6 Tips for Practical Travel Packing

Spring is right around the corner, and it seems like almost everyone is getting ready for a vacation. If you’re gearing up for a getaway, you’re probably thinking about one of the most difficult parts of traveling: packing practically. Since airlines have started increasing baggage fees, it’s important to limit your luggage.

But don’t stress! Even the most high maintenance traveler can pack lightly with some easy tricks:

Roll, don’t fold. Folding takes up a lot more space than you think, and it can leave you with big creases in your clothes. By rolling your items tightly, you’ll save a ton of space and avoid extra wrinkles.

Pick a base color. Maximize your wardrobe options by selecting a neutral color for your basic pieces. Whether it’s black, navy, brown, or khaki, you’ll be able to narrow down belts, shoes and other layering items by staying in the same palette.

Make the most of your personal item. Most airlines allow a carry-on and a personal item. Take advantage of the policy by bringing a large tote for your personal item. Store your books, electronics, and even a few changes of clothes in it to save room in your suitcase. Bonus: If your luggage gets lost, you won’t be totally without clothing options.

Bring your favorites. If you’re planning to re-wear clothing (which you should if you want to slim down your luggage), don’t bring that shirt and those pants you hate just because they’re basic and unmemorable. If you have to wear something more than once, you might as well love it, right? So go ahead and throw in that printed dress and that colorful blazer. You’ll be glad you did when you’re wearing them for the 3rd time.

Don’t overpack things that you can buy at your destination. Whether you’re going to South Padre or Slovakia, chances are that you’ll be able to find whatever toiletry/cosmetic item that you need.

Pack food and drinks. It might sound strange to pack consumable items in your checked luggage, but at the end of your trip you’ll be left with extra room in your suitcase for souvenirs. Plus after you see the prices on the hotel’s mini-fridge, you’ll be very happy that you brought your own bottled water and macadamia nuts.