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5 Packing Tips for More Efficient Travel

1. Use a List

Just like a map you use to navigate your trip, a list will help keep you from getting off track with packing (say, like 6 swimsuits for a weekend getaway). For each trip, print out a packing list, and adjust according to the length of your stay and the type of trip. A good rule of thumb is 5, 4, 3, 2, 1 for a weeklong trip. Five sets of socks and underwear, four tops, three bottoms, two pairs of shoes and one hat. You can adjust for a shorter or longer trip, if there will be a washing machine, and if your destination is sunny or cold. Our handy printables will help you! And they are specified for you and your trip!

2. Let's Get Visual

If you’re a visual person, this will be especially helpful. Once you have your items from your list, lay them out and assess what outfits will work (how many times have you packed jeans that don’t actually work with your favorite boots?), if you’ll actually wear them (will you really wear those heels?), and what you might be able to edit out.

3. Bigger Isn’t Better

This is just like in your home – if you have extra space, you’re more likely to fill it. Invest in a quality suitcase that you can carry on if needed. I like hard-sided suitcases because you can efficiently pack without bulging and they last longer. Tip: choose a bag without a lot of compartments. It takes up space and adds weight.

4. Keep a Separate Set of Travel Toiletries

This is a travel game changer. If you unpack your toiletries after each trip, you’re more likely to accidentally forget one on the next trip. Have a completely separate set of travel sized toiletries. If you’re thinking, “but La Mer doesn’t sell travel size!” – you can buy cute little jars and pack your own specialty beauty goodies. This will save you sanity and time the next time you travel.

5. Learn the Art of Packing Efficiently

Again – just like organizing your home, the way you place your items makes a big difference. Here’s a few tips:

  • Roll soft items: socks, underwear, cotton tops, knitwear that doesn't wrinkle and jeans.

  • Fold stiffer items: typically, anything that you would dry clean.

  • Place shoes on the bottom or along the side in plastic bags to keep any dirt away from your clothes.

  • On top of the shoes, place soft items that won’t wrinkle as easily, followed by stiff items. On top, place an outfit you’ll need first or want to change into at the airport.

  • Place items such as belts, socks or chargers within your shoes to maximize space. Again, you can place the items within bags to keep them clean if you don’t quite trust the inside of your shoes.

  • Use packing cubes to separate categories (intimates, swimwear, electronics, etc). This helps you find what you need quickly and they surprisingly help conserve space. Once you have a system in place of how you categorize your items into cubes, it will make packing more efficient.

Okay, so who’s ready for a trip?!

Download my FREE packing lists below!

A big thanks to my friends, Girl Meets Gold and MinimalistMe for their lovely photos in this post.

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