With each trip I take, whether it’s a weekender or extended travel, I’ve learned some pretty neat hacks when it comes to packing my suitcase. Some call me a bit of an over packer (hey, I’m a have it and not need it rather than a need it and not have it kinda chick) – what can I say? But those “some” I’m talking about always thank me when they’ve realized they’ve forgotten or overlooked packing something when I go into my special bag of goodies and pull out what they need. Anyhow, this post is to share some hacks I’ve either learned for myself or from others.
First things first. I cannot stress enough how important it is to get a head start on packing before your trip. The longer you wait to pack, the more likely that you will forget things as your travel date nears. I normally try to start packing at least a month ahead of my planned travel, but I understand sometimes that isn’t possible for some folks. Which is the perfect segue to my next point. 😉
Second thing. MAKE. A. LIST. For frequent travelers, making a list may not be super necessary as you’ve grown to learn and memorize the things you’ll need. But if you’re not a person who travels often, I’d strongly recommend making a list. Whether you’re an old-school cat who prefers a pen and paper, or one who prefers to use the notepad section in your smartphone; whichever works best for you. Making a list before you start packing will help you identify what else you’ll need to stock up on before you leave for your trip and prevent you from paying a ridiculous amount for an item once you arrive to your destination and realize you forgot something.
Finally, if you’re anything like me, and absolutely HATE paying the overweight baggage fee (which usually costs about 3x more than the baggage fee itself), below are some helpful packing hacks I’ve grown to love. Trust me, you’ll thank me later.
- Pack similar items together, that way they’re easy to find when you need them.
- Purchase some Ziploc or other brand of space saver bags. Space saver bags come in a variety of sizes and allow you to pack as little or as much as you need and fit in all types of luggage. If you are unable to find these in time, find some old plastic shopping bags around the house, those will also do the trick.
- eBags.com has a nice variety of travel bags and other accessories to make packing easy as pie. I purchased a set of packing cubes and they work wonders in keeping items together and compact.
- For your gadgets and fragile items; I found that packing them in the center of my suitcase makes for better cushioning. I’ll usually set my electronics on top of one of my already packed space saver bags and surround them with my other items. Then finally rest another packed space saver bag on top. This helps with keeping them in place and in one piece after all of the pushing/pulling/tossing/flipping and every other crazy thing that happens to our precious cargo while traveling.
Once you’re done with packing, be sure to use those strappy hook thingies that clasp together to help prevent your items from sliding around too much in the suitcase.