One of the most overwhelming parts of a vacation is packing. I’m always afraid I’m going to forget something — especially when I’m responsible for getting our entire family prepared to pack for the trip.
There are so many things to be packed: clothes, toiletries, shoes, books and if you have kids there are even more things to add to the list! Then, how do you ensure that the clothes do not get wrinkles and make sure no liquids spill on your clothes. FORGET IT! Cancel the trip…..Just kidding!
These packing tips and goodies can help avoid any packing pitfalls:
A week or so before the trip, prepare a list of items that you know you will need and start setting aside those items in order to save time on your actual packing day. You can keep this list in your suitcase as a handy guide for your return and for any future travels you do. This packing list from the amazing travel expert Rick Steve (I would do anything for his job!!) is all you could ask for:
Clothes ideally should not be folded as crease marks may appear on them while packed in the suitcase. Rather, rolling them with medium tightness will keep them crease free. You can roll up two or more of the same kind of garments together. Take the pants, close their buttons and zippers and fold them lengthwise. Now place all of them one over another and roll up. The skirts should be packed in the same manner. The arms of shirts, tops and sweaters should be folded at the back first before they are rolled. Keep all these garments next to each other.
Keep the number of shoes, handbags and belts minimum. I know this is really hard!! We all know the importance of accessories; but, sometimes we must travel “light.” They take up too much room and can weigh down your luggage! Placing the shoes at the border of the suitcase, in such a way that the soles touch the lining of the suitcase and not the clothes, keeps your clothes from getting soiled. Put them in plastic bags or fabric bags that come in certain brand name shoe boxes to avoid ANY damage or dirt. Wal-Mart sells cute PB 2 shoe bags for $16!
Pack all the essential toiletries like toothbrush, toothpaste, shampoo, sunscreen, medicines, and other such important things in zip lock bags, so leaky items will not spill on to your clothes and ruin them. There is also something to be said about a cute travel bag like the ML Traveler from Stephanie Johnson.com.
So, now you need to think about “how” to arrange! Think layers! Keep them in the order in which you need them.
That means the clothes that you need on the last day of your trip should be kept at the bottom. If your suitcase does not have a separate section for socks and undergarments, keep them at the bottom corner. The laundry bag in which you will put all your dirty clothes should be kept at the top for easy access. The bag containing all the toiletries should be kept below the laundry bag. Fragile items should be kept in between the top layers of clothes, so that they get adequate cushion. Valuables like cash, travelers cheques and bank cards should be dispersed throughout all of your bags and luggage (never in one place).
What really matters is that you are GOING ON VACATION!!! Have fun and send Sweet Abode a postcard!