through security. These are limited to 3.4 ounces or less per item.

7. Use every inch of your suitcase

Shoes should be placed along the edge of the suitcase. Small items such as underwear, socks, camis, and t-shirts can be rolled up and stuffed into shoes. 

8. Download Books

Instead of taking bulky travel guides, book magazines with you,  download those to your phone. It is handy to have earphones to listen to music and audiobooks and to drown out any noisy neighbors. Keep in mind though, too many electronic devices can be cumbersome.

9. Hair dryer - To take or not to take

Most hotels today provide hair dryers although, they may not be up to par with your own. If it’s a must have, roll jeans or pants around it.

10. Make the Most of Your Carry On Purse

Put your small purse in larger bag or purse. Carry in the larger bag a set of clothing and those travel- size toiletries in case your luggage gets lost. Avoid using backpacks. You are a magnet for pickpockets. Crossover bags are less bulky and allow you to keep you hand over it for safety. 

I hope these tips help you to enjoy your summer exploring as much as possible!

Sincerely,

Camilla, Owner, The Farm at Cedar Mountain

Photography by: Mary Elizabeth Creative

Elise Crawford