Bon Voyage: Luggage and Travel Organizing
With January comes an influx of vacation plans. Trips are an exciting way to kick off the new year and this blog intends to make sure your adventure is nothing but fun!
Read through these tips for organizing your next vacation!
Itinerary and Travel Prep
A great vacation comes down to great planning. You don’t need to be a professional organizer (although it helps!), you just need to think it through and give yourself enough time. Keep these ideas in mind:
- Keep all documents in one spot (flight confirmations, passports, boarding passes, hotel bookings, car rental confirmations etc.) with easy access and secure them in the hotel safe when you arrive at your destination
- When booking longer vacations, check out the laundry situation in your Airbnb, hotel, cruise ship etc. This is a great way to lighten your luggage!
- Pick your travel outfit carefully:
– Airports – consider security and the check-in process. Limit the metal and jewellery on your outfit, and wear jackets, shoes and accessories that are easy to remove and put back on
– Car rides – comfort above all!
- Note all regular appointments and commitments in your life and reschedule the ones you’ll be missing, such as:
– Arranging care for your pets and plants
– Reschedule landscapers, cleaners, etc.
- Take care of all your ‘closing up shop’ tasks 1-2 days before, like:
– Change your email signature and answering machine message
– Notify bank and credit card company of travel plans
– Setting alarms
- If you have trouble sleeping on planes or car rides, plan ways to help you relax easier, like comfy clothes, a sleep mask, neck pillow or soothing music
- Research your specific destination and the unique needs required
– Locations outside of Canada and the USA will usually need a universal adapter
– Humid climates need lighter clothing, whereas colder climates need more layers
– Proper currency
- Most importantly, be flexible. Things rarely go exactly as planned, but with back up ideas and a positive attitude, that doesn’t have to be a bad thing
Packing your luggage for a vacation is the toughest challenge, so once you have that down pat it’s smooth sailing! Try these packing tips to save room and keep things light.
- Roll your clothes instead of folding them, it creates way more room in your luggage!
– Try rolling up clothes into ready-made outfits (socks, underwear, pants and shirt rolled together) for easy access OR keep socks, shirts, pajamas etc. sorted together
- Creating a list of what you need to pack is a huge help and makes it less likely you’ll forget something
- Pack most of your things a couple days before leaving so that the night before you can look at everything with fresh eyes
- Layers are key – this keeps you covered for any unexpected temperature shifts
- Try limiting yourself to just one luggage piece and carry-on. Ladies: try to combine your purse and carry-on together!
- Make your carry-on a Mary Poppins bag, with a little of everything you need for emergencies. We recommend including:
– Passport and itinerary confirmations
– A small first aid kit with bandages, Gravol and painkillers
– A few snacks
– Light entertainment/time-killers like Sudoku, crosswords, a book or even Candy Crush
– Ear plugs and sleep mask
- Pack your socks inside shoes (space saver)
- Pack light! How often do you go on a trip and only wear half of what you pack?
- Only pack necessities – most hotels will offer basic amenities like hair dryers, soap, shampoo and conditioner, bath robes, towels and more. No need to take up space with that bulky hair dryer!
- Don’t forget the techno items like your camera, phone charger, headphones and any other gadgets
- Use sectioned bags/areas to organize your suitcase. Separate compartments by shirts, socks, undergarments, sweaters, pants and toiletries
- Pack some plastic bags for ‘just in case’ scenarios, like dirty laundry, leaking shampoo bottles or grabbing some lunch time snacks from the breakfast bar
- Be smart with your wardrobe – layers, versatile colours and no more than 2 pairs of shoes
Dos and Don’ts
Follow these dos and don’ts from travel experts to make your vacation more enjoyable.
- Do wear loose shoes on the plane (otherwise avoid taking them off); altitude swelling is real!
- Do walk around on the plane, even if just for one bathroom trip. Even short plane rides can throw off your system
- Do take breaks on long car rides too; it helps you stay sane, healthy and upbeat!
- Do check the weather during the week before you leave, ideally a few days before; the weather can change
- Do learn a few handy phrases in the native language where you’re going (please and thank you go a long way!)
- Do make copies of important documents like your passport and store them separately from the originals
- Do pack extras in your carry on (imagine a scenario where your luggage gets lost – pack what can help you get by for 24 hours)
- Don’t enter confidential information like bank account log-ins while using free public WIFI
- Don’t keep your cash and cards in the same spot
- Do bring a golf or tennis ball in your carry-on (rolling one under your foot during a long plane ride does wonders to relieve any tension or swelling)
Now that that’s all taken care of, you can start getting really excited to take off! Get in touch for more advice on pulling off a well-organized vacation.