Rising baggage costs and strict airport security measures are a nightmare, and don’t we know it. When I have to fly now, no way am I taking for granted things like, complimentary beverages and checked luggage. Some airlines in America charge you upwards to $25 to check a bag and some even charge ridiculous amounts for carry-ons that exceed the size of a backpack. It’s crazy! However, there is hope yet. The key to lightening your load is knowing how to efficiently pack your bags – this will not only save you time and money but also the added hassle that comes with airport bag crackdown. Check out these life-saving tips so you can have as much a stress-free vacation as possible.
Most of us just throw random clothes and shoes in, without really thinking of what we’re packing. And a majority of the time, not only have we over-packed but we only wear about 60% of what we packed. Samantha Brown of the Travel Channel suggests that you, “Lay out everything that you think you want to pack on your bed and take a good hard look.” Chances are, you don’t need four red sandals and three summer dresses. “It’s only when you lay your entire ensemble in front of you that you see where you’ve made mistakes and can make the appropriate cuts.”
Put your clothes on a diet:
“Choosing thin clothing that packs flat over thicker, more bulky items makes a huge difference in how much you can fit in your suitcase,” says Susan Foster, author of Smart Packing for Today’s Traveler. So instead of packing that heavy sweater and jeans you love so much, try more travel-friendly options like a micro-fleece pullover and pants in lightweight, weather-resistant fabric.
Diana Lane, an associate with Geiger & Associates, a Florida-based destination marketing firm, absolutely loves the versatility of lightweight sarongs. You can use sarongs as skirts, various styles of dresses, shawls, swimsuit cover-ups, shoulder bags or even used as a blanket. “There aren’t many items that give us quite this much bang for the buck,” she says.
Wear it on-board:
You desperately want to bring along that adorable full-length overcoat and your boyfriend’s chunky grey sweater, hey we don’t blame you, those sound cute. When traveling with bulky clothing is necessary, or you just really want to, try wearing the item that is going to take up all that extra room. Besides, it gets super cold on-board so why not bulk up?
Are you a fabric fiend, well you should be:
Who doesn’t want to look gorgeous and refreshed when they land at their destination? It’s not just about how much you slept on-board, it’s your clothes too. Stick to wrinkle-resistant fabrics that dry quickly, like washable silk, nylon and micro-fibers. Cotton isn’t your friend here, it takes ages to dry and wrinkles easily. But if you adore cotton, then try Brooks Brothers, they’ve got some super cute lightweight cotton blouses specially designed to withstand wrinkling.
Go for spray tactics:
Here’s an added bonus for counteracting wrinkles in your clothes – hang the unfortunate item in the bathroom while you shower, the steam will work out the wrinkles. If this fails, try Brown’s secret weapon—a spray-on de-wrinkler. Brown swears by ‘Downy Wrinkle Release’, which is often sold at newsstand stores inside the airport.
Pack for compatibility:
This one’s a biggie and probably the hardest for travelers to digest, Foster advises that you, “Let go of the idea that you have to take a different outfit for each day.” Gasp! She says that, “The key to packing light is selecting versatile and interchangeable pieces.” Try focusing on one basic color when packing, like black, white, brown or khaki, then add some variety with various tops and accessories that have more color and personality. This will keep you from over-packing, plus you get to change up your look with splashes of color that mix and match. Sounds like fun!