The Ultimate Guide To Packing Like A Pro

Packing suitcase

©istockphoto/alexeys

Traveling is awesome, there’s no doubt about it. What makes it even more awesome? Knowing how to pack like a professional globetrotter. Avoid overstuffed suitcases, wrinkled clothes, leaky bottles, and all of those other irritating but seemingly inevitable annoyances with our guide to assembling a top notch travel kit.

Plan Ahead
Before you even start the packing process, you’re going to want a game plan. Sit down with a weather report for your intended destination, a pad of paper, and a pen and start drafting a list of everything you want to bring. Once you’ve finished, go through what you’ve written and edit as much as you can. For instance, you probably don’t need that second pair of stilettos. Be sure to include easily forgotten items like toothpaste, dental floss, and prescription medication. Now, put together a final draft and check off each item as it goes into your suitcase. Pack the list itself so that when you’re heading back home, you’ll know that nothing has been left behind.

Choose Your Bag Wisely
The key to any stellar packing job is starting with the perfect suitcase. You can’t expect to put together a top notch travel kit if you’re working with a sub par foundation. When picking out a suitcase for your next trip, consider your needs. If you’re the type of traveler who doesn’t have a problem paring down, you’re probably fine without a massive wheeled contraption. On the other hand, if you find it hard to travel light, a sleek carry-on may not serve you particularly well. If you fall into the former category, try something along the lines of Toursafe LS21, a compact wheeled carry-on that won’t weigh you down but doesn’t skimp on features. If you’re firmly planted in the latter group, the LS29 is probably just what you’ll need. Tons of compartments to keep you organized, ingenious anti-theft features, and enough room to accommodate all of your spoils, it’s the ideal way to keep things under control and efficient.

Start Big
Now that you’ve narrowed down your packing list, it’s time to start loading up your suitcase. Start by rounding up the heaviest items you’ve got (think shoes, power adapters, hair dryers etc) and laying them at the bottom of your bag. They will essentially serve as the base of your luggage and any unoccupied space around them can be filled by smaller things like belts, socks, and other accessories. Word to the wise: cover your shoes in disposable shower caps before packing them so that you keep surrounding items clean and germ-free.

Secure Your Liquids
Nothing ruins even the most efficiently packed bag like a massive liquid leak. A bottle of shampoo is great to have but not when it’s soaking through your favorite cashmere sweater. First and foremost, always decant your liquids into smaller bottles before you start packing. There’s no sense in dragging an economy sized container of body wash across an ocean unless you’re sure that you won’t be able to buy any once you’ve reached your destination. Next, store bottles in heavy-duty freezer bags to ensure that if a lid comes loose, the only mess you’ll have will be contained and easy to deal with. Take note, leaks can come from unexpected sources like tubes of lip gloss and pens. It’s always better to be safe than sorry.

Roll, Don’t Fold
It may seem like folding your clothes before packing them is the most sensible way to go but as it turns out, it’s a surefire way to end up short on space and big on wrinkles. When getting your holiday wardrobe organized, roll each piece to maximize efficiency and avoid ending up at your destination needing a one-on-one session with a steamer. For more delicate pieces (think silks and other fine fabrics), try wrapping them in tissue paper in order to keep them extra safe. You’ll find that by using this method, you’ll be able to fit more things into a smaller space and you’ll save yourself a lot of hassle once it’s time to unpack

Separate Your Valuables
It may seem obvious but it bears repeating- never, ever pack high-value items in your checked luggage. It’s really just not worth the risk. If you absolutely must travel with expensive pieces, keep them on your person at all times. For things like travel documents, airline tickets, and cash, consider using an anti-theft wallet or travel organizer. For jewellery, a portable safe is probably your best bet. It’s also worth considering an anti-theft strap for your camera, just to be extra cautious.

Kate Walker

Who is Kate Walker? She’s a freelance writer, yoga addict, and citizen of the concrete jungle. When not on the mat, Kate can be found at the dog park or on the dock in Muskoka. She is also pretty fond of running, skiing, and Settlers of Catan.