Monday, June 3, 2013

Stress-Free Packing Tips

With nearly every airline charging fees for checked baggage these days, more and more savvy travelers are opting to use carry-on bags. It can be tricky to fit all of your belongings in a compact carry-on, so we’ve gleaned some tips from the experts to take the stress out of packing: 

  • Plan accordingly: One to two weeks before your trip, take a look at your itinerary and create a packing list that takes into consideration all of the activities you’ll be doing and places you’ll be visiting. A good list will make the packing process go smoothly and will ensure you don’t forget anything!
  • Forget folding—roll your clothes: Rolled clothes take up less space than folded ones, allowing you to utilize more space in your carry-on bag. As an added bonus, travel expert Caroline Costello points out that the rolling technique decreases the likelihood you’ll end up with wrinkled clothes when you arrive at your destination!
  • Streamline your liquids: If you’ve taken a flight in the last decade, you should be aware of TSA’s 3-1-1 rule for carry-ons: each passenger is allowed to bring one quart-sized, clear zip-top bag containing liquids, aerosols and gels stored in 3.4 ounce bottles or less (by volume). Most drug stores and pharmacies carry travel-sized toiletries that meet TSA requirements, or you can fill empty bottles with your favorite products. If you’re still having trouble whittling down your liquid allotment, try finding solid alternatives. For example, travel blogger Caroline Morse suggests bringing cleansing face cloths instead of liquid face wash.
  • Make the most of your personal item: Most airlines allow passengers to bring one personal item in addition to a carry-on bag. Travel blogger Caroline Morse advises travelers to use a large tote bag as your personal item. Not only does a tote bag give you extra storage, it also keeps essentials like medications and cell phone chargers and close at hand during the flight.
  • Expect the unexpected: Traveling can be unpredictable. Be prepared for split seams or the occasional loose button with a small sewing kit. Stain remover pens are great for minor spills. And in the midst of an unanticipated downpour, you’ll never regret packing a travel-sized umbrella and/or a rain jacket! 

With these tips, you should be well prepared for your next adventure!

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