Wednesday, February 4, 2009
A while back, I asked if you had any travel related questions for me, and I said that I'd answer then in a future blog post; this is that post. In my request for questions I received only one reply so I'll get to explore the answer to the question more fully than I had anticipated.
Robin Sue asked, "You must have packing down to a science, how do you pack? I would love some packing tips."
Before I get into my tips, some context will be helpful. I normally travel for business on trips that normally last between 3 and 6 days, but they can occasionally be up to 14 days. My work duties require that I check a medium-sized toolkit, and I also check a piece of personal luggage.
-Carry a good quality, rolling suitcase and a reasonably sized carry-on.
-Keep a dedicated set of travel toiletries if you travel frequently as this will speed your packing.
-Pack zip-tight freezer bags in case you want to bring something back that may leak, such as jam or even soiled underwear.
What to Pack
-Check the Weather of the destination to determine what special gear you may need to take with you.
-Always pack an extra pair of socks and an extra pair of underwear because you never know what might happen.
-Pack a wire coat hanger so that you can hang your clothes in the bathroom after a hot shower in order to steam the wrinkles out.
Packing for the trip
-Pack under the assumption that your checked bag will be delayed for one full day. Your carry-on should have all of the essentials that you'll need: a change of clothes, toothbrush, comb, razor. I even pack food, favorites include dried fruit, energy bars and chocolate.
-Make a list of each day of your trip along with what will be needed for each day. I usually break these into work/travel/leisure days as I wear different types of clothes on each of those types of days.
-Lay out your clothes to be sure that you have everything you'll need, checking items off the list as you go.
-Check your toiletries kit to see if you need to refill anything (ie: shampoo, razor blades, cotton balls, etc.)
-Pack tightly because things will shift and be compressed while in transit.
-Wrap any breakables well and pack them in your carry-on if possible. If this isn't possible, such as with a bottle of wine, wrap it well and pack it in the center of your suitcase. Placing a bottle of in a zip-top bag, wrapping it in a pair of jeans and then packing that in the center of the suitcase has worked well for me so far.
-Pack everything that you'll need upon checking in on the top, such as PJs and toiletries, so you wont have to do a lot of digging after a long day of travel.
Packing for the return
-Smaller bottles of liquid (local syrups, jams, etc.) can go into zip top bags and then be surrounded by clothes for padding.
-Pack used underwear and socks separately from everything else.
Well, Robin Sue, I hope that answers your question. If anyone out there has a favorite packing tip that you'd like to share, I'd love to hear it.
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