Packing a suitcase can be one of those things that seems alot more stressful than it needs to be. Dreading the task? Here are 10 clever tips for mastering the art of packing...
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Before you even drag out your suitcase, think ahead and loosely plan out what you’re going to wear for each day of your trip. It pays to write out a basic list of the items you’ll wear, but be realistic – you really won’t need stilettos if you’re trekking Machu Picchu. This will help you work out exactly what shoes and accessories deserve a place in your pack.
2. Fuss-free fabrics
You might need to wear certain fabrics depending on where you’re going, but try to avoid those that wrinkle easily. Natural materials like merino wool and bamboo viscose are wrinkle-resistant, and there are some great synthetic options (stay with us) too. If you’re taking rolling luggage, packing Lyocell, polyester-elastane blends and (dare we say it?) lycra are all great at resisting suitcase creases.
3. Heavy loads
If you’re taking rolling luggage, packing your heavier items at the bottom is crucial to avoid crushing your more delicate ones. As soon as you pick up your luggage the basic laws of gravity will apply, so pack your sneakers down the bottom, along with any other weighty pieces: think boots, books and toiletries.
4. Roll or fold?
This is always a controversial question. Our advice? A little bit of both. Roll softer garments (like T-shirts and knitwear) and fold stiffer ones (such as starched cotton shirts or blazers) to save space. Anything tailored should be folded or packed in a separate garment bag – especially if you’re heading off to a wedding or a special function where your appearance counts.
5. Quick change
Always pack an extra set of clothes in your carry-on just in case, heaven forbid, your suitcase is misplaced. The outfit doesn’t have to be glamorous: jeans, a simple T-shirt and clean underwear will do the trick.
6. Wild wires
To make sure your electronics’ cords don’t form a frustrating tangle en route, roll them up tightly (be careful not to snag them!) and pack them in a sunglasses or glasses case. Easy to open and close, the case will protect the wires and stop them from moving around and developing knots when you're on the go.
7. Empty spaces
Is there a bulky handbag you absolutely have to take? Is it one you can’t flatten or roll up (like a tote)? Utilise it and put ‘scrunchy’ items inside, like swimsuits, singlet tops or coin purses. And it has to be the oldest trick in the book, but the same goes for the insides of your shoes – stuff with socks or small items to make the most of every space possible.
8. Bottle it up
If you absolutely have to take your favourite shampoo or liquid soap, decant it into reusable plastic bottles. Be sure to only fill them three-quarters of the way though, as the cargo area on a plane is not pressurised and liquids can expand in-flight. Definitely not the kind of surprise you want to find at your destination.
9. Use protection
Put any toiletries that are in bottles (like perfume or cologne) in zip-lock bags, just in case they leak. Or, wrap them in thick socks to prevent breakage. And make sure you keep your liquids well away from any electronics – unless you want your (now useless) iPad to smell like Chanel No. 5, of course.
10. Little laundry legend
Don’t forget to pack a lightweight tote bag to separate your clean and dirty clothes while you’re on the go. Whether you get your laundry done while you’re away or save it for when you get back, sorting your clothes in this way will make life simpler and more hygenic.
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