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A suitcase is one of the most important items we take when traveling. It is so important that packing is often considered one of the most stressful parts of taking a trip. Not to mention how frustrated we can become to realize upon arrival that we left out something as basic as our phone charger. Not only do we need to consider the type of clothing to take for our chosen destination, but we also have to take into account what suitcases we have at our disposal to ensure all our things will actually fit! Therefore, we would like to propose some tips when it comes to selecting luggage and packing bags so that you will become experts in packing your suitcase in an optimal, fast and efficient way.

The first decision: What type of suitcase should we choose? This is a very important decision. Of course, a weekend getaway to the beach is not the same as a fifteen-day trekking trip in the mountains and a summer destination is far different from one where colder temperatures require a coat or an umbrella. It is fundamental to select a bag that is appropriate for the destination and the duration of the trip ahead.

Therefore, ask yourself these questions: how many days will I be traveling? Is it warm or cold where I am going? Large suitcase or carry-on? With these answers you will discover what type of luggage you will need. If you are just taking a weekend escape, then a small, well-organized suitcase should be more than enough. If you will be traveling for more than 4 or 5 days, it may be likely that a medium-sized suitcase is necessary, yet if you plan to be gone for more than 10 days, a large suitcase is your best option.

Summer weather destinations allow for lighter luggage, whereas cold weather destinations require coats and sweaters that occupy more space in your suitcase (however, these are necessary). There are three fundamental points you must take into account before packing your bag:

  1. Comfortable clothing that combines. Choose multipurpose clothing items that mix and match and can take you from day to night.
  2. Take clothing that you wear frequently, not items you wish you wore more often.
  3. Think about the items that were missing and those that were essential on your last trip. This will help you to quickly and efficiently pack your bag.

Tips for organizing and optimizing the space you have: we can use some simple tricks to better organize and transport our belongings, save space and make the return trip even easier.

  • Roll each item of clothing: it takes up less space and does not get as wrinkled – perfect!
  • Where to pack shoes? The best option is to do so at the back of the suitcase. A space-saving trick is to roll socks and underwear and put them in plastic bags inside your shoes.
  • Save time by using foldable hanging bags. Your clothes will be wrinkle-free and quickly organized during your trip.
  • What to do with so many cables? Bring a multi-charger. And if we don’t have one? Storing chargers and cables in a sunglasses case is a good way for them not to become tangled or lost.
  • If you travel often or want to be ready at a moment’s notice, you can keep a half-packed suitcase on hand with basic items such as socks, underwear, a pair of jeans and small toiletry bag.
  • If you have a suitcase with several pockets, try using them to store your toiletries, underwear, etc, leaving the central storage space for larger items such as shoes and clothes.
  • For business travelers, folding jackets inside out reduces wrinkling. Those should always be placed at the top of the suitcase, along with other suit items such as shirts, pants or skirts. Also, choose wrinkle-free fabrics to reduce wrinkling.
  • If an item of clothing requires special drying or ironing, it’s better to leave it at home.
  • Don’t pack a fresh outfit for each day of travel, as clothing can be combined or laundered during the trip.

And for the toiletry bag?

For personal toiletry items, we always recommend taking a small toiletry bag that can fit in your carry-on luggage. This will help us keep to the limited space and to do so, we have a few tips:

  • Use small containers. Do not carry along large bottles of shampoo, conditioner or lotions that you use on a regular basis.
  • Include essential items first, such as a toothbrush, comb or deodorant, followed by extras such as make-up, perfume or aftershave.
  • If you will be staying at a hotel, you can manage without shampoo or soap, as these are typically provided in the room.
  • If you expect to use a lot of one item, such as sunscreen, shampoo or conditioner, consider purchasing it at your destination.
  • Substitute liquid soap for a bar of soap.
  • Pack a microfiber towel which takes up less space and dries more quickly.

To conclude, we leave you with an interesting fact: according to a recent study by Opinion Matters in the United Kingdom, the items most frequently forgotten at home are a toothbrush and toothpaste, a mobile charger and adapter (in case one is needed). So be sure to keep these items in mind as you pack your bags!

Once we have our destination selected and our bags packed, the only thing left is to enjoy the trip!

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Note: cover photo of this post by  BubboEtsy.com (CC BY-NC 2.0)

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