A Nomad's Diary - travel tales

The Ultimate Guide to Space-efficient Travel Packing!

To be honest as a frequent traveller there was a time when I was mocked at. The reason for the same was my big suitcases. Now mocking at someone itself is a behavioural problem in my opinion. But let’s face it at times some lessons are learnt the hard way only. So thanks to the frequent jeering in the past, one fine day I decided to google out and learn how to pack a suitcase correctly. I started practising the same and voila, I can say I am getting better with every trip.

Here are some of the packing tips that answers how to pack a suitcase correctly and more. Hope that you make it till the end of the post because there’s a clickable link for downloading an all-encompassing printable packing list. This absolutely free packing list resource aimed to help you pack without forgetting any essentials.

Lay down all things needed to be packed before arranging in the bag: How to Pack a Suitcase Correctly
Lay down all things needed to be packed before arranging in the bag: How to Pack a Suitcase Correctly

So let’s quickly get to the better packing hacks:

• Consider the duration of your travel and take out all the things you need to pack.

• Check the ongoing season of your destination. Accordingly, take appropriate stuff along like umbrella, light-weight raincoat, winter clothes etc.

Get the Apt Suitcase:

For selecting the best-fit suitcase to consider checking the airline norms. Most international airlines and especially the connecting low-cost air-carriers like Ryan Air have a restriction on free luggage. In fact, on my first trip to Paris, I remember I had to face a lot of problems because of this. Obviously I ended up paying some handful of Euros for just carrying my luggage along. Even when you are travelling by train or bus then also efficient packing and lesser number of bags are of immense help.

There are two things here one is the weight part and second the size of your check-in luggage. Both of these aspects are equally important lest you want to treat the Airlines with some extra bucks. Post the packing, while checking the weight, additionally, also check the size of the bag width-wise.

• Comply with the dress code of the country you are visiting:

This is an important tip for a sustainable traveller. Sustainable doesn’t only mean aspects related to nature but practising a thing that is consistent with societal norms as well. Basically, practising to do things right!

No matter if a country is modern or orthodox, but, it is good to accept that there are restrictions in terms of clothing in some places. Like in Arab countries there are guidelines for women clothing. Similarly in culturally focused & religious places, one needs to be cautious of proper dress code.

Classify all the stuff that is needed to be packed according to the sequence and frequency of usage.

• Post this lay down all the things to be accommodated in a bag. Always start with the main piece of bag/suitcase and then work down to hand backpacks etc.

Optimize Clothes:

Subsequently decide is how many clothes, shoes & other stuff is enough for a trip. Trust me most girls end up packing more because they are indecisive for this. The solution is simple. Take out all the clothes and shoes that you find good for taking along. Now simply reduce the stuff to 1/3rd of what you have taken out. What the heck you would be thinking now. But understanding that even when it comes to our closet we do not wear every dress that’s kept inside. It is about optimizing and not minimizing!

• Pack Thy Shoes:

Further, for shoe selection too, considering the span of time spent walking is intelligent thinking. Wear the heaviest shoe among your selection of shoes for the trip. After which start to pack the shoes in the main suitcase. Stuff the shoes with other small essentials like socks, underwear etc. Of course, for this, you need two things, one a shoe bag & second that they are clean and odour free. Shoe bag prevents other clothes from soiling.

• At this time, arrange the denim and other kinds of lower, inside. Followed by shirts and tops.

Pick from any of the three ways of folding clothes:  How to Pack a Suitcase Correctly
Pick from any of the three ways of folding clothes: How to Pack a Suitcase Correctly

There are three ways of folding clothes:

  1. Roll up all smaller clothes like t-shirts & dresses. While interfold the bigger ones like denim, lowers, jackets and more to flatten the entire group. This creates more space and ensures they are not wrinkled. This way one can see all things packed in one scan and also it is spacious.
  2. Fold up, the Marie Kondo way! She is a celebrated organizing consultant and her way of tidying up is called the Konmari way. Folding up clothes as suggested by her in neat rectangles and then put in the suitcase. This can be done but it takes up a lot of space. However, in this kind of arrangement one can see all things packed inside in one glance.
  3. Fold maximum medium to big sized clothes in an elongated manner. While roll up the tiny things like socks etc. This technique creates massive space the only key point here is to do it in a neat manner. As contrary to the Marie Kondo method here, not all clothes etc. are viewable in one glance.

          Pick the one that you find most convenient to do.

Toiletries & Gadgets:

Pack the toiletries and DSLRs, laptops etc. in the centre of the suitcase. This avoids damage of any kind. Avoid packing big bottles. Also do not pack batteries, toy weapons of any kind in the check-in baggage.

Fill the gaps with small essentials:

Pack bras inside any hat or cap if you are carrying. Good for both of their shapes. 😉

Belts & scarves can be arranged along the sides of the suitcase in an elongated manner. No rolling or folding here.

Ditch that usual all-in mighty Hand Bag:

It is really inconvenient while carrying the luggage. Instead, carry a small backpack that is easily wearable and moderately roomy. Also, consider taking up a smaller wallet for money purpose. Inside this bag, keep sunglasses, power bank, batteries, and other frequently used things here.

As promised at the beginning, CLICK HERE for the free printable packing list.

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