You’ve planned a great vacation, and now it’s time to pack those bags. Fortunately, you don’t need to stress over it.
- Create a generic Master Checklist before you start packing. This list can be used anytime you pack. It will help you pack efficiently and reduce the risk of forgetting something. Break items into categories such as clothing, accessories, documents, toiletries, electronics, food items, and miscellaneous equipment. You can generate a list by using an interactive packing list or you can create one yourself. This list can be designed for the whole family or honed in for each individual. Following this list can help you avoid over packing. If it’s not on the list, you probably don’t need to pack it.
- Begin a trip file in advance by gathering all your travel related information into a folder. This file should include items like your hotel confirmation numbers, passports, flight information, necessary phone numbers, and literature about your destination. Keep this file in your carry-on case so it is accessible at all times.
- Put the heaviest items towards the bottom when packing your suitcase. This makes the suitcase easier to transport and prevents delicate, lighter items from getting squished. Pack similar items together using zippered plastic bags. Keeping underwear or socks grouped together makes these small items easy to find and access. Take along a few extra baggies to keep items like a wet bathing suit or muddy shoes separate from the rest of your clothing.
- Store items for specific activities together. If your vacation includes a day at the beach, pack the towels, suntan lotion, flip flops, and hats in the beach bag before placing it in the suitcase. When beach day comes, you can simply remove the pre-packed bag from the suitcase, and you are ready to go.
- Keep an empty ziploc bag in your carry-on bag to hold your loose items like change, a watch, your keys, your wallet, etc. as you go through security. This will keep these items from sliding around the airport bin and make them easier to retrieve on the other side of security.
- Know your luggage limits. If you are flying, check with your airline about 1 week before traveling to find out its restrictions. If you are traveling by car, remember you have to fit people comfortably into the car as well as the luggage, so don’t bring too large a suitcase.
Happy packing and have a wonderful trip.
© 2013 Beth Giles