Packing for a vacation can be stressful. Are you tired of forgetting essential travel gear or worrying about how to pack your travel wardrobe? If so, these 13 packing tips to pack like a pro will help you relax! Focus on the amazing vacation you are about to go on instead!
Packing for your holiday or weekend getaway shouldn’t feel like a chore. You are headed to a great vacation destination or maybe visit some pretty amazing people. Let that be what you think about rather than what to pack, how to pack or worrying about forgetting something.
Having traveled all of my life, I have gotten to where it takes about 10-15 minutes to pack for a trip and you can too!
These packing tips will help you use your upcoming trip to pack for a vacation in a way that is not only easy and stress free but quick!
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One of the most common mistakes when packing for a vacation is overpacking. What you may not realize is this is self-sabotage. Not only are you bringing more than you need, you are making it nearly impossible to find anything while you are on your vacation!
Let’s see if this sounds familiar. You packed all of the things you thought you might need. Your vacation is underway and you’re getting ready for a day of, what is supposed to be, fun. Time to pick your outfit for the day. You realize that to find your outfit everything needs to come out of your bag.
Not only does this take more time but it’s frustrating that all of that planning led to your day starting with frustration.
Whatever you do, don’t overpack. There are several tips below that will help you avoid this. The worst part of overpacking is it not only makes everything harder while you are on your trip, you get home and realize how much you never used!
Of all the packing tips this is one of the most important!
Have a Plan
Wherever you are going you want to have a plan on what you might be doing on this trip. Your plan should be flexible, yes, but you need to know what to prepare for.
For example, will you be on the beach? At a resort or theme park? Are you planning to do any outdoor activities? Maybe you are going to be hiking or walking a lot. All of these things matter. The rest of the packing tips will make a lot sense based on what your plan for your vacation are.
If your travel plans include a lot of different activities that’s totally ok. The key is having an idea of what you will realistically be doing while you are on vacation!
It is absolutely essential that you look at the weather forecast prior to packing for your trip. Especially if you are going to a new vacation spot or you are going at a different time of the year than you normally go there.
There is nothing worse than getting to your amazing vacation destination only to have packed the wrong wardrobe.
Before you pack for your trip look for these two things related to the weather. First, go to The Weather Network to search the 14 day forecast for your trip. Here’s an important tip!!
Next, look at the weather forecast 7 days before and after your travel dates too. This will give you a better idea of what to plan for because the weather forecast is never wrong…. right?
Pack according to what the forecast may bring your way! Too easy!
Use a Packing List
If you have read any of my other posts you know I am a list girl. I love my lists!
Using a packing list will help you to avoid making the cardinal mistake of forgetting the most obvious travel items. It doesn’t matter if you are a seasoned traveler or getting ready to take your first vacation, using a list will significantly decrease your stress level when it comes to packing!
Grab my favorite packing list here. It’s one page of important important items that you don’t want to forget when packing for your vacation. There’s a page of tips to keep close by when you’re packing too!
Casual to Cocktail: Dining Wardrobe Considerations
Whether you are a foodie or not, you will be hitting some restaurants while your are on your vacation. When planning what to pack be sure to do a little research on restaurants you would like to try.
If you are going to a nicer restaurant you will want to pack appropriately. Even theme parks have nicer restaurants that would require a bit more dressy attire than you may plan to wear for the rest of your trip.
It’s too easy to throw a simple cocktail dress into your suitcase. There are so many options that are wrinkle free too! The main point here is be prepared for what you PLAN to do. If you’re not into fine dining, no worries. Your normal wardrobe will suffice.
Capsule Wardrobe To Save Space Like a Pro
You may be asking yourself, “What is a capsule wardrobe?” Basically, this is a methodology of simple and intentional clothing choices that all work well together. In other words, your shirts, shorts, pants and skirts can all be interchanged to create different outfits.
As you are planning your wardrobe for your vacation pick out clothing items that can mixed with other things from your wardrobe.
The best way to do this is to start with what you KNOW you want to take. Lay them out on your bed. Then start adding clothes from your wardrobe that you mix and match easily. Important note: Don’t take clothes you aren’t comfortable in. If you take things you aren’t drawn to you won’t wear them. This leads to “not enough options” when you are getting ready for the day on your trip.
Be honest with yourself about what you will wear and what you will wear it with. You have your own unique style and this is NOT the time to change it.
First, let’s talk about picking out your shoes for the trip. Look back at what you have planned to do on your vacation. If you are planning to do a lot of walking be sure to pack some comfortable walking shoes.
Whatever you do, do NOT take brand new shoes with the idea they will be your “go-to” on this trip. Envision blisters, pain and misery… it’s not worth it. If you have some new shoes you want to take be sure to break them in ahead of your trip.
Next, consider how you will pack your shoes. I am a carry-on only woman myself. One too many times of my luggage getting sent somewhere other than where I am headed cured me of checking bags real quick!
There are a couple of ways to do this. If you do check bags consider packing your shoes and toiletries along with your hair care tools in one bag and all of your clothes in another.
I prefer to bag my shoes in the bottom of my carry-on luggage. Putting them in shoe bags ensures that your clothes stay clean and it also protects them a bit more inside your suitcase. Bed Bath and Beyond has some great options for travel shoe bags for any budget.
If you’re really in a pinch or don’t have time to grab some shoe bags use plastic bags from your grocer or department store for each shoe.
If you are flying be sure to check out my post on Travel Tips for Flying. It’s packed full of great tips related specifically to air travel.
Travel Compression Cubes
Travel compression packing cubes will make your life SO much simpler when you’re packing and traveling.
Not only can you fold your clothing items and pack a ton into a small space (your luggage), you can move them right into the dresser when you get where you’re going!
All of your clothing that you brought on your trip will be just as you packed it. This makes for even quicker prep in the mornings as you get ready to go enjoy your day.
You can fit a ton of clothes into these compression cubes if you fold creatively. That leads me to the next packing tip!
Fold the Marie Condo Way
There are several popular options for how you pack your suitcase. You can fold traditionally (least space efficient), lay everything flat (creates tons of wrinkles), the wrapping method (starting small and working your way up), the Army roll (literally rolling your clothing), and the Marie Condo way.
I have always been obsessed with organization and neatness. Marie Condo sparked some new ideas for me so I deviate slightly from her exact folds but she really helped me think outside the box on how I fold my clothes. When traveling, I have found the Marie Condo way works best for two reasons.
First, I have fewer wrinkles in my clothes. Second, when using compression packing cubes I can put my folded clothes right into the drawers at my hotel or vacation home without taking them out of the cube.
You are able to see every item of clothing and fit over double the amount of clothes in the same space as traditional folding. I’ve included a video below to illustrate some of her folds.
Packing Undergarments & Lingerie
There is nothing more frustrating than having expensive bras get wrinkles or have them become misshapen when traveling.
Luckily there is an easy fix for this! Padded bras get stacked in each other with the cups one inside the other. To keep the cup’s shape fill them with socks, underwear and lingerie. These things need to go with you too. You may as well make good use of the space AND preserve your expensive undergarments.
Want to give a little extra protection? Put your finished bra arrangement in a shoe bag to keep everything the way you packed it! It also keeps them a little more protected in the event of a TSA inspection on your bag if you’re checking it.
This is a quick easy solution and avoids the frustration of the appearance of misshapen boobs on your dream vacation!
Travel Laundry Bag
This is one of the simplest and most forgotten things in every travelers luggage.
A laundry bag! Think about it… do you really want your dirty clothes all over your clean clothes? Too easy. Just grab a travel laundry bag. You can find them literally anywhere. Here is one from Bed Bath and Beyond!
Travel Toiletry Bag: Prepped Ahead
Regardless of how often you travel having a travel toiletry bag ready to go at all times will save you forgetting to put your favorite (fill in the blank) as you pack for your trip. Not only that, it is one less thing you need to worry about!
I like to separate my travel essentials into two bags. One has makeup and the other has my skincare and razor, etc.
You can save a TON of space by having travel sized everything in these bags. My “go to” for toiletries and skin care for travel is filling them with my IPSY products! If you have never check them out definitely go do it now. These are high quality products and they are travel size!
The best part is, you can customize what you get from them and they come in a glam bag every month that is perfect for travel. AND it’s so affordable! I haven’t bought makeup apart from my IPSY shipment in years unless it was a special beauty product I was wanting to try. Definitely check it out. You won’t be sorry! See what IPSY can do for you!
They key for packing your toiletries is pack them in small glam bags so you can fit them where you have space rather than trying to make space for a huge bag that holds all of your skincare and makeup products.
Don’t Stress ~ Packing Tips Essential
You are about to take a trip or vacation so let yourself enjoy this! The reality is, if you forget something it’s not the end of the world. You will be able to find what you need. Yes, it may get a bit pricey but it’s not the end of the world.
You have probably spent a fair amount of money on your trip too. Take a deep breath and let yourself enjoy this vacation! Isn’t the point of getting away to relax, see and do something new and have a break from your day to day grind and just unwind?
Make the commitment to yourself to enjoy your trip, make great memories and be totally renewed!
13 Packing Tips to Pack Like a Pro
You want to look and feel great while on your vacation! Don’t let something as simple as how or what you packed derail your trip. Definitely don’t waste time stressing out over your trip. With a little planning, intentional choices with your wardrobe and a few key things to remember, you will be set to have a stress-free vacation.
This post was all about 13 packing tips to pack like a pro! No more stressing out over what to pack, how to pack it and forgetting the travel items you will need. You are headed out on an adventure so enjoy it!