Conventional wisdom states travellers should take half the clothing and twice the amount of money on an overseas trip. To make the most of your valuable suitcase space, holiday in style and still leave room for shopping and gifts, here are our pro packing tips for travelling.
1. Make sure you have the essentials in your hand luggage: a valid passport, visas, travel insurance, photocopies of any travel documents (or scan them into a mobile app such as Evernote), your itinerary and tickets (these can also be scanned into Evernote or TripIt), a mobile phone and a pen to complete immigration forms.
2. Consider making a packing checklist to ensure you do not forget anything, and hold onto this list in case your bags are lost and you need to itemise what you packed for insurance purposes. A mobile app like Packing Pro can also allow you customise packing lists and add reminders.
3. To maximise the space in your suitcase, roll your clothes. Not only will this ensure you have more room, your garments will also have less wrinkles. Another pro tip is to fold similar items together to avoid creases, such as two pairs of pants or skirts.
4. When packing for your holiday destination, consider choosing items that are easy to pair with other clothes, can be worn in different ways and don’t require ironing. For women, dresses are a good inclusion as they are easy to wear during the day and then can be dressed up at night. For men, a wrinkle-free pair of chinos or jeans will also do double-duty for day and night.
5. Wear your bulkiest items on the flight. Not only will this keep you warm while flying, you will also save space in your luggage by wearing your heaviest or most cumbersome clothing.
6. Only bring the shoes you will need to avoid unnecessary bulk and weight in your suitcase. And use the space in your closed toe shoes to roll underwear or socks to avoid shoes getting crushed and also to create more room in your luggage.
7. Likewise, opt for travel-size or samples of your skincare and beauty products to minimise the amount you are carrying and avoid any messy mishaps mid-flight. Remember not to pack any liquids, aerosols or gels over 100 millilitres in your cabin baggage, and store any items of this nature in a transparent, resealable bag.
8. Make the most of your cabin baggage allowance and pack a change of clothes, toiletries, medications and any valuables in your carry-on, just in case your luggage is lost or delayed. Most international airlines will allow you to carry between seven to 10 kilograms in your cabin baggage on an economy flight.
9. Spread any books or documents throughout your luggage to ensure an even distribution of weight, or consider going paper-free by bringing an iPad or e-book reader preloaded with reading material.
10. If you are travelling with multiple gadgets, take a powerboard to charge your appliances as there is usually only one electrical outlet in hotels or cabins, as well as an electrical converter and adapter for the country or region you are travelling in. Bring extra batteries for any batterypowered items.