The art of packing….

Packing when traveling is something I have never mastered!  I ALWAYS bring way more than I need, and usually come back from a trip with only half of what I packed actually used.  Now, I get that you have to be prepared for various weather situations, but it was clear to me that I wasn’t being as efficient as I could be.

My trip to Africa was my first foray into ‘thoughtful packing’. I had a friend assist me in packing up one 60L backpack to last me two weeks.  Not only that, but said pack also needed to hold my mountain climbing clothing, altitude layers, sleeping bag and resort wear for the last two days in Zanzibar.

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Not too long ago, I discovered the freedom of flying without checking luggage.  I flew to Toronto from Denver for a wedding and only brought a small roller carry-on.  It was exhilarating!  I was able to walk in, get on the plane, and walk off!

So a month later, I tried it again – flying from Denver to Bangor, Maine. This time, I was a bridesmaid.  I carried my dress in a garment bag and laid it on top of the overhead luggage. On the way back I just crammed everything into my carry-on suitcase.  It worked so well!

I started learning how to come up with coordinating garments that would allow me to make multiple outfits out of a few pieces of clothing without anyone really knowing.  One pair of jeans, a couple of blouses and jackets.

Then I started rolling my clothes to make more room.  And I came up with this on my most recent ‘checked-bag-free’ trip from Denver to Washington, D.C.:

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This was actually a business trip.  I had dress slacks, jackets and blouses in there, along with workout clothes, a laptop, and toiletries!!

What are some of your light packing tips?

 

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One thought on “The art of packing….

  1. I haven’t checked luggage in years! The last time was for a ski trip, although these days I wouldn’t be surprised if I could even wrangle ski clothes into a carry on.

    My main strategies are to wear the heavy stuff and pack a large bag as my “purse” to carry the extras, like electronics and books. I also strategize outfits and roll stuff up.

    And, I remind myself that, worst case scenario, I can buy stuff! If I didn’t quite pack well enough for the weather, I can buy clothes. Or if I can’t fit a toiletry item, I can buy it there. Considering checked bags start at $25 for most airlines, I figure as long as I stay under that, I’ve still saved money….and even more so in the time I gain by marching past the carousels. 🙂

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