When you go on holiday do you ever find as soon as you get there you wished you had packed all the things you left at home? Yeah, that’s me. Packing is hard, especially if you are only bringing carry on – so not only are you limited on weight, space isn’t on your side either. So how can we pack everything we want to bring without upsetting the gate staff? I’ve been a well seasoned air traveller, so I have a few tips and tricks to share, which is also appropriate since I jet off to Spain this week. Have a read of my guide to packing!
Choose a suitcase that has no compartments inside
I have so many small cabin size suitcases that look cute, but when you open them they are full of zip compartments that take up valuable clothes space. Yes, it’s nice to separate your undies and socks into a zipped up area but you are better off with what is basically a shell on the inside. You can fit so much more. Your undies and socks can be squished in your shoes.
Minimise the toiletries
I have a strict skincare routine that I cannot deviate from. But, they are all in containers over 100ml. I decant what I can into travel size containers (Penneys make a set for €1.50/£1) that are secure for facial wash etc. Moisturisers and serums are put into small stackable containers (Boots have the best ones). What I do not pack are shampoos, hair sprays etc. I get those when I arrive as I tend to wash my hair more in the sun. I know it’s lovely to have all your premium brands with you, but for two weeks your hair will be fine. The only hair product I pack is some Moroccan Oil in travel size to keep it hydrated.
I generally want to bring my entire makeup kit -but can’t. So look at what doubles up. A highlighter can also work as an eye shadow, and a multi use product for lips and cheeks is also handy. One thing I am packing is Charlotte Tilbury’s Instant Palette which has eyes, cheeks, contour and highlight in one palette. I may only bring one small dark colour for night time eyes. Choose one lipstick for all occasions, as well as a lip pencil and stick to those. I save up my mini mascaras from deals I buy from brands over the summer, and they sometimes also have smaller versions of cleaners too. The rule really goes, you can only use what you bring.
I also buy my sunscreen when I get there too!
To fit more in, roll your clothes rather than fold. Then “stack” them beside each other. You’ll be surprised at how much you can fit in. Just be mindful that carry on is generally 10kg! Pack your shoes first, with all your underwear and socks in them where possible. Then go for heavy items like shorts and anything denim. Finish with your tees and tops!
The shoe decision – two is plenty!
I know I actually admitted to bringing only two pairs of shoes. When I travel I wear runners; so I have those for days out walking. I also like to run a lot on holiday, so I wear the shoes that I will also jog in. I then pack one pair of casual sandals (I love Birkenstocks) and one other pair of flats, like Ballerina pumps or a small wedge that can be for day or night. I choose neutral colours that will match everything I pack.
Other key items
I bring one small bag for the day, like a cross body which fits things like my wallet and camera. I also bring a hat, but one that can be folded so it doesn’t lose shape in the case. I love to read on holidays but I devour books, so I invest in a Kindle that I can have as many books as I like, and it has an anti glare screen for reading in the sun. For swimwear, I bring two – a bikini and a one piece that I can rinse out and reuse.
And most importantly, DON’T forget your passport and any travel documents – check those before you leave the house!