Are you one of those people who struggles to pack light? Always rushing around at the last minute trying to decide what to take out of your bulging suitcase? Taking more than you need means luggage fees, and a heavier load to carry. We have managed to ALWAYS pack in only a carry on, no matter how long our trip – including our 6 weeks abroad in Europe last year that ended with a two week river cruise! You can do it, too…just pack smarter! Before you start packing for your next trip, consider these five tips to pack-lighter.
If you haven’t tried packing cubes yet, rest assured these will revolutionize the way that you pack! Packing cubes are basically small containers used to pack clothing. They are made of fabric, and you close them via a zip. A few of these will easily fit into a backpack or suitcase. It’s much easier to fit in more items when using packing cubes, as these help to keep your luggage compact. Depending on which type of bag you have, you can buy packing cubes in various different shapes. You can get tube shapes, rectangles, squares, or even cubes with compression zippers.
The right suitcase
If you’re determined to pack light you simply must choose the right suitcase, look for one that is small, yet spacious. Some suitcases may look like a good size from the outside, yet when you open them up- it’s another story! Check the labels of any suitcase you’re considering buying to ensure that you get a lightweight bag with a good amount of space. The Samsonite Flexis 21” is a good option for a carry on bag. It has 2520 cubic inches of space (perfect for those long weekend city breaks)!
Doesn’t it feel like there’s an app for everything these days? And of course, we’re not complaining! A packing app like ‘PackPoint’ can help you to get all your items organized. You start off by selecting your destination, and your reason for your trip. You can also select different filters to select laundry facilities (if you’ll have them when you’re away). The app helps you to select the perfect items for your trip so that you won’t end up with anything extra taking up space. For further pack-handy apps, try Packing Pro.
If you’re keen to pack light, you’ve got to get your folding techniques perfected. One option is to roll your items and then use elastic bands to fashion them into a ‘compact ball’ of clothing! Another option is to layer and stack clothes, then push down on top of your pile to compress into a small space. For some more ideas, check out these clothes folding techniques to save space.
Last but certainly not least, make a list of your essential items, so you are only taking the things that you actually need. Plan your clothing by day and make a list of key items such as your rimless glasses, your favorite hair care product, and your toothbrush. Do not be tempted to take more clothing than there are days of your trip, (especially if you have a washing machine)!