If you are new to packing, or maybe wish to pick up some tips to make packing easier, I have put together some information for you below.
A Travel Drawer
Is this you the night before you travel….
“My passport...I am sure it was in this drawer...ahhh where is it”
“I am sure I have some euros left over from last summer, now where did I put them”
“Oh no my case won't shut!”
“Boarding pass...John where did you put it?”........”Janet I gave them to you last week…..”
“John where did you put the phrase book?”
So why not start a travel drawer, somewhere you keep your passports, flight information, hotel and transfer transport details, when you come back from holiday put your leftover currency in the drawer. Keep your plug adapters, padlocks and a hint to your combination lock! a spot to keep phrasebooks and maps. This can save anything up to half an hour to several days!
I Just Chuck it all in my Case...
Is this you? ever have trouble shutting your case? Digging around to see if you have packed something or you want to squeeze an afterthought into the bottom of the case?
So instead of putting things straight in your case lay it out so you can see all your taking, either on the bed or the floor, first job to do when your have done that is go through all you have laid out (most people will take way more than they need and come back with unworn clothes) as you go through it take anything out you had in as a maybe, you probably won’t wear it, try and pick clothes that can mix and match colour wise, this will reduce the number of jumpers etc you will need to take.
Now to packing!
To make the case more stable when stood up and more balanced to wheel you need to keep the heavy items close to the wheels at the bottom of the case, so pack as follows from the bottom up:
1 - Books
2 - Shoes (place in carrier bags this keeps them off clean clothes and double as laundry bags for the trip home.) and don’t forget all that empty space inside your shoes, stuff,stuff, stuff should be your moto!
3 - Wash Bag (again wrap in a carrier bag) (Remember liquids need to be in clear bottles and bags, no more than 100ml for carry on cases) Maybe think of buying toothpaste, soap, shampoo etc when you get there and leave it there when you come home!
4 - Chargers and adapter plugs (Bag again to contain them)
5 - Evening bag - put your jewellery in here to protect it and stop it snagging on clothes.
6 - Belts (Roll them)
7 - Now plug any gaps in these first 6 layers with underwear, roll socks and use them to fill gaps, same with knickers/pants.
8 - Now the rest of your clothes, putting lighter weight fabrics at the top, either folding or rolling whichever is your preference.
Some Tips you Might Find Useful!
Wear your bulkiest, heaviest, shoes, coats etc that way freeing up space and weight in your case!
Plan ahead - contact the hotel, cruise ship, caravan park wherever you are staying and ask do they supply, hairdryers, irons, beach towels, dressing gowns, sand toys, in fact anything that is bulky and would be better left at home, answers of yes to any of these means do not take your own as well!
DO NOT leave packing to the last minute, the biggest cause of over packing, overweight luggage is the last minute grab and stuff, start laying at least a week before hand. Planning = stress free holiday departure.
Fragile Items maybe wrap in some bubble wrap and pack into the center of your case, this will give it as much protection as possible, but bare in mind that sometimes cases get a bit of a rough ride!
TSA guidelines Do follow the do’s and don'ts for TSA warranted travel, for the USA you need TSA padlocks / locks if you put a non TSA standard lock on your case security at the airport will use any method to open the case, normally damaging it. A TSA lock has an additional key hole that ONLY security at airports have the key for, if your case has a TSA lock they will open your case as you would and then lock it all back up for you after being checked. Remember for carry on luggage liquids etc need to be in CLEAR bottles in a CLEAR plastic bags and no bigger than 100ml capacity. This can be annoying but on the plus side it does encourage you to leave behind all the large containers! and remember you can always buy top up toiletries at you destination! So in you check in case consider travel size toiletries - it saves a lot of space!
Weigh your case overweight charges at check in have the ouch factor so weigh before you leave the house, pop your case on your bathroom scales and check you are not overweight. (alternatively if thats difficult, weigh yourself and then weigh yourself holding your case, and subtract one from the other to get your case weight) and remember to leave a little spare so you have some space for souvenirs! Don’t get charged for overweight on the way home tainting your holiday memory.
To Fold or to Roll We advise rolling as
Folded = Creases
Rolled = Significantly less creasing
Now when you roll, roll into tight tubes it is no good if you roll so loose when you put the item down it falls flat!
For delicate fabrics for example silk, roll with a sheet of tissue paper on the inside of the roll, this will again help to reduce creasing.