If you are like just most other women, every time you come back from a trip after paying an extra baggage fee, you always resolve to pack light next time! But like most New Year resolutions,this also ends up being just a resolution! How often have we grappled over the wardrobe choices lying on our floors, trying to squeeze an extra pair of heels to your overflowing suitcase hours before heading out of the door to the airport? How often do we have to leave behind a souvenir that we absolutely loved because our suitcases were bursting at the seams? If you answered yes to either one of the two, read on!
“If you wish to travel far and fast, travel light. Take off all your envies, jealousies, un-forgiveness, selfishness and fears” – Cesare Pavese
We believe that we can also add a lot more to that list. Having travelled a lot in the continental United States, where it costs a mini-fortune to check in bags on flights, some of us have finally mastered a few tricks that helps us to pack an entire month’s worth of clothes in a carry-on! To all the collected gasps that the sentence above evoked, yes we know it’s almost used for your make-up or your laptops and other gadgets, but it’s achievable! And yes, you may even have space for the above mentioned heels or the lusted after souvenirs! All it requires is a bit of organization and planning and all your worries about losing your bags in transit or having to drag your luggage around will vanish in to the thin air!
As George Clooney once said in the movie “Up in the Air”, always get behind the Asians (while in an airport security line)! So here are some wise words from four (ASIAN) friends who wish to see the whole world with just a carry-on bag!
We always pack some great basics that go with everything! I agree that style is personal, but it does not have to translate to a wardrobe change for every pic to be uploaded on FB! But we also pack a statement piece for the night outs, be it our favorite pair of heels or the favorite dress. Always lay out your clothes in front of you and check what can be paired with what and what’s needed to be absolutely packed and what you do not need. Whenever in doubt, leave it behind, you most certainly will not be wearing it! One can never ever underestimate the power of a simple tee or shirt which will help you to look chic. Look for inspiration from the Parisian women for simple yet chic dressing! You can always wear your old jeans and shirt with your heels (a’ la Emmanuelle Alt) and voila, you have a new outfit!
Like Carrie Bradshaw, we all have a “shoe problem”. No matter how many we buy, we always are never satisfied. And before every trip, we spend hours to decide with which ones to take with us and which one to leave behind. So, to satisfy the inner Carrie in all of us, we always pack our favorite pair of neutral heels for every trip (but just one PAIR, not two, it’s your favorite for a reason, so ladies don’t let the second best fool you). Then, we throw along a pair of sneakers or flats for the sightseeing. If you prefer comfort while travelling, you can just wear this to the plane, you might also have you space to fit in your other pair of heels or flats!
Our handbags most often double up as our make-up, tablet, e-reader or camera bag. At times, it even holds an extra purse for any special occasion. The key is to utilize all the space you have, and it’s better if you clear all the junk that had accumulated (say old receipts, useless pennies etc.) in your handbag over the years. You will be surprised by the amount of stuff that you can fit in most handbags. Unless, you absolutely need a laptop, leave it behind. Remember that escaping from work is why you are taking a vacation in the first place!
We always roll our clothes and never fold them! You will be surprised by the space that this simple act will create in your carry-on. This will also save you the hassle of carrying an iron box to smooth out those wrinkles in your clothes.
We pack heavier items, like jeans or pants (which cannot be rolled) at the bottom of the bag. Always ask yourself if you really need five pairs of jeans for a week-long journey? Always pack with the intention of eliminating things that you do not need, instead of packing things that you might need!
When travelling in winter, we always wear your coats or heavy jackets on the plane, packing them only adds unnecessary bulk. Also it saves us from being cold in the plane and airports. If you are travelling to a cold country or vice versa, always wear layers, if you want to avoid carrying a jacket.
Though it’s redundant to mention, but we pack toiletries enough for a day or two’s use, not more! You get most stuff at the hotels for free or you can buy them at the local drug store after arriving at your destination. If you are travelling in a group, it’s a good idea to coordinate with your friends and carry stuff that everyone can use; like you can pack the sunscreen, someone else can pack the curling or straightening iron or even the toothpaste unless you suffer from an acute case of germaphobia like Sheldon Cooper!
Always pack your underwear or special items of clothing like socks or jewelry in packing bags or cubes, it will save you the embarrassment of seeing your panties being flipped out of the bag in the case a security officer checks your bag or your bag’s zip gives away.
Finally, and most importantly, just remember that “Travel is the best way to get lost and found at the same time” (Brenna Smith). So, just relax, have a drink and be ecstatic at this opportunity to get lost in a new city. Hopefully you will have the smug grin of the light traveler who glides through the security with these tips in mind!
If the post above has helped you, I am sure the infographic below will help you even more! Let us know!