Going on a trip can feel like a lot of work. Even when you’re trying to do it as a form of escape or a way to relax, it can be overwhelming to prepare for it. I often pack and repack, trying to make sure I have everything I need. After traveling quite a bit for the past few years, though, I’ve learned a few tricks that help me pack more quickly and efficiently.
Stick to a color scheme. While you’re traveling, you’ll have more possibilities for outfits if you can mix and match just about everything in your suitcase. Instead of packing exact outfits or just throwing in items and hoping for the best, choose items that you know will match with most of what you’re packing. Avoid packing items that only match with one other piece.
Make a master packing list. This can include all the items you normally pack so you don’t forget the basics. Depending on where you’re going, the exact items you’ll pack will likely change, but that doesn’t mean you won’t typically have certain types of items you always need to pack, such as toiletries or basic clothing items.
Cross items off after you’ve packed them. This will be particularly helpful if you’re packing over the course of a few days. Once you’ve packed the right number of shirts or socks or have packed the book you’re currently reading, check it off your list. This will help keep you from overpacking because you’ll actually be sure about what you have or haven’t packed yet.
Lay out items before putting them in your suitcase. This way, you’ll be able to look at everything you want to pack beforehand. This will allow you to make sure you’re sticking to the right color scheme, and you’ll be able to visualize some of the potential outfits you’ll wear. You’ll also be able to glance around and make sure you have the exact items you want to pack.
Use packing cubes. These have made a huge difference in my life. It’s so much easier for me to keep track of where everything is when I’ve packed all my clothes in packing cubes. I can see everything pretty easily, and all my clothes stays organized.
Be realistic. Keep in mind how you normally dress for the types of activities you’ll be doing on your trip. If you don’t normally feel comfortable wearing something, that’s not going to change when you’re on vacation. Instead of trying out new styles, stick to your go-to outfits and pieces of clothing.
Whether you’re packing for a weekend trip or you’ll be gone for a few weeks, it’s possible to be organized about how and what you pack. If you end up using any of these tips, please let me know!