HOW TO PACK YOUR LUGGAGE
Packing luggage can be really stressful. Here's how to do it easily, systematically and efficiently while maximising space!
Make a list
Making a list might seem like a waste of time, but taking a quiet moment to come up with it will save you lots of time. Those few moments will prevent you from standing in one spot snapping your fingers wondering what to pack next.
Always think through each day of your trip and the events that you will be having and write the outfit for each event in your list (e.g. first day - 1 shirt, 1 pants). When you reach the last day, tally your list and you'll know how much of each type of clothing to bring.
Alternatively, if it's going to be a special event, write down the specific clothing that you're going to be wearing (e.g. black and white striped shirt or favourite little black dress).
Section your list in two parts, things that you can pack right away and things that you need to grab just before leaving like your toothbrush.
Write down everything that you can think of, right down to your toothbrush. Since you've got a list, don't trust anything to memory.
You can do this on the bed or on the floor, don't put anything in your suit case yet! Check your list against the stuff you've laid out and check off everything that you have on your list. Only after making sure you have everything, pack your things into your luggage.
Pick clothes that can be used for different events. A nice pair of jeans can be useful for smart casual dining and a shopping trip. For guys, a pair of black boots can be formal enough to wear with pants for formal occasions and they look great with jeans too.
Try to bring clothing that can be mixed and matched for different occasions to reduce the number of clothes you bring.
Always roll clothes like tshirts and jeans, this prevents wrinkles, minimises space and acts as good cushioning if you're bringing breakable stuff (which you really shouldn't be bringing).
Lay your belts into the gaps between your clothes and the sides of the bag to save space and not damage your belts.
Space is limited in your luggage and airlines only allow you to check in a specific amount of weight. Airlines also allow you to carry on some luggage provided it doesn't exceed a specified size and weight. Put some stuff into a carry on bag to squeeze a few more must have items and meet the check in weight.
Another tip if that still isn't enough is to carry stuff in a plastic bag, when you reach the airport, get a bag from the duty free shops to put your stuff in. The airline crew won't bat an eyelid if they think it's from the duty free shop. It's sneaky, I know. Just make sure that duty free bag is relatively trim and doesn't look like santa clause's sack.
Wear your heaviest and bulkiest clothing and shoes, you'll be surprised by how much space you save.
Repack your shampoo, conditioner and other toiletries into smaller bottles. You're not going to use the whole bottle on your trip anyway.
Always make sure bottles have a screw cap and that they are properly tightened. Flip caps tend to spill easily. Bag your bottles in zip lock bags for added protection. A loose bottle cap in your luggage can be a huge disaster.
Put rolled up socks in the cups of bras to help them keep their shape.
Put rolled up socks inside shoes to help them keep their shape.
Don't put anything you would hate to lose in your luggage. Always carry valuables on board the plane with you.
Always pack your carry on bag with the mindset "if my check in luggage goes missing, do I have what I need with me?"
Strap your bag with a luggage strap. It prevents your luggage from popping open when they throw it around during loading and unloading of the plane. And if it does pop open at least you now have a way of temporarily securing it.
Always wrap a bright distinctive ribbon around the handles of your bag to differentiate your bag from others. It helps you pick your bag out on the conveyor belt and it helps to prevent people who accidentally take the wrong luggage. It also deters theft of your entire luggage as it's easier to spot someone carrying or rolling it away.
When you reach your hotel, if it has a bath tub, turn on the hot water, put your clothes on hangers and hang them above the tub. The hot water helps to remove creases.