Jun 24

Pack Efficiently

Checking luggage is a pain. It takes forever, and sometimes, you never receive your bags. Here are some tips on how to pack lightly and tightly so that you can avoid checking bags altogether.

1) Make a packing list . Don’t use one of the comprehensive lists, easily found on the internet; make it specific to your needs. A list serves two functions:
a) It prevents you from forgetting anything.
b) It prevents you from packing unnecessary items. If you think you might need it, you don’t.

2) Edit the list. Check the weather report, and don’t pack winter clothes if you’re traveling to Miami in July. Make sure to pack culturally appropriate clothing, i.e., if you’re visiting religious sites, you might not want to wear a tank top. Pick clothing that you can mix and match so you don’t have to pack as many items. Add items sparingly and only as necessary.

3) Shrink what you do need to bring.
a) Pack toiletries in small containers. You don’t need your entire bottle of shampoo for a two-day business trip. Besides, you’re probably not allowed to carry-on (pdf file) larger bottles of liquids.
b) Photocopy pages from travel guides, and bring articles instead of entire books.

4) Pack tightly. Roll your clothing, and use reusable compression bags to save room. Stuff underwear, hose, and socks into small spaces (like the insides of shoes) that would otherwise go unused.

5) Find out what amenities the hotel already has, i.e., robes, hairdryers, shampoo, and don’t pack those items.

Comments

  • this article helps. i am going on vacation and my mom is insisting that i bring boots,a jacket and a sweater. mothers!

    manda

    Feb 28
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    Jan 09
  • this is really helpful.

    Aug 19
  • Also, You should (if going by car) pack a "car bag" including

    ~ Books
    ~ Drawing pad/cploring book/crayons (for kids)
    ~ 5-10 US dollars
    ~ gameboys/PSPs/DSes
    ~ Cell phone and car charger
    ~ MP3s/Ipods/mini radios/cd player and CDs and headphones
    ~ Extra batteries for above things
    ~ drink (like from a connivence store

    You also might want to check out the radio stations for where you're gonna be. For example: if you live in Tampa, 93.3 WILL NOT BE AVALIBLE IN Tallahassee

    Jun 10
  • Does anyone know where to find the lightest luggage? I found an article on the internet once that listed several light luggage alternatives and I can't find it. I'd like to switch to one checked luggage piece that's less than 10 lbs.

    Thanks,
    Susan

    Apr 05
  • Nice article

    ~Alexandra

    Mar 15
  • On business trips, I've resorted to sport coats and ties when possible instead of suits. It's easier to mix and match coats/slacks/shirts/ties for several days' wear without wearing the same suit twice. This is especially relevant if you are at a convention or multi-day meeting where you will be seeing the same people each day. Also, when laying out clothes for a trip, I take a photo with my camera phone to document clothes/shoes/etc for the airline in case of lost luggage.

    Feb 06
  • With regards to bringing books along, leave them where you are staying, if thats appropriate. In out of the way places, like French Polynesia, its nice to have a library at the resort, stocked with books left by tourists. Its not just good for other tourists, but it also gives an opportunity for the staff and their families to read the latests novels that normally take a long time to trickle in their direction. Some of these places don't have proper public libraries the way we have in the states. Sometimes we take books we aren't even going to read, just to stock the place with good reading materials.

    Jun 28
  • Sometimes you need to bring a lot of stuff, maybe for hiking or camping. Instead of checking it, pack it all in a large container (a cooler works well) and FedEx it to yourself at the destination airport. FedEx will keep it at their airport office; after you rent the car, drive over there and pick it up. Reverse the process on the way home, except ship it straight to your house. This also works when you traveled light on the outbound leg, but bought a lot of stuff along the way.

    Jun 27
  • Great tips and comments, especially packing chronologically and carrying on the items you need in the first couple days [in case of lost baggage--which happened to me]. Also like the idea of clothing you can discard and buying some at your destination [like tee-shirts].

    Jun 26
  • Some of us do like to read entire books over a weekend, though. I can read a book in a day if I'm at the cabin. My mistake last weekend was not bringing enough books -- I loaned one to my dad and only had one to read myself.

    Jun 26
  • Just remember that you can buy stuff where you are going, so just travel light as you can! You can buy a change of clothes and wear them there. You will have less stuff to bring home if you don't take it all with you when you leave! //bob

    Jun 26
  • "Check the weather report, and don’t pack winter clothes if you’re traveling to Miami in July."

    Use common sense with this advice. I went to Texas in January ('07), expecting 60-degree weather because that was what the Weather Channel told me to expect. An ice storm moved in over Texas that weekend, making the roads dangerous and keeping many of the Texans in their homes.

    Jun 25
  • I would add a couple more tips.

    1) Pack clothing that can be discarded along the way, after some wearings. That'll free up more space on the way home.

    2) If you are traveling as a family, pack chronologically, rather than by family member. You pack all the stuff for the first couple of days, for all the people, in one bag. If you are travelling by car, that means that you don't have to even bring in some bags. If traveling by plane, have the first day or so, for everybody, in a carry-on so that you have clothes if your luggage gets lost.

    3) If traveling by plane, pack a small sturdy duffle in your luggage. It allows you to better distribute weight throughout the luggage to avoid paying for overweight bags. Also, think about doing this distribution when you are packing to go home, rather than at the ticket counter.

    Jun 25
  • I like this article and I and backlinking it to my blog

    Jun 25