By Jeremy Rochow | Video by Vanessa De Lorenzo
Last updated on: May 14, 2019 at 8:49 pm
While you might not have the skills of famous Japanese organising consultant Marie Kondo, that doesn’t mean you can’t pack like a pro when you take your next holiday.
Packing for an overseas adventure
When you’re travelling overseas for an extended period, you’re going to want to cram as much as possible in your suitcase without being over the weight limit. The question is: do you fold, roll, or just chuck your clothes in a suitcase at the last minute? The way you pack can make a big difference to the amount of space you use.
Scrunching your clothes will result in creases, while packing moments before you leave for the airport can end in tears when you realise you’ve forgotten your favourite bathers. Let’s explore some practical ways to pack for an overseas adventure.
Packing technique 1: Cubing
PROS: Packing cubes are a relatively new concept, and make it super easy to organise your clothes into separate compartments, with plenty of sizes to choose from. You can purchase a threepiece bag packer that’ll help you find particular clothes without making a mess of the rest of your luggage.
CONS: Packing cubes are an extra expense, but most people who purchase them say they pay for themselves quickly.
Packing technique 2: Folding
PROS: Folding is the quickest and easiest way to pack. You open a draw, grab your folded clothes and put them in your suitcase.
CONS: When folding, you’re more likely to crease your t-shirts and other thin clothing items. Folded clothes take up more room in your suitcase and leave fewer gaps for other items.
Packing technique 3: Rolling
PROS: If you roll, rather than fold your clothes, you’ll be able to find specific pieces easily, as they’ll be laid out in a row instead of stacked on top of each other. If you want to be even more organised, you can roll entire outfits together.
When you fill your suitcase with rolled clothes, you’l
Checking your weight
Have you ever stepped on the scales, jumped off, and then repeated the process while holding your bag to find out how much it weighs? This is an awkward manoeuvre that should be left to the likes of Olympic weightlifters.
If you’re overseas, you might not even have access to scales – you definitely don’t want to lug them around with you.
Weighing your luggage is now so much easier, with a variety of small, easy-to-pack travel scales. The Go Travel Digi Scales are so small they can fit in your pocket. With an LCD screen, you can get an accurate read of how much your bag weighs and no longer have to worry at check-in.
Packing chargers and gadgets
You arrive at your accommodation and look for your phone charger among your clothes. When you finally find it, it’s caught in a tangled mess of cables and five different adaptors.
This problem can be solved with a few different gadgets. If you can’t minimise your charging cables, it’s best to organise them. There are numerous tech cases available – ranging in price and size – that can store all those clumsy cables when you’re travelling.
If you’ve still got a zip-lock bag full of adaptors, it’s time to upgrade. The Jackson Worldwide Travel Adaptor will allow you to plug in your charger anywhere you travel – it even has USB ports so you can charge more than one device at a time.
Packing for a short getaway
You’ve booked a week away, purchasing a cheap ticket on one of those no-frills airlines where you’ve got to pay extra for check-in luggage. You want to pack a few different outfits, but you’re concerned about the 7kg carry-on luggage limit. Here are a few techniques that’ll help you stay under the weight limit.
Compartmentalising and rolling
Rolling your clothes is the way to go here as they’ll takes up less room in your suitcase and allow you to squeeze in those extra bits and pieces. You can also use smaller bags inside your suitcase – or even packing cubes – to separate clothing, shoes and toiletries.
Choosing your shoes
A pair of versatile sneakers and some thongs are probably enough. If you’re going hiking, it’s best to wear your boots on the flight as they’re heavier – the same applies if you’re taking formal shoes for a special event.
Rationing your liquids
Full-sized soaps, moisturisers and shampoos will take up too much room in your carry-on luggage – you won’t need that much for a short getaway anyway. Only take what you need, using a range of cabin bottles. The Squeeze It Trio will allow you to transport your toiletries easily in three 60ml colour-coded tubes. These bottles will fit perfectly in between your rolled clothes.
There’s nothing like relaxing with a hard copy book or magazine, but when you’re short on room, it’s best to go paperless. Load up your tablet with your favourite mags, books, movies and television shows before you jet off. If you’re worried about running out of battery, you can purchase a Go Travel Power Bank, which will fully charge your tablet or smartphone in less than two hours.
Implementing the 1-2-3-4-5-6 rule
The 1-2-3-4-5-6 rule is one of the simplest packing tips you’ll find. For a week-long trip, just pack:
- One hat
- Two pairs of shoes
- Three pairs of pants, skirts or shorts
- Four shirts
- Five pairs of socks
- Six sets of underwear
This list can be modified depending on your trip, but it’s a good place to start – you might want to add a couple of extra pairs of socks and underwear. If you need to wash as you travel, purchase a Go Travel Clothes Line, which makes it easy to hang up your clothes in your hotel room.
Choosing your luggage
Our first piece of advice – tailor your luggage to your trip. If you’re planning on backpacking around South-East Asia, you won’t want to take a huge suitcase, while those on a business trip won’t want to lug around a backpack. There are a few factors to consider before you go choosing your luggage.
- Think about the items you plan to bring. This will help you determine your ideal luggage type. Backpackers may want straps or pouches for sleeping bags, as well as tents and hiking poles. Business travellers might want a suitcase with an easily accessible laptop compartment.
- The size of your luggage is important. Limit yourself to what you can handle and check the weight limits for the airlines you’re travelling with.
- You should buy a suitcase that’s easily recognisable on the luggage carousel. Stay away from white or cream-coloured bags – they’re more likely to get dirty.
- Think about the material of your suitcase. Soft material cases are great for carry-on, as they will easily squeeze into the overhead locker, while hard cases are more durable and will keep your possessions safer.