I find packing to be one of the most fascinating aspects of travel that so many people seem to get very very wrong. The thing is that once you get it wrong, more often than not the only way to make it better is to throw either your bag away and get a new one, or to discard things that you don’t need. This is of course a waste, so getting it right the first time is very important. This guide will talk not only about fitting more in your luggage, but also some other important considerations before you even get to packing itself.
This is a huge consideration and the number one thing you need to consider. I know a lot of people just take what they have when it comes to piece of luggage, but this can be a huge mistake that will surely end up in tears. A good quality bag can really help you when fitting more into your luggage.
The first thought is of course the type of holiday you go on, of course if you are backpacking through Asia you don’t want to be carrying a suitcase. A backpack is much more practical and easier to carry over a longer distance. On the other hand you may be on a short trip and you may only need a very small bag that you can easily transport. This is also important for people that take a lot of business trips.
Personally I like to go with something that has pockets to allow me to separate different things that I take with me. For example a slot for my laptop and lots of smaller slots for things that I use often. This makes it easier to access the things that you need the most, rather than fishing around for them in your entire bag. The most painful thing is seeing people doing this in an airport with all their belongings spread across the floor!
The right technique for packing
Packing the right way is something that is very easy once you know how, but quite difficult to explain. I did, however, find a really great video that illustrates everything that I want to put into this article in a very short video and you can watch it on YouTube here.
This video shows you how to pack a small bag, but all the basics will apply to larger bags too. I find this to be a very good way to pack and uses some simple structure to fit everything in.
Taking the right things
It is important to take the right things when you travel and not things that you won’t use. I hear so many people laughing about things that they didn’t even use on their trip, particularly as they are unpacking. I find that these types of things are just dead weight that you carry for the entire time. By minimising these things that you don’t need, then you can make your trip much more hassle free and therefore enjoyable. My rule of thumb is that if you might use a particular item on your trip, then don’t take it, because these tend to be the items that you laugh about taking with you in the end. You should be interested in only things that you will use.
Another thing that I like to do is to make a list of things I that I absolutely need and things I want to take, but might not necessarily need. I can then make the list smaller from there. Of course I don’t need five pairs of jeans when traveling to Europe in the summer!
Of course the final thing to remember that leaving a little room gives you the opportunity to shop for some souvenirs. Happy packing and enjoy your next trip!