Are you ready for your next adventure? Do you need a break from the office grind?
If you’re like most people, you get about 10 days of vacation each year. That might not seem like a lot, but it adds up to two weeks of “me time.”
After you’ve set your itinerary and purchased your tickets, the tough part kicks in: packing.
If you have a tendency to bring your entire closet on vacation, this article’s for you. We’ll break down how to pack a suitcase and help you figure out what to pack for a trip.
How Many Shoes to Bring?
If you trouble packing, it’s probably due to shoe overload. The good news is that you can use your shoes to stow smaller items like charging cords and socks.
In general, you should bring three pairs of shoes. One pair of good walking shoes, one pair of dressy shoes, and one pair of comfortable house shoes for traveling.
If you just can’t narrow down your shoe selection, lay out your outfits and take a look. Can you wear one pair of shoes with more than one outfit?
When you’re packing shoes, put each pair into its own plastic bag.
If you’re going to bring more than three pairs of shoes, try to pack them on the bottom of your suitcase so they don’t get damaged.
Instead of putting socks into your heels, try to wrap them around the heel as a cushion.
If the heel of your shoe breaks during travel, your hotel may be able to help you get them repaired.
What is the Best Travel Luggage?
Should you invest in a hard-sided rolling suitcase, or is a backpack best? It all depends on the kind of trip you’re going to be taking.
If you’re going to stay at a hotel, you’ll have the space to lay out the contents of your suitcase. If you’re going to be camping or staying at a hostel, you might want to pack a backpack and call it a day.
If you do need a suitcase, make sure that it’s got wheels. You don’t know how heavy a suitcase is until you have to carry one through an airport or train station.
You can also get the best of both worlds by using a rolling suitcase for your clothing and a backpack for your toiletries and water bottles.
Just don’t leave your packing until the last minute: it usually takes about an hour longer than you think it should.
About a week before you leave on vacation, make a list of absolutely everything you would like to bring. Don’t leave anything out, and don’t limit yourself.
Then, a few days before your vacation, see if you can get everything into your suitcase. You may not be able to, but you’ll also have some time to make those hard packing decisions.
How to Pack a Suit?
If you’re going to pack a suit or other dress clothes, you should pack your suitcase in more than one layer.
On the bottom layer, you should fold or roll your clothing that doesn’t wrinkle. Socks, t-shirts, leggings, and shorts can all go on the bottom layer, along with your shoes.
Check out this website for some cool travel clothing options.
There’s a lot of discussion online about whether folding or rolling is the way to go, but it’s up to your personal preference. You can fit more into a suitcase if you roll, but your clothes will look better if you fold them.
After you’ve got your bottom layer, put a garbage bag or a dry cleaning bag on top. You need to separate the layers so your suit has a smooth surface to lay upon.
Try not to fold your suit more than you need to. If you’re staying at a hotel, you should have access to an iron or clothing steamer.
You might want to call ahead and confirm with the hotel that they have irons. If your suit ends up wrinkled, ask the concierge about local dry cleaning options.
How to Pack a Suitcase for International Travel
If you’re going to be traveling to a foreign country, make sure that you have all of your paperwork with you at all times.
You don’t want to lose your suitcase and end up without identification. Always pack your tickets and ID in your carry-on bag.
Take the time to make copies of your social security card, birth certificate, and drivers license so you have a backup. You might also want to write down the location of the American Embassy in the country you’re visiting.
For international travel, try to pack several clothing options. You should check out the average temperatures of your destination so you can bring the right outfits.
Also, you should make sure to bring sunscreen. Even if you’re not going to the beach on vacation, you should apply a layer of sunscreen before you go sightseeing.
Always pack your liquids – soap, sunscreen, and shampoo – in a Ziploc bag so that they don’t leak. That would be a packing disaster!
More Travel Tips
When you’re trying to figure out how to pack a suitcase, there is one thing to remember. Whether you’re taking a quick trip to a tropical island or leaving your 9-to-5 to travel around the world, you should invest in a money belt.
Carrying a wallet or a purse isn’t always a good idea. No matter where you go, you’re at higher risk for theft if locals know that you’re a tourist.
Keep your money with you at all times. Ideally, you shouldn’t carry any cash. There are many countries, however, where you do need to use cash sometimes.
When you’re traveling, make sure to stay hydrated. You might feel under the weather and not realize that you just need to drink some water.
If your job is a total grind and it’s just getting you down, check out my blog. I’ve been traveling the world for three years and I’m psyched to share my experiences!