So many of us love to travel, but how many of us love packing our bags? Waiting until the last minute and then desperately trying to squeeze your bag shut is never a fun way way to start a trip. I’ve got a few simple ideas to maximize the space in your bag with things you already have around your house. There are lots of great products out there, but who wants to spend money on packing when you can spend it at your destination! Between the money you’re saving and the extra room in your bag you’ll be able to bring home all your travel treasures!
Tip 1: Clothes
- Create a capsule wardrobe for your trip.
- Simply put, a capsule wardrobe uses the minimum number of items to create the maximum number of choices. Pick clothes that are lightweight and coordinate well with each other. Using lots of neutrals and/or clothes in the same color family you’ll be able to use the same items to create lots of different looks. Bring fun scarves and jewelry to accessorize and you’re set.
- Once you’ve picked out what you’ll be bringing roll your clothes instead of folding them.
- Fold each item in half then carefully roll them before placing them into your suitcase. You’ll have a lot more space and your clothes are more likely to stay wrinkle free!
- Organize outfits in zip-top bags.
- This works wonders if you’re traveling with kids! Organize outfits by day including socks, underwear, tops, and bottoms and place them all in a ziplock bag. Large kids (adults can do this too!) will need gallon-sized bags while toddler and babies can use smaller quart-sized bags.
- Once everything is in the bag press out the extra air and seal the bag. This is going to save you even more space in your bag. You can label the bags by days or just let your kids pick what they’d like to wear.
- Bonus: You won’t have an entire suitcase worth of clothes flung around the hotel room while you’re 7-year-old looks for the outfit she wants to wear…and that’s a fact! haha
Tip 2: Liquids
- Transfer your liquids into smaller containers for travel.
- Contact lens cases or small containers from the craft store (mine are supposed to be used to make your own lipgloss) are perfect for week-long trips.
- After you’ve decanted all your liquids into small containers place them all in a quart-sized ziplock. So you’re ready to for airport security well ahead of time!
- Even if you’re not taking a plane using smaller containers makes traveling easier and helps you pack light.
- If you are checking a bag with an airline pack your liquids carefully inside the checked bag so they don’t leak. This will really simplify and shorten your visit with the TSA.
Tip 3: Jewelry
- Use a 3×5 notecard to hold all your earrings in one easy-to-see place. Poke them through the card and secure them with the backs. Then place the whole card into a snack-sized zip top bag and you’re set.
- For necklaces, lay out a washcloth and carefully place all your necklaces on the cloth leaving about an inch on each end of the washcloth. Carefully roll the washcloth and secure the ends with hair elastics.
Tip 4: Extra Bags
- Pack a garbage bag or two to hold your dirty clothes for the trip home.
- Grab a few extra zip top bags. They always come in handy for things like wet bathing suits, dirty shoes, and to keep small souvenirs together in your bag.
- Bring a lightweight reusable shopping bag that can fold into a small pouch.
- At the airport, use it as your personal item. It can hold your purse, snacks, a book or tablet, etc.
- At your destination, fold the bag up and keep it in your purse in case you need an extra bag while you’re sight-seeing or shopping.
Tip 5: Travel Documents
- If you’re traveling internationally make a digital copy of your passport and other important travel documents and email them to yourself, or store them in a secured/encrypted online cloud. You’ll be able to access them with any computer in the event that you lose the originals.
I shared all these tips on a fun segment I did on Fox 13 Utah’s The Place! The hosts of that show are super cute and so easy to talk to that being in front of a camera isn’t completely terrifying! Though I still totally stumble through…and I’m definitely not as adorable as they are. It’s fun to be a part of it! Check out my latest segment here.